Monthly Workout Round Up – Dynamic Warm Up

It’s time again for the monthly workouts for runners round up, in which I, Angela, Allie, Laura, Nellie and Sarah share workouts for runners based on a monthly theme. This month we have five great dynamic warm up workouts for you, not six, as Sarah is busy prepping for the Run Rise Retreat this week (you can follow the account on Instagram to see what happens when a bunch of women running bloggers get together for the weekend!).

A dynamic warm up is your secret weapon to maximize running performance and avoid injury. Try one of these 5 great dynamic warm up workouts, part of the monthly workouts for runners series, written by runners, for runners.

So – dynamic warm ups…what are they? Do you need to do them? And why?

Honestly, I think warming up is one of the most discussed and least performed aspects of running. There are plenty of people who count their first mile as their warm up, as the kinks get loosened out of their running form. There are lots of people who do static stretching before their run or race, thinking that stretching their muscles is a good way to warm up. But most of our bloggers this month will tell you a dynamic warm up is the best way to prepare your body for a run.

A dynamic warm up uses dynamic exercises to warm up your muscles for movement. Unlike stretching, which lengthens your muscle fibers (not exactly conducive to having them do work), dynamic exercises activate the muscles used in running, as well as increasing blood flow, lubricating your joints, elevating your heart rate and raising your body temperature. Dynamic warm ups can be done quickly, in 5 or 10 minutes, and can even be followed with some strides before getting to your running workout for the day. As well as being the best way to prepare your body for running, they are also important for injury prevention.

When Should You Do a Dynamic Warm Up?

Before every run, is the short answer, but there are times they are more important than others.

  • When it’s cold outside. Cold temperatures outdoors mean your muscles will take longer than usual to get warm when you go running. Do a variation of one of these dynamic warm up workouts before you head out, when you’re still indoors in the warmth.
  • When you have a tough workout. Ideally, you would warm up even for a long run, or a recovery run. But when you’re asking your body to do something especially challenging, like an interval workout, or running hills, you’ll get your best results when you’ve prepped your muscles with a dynamic warm up.
  • Before a race. The shorter the race, the more important your workout becomes. You want your muscles to be firing and ready for the first step across the line. In bigger races, you will likely find yourself stuck in a corral waiting for the start, so do your dynamic warm up and some running, then when you get into your corral take some of the exercises from one of these workouts that you can do in one small space.

A dynamic warm up is your secret weapon to maximize running performance and avoid injury. Try one of these 5 great dynamic warm up workouts, part of the monthly workouts for runners series, written by runners, for runners.

Do one set of each of these movements in order, either 1 minute each, or 15 repetitions of each. That makes this a very short (six minutes at most!) warm up you can easily do before every workout. Once you’re stuck in your corral before a race, you should have room to continue with some knee hugs, butt kicks and possibly the lateral lunge leans.

KNEE HUGS

In a standing position, raise one knee up and reach your hands to grab your shin as you pull your knee into your chest. Alternate sides.

KNEE DRIVES

This is like an exaggerated running stride – From standing, lunge one leg back, then drive your knee up as you pull your opposite elbow in to meet it.

BUTT KICKS

Like running in place, except you are kicking your heels up behind you, as if you were trying to kick your own butt. 🙂

LEG SWINGS

Rest a hand lightly for balance on a tree or a fence, then swing your straight leg back and forth, using momentum and getting your hips warmed up. You can also do some lateral leg swings, again swinging your straight leg from side to side in front of your standing leg.

LATERAL LUNGE LEANS

Get into a lateral lunge position, then lean into a lunge on the other side and back to the start. Continue alternating between sides, really engaging your glutes.

CURTSY LUNGES

Lunge one foot back and across behind you, alternating sides. If you’re feeling warm by now, you can also add in a little hop between sides to raise your heart rate.

But no need to get bored with just one dynamic warm up routine! Try one of the other fantastic workouts in this month’s round up!

First up check out Laura’s full body dynamic warm up:

A dynamic warm up is your secret weapon to maximize running performance and avoid injury. Try one of these 5 great dynamic warm up workouts, part of the monthly workouts for runners series, written by runners, for runners.

Nellie has a great workout designed to engage your glutes:

A dynamic warm up is your secret weapon to maximize running performance and avoid injury. Try one of these 5 great dynamic warm up workouts, part of the monthly workouts for runners series, written by runners, for runners.

Allie is dropping a bombshell about dynamic warm ups on her blog. You don’t want to miss it! And I can’t NOT mention her killer shoulders in this pin:

A dynamic warm up is your secret weapon to maximize running performance and avoid injury. Try one of these 5 great dynamic warm up workouts, part of the monthly workouts for runners series, written by runners, for runners.

And finally Angela give you a warm up to get you ready to race:

A dynamic warm up is your secret weapon to maximize running performance and avoid injury. Try one of these 5 great dynamic warm up workouts, part of the monthly workouts for runners series, written by runners, for runners.

Okay, spill – do you do dynamic warm ups before running or racing? What exercises do you incorporate?

Why Running Is Like Therapy

Why Running is Like Therapy - how running can improve your mental health and your every day happiness.

There are so many reasons I go for a run. I might be training for an event and have a planned run to get me that much closer to my goal. Occasionally I just feel slothful and low energy and I head out for a run just to get myself moving. But mainly, these days, while I'm not training for anything in particular, I've realized running has … [Continue reading]

Why You Need to Run Fast

Whether you're chasing a PR or not, speed work benefits EVERY runner. If you've been unsure about adding speed workouts to your training, here are 6 reasons why you should start now!

Everyone needs to run faster. No, don't worry, I'm not judging anyone for their pace, or suggesting that a faster time in a race is somehow better. What I mean is, to become a better, stronger runner, you should be incorporating faster running and speed work in your weekly training. Speed workouts should be a part of your training routine, … [Continue reading]

Summer in Vermont

Summer in Vermont

This was the first summer I've spent out of NYC in 15 years. New York in the summer is a love hate relationship. The city empties out as people head to the Hamptons or on vacation, so suddenly you can get a table anywhere and everything is less crowded. There's a lot of rosé drinking, ice cream eating, and evening strolling. There … [Continue reading]

Monthly Workout Round Up – Core Workouts for Runners

Core Workouts for Runners - six core workouts designed for runners, by runners. A strong core is the key to being a faster, stronger runner.

Once upon a time, the words "core exercises" used to make me cringe. One of my clients still remembers me telling her, "You are not an apple," when she first told me she really wanted to work on her core. To work on your "core" to me brought forth countless infuriating articles in women's health and fitness magazines, with their hundreds of … [Continue reading]

Why Running Blogs are Every Runner’s Best Friend

Why Running Blogs are Every Runner's Best Friend

I'm so excited to share a guest post from my running blogger friend Ellen today. I love reading her blog, Tale of Two Runs, because when reading her posts, you can honestly feel her love of running and enthusiasm for the sport and the running community. Right now Ellen is training for her first full marathon and it's so fun to catch up on her … [Continue reading]

High Five Friday

High Five Friday - starting off the weekend with some happy news, great reads, positivity and good vibes.

Hola my lovelies and happy Friday! It's time to share good times, good reads and things making me feel good from the week - because a little bit of positivity never went astray, right? I'm linking up with Angela, so you should check out her blog for more high five posts. HIGH FIVE FROM INSTAGRAM You can come follow me on Instagram here, if we're … [Continue reading]

4 Questions to Ask When You Have a Bad Workout

4 Questions to Ask When You Have a Bad Workout

I'm sure you've heard the saying, "You never regret a workout." Well, maybe you don't regret working out, but anyone who exercises consistently has definitely had an experience of just nothing going right and suffering through a suckfest of a workout (that's a technical term, of course). Whether it's a run which feels like an interminable slog, a … [Continue reading]

Full Body Plank Workout

A full body plank workout you can do anywhere! Great for working on your abs, posture and strength.

Nearly every single workout I do, I incorporate some form of a plank exercise. And my clients will be quick to complain  tell you that their workouts always seem to have planking involved. Why do I love the plank? It's a simple position in which you're maintaining good posture while working against gravity. Add in limb movement or weights and … [Continue reading]

Monthly Workout Round Up – Speed Workout

6 Speed Workouts for Runners. Part of a monthly workouts for runners round up from running coaches, trainers and bloggers.

A week ago a friend of mine reached out to ask me for advice on how to start building up speed in her running. She had surgery earlier this year and has been easing back into her workout routine. I gave her some general tips and then looked at my blog calendar. I wrote her back excitedly to tell her to wait a week and she'd have 6 blog posts of … [Continue reading]