Exercises of the week:
Week 1: Plank
Start off easy and increase throughout the week. You can add it into your strength training routine. It has great variations in case you are one who easily gets bored. For example, there are side planks, hip-dips, and alternate shoulder taps.
Week 2: Lunges
Lunges are a fabulous exercise for runners. It strengthens key running muscles as well as can act as a stretch if your hip flexors (front of your hip) are tight! Once again there are variations for this as well including side lunge and reverse lunge knee ups!
Week 3: Step ups
As with the past two exercises step ups have a couple of way where you can throw in some variation. For example, you can add weight or change the height of the step you are using. This exercise is great for increasing overall strength and balance but you work on one leg at a time so make sure to do equal amounts on each leg to keep them even. It helps develop the muscles in your lower body and also helps to solve any overall imbalances between your two legs. It can also help you become more explosive.
Week 4: Superman
Our independence weekend special… The Superman exercise targets and strengthens the lower back muscles. This not only helps in our overall goal to strengthen our core to improve our running but also helps if you are seated for long periods of time during the day.
Week 5: Bridge
This exercise strengthens your entire core, lower back muscles and glutes. Makes sure your knees and feet are shoulder width apart and push through your heels!
Week 6: Frog Crunches
This is a toad[al] core exercise!
Week 7: Wall Sits
Sit for Strength… Wall Sits are a great way to engage almost your entire lower body. Your glutes, calves and quads are all sure to feel it. Sit with your back flush to the wall and your knees at a 90 degree angle.
Week 8: Pike Crunch
Pike fish are predatory fish with large teeth. While this exercise isn’t going to increase your tooth size it will help you in your journey to a lean, mean, fighting machine. Start lying on your back with your legs straight and together. Lift your legs up bringing them towards your torso as you lift your torso towards your legs, reaching for your toes.
Week 9: Mountain Climbers
Mountain Climbers are a full body workout that can help you climb up to wellness. Starting from a pushup position bring one of your knees up towards your chest, return to the original position and then bring the other knee towards your chest. Continue to alternate for a predetermined amount of time. As you get more comfortable with the exercise you can try increasing your speed!
Week 10: Windshield Wipers
Wash away all that’s covering that strong core! Lie on your back on the floor and raise your legs 90 degrees. Spread your arms straight out to your sides for support. Rotate your legs to one side, stopping short of touching the floor. Rotate to the other side. As you improve, bring your arms closer in to your body so they offer less stability. For more of a challenge you can straighten your legs or doing hanging windshield wipers!
Week 11: Flutter/Scissor Kicks
Cut into your abs with these scissor kicks. They work your hip flexors, lower abs, and leg muscles. Lay flat on your back with your hands under your buttocks for support. Keep your feet close to the ground, no more than 6 inches above.
Week 12: Side Plank
Side planks are incredibly beneficial for stabilization of our spine and so many other things. To do lay on your side with your elbow directly below your shoulder and lift up, hold it then switch over to the other side and repeat.
Week 13: Donkey Kicks
Kick your glutes into action. Many of us are very hamstring dominant so it’s always good to do exercises that target our glutes like Donkey Kicks. Get on all fours so that your hands are shoulder width apart and your knees are straight below your hips. Keep your knee bent and lift one leg up behind you until it is in line with your body and your foot is parallel to the ceiling. Lower it back down and repeat with the other leg.