Strength For Runners Workout


Strength For Runners Workout

A well-rounded running programme doesn’t start and end on the pavement, road or track. What you do before, after and around your regular runs is just as important as time spent pounding the pavement. Simply put: healthy running isn’t just about putting one foot in front of the other. 

But that doesn’t mean it’s difficult either. You can build a strength in your legs, glutes and core without lifting a single weight. You can even do it in your living room — we won’t judge. Here, Third Space Master Trainer Kate Maxey walks you through a zero-weights session — comprised of a warm-up, activation, main workout and a cool-down — that’s designed to help runners build strength at home. 

“When we run, we are more or less bounding or jumping from one leg to the other, so it is imperative that we build strength working a single side not just bilaterally,” explains Maxey. ”Each exercise in the main part of the workout can be done with or without weights.”


Downward dog to up dog, 30 seconds

      1. Start on all fours and lift your hips up and back, whilst pressing the chest towards the thighs creating an equilateral triangle shape with the body.
      2. Feet and hands should be shoulder width apart.
      3. Transition into a low plank by bending the elbows to 90 degrees and rolling onto the tops of the feet.
      4. Pull the chest up and push the floor away, keeping the thighs off the floor.


World’s greatest stretch, 30 seconds

      1. Start in a high plank position and then bring your left leg forward, outside of your left hand so that your shin is vertical and your knee is bent at 90 degrees. Your right leg should remain as straight as possible.
      2. Lift your left hand off the floor and bend your left elbow to 90 degrees.
      3. Reach your left elbow down toward the inside of your left foot getting as close to the ground as possible without rounding your back.
      4. In one smooth motion rotate your torso to your left and extend your arm up towards the ceiling, palm facing out.
      5. Return to high plank position and repeat.


Hip Pail Rail, 30 seconds

      1. Start in a seated position on the floor with your knees at a 90°/90° position and your left leg externally rotated. Straighten your arms and make a fist with both hands. Rest gently on the ground.
      2. Lean over your left leg until you feel a stretch in your left glute. Hold this position for 2 minutes.
      3. Perform a PAIL contraction with your left leg by driving it into the ground and hold for a count of 10-seconds.
      4. Switch knees to the opposite 90°/90° position.
      5. Repeat step B & C.


T Spine Rotation, 30 seconds

      1. Start on your hands and knees.
      2. Take one hand and place it on the back of your head.
      3. Rotate the spine to bring the elbow towards the opposite elbow and reverse the movement to open up the chest.
      4. Return to the starting position and repeat with the opposite elbow.


Walkout Press-Up, 30 seconds

    1. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and perform a toe touch allowing your knees to bend so you can reach the floor with your hands flat.
    2. Walk your hands out to a high plank position, keeping your core engaged and back flat.
    3. Lower your body, maintaining a straight line between your toes and head.
    4. Reverse the movements until you are standing back up.


Dead Bugs, 30 seconds x 2

      1. Lie on your back with your arms extended in front of your shoulders.
      2. Bend your hips and knees to a 90-degree angle.
      3. Contract your abs and press your lower back into the floor.
      4. Take a deep breath in. As you exhale, slowly lower your left leg and right arm toward the floor. Keep your abs tight and don’t let your lower back arch.
      5. Slowly return your arm and leg to the starting position. Repeat with your opposite arm and leg. Continue alternating.


Pogos, 30 seconds x 2

  1. Stand tall with your feet  shoulder width apart.
  2. Raise your heels so you are standing on the balls of your feet.
  3. Quickly bounce up and down on the balls of your feet. Don’t let your heels touch the ground. Focus on minimal ground contact time and only minimal knee flexion.


A Skip, 30 seconds x 2

    1.  Lift lead knee to waist height. When it reaches the highest point there is a small hop forward.
    2. Keep your toes pointed up on your lead leg (dorsi-flexed ankle).
    3. Forcefully step down with a mid-foot strike – aim to make a noise when contacting the ground.
    4. Repeat by alternating legs.



1A: Floor Hip Thrust, 10reps x 3 sets 

  1. Lie on your back on the floor, with knees bent, feet planted firmly on the floor.
  2. Press your heels into the floor, driving your hips upwards. Pause at the top, making sure to squeeze your glutes.
  3. Slowly return to your starting position, and repeat. 

1B: Unilateral Box Squat, 10reps x 3 sets

  1. Start standing on one leg with a box positioned just behind you.
  2. With your front leg flexed, slowly sit down into a squat, making sure that your torso has a slight forward lean.
  3. When your bottom touches the box, press into the floor with your standing leg to drive yourself back up. Use your arms to balance.
  4. Repeat.

Rest 40 Seconds Between Supersets


2A: Cross-Reaching Unilateral RDL, 10reps x 3 sets each leg 

  1. Start by balancing on your left leg.
  2. With a slight bend in your left knee, hinge at your hips keeping your right leg straight and in line with your body throughout the rep.
  3. Keeping your back flat, continue to bend at the waist until you can touch your left toe with your right hand.
  4. Drive back up pushing your hips forward to return to your starting position, and repeat.


2B: Reverse Lunge: 10 Reps x 3 Sets, each leg

  1. From a standing position, lunge backward a distance that allows you to maintain a slight forward lean and keep the majority of your body-weight over your front foot. The heel of your back foot should be raised.
  2. Keeping your torso straight, lower slowly until your back knee almost touches the floor, pause, then push back up to return to your starting position, and repeat.

Rest 40 Seconds Between Supersets


3A: Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat, 10 Reps x 3 Sets, each leg 

  1. From a standing position, lift one leg and place the top of your foot on a bench, chair or raised surface behind you.
  2. Keeping your torso straight, lower slowly until your back knee almost touches the floor, pause, then push back up to return to your starting position, and repeat.

3B: Step Up: 10 Reps x 3 Sets, each leg  

  1. Start by placing one foot on top of the box making sure the entire foot is in contact with the surface.
  2. Drive your body up pushing through the heel of the foot that is on the box.
  3. Lower yourself slowly back down to the floor, and repeat.


Rest 40 Seconds Between Supersets


4A: Russian Twists: 10 Reps x 3 Sets 

  1. Start on your bum with your feet planted on the floor.
  2. Engage your core and raise your feet slightly so they are hovering just off the floor.
  3. Now twist your torso slowly from one side to the other. Repeat for designated number of sets and reps.


4B: Plank Reach: 30 Secs x 3 Sets 

  1. Start in a high plank position forming a straight line from head to toe and your shoulders stacked directly above your wrists.
  2. Brace your core and push the floor away from you.
  3. Slowly raise your right arm and left leg to full extension.
  4. Pause momentarily and return to your starting position, then repeat on the other side for the designated number of sets and reps.



Angry Cat, Happy Cat, 40 Seconds

      1. Start on all fours, with your hands and knees stack directly under your shoulders and hips respectively.
      2. Engage your abdominal muscles and arch your spine upward toward the ceiling (angry cat), exhaling as you do so.
      3. Hold the position for a few seconds, then slowly relax your back and allow your stomach to fall toward the floor, stretching your back downwards (happy cat), inhaling as you do so.
      4. Hold for a few seconds, then return to the starting position and repeat.


Child’s Pose, 40 Seconds 

      1. Begin on all fours.
      2. Rock back so you are sitting on your heels.
      3. Walk your hands forward whilst remaining seated on your heels to increase the stretch.


Quad Stretch, 40 Seconds 

      1. Whilst standing, bend your leg behind you 
      2. Pull your foot into your backside


Glute Stretch, 40 Seconds 

      1. Lie on your back with your knees bent. Lift one ankle up and rest it across the opposite knee. 
      2. Reach underneath the lower leg and pull up towards your chest. 
      3. Repeat with the opposite leg.


Hamstring Stretch, 40 Seconds

    1. Sit down and straighten your legs directly in front of you. 
    2. Reach forward and hold onto your toes, pulling them towards you for a deeper stretch

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