By: Alanna Pokorski, PT of Sports PT
Training your core is critical for proper form and endurance. It also reduces the risk of injury when running. The core is more than just your abdominals. The core consists of abdominals, hamstrings and quadriceps (which are the front and back of your thighs), gluteal muscles (which are the buttock muscles) and low back muscles.
If you are training for a race this summer, check out these exercises to help improve your core strength:
Lift your buttocks up off the ground with knees about shoulder-width apart. Squeeze buttocks while pushing toes into the ground. Begin holding 10 seconds, and repeat 6 times. Also, it is recommended to place a belt or strap around the knees and push out while lifting the buttocks up.
Laying on your side, lift your hips up towards the ceiling keeping your torso straight and lean slightly forward. Keep one hand on your hip and your elbow on the table. Begin by holding 10 sec, repeat 6 times.
Keeping elbows bent, push toes into the table and elevate to keep your spine in a staright line. Squeeze buttocks and keep the abdominals tight. Careful not to lift only the buttocks on the air. Maintain breathing and begin by holding for 10 second, repeating 6 times.
One training philosophy is to work on increments of 60 to build up endurance, which is critical to successful running. Try the following increment schedule: