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I am going to share with you my 5-MINUTE CORE EXERCISES FOR RUNNERS routine to help you get the flat abs you’ve always wanted!
These are my top 10 core moves, each done for 30 seconds. These exercises will help you become a leaner, stronger, and faster runner by working the large and small muscles in your core. No matter where you are at in your running, just beginning or have had several years under you belt, everyone can benefit from this routine! I will explain 3 levels of intensity that you can work through – beginner, intermediate, and advanced – so start where you feel most comfortable, and let the fun begin!
Carolyn Watson is a middle-distance runner who runs for a professional running team called Asics GTC- Elite in Greenville, South Carolina. Carolyn's love for running developed when she was 11 years old, and the sport has been impacting her life ever since. She excelled at the state level in high school and went on to run for Cedarville University in Cedarville, Ohio. College was full of setbacks and injuries, but her disappoint did not deprive her love for the sport. About 9 months into her first year of coaching at her alma mater, Carolyn re-entered the sport competitively and began to see new hope and large improvements. Carolyn has worked for Athletes in Action, a Christian sports ministry organization for almost three years, is currently halfway through her Master's in Counseling, and has moved to South Carolina with her best friend and husband, Clay, to pursue her dreams and potential as a runner on the professional scene.
What’s your favorite time of the day to workout?
For me it’s a 5:00am date with the pavement. That means I’m up at 4:30am getting dressed, laced up and warmed up. Some say I’m crazy. Maybe I am- ha. But it’s truly the only time that I can manage to get my workouts in.
You never know when something is going to come up in the middle of the day that will sabotage your post-work runs.
Now I’m not saying it was as easy as just setting my alarm. It took me weeks, if not months, to become accustomed to the early rises followed by extraneous activity.
But by doing it I was able to train for my first marathon in 18 weeks only missing one run and clock a 3:42:16 marathon in Pittsburgh. I know I was able to do this because my early morning runs kept me accountable to training.
After 8 months of training I was finally ready to RACE, and boy oh boy I have come a long way with my speed, strength, and confidence!!
On April 30th I blew my old personal record (PR) out of the water, then 2 weeks later I set yet another PR!! Overall I took over 3 minutes off my old 5k time. This was only possible because of personal coaching through Coach Jasmin's VIP program where she gave me a personal training plan, help with nutrition, and daily encouragement!!!!
I often see runners try and incorporate P90X or Insanity into their running routines, which is not wise. Both of these programs are amazing (I myself am a Beachbody coach and use 21 Day Fix and PiYO in off-season training), but they are not specifically made for runners. I also see runners go to the gym without a plan and make up their routine on the fly.
If you truly want to excel as a runner, you need to incorporate specific strength training in your routine that improves running economy, range of motion, power, and prevents injury.
But strength training for runners doesn’t just involve weights or circuits. Is it vital that you also incorporate the following into your routine:
One of the questions I get asked more than any other is how am I able to do it all? As a working mom, coach, part time blogger, and runner, it can be seriously difficult to try to squeeze in everything I need to do in a 24-hour period. Most days, I feel like I need at least 30 hours in order to cross off everything on my to-do list, while still having time to work full time away from home, coach each afternoon, get in a decent run, blog, and still have time for my family. It definitely isn’t easy, but I’ve learned a few things in my short time of being a mom of 2.
At what point should a runner considering investing in coaching?
Every runner who wants to commit to the sport of running and do it in a way that brings enjoyment as well as success in achieving personal records should consider some form of coaching.
However, coaching can take many forms and styles, and I am here to help you find the coaching that fits your needs, goals, and price point.
I have listed a few scenarios of the most common runners who inquire about my VIP Coaching, and the coaching I feel is appropriate to their specific goals and communication needs. Read the options below and see which scenario matches your current situation and see how you can take action for affordable, helpful coaching!
I am so excited for your to read Louisa's tips on Finding Time to Train Today!
Louisa is a second year mental health nursing student. The past three years have been a massive transformation for her. In April 2013 I was 14 stone 11 pounds (206 pounds) and decided to take on a massive challenge and sign up for London marathon, five full marathons and eight half marathons. She is now down nearly 50 pounds and continues to race and share her story and encourage others on Instagram and her blog.
She is extremely passionate about promoting a healthy lifestyle through exercise. She focuses on promoting balance and promotes positive mental wellbeing and physical healthy lifestyle choices.
She believes life is about making time to look after yourself physically and mentally, and uses exercise and self care v. a chore. I hope you enjoy her tips and leave ready to lace up your shoes!
Finding Time to Train
We all have busy lives – from working to socializing to training. People often ask me how I find time to train and somehow I just do.
When I first started running three years ago, I found it hard to complete and fit long runs into my schedule.
I rarely found time to cross train. However, as the years have gone on and I started to love running I found it easier to make the time.
I am currently studying as a student nurse and my schedule can be forever changing. Some terms I am studying at university, some I am on placement. I also work part-time and therefore can easily find excuses and lack of time to train.
But if you love something you do not need to find ‘time’, it will naturally incorporated into your life.
Running is high up on my list of things to do because I love it – it keeps my well both physically and mentally. I do not find training as a chore but something I love – therefore I make sure I make time for running.
To be successful in your race training, you mindset needs to change. You need to think positively about your runs and occur some excitement for them. If you dread them, you simply will not make time for them.
Somedays I struggle and it would be a lie to tell you I don’t. Some weeks I am so tired and drained and cannot think of anything worse to do than run.
But, in the back on my mind I think how much better and refreshed I will feel after a run, even if its just a short one; that is what gets me out the door and keeps me going.
Of course there are some days when I just can’t. I work long twelve hour shifts and sometimes it’s just not possible to go out and run, whether it be to dark and unsafe or whether I will just be too tired. I have learned over the years to accept these days and not to beat myself up about them. Life does not go perfectly all the time. When I miss my opportunity to run and feel down about; it helps me to appreciate the days I do run and makes me love them even more.
Over the years I have developed some tips to help me fit running into my life:
- Running early in the morning – setting out early means its over and done with and I can enjoy the rest of my day, it also fills me with a self of achievement for the rest of the day.
- Running to/from work – running to and from work (if possible) gives you the possibility to cut your commute time down, keep fit and save money.
- Running at lunch – if you’re able to eat at your desk a run at lunchtime it perfect. It’s a chance to stretch your legs in the middle of the day and help refresh your mind for the afternoon.
- Joining a gym – this gives you the flexibility to run in the evenings and early morning when it might be dark so you can keep be safe.
- Get other members of the family involved – if you are a working mum and struggle to find time to run around kids, you can get the kids out cycling while you run alongside. This helps you get your run in and keeps the kids active too.
- Walk when you can’t run – some days I work long shifts and there is no chance I can fit a run in, but instead I will walk everywhere. I will walk to work; go for a quick walk on my lunch break to keep my legs moving and my mind active.
- Take the stairs – taking the stairs is excellent exercise. If you don’t have time to run or have little energy to run in the morning, take the stairs everywhere you do so you are still exercising throughout the day.
- Break a long training run into two short runs – this is not always ideal as when since you need to make sure your body it prepared to run the longer distances. However, if you struggle to find a block of four hours in your day, break it down to two shorter runs so you can still exercise an complete your work and studies.
Training for any race, especially a marathon, can take up proportions of your time, but trust me, it’s worth it! There is a massive feeling of pride and achievement associated with any race and that makes every single training run worthwhile.
Good luck to everyone training, you’re all doing amazing.
Thank you Louisa for sharing your tips for Finding Time To Train! We are so thankful for your daily example and encouragements to keep us going!
Are you overwhelmed at the thought of creating your own running plan? Do you want a running and nutrition plan that will help you shed fat and run faster? Join my FREE 5 Day Run Academy, where you will receive a sample custom week of workouts, cutting edge meal plan, and a free week of coaching.
Two weeks ago I found myself in a rut. I no longer looked forward to my long Saturday runs, instead I dreaded them. I made a decision to not flat line before race day, and came up with a few creative ways to "trick my brain" and push through my workouts. Some of these ways not only help me get through a workout, but actually make me stronger physically and mentally for the long haul! Read the blog as I share these tips with you, to help you exit your rut better than how you entered! If you leave your name and e-mail I will also send you FREE tips on how to conquer a hill and get stronger!!!
But I have found multiple ways to change up my routine and trick my brain into pushing through my workouts all the way to race day (only 1 more month!!).