I started the You Run… But Are You Really Fit? series last month to help provide ideas and inspiration for movements that runners (and everyone else) should be doing to create a balanced training plan.
As I said in the last post from this series, there are lots of runners who log endless long, slow miles and wonder why they are getting injured and/or not seeing results (not getting faster, not losing weight, not meeting goals).
Strength training helps reduce muscular imbalances, protects joints and is essential to any athlete’s performance.
Here is a simple and fast strength circuit that runners can do… even the ones who hate strength training!
Remember: While I am an ACSM Certified Personal Trainer, I can’t make specific recommendations for your body without meeting with you in person. This post is meant to provide ideas and inspiration for ways to improve your training.
These movements can be done with or without the equipment. If you are new to strength training, start by doing all the exercises with body weight only, then work up to weights and new equipment.
I have been doing these exercises 3 days per week- 3 sets of 10 reps on each. It takes me about 10 minutes to do the circuit, going from one exercise to the other with about a minute rest in between each round. It is important to change your set/rep numbers after your body gets used to the routine.
I do this circuit after a short run or as the first part of a 30 minute strength/cardio/core circuit (more on that to come). I have definitely noticed less pain and better form on my runs now that I am doing strength training 3 days per week versus a sporadic/lazy 1 day per week before.
Squat to Press:
This website has some interesting articles, one of which says that “happiness is the process of becoming your ideal self.”
The article goes on to explain how and why happiness comes from doing something difficult; from doing something that you are not 100% sure you can accomplish.
Here is an excerpt that perfectly summarizes why we find happiness in running a marathon (when your friends and family just think you are crazy) and why other really hard things make us happy. My favorite parts are in bold.
Completing a marathon makes us happier than eating a chocolate cake. Raising a child makes us happier than beating a video game. Starting a small business with friends and struggling to make money makes us happier than buying a new computer.
And the funny thing is that all three of the activities above are exceedingly unpleasant and require setting high expectations and potentially failing to always meet them. Yet, they are some of the most meaningful moments and activities of our lives. They involve pain, struggle, even anger and despair, yet once we’ve done them we look back and get misty-eyed about them.
Because it’s these sort of activities which allow us to become our ideal selves.
It’s not the end results which define our ideal selves. It’s not finishing the marathon that makes us happy, it’s achieving a difficult long-term goal that does.
It is very sad that this beer is seasonal because it is amazing and would be great to drink any time of year. You are in luck IF you can still find Dogfish Head Aprihop! It is not too sweet for a fruit beer and not too hoppy for an IPA… which makes it a perfect combination for a late spring/early summer evening. This beer is the reason I learned to brew my own- I wanted to be able to make a similar beer all year long since Aprihop is only available in the spring.