Core Workouts — Improve Your Speed Now

Type: Easy Run
Distance: 4.0 miles
Time: 32:01
Average Pace: 8:00 min/mile
Average Heart Rate: 157 bpm

This was a good start to the week. I decided this morning on my run that I would alternate between runs and bikes and then pound out a good 8.0 miler this Saturday. It will be a good test for my current fitness levels. As long as there is no snow on the roads I will do it outside as well. I like where my fitness levels are for the off season and what that means I will be carrying into the race season. I am going to start doing my speedwork after January 1st, so this part of my blog will be somewhat boring for the next couple of weeks. Sorry people…

Running Tips

So I have been canvasing the web for some effective videos that provide tips on improving your running. Truthfully, I haven’t found too many. There is a lot of junk out there and stuff that is a real waste of time. While I can give you lots of little tips to help you in your next race, the time for those tips is probably in the spring. Right now, what is the best piece of advice I could give you to make you faster next spring?

We could talk about your runs and biomechanics, but I am really not qualified to help you improve your stride. We could talk about nipple chafing, but that mainly applies to the boys and I don’t want to isolate the ladies. We could talk about how to structure your workouts now so you can start speed work sooner in the year. But really, are you going to start a new running or biking program during the month of December? Me thinks no.

One of the biggest limiters to endurance athlete performance is core strength. I know I thought for a long time that I was getting plenty of core work just through running and cycling, but the answer is no. I found that especially in long runs and races my stride would break down and it would get very, very sloppy. A friend of mine made (not really made, but you get the idea) me focus on core work for the total of four weeks. What I found was that my stride benefited. Especially during speed work and long runs, I felt the benefit of the improvements in my core strength.

I loved the article this month in LAVA Magazine that showed how to use the TRX system for a core workout. While some of the best core workouts happen without equipment, the TRX system is a fantastic way to target your core even more. I like to mix a workout using it at least once every ten days or so.

Like I mentioned, there are a thousand ways to target your core. In my exhaustive search, I found this video that I liked. Now, the host is a little “Jersey Shore” for me, but I think the information is pretty solid. You almost expect him to break out a fist pump and a little “GLT” time reference. I think his accent from his days down on ” ‘da Shore” comes through from time to time even. But even “Guidos” know their stuff.

The video is a little long, but it does contain some good exercises for you to include as part of your regimen. Enjoy!

Any other exercises you want to share with us? Anyone?

About the Author

I have been participating in running and triathlons for 10 years and love the feeling that training provides. You may not agree with me, but you know you just can't look away...