Rock and Roll Arizona marathon, I’m back to pounding the pavement again. I ran 3 miles at 7:45 pace. If I am being honest? It hurt somethin’ fierce. (Best said with a bit of a southern drawl and a corn cob pipe - and a banjo) I’ve never recovered very quickly from all out marathons and this one was no exception. My quads are still actually a bit sore to the touch - although, I’m finally not walking with a
No idea why I took this picture a few months back
(I'm not even sick now!)
As I turn the page on another marathon cycle, I always like to do a few things in an attempt to avoid the Marathon Blues. (That lack of goals feeling that leads to watching Biggest Loser on the couch while eating an entire bag of baked Doritos. You know, because baked is healthier.) I usually take a bit of time to reflect on the marathon training cycle gone by (consulting speak: a post mortem) and try to once again start doing all of the things that I harp on to the people I coach: core work, strength training, cross training.
- I already have a really good core routine courtesy of Jamoosh and his Hard Core Club v1 (before he got all commercial with v2)
- When you get a 6 pack you can be one of “those people” that seems to always have their shirt off no matter what
I can finally get those porn star “star” tattoos on my belt line
- It doesn’t require any “tools” or a gym membership, just me, a yoga mat, and some lovely gravity that was so much of a pain in the ass the last time I went out drinking
- Most importantly, core really IS important for running speed and endurance.
From Runners World (as well as a few medical articles I’ve read):
As you extend your stride or quicken the rate of your leg and foot turnover when you're trying to pick up your pace, the lower abs-including the transversus and rectus abdominis-and lower back are called into action. The stronger and more stable these muscles are, the more force and speed you can generate as you push off the ground. As you're nearing the end of a race, a solid core helps you maintain proper form and run efficiently, even through fatigue. With strong lower abs and lower-back muscles, such as the erector spinae, it's easier to stay upright. If your core is weak, you may end up shuffling, slouching, and putting too much stress on your hips, knees, and shins.
So, a strong core makes you go faster and last longer. Sign me up!! Something tells me that those two traits will have benefits during activities other than running. (Biking, duh). I'm starting out with planks, situps, pushups (surprisingly good on your core), and side raises and moving on to some of the more advanced positions. 6 pack and star tattoos here I come!
Do you core? What are your favorite core exercises?