Why you want a strong
core: No matter what distance you cover at what speed, core strength helps
you move better, hurt less, and recover faster. Be your best.
Why you want this
book: To get results. There are thousands of core exercise ideas out there.
What’s missing, is a plan. Just like running, a structured training plan helps
you do the right things in the right order.
Otherwise, it's just random acts of exercise which may or may not be doing the job of increasing your capacity. In fact, you could be setting yourself up for injury.
What to look for in core training for runners: Progressions that build core strength starting with spine stability and deep stabilizers, and gradually working through increased limb and movement integration, and then higher loading. Without the proper base, that latest cool exercise you found on the Internet or in the magazine could have you hanging up your shoes for a bit.
Myths about core exercises for runners: Many people make the mistake of thinking that exercises that mimic a movement you do in sport are better crosstraining for that sport. Actually, sports that use repetitive motion such as running create notoriously common injury and tension patterns because the movement of the sport does not use muscles and joints in their full range, or in natural balance. As a result, effective cross training needs to take those muscles and joints, and use them in motions which are NOT the most common in the activity, in order to maintain joint integrity. For example, running moves the legs mostly forward. Most runners have weak hip stabilizers and weakness in the sides of their knee and ankle joints which can become an injury when a change in terrain suddenly challenges the body laterally. By strengthening these areas with exercises designed to load in ways running normally does not, the runner is better prepared. Another example is the deep stabilizers in the spine. Running is upright. However, by using horizontal exercises such as the plank, runners make use of gravity to load the core area more effectively for training the deep stabilizers. typically, the purpose of crosstraining in sport is to give muscles, ligaments and joints capacity for loading and for repetition which exceeds what the body will encounter in the actual activity. Otherwise, the activity actually begins to wear you down. It's a myth that you get strong for running, by running. It is such a repetitive activity, that you need crosstraining to protect you from repetitive strain to leg and hip joints, as well as the spine. This is especially true if you are over 40, have previous injuries, are prone to osteoporosis, or are menstruating.
This book gives you a plan so you know what to do each day and week. No
more wondering. No more boredom.No more wondering how many of an exercise to do, whether you are doing
it right, what to do if it hurts, or when to stop and do something new. It’s
all here, and it keeps changing every week.
With a few minutes a day, you will see instant and long term results in
your pace, posture and ability to tackle everything in your path.
You will build your core from the inside out, and from the
ground up. Many exercise progressions in this book have been used successful in
a back injury post-rehab program, and in training programs with athletes.
This plan is efficient, inexpensive, portable, simple to follow and
No gym or expensive equipment required. Train where you want
to.Live your life.
The Science Behind the Workout
This workout was developed with serious intentionality. Every exercise, each day and every week was carefully selected, and then purposefully combined with specific other exercises to create the base you need (core stability) first, and then add movement ability in logical sequence. Many of the combinations and exercises have been used in a curriculum for spine injury recovery because back pain in runners is so common. It is critical to work smart, not just hard, so that you can do what you love for a long time to come. Also, the workout is great for walkers, hikers and anyone else that self-propels on their own two feet over distance and varied terrain. The great weakness of running and similar forward movement, is that it happens mostly in one plane. Consequently, the body is much less able to manage changes in terrain. Core strength supports hips and torso position, which supports a healthy spine, knee and ankle integrity, and even movement biomechanics. Better movement equals faster, stronger, longer, later in life.
Heather Sansom is a certified coach and personal trainer who focuses on integrated core training. She has published over 200 articles on fitness and conditioning and five other fitness related books, and has spoken internationally. If you are ready to take your fitness to the next level, she offers personal training by Skype, and life coaching by Skype or phone. More information at: www.heathersansom.ca