03-24-2015

Quick Hamstring and Glute Workout

After a run, I really don’t feel like lifting. I know it’s a problem, and I should probably start splitting up my workouts (lift in the AM, run in the PM), but for now, I have been doing quick strength workouts post-run.

I did this one yesterday and really liked it. I wanted to focus on legs, especially hamstrings and glutes, which is why I named this a posterior chain workout.

We know that runners, and people who sit a lot throughout the day in general, are prone to weak glutes and hamstrings. That’s why working on your core is so important…and these two muscle groups are part of your core!

While doing lunges, squats, step-ups etc. does hit your hamstrings a bit, those mainly target quads and glutes. By not doing hamstring specific work, you’re setting yourself up for an imbalance. 

Here are a few facts about your hamstrings that I found here:

The role the hamstring plays in running is twofold:

1. when a runner’s leg is in the air advancing forward, the hamstrings control how quickly the knee extends and the hip flexes;

2. when the runner’s foot hits the ground, the hamstrings will do the reverse and flex the knee and extend the hip. This is a key distinction because the hamstring muscles must quickly transition from one role to another once the foot strikes the ground. It is during this transitional period that injuries frequently occur.

So this workout is one you’ll definitely feel throughout your back side…and I threw in the windmills for a little oblique action as well, though even those I felt in my hamstrings too! 

If you don’t have access to do cable kickbacks, you can do kneeling kickbacks (get on all fours, kick your straight leg up into the air, focus on a slow, controlled motion). 

Here’s the workout, and keep reading for video instructions if you need them!

Hamstring & Glute Workout
Cable kickbacks:

Kettlebell windmills:

Kettlebell swings *good form is important for this, so watch this whole video!*

Read more tips and cues from personal trainer Annie Brees in regards to the kettlebell swing…it’s a great exercise and if you can only do one thing after a run, I’d definitely suggest this!

I did this workout yesterday after an 800s repeat treadmill workout, and then finished up with a good stretch and sauna session. Stay tuned for another workout I’ll post on Thursday that focuses on your quads…remember, it’s all about balance!

Do you lift after a run? Or split up your workouts?

Do you prefer working on your quads or hamstrings? I love doing heavy deadlifts!

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03-03-2015

5 Mile Treadmill Workout

I’ve been doing this treadmill workout recently because I cannot do steady pace runs on the “dreadmill” for the life of me. I GET SO BORED. Props to all you training for a spring marathon on the treadmill. 5 miles is about my limit.

So I made up an interval type run that focused on speed with some hills thrown in, which really helps pass the time. I actually had a really good 4 mile treadmill run yesterday thanks to this workout.

Anyway, here’s my 5 mile treadmill workout:

5 Mile Treadmill Workout
Something I like to do on the hill intervals is speed up for 15 seconds at the end. So if I’m running 45 seconds at 7.0 speed, in the last few seconds I’ll lower the incline back down but then crank it up to around 7.5 and run that for 15 seconds before I take that one minute break. I think that helps with feeling stronger on hills in races, because you’ll be trained to speed up at the top once it flattens out as opposed to slowing down or walking.

You can play around with how many of those 2 minute intervals you want to do or at what pace. Same with the hills. With the hill intervals, just pick something you can hold for 1 minute for the first one (challenging but not TOO challenging), and that last interval should really be killer for 30 seconds.

Let me know if you try this out, I always like hearing feedback!

What types of treadmill workouts do you do? Are you able to just do steady state runs?

Some of you have suggested podcasts instead of music…if you listen to podcasts please leave me some suggestions!

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01-21-2015

Do-Anywhere Leg Workout For Runners

As I mentioned yesterday, I’ve been doing more circuit based workouts recently, which include single leg movements and plyometric movements. As I was working out, I thought, these exercises are perfect for runners. 

As runners, we spend most of our time on one leg…so it makes sense to do single leg training. I love step-ups, lunges, single leg hip raises, etc. and include those in my own training plans I make for my cross country team.

Before I get into the workout, here is one of my favorite exercises: reverse lunge into single leg deadlift. It’s working on your hip stabilizing muscles, core, hamstrings, glutes and quads…what more can you ask for?? It’s okay if you’re wobbly (like I am in this video). Start with no weights then add in dumbbells.

 

A video posted by pattyrivas13 (@pattyrivas13) on


Cues:

  • Keep your chest up and shoulders back throughout the movement.
  • When you go into the deadlift, hinge at your hips and bring your back leg up as high as you can as you squeeze your glutes.
  • When you’re not using weights, reach out in front of you a bit with your hands. Place a low box in front of you and touch that with your fingers, then come back up and into reverse lunge. When you start using dumbbells, lower dumbbells straight down (not out in front) so you’re not placing pressure on your lower back.

It’s a bit challenging, especially for someone with lack of balance like me, but it really is a great exercise for runners to work on!

And here is my do-anywhere leg workout for runners:

Leg Workout For Runners
So you do the first group of exercises for 5 minutes straight, take a break, then repeat. Then move onto the next set. Or you could do the first group, break, second group, break, and go back to the first group.

With reverse lunge with knee raise I mean step back into a lunge, and when you step back forward left your knee up so it’s at a 90 degree angle, balance for a second, then go back into reverse lunge. Let’s work on our balance people! :)

What are your favorite leg exercises you can do anywhere? Or balance exercises…because I need those!

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05-08-2014

Strong & Lean Legs Workout

Summer is almost here…which means shorts and skirts!

Recently, I’ve liked making quick (but certainly not easy) workouts, like my 4 minute HIIT workout and my 3 minute abs workout. They are quick in the sense that doing just 1 round will take you 3-4 minutes…and this leg workout is no different – it’s a total of 4 minutes!

Keep in mind, it doesn’t have to be just 4 minutes. You can do these workouts anywhere from 3-6 rounds depending on how long and challenging you want the workout to be. You can also use them as finishers after your own workout.

Strong & Lean Legs WorkoutPhoto Credit: k-girl via Compfight cc

This is also a great workout to do after a run if you want something quick to get in some leg strengthening! Hits all the major muscle groups like the glutes and hamstrings, with a little plyo action thrown in.

If you don’t have a box or step to use, no worries, just do squat jumps or burpees instead. I actually did this workout after my run yesterday for 3 sets :)

Let me know if you try it out and what you think!

Would you rather do burpees or walking lunges? ;)

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02-12-2013

Hill Workout on the Treadmill

Whether it’s because of the weather or because you live in a flat area, sometimes an outdoor hill run just isn’t possible.

Recently, once a week I have tried to incorporate hills into my run, and usually it’s been on the treadmill. I like hills on the treadmill because you can control the incline. Below you will find my own hill workout I’ve created, which usually amounts to 3 miles. If you do a shorter warm-up or cut the 3 minute break into less time, it will be less miles (obviously).

Since I’m just starting half-marathon training, these are different than hill sprints. I am not doing hill sprints. These are simply running at an incline at a normal pace. I do not change my pace on the treadmill while doing these. Hill sprints are great but once you have built up a running base. So, if my running pace that day is 10 minutes per mile (or 6.0 speed) that’s the speed I keep it at the whole time…unless of course I want to walking break ;)

Let me know if you decide to try this workout on your next treadmill run! I love it…it helps pass the time and make the dreadmill not so boring :)

hilltreadHow do you make the treadmill less boring? Any sort of interval workout works for me. I cannot run at a steady pace and not be bored out of my mind!