Overuse injuries are a common problem among people who run regularly or competitively. The failure to adequately warm up for a run and a lack of resistance training are the primary causes in many cases. If you struggle with frequent injuries, consider that adding strength and resistance training can reduce the risk of injury by 50 percent. It also increases your performance by shaving off time, improving your physical endurance, and giving you the ability to sprint towards the end of a race.
Resistance and Training Exercises to Incorporate in Your Warm Up
According to a June 2016 edition of Runner’s World, the following exercises can help you achieve the outcomes stated above:
- Planks: With your feet several inches apart, prop yourself up on your elbows and make sure that you properly align your body. Your shoulders should be directly above your elbows and your abdominal muscles should feel tight. Remain in this position for at least 45 seconds and repeat it three to five times. You can increase both the time and the repetitions as you get stronger. Planks work your lower back, shoulders, and core.
- Scorpion: Place your feet on a bench and get yourself into a push-up position. Next, bring your right knee towards your left shoulder. Then rotate your hips upwards and to the left as far as possible and switch directions by rotating your hips upwards and to the right. Lastly, attempt to bring your right foot to your left shoulder. Although your foot and shoulder won’t touch, the stretching action increases your strength. One repetition is about 30 seconds and you can aim for as many as you can comfortably complete. The scorpion works your core and shoulders.
- Back extensions: You will need a stability ball to complete this exercise. Lie face down on the stability ball with your legs spread about two feet apart to maintain good balance. For initial support, place your hands lightly on the ground and make sure your elbows are bent. Next, lift your torso upwards and squeeze your glutes. Bring your elbows over your head and hold for two seconds. Repeat this at least 10 times. Back extensions work your glutes, lower and middle back, and shoulders.
Also known as jump training, plyometrics involves a series of hops and jumps. You might decide to jump over cones, onto a bench, jump rope, or any other form of jumping that works for you. Plyometric training stretches your muscles and makes them stronger, both of which are essential for excellent running performance.
We’re Here to Help
Whether you have recently taken up running or have been running competitively for years, we encourage you to work with one of our trainers to improve your strength and speed. Being in good shape is essential for runners as well, so consider giving yourself the gift of membership at Cape Carteret Aquatic and Wellness if you haven’t already. With 24-hour access to our gym, you can work on improving your strength and stamina whenever it’s convenient for you.