Time for another monthly workouts for runners round up! This month we have a really fun theme – Nellie, Angela, Sarah, Laura, Allie and I are sharing our favorite workouts. They’re all different, but they’re what we – runners, coaches, trainers – use as our go to workouts, whether for running or strength training.
I have so many favorite running workouts, but you know I’m a huge proponent of strength training for runners. I’ve shared that with you here and here and here! So for our favorite workout, I wanted to share my go-to strength workout for runners. Since running is an endurance sport, stick to 2 sets of 15 – 18 reps for this workout, doing it as a circuit to keep your heart rate elevated.
Whenever I do a strength workout in the gym, I start out with a warm up on the treadmill…because it doesn’t feel quite right if I don’t run. 😉 You can do any form of cardio to warm up, as well as foam rolling and/or a dynamic warms up (psst, we already put together some awesome dynamic warm ups for you here).
My go-to warm up on the treadmill is a 5 minute easy run, followed by 3 x 1 minute sprint and recovery intervals. I like to get loosened up, then fire up the muscles I’m about to strength train by incorporating the speed intervals.
With a wide stance, reach forward in a deadlift position to grasp kettlebell on the floor in front of you. Drag it back between your legs to start the swing. Swing the kettlebell up to shoulder height, as you thrust your hips forward into the top of a deadlift position. Keep that lovely deadlift position in your back throughout the set.
FORWARD TO REVERSE LUNGES
Since running is about unilateral leg movements, I gravitate toward lunges rather than squats, to echo the running leg movement. You can try this bodyweight if you’re not used to lunging (especially because one forward lunge AND one reverse lunge counts as one rep), but to progress it, hold dumbbells at your sides, your chest, or on your shoulders.
We all know core strength is key to running (and don’t forget you have 6 awesome core workouts for runners right here), so I like to incorporate a couple of core moves into my strength training. This is a great one to do in the gym when you have access to a cable. You can do it at home with a medicine ball, dumbbell, or a resistance band (like in this resistance band workout here). With a wide stance standing sideways to the cable machine, hold the handle with both hands and pull up from the outside of your leg to swing up over the opposite shoulder. You want your leg and hip to swivel to follow the movement of the cable.
BENCH JUMPOVER TO OVERHEAD PRESS
This is a fun exercise that injects a little cardio into your strength workout while keeping the sports specific movement. For this exercise, start by sitting on the bench with both legs on one side, holding dumbbells at your chest. Swing your legs over to the other side of the bench, jump up to standing and press the weights overhead, elbows in close. Sit back down on the bench and swing your legs to the other side to repeat.
Plank flutters are another great stabilization exercise (umm you remember I love planks right? I put together a whole workout based solely on planks). Get into either a forearm or hand plank, then start the flutter – raise alternating straight legs, keeping your torso still and in the plank position.
Once you’ve finished that workout, check out my friends’ awesome contributions this month, sharing their favorite workouts!
Nellie gives you another workout for the gym – strength training, baby!
Sarah gives you a do-anywhere strength routine to supplement a run:
Angela shares her favorite strength and running workout – I love the timed aspect of the reps:
Allie has you covered to take 10 minutes off your half marathon! Check out her favorite workouts for a PR goal:
Laura has an awesome progression long run workout – you can do it for marathon or half marathon training:
What’s your go-to workout that you look forward to every time?