6 Strength Training Workouts for Runners

As an injured runner, I know that strength training is a must, and as I plan to start running again, I did some research on strength training for runners. I am getting ready to get strong.6 Strength Training Workouts for Runners - mostlyfitmom.com

What I’ve been learning is that my injuries are likely related to hip instability. Nearly every strength workout for runners that I’ve seen focuses on strengthening the glutes and core, and this ties into hip stability in that strengthening these areas improves your hip stability and reduces your risk for injury.

The current issue of Runner’s World has a four-stage progression aimed at improving hip stability. It’s so simple that it only makes sense that I follow it. I couldn’t find any links to it online otherwise I would share, but I did find some other pretty awesome links that include info and exercises aimed at keeping us runners healthy and injury free.

Love the Another Mother Runner website? Get Ripped Like a Mother.

I couldn’t find the hip stability workout from the current Runner’s World magazine, but I did find their 10 Essential Strength Exercises for Runners.

Coach Jenny Hadfield has a super simple (read: doable) strength workout in The Minimalist Guide to Strength Training for Runners. In my world, simple = awesome.

Women’s Health Mag also has a list of 7 Strength Moves for Runners. Get the sense that runners are into less is more when it comes to strength training?

This article from Greatist has links to multiple workouts and also explains Why All Runners Should Strength Train.

Looking for a body-weight workout that’s challenging? Check out Prevention’s 12 Essential Exercises Every Runner Should Do.

Lucky 13: A 13 Week 10k Training Plan for Beginners

Lucky 13: A 13 Week 10k Training Plan for BeginnersIt’s time to start running again. In January, I hit the road a couple of times, but it was so frigid that my shoes turned into hard blocks and my plantar fasciitis flared up. After that, instead of walking/running, I stuck to the stationary bike and yoga and also started adding in some strength training.

I have been thinking about running, though, and really want to get back to running for more than a minute at a time. The tricky part is that running takes effort and consistency, which is something I’ve been practicing but that I’ve always struggled with. A little motivation in the form of a race can be that kick in the pants needed to put on those runners with regularity, so this morning I signed up for a 10k here in Saskatoon on Mother’s Day. That gives me about 12 weeks to build up my distance without ramping up too quickly.

My source for a training plan was the runDisney website. I successfully used one of the Jeff Galloway-designed plans to prepare for the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler back in 2013, so the runDisney website was my first stop. I took a look at the website’s 10k plans and adapted what they had to my needs. The Galloway plan looks the same for all of the 10k races that runDisney has in their roster, which are the Walt Disney World 10k, Star Wars 10k, Disney Princess 10k, Disneyland 10k. Jeff Galloway advocates a run-walk-run approach, which works well for me since I’m easing back into running and want to avoid injury. Check out the runDisney website and Jeff Galloway’s website, which are far more informative if you’re looking for more information on training programs. I am not a running expert at all.

The plans on the runDisney site are date-specific and are laid out for Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday runs, which is great if you’re running one of the Disney races (and I would sure love to be!), but I wanted something customized to my schedule so that it felt more formal and I will feel more committed to nailing those workouts.

After deciding which race to run (the 2015 Saskatoon Transplant Trot), I opened up a spreadsheet, plugged in the dates from now until the middle of May and created my own 10k plan, a shorter version of the plan I found online. In addition to the times and distances listed in the plan, I’ll be adding in a five minute warmup and five minute cooldown for every workout. Note that the Jeff Galloway plan advises a ten minute warmup before and ten minute cooldown after every workout. I’m okay with adding an additional ten minutes to the times in the plan, but an extra twenty minutes seems like a lot.

Below is the chart I developed for my May 10th 10k. If it’s useful to you, then that’s fantastic. Like I said, I’m not a running expert, so please refer to the websites I’ve mentioned above for more information.

Lucky 13 10k Training PlanAre there any running websites that you regularly turn to for info or training plans?

The End of My 39th Year

I turn 39 this month, which means that I’m heading into my 40th year. I have that voice in my head telling me that I haven’t accomplished enough, that I should be farther ahead than I am, but I am deliberately not listening to it. I’m not saying that there aren’t things that I want to accomplish in my 40th year of life and beyond, but I am where I am, and that’s okay.

I’m sure I seem to have life sorted, but I don’t. My husband and I are both building businesses, which means that we’ve pretty much used up all of our available credit. We haven’t been doing a good job of budgeting (working on it) and I’ve been avoiding taking a hard look at the numbers in my business (working on that, too). I recently asked my mom for a loan for my business because the bank wasn’t a great option (we have assets but not steady incomes, so they weren’t going to be eager to loan us money), and while I am still dealing with the shame and embarrassment of having to borrow money from my mom at my age, I am dealing with it.

On the other hand, I have a whole lot to be grateful for:

  • my kids, who are mostly sweet and loving and funny (though sometimes I want to strangle them)
  • I have a home, food, and everything I need
  • my parents are in a position to lend me money when I need help and are willing to help
  • my husband works hard and helps out around the house way more than any other man I know
  • I am making friends
  • I’ve started doing yoga regularly, which I am proud of because it was one of my goals for this year
  • I am working with a life coach and it is making such a difference in my life
  • I have a massage booked for tomorrow, which means that I can get some relief from the tightness of my chest and back muscles that’s been plaguing me since my cold/bronchitis started mid-October (coughing is a b*tch on the thoracic musculature)
  • I am finally feeling better and getting over my bronchitis, which means my energy levels are increasing again
  • I have the day off from work tomorrow so that I can run some errands and practice self care
  • Christmas is coming!
  • I’ve been easing back into exercise and I feel good about that
  • I got to watch The Walking Dead without distractions tonight

As I countdown to my 39th birthday, I am thinking about what I want my life to look like. Of course, I am working with a life coach, so this is something I’ve been thinking about a lot already. I’ve started making changes: going out of my way to talk to people and build relationships; joining a women’s cross country skiing group to develop relationships, work on my fitness, and enjoy winter for a change; decluttering my house; practicing yoga on a more regular basis; developing an attitude of gratitude. I have been considering committing to a race sometime next year – a local one so that it’s easier on the budget – because I would like to get back to running and setting a bigger goal, like a half marathon, is often very motivating for me. At the same time, if I commit to such a big goal, I also have to give myself permission to listen to my body and take care of it with a healthy diet, yoga, sleep, and strengthening so that I don’t end up with a(nother) long-term injury. As I read somewhere, possibly Runner’s World, if a race entry of 50 bucks gets you running and healthier, it’s worth it, even if you don’t make it to the race. I couldn’t agree more.

Beginning Runner Plans: A Comparison of What’s Out There

Beginning Runner Plans - mostlyfitmom.comSpring has finally arrived here in Saskatchewan after what was (and definitely felt like) a long winter. Sadly, my running efforts so far have been weak. I allowed the weather to be an excuse not to run, and then had a legitimate reason not to run when I was dealing with traveller’s diarrhea for two weeks (gross and uncomfortable).

Now that I’m pretty much recovered from a gastrointestinal perspective, I’m ready to start running. I looked at joining a local “Learn to Run” group to increase my accountability, but nothing is starting in the near future, so I’m turning to online resources for a beginning running program. To be honest, I’ve started over running so many times, I could probably sit down and draft a reasonable plan on my own, but sometimes it’s nice not to have to do much thinking.

Without further ado, here’s a round-up of the best resources I found online.

1) Couch-to-5K

The Couch-to-5k plan has been around for years and now has an app (available on iTunes) to get you from a non-runner status to running a 5k in nine weeks. It provides a gradual increase in running time from week to week, which is good for letting your body tissues adapt to the stresses of running. I have never tried this plan, but having an app that I can download to my phone is appealing in terms of increasing motivation. It’s like having someone coaching you while you run.

Find the Couch-to-5k plan here.

2) Women’s Health Beginning Runner Program

This is is basic, but pretty consistent with other plans I’ve seen. It’s been designed by Jenny Hadfield, who writes for Runner’s World, and looks reasonable. The plan is slightly more flexible that the Couch-to-5k plan and allows you to choose whether you want to run three or four times per week. This plan builds up from running two minutes at a time to five minutes at a time over four weeks, and then provides guidelines on how to build your total running time from there. The other plus is that it includes a couple of days of cross-training so that you’re not just running. The downside is that it doesn’t have a table that you can print out and check off as you go along.

Find the Women’s Health Beginning Runner Plan here.

3) The Runner’s World 8-Week Beginner’s Program

I love Runner’s World magazine and look forward to its arrival in my mailbox monthly. Naturally, they’ve got an online running plan for beginners. I have to say that I’m not in love with this plan and I’ll tell you why: I think it adds too much running time too early. I don’t find running easy and I struggle through every cardio session I do, so to go from one minute of running at a time during the first week to four minutes of running in one shot during the second week seems daunting. I would feel like I’m going to puke up a lung. However, if you have a stronger cardio base, this plan offers a little more variety over the course of the plan and might be a good choice.

Find the Runner’s World 8-Week Beginner’s Plan here.

4) Skinny Ms. Running Program for Absolute Beginners

I love that this comes as a downloadable chart! The plan takes you from walking to running, which is nice. It also includes strength training, which I think is important. What doesn’t work for me is that, over the course of two weeks, you build up from running one minute at a time to running eight minutes at a time. Sorry, my cardio base sucks and that’s not going to work for me.

Find the Skinny Ms. plan here.

5) Super Skinny Me 10 Week Plan

I like this plan. It’s flexible, providing you with guidelines to run three to five times per week, and the running builds up gradually over the course of the ten weeks, ending with twenty minutes of running by the end. The chart isn’t so much a daily calendar as the instructions for the week, but it’s easy to understand.

Find the Super Skinny Me plan here.

Is there a beginning runner plan that you like or have used in the past?