Most of them tell me that they can hold the low, braced position up to the 3/4 distance of a training run and/or race. They then start to get tired and let go of the braced core activity. This inevitably leads to a loss of form. The downward force of gravity starts to dominate, causing the body to hit Mother Earth with excessive, unbalanced force. Almost without fail, the results are a drop-off in performance, an increase in avoidable injuries and frustration with the process of injury-free running. A few years ago, I developed a strength endurance circuit for my clients to help them counteract the above situation. The results in helping them maintain the Squat-Scoot and run injury-free faster and longer have been remarkable. The programme can be done almost anywhere and requires minimal equipment. Each exercise in the circuit is done for 60 seconds consecutively (in other words, there is no rest between exercise). The circuit is as follows:
- 1-legged overhead press using 5 to 10 lb dumbbells
- forward lunge crossovers holding weights against chest
- 1-legged bent over rows using 5 to 10 lb dumbbells
- 1-legged 1/2 squats holding weights to chest
- 1-legged alternate forward and forward angled arm raises using 5 to 10 lb dumbbells
- side to side deep lunges with 5 to 10 lb dumbbells carried from side to side as well
- push-up position alternate arm lift to shoulder holding 5 to 10 lb dumbbell
- forward and backward Sumo Squat
- push-up position alternate full body rotation with 5 to 10 lb dumbbell in hand
- 1-legged 5-count burpee holding 5 to 10 lb dumbbells
My clients and Team Over The Top runners do the circuit only once per week year-round. They combine it with running workouts and cross training sessions as part of the overall training plan for the racing season.
With a focus on perfect practice of the above circuit, the results have been impressive – no injuries, faster race times, better age-group placings.
The main thing for me as a coach is the ‘no injuries’ component. If you can’t run injury-free, then why the hell would you run??
JOIN COACH JEFF for an upcoming clinic and enjoy #InjuryFreeRunning!