Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Strength Training for Runners

One of the things I am committing to as part of my Marine Corps Marathon training is consistent strength training. So I was especially glad that last night's talk at the Women's Training Program focused on strength training. And as an added bonus, Coach Shannon was the person teaching us about planks and lunges.

I originally learned these exercises from Coach Shannon during PR Training Running 101 a year and a half ago. I did them consistently for a few months and then kind of lost my momentum as my life got busier. I commit to consistently doing these exercises during my MCM training. Consistently means 3 times a week on non-consecutive days.

Lunge Matrix

The lunge matrix is a series of lunges - forward, back, forward with a twist, sideways, and a fancy knee lift where you step back at an angle. Eventually you build up to 5 of each lunge style on each leg. It looks like this: 


The plank series includes four planks - front, back, right side, left side. You can start out slowly - 5 seconds in each position and take breaks between them if needed. You gradually build up time and eliminate the breaks between the positions. It looks like this:

My Plan

For now, this is what I'm committing to for strength training. I will build up to these exercises as demonstrated in Coach Jay's videos above. I know that successful habits involve starting small and building towards the bigger habit, so I'm not adding a whole list of things that will be overwhelming & time-consuming and ultimately setting myself up for failure.

As these routines become habits for me, I may add others, like the myrtl routine:

and the back routine:

I'm also going to add some yoga, but that will be in small increments as well. For now, I am doing one sun salutation when I get up in the morning and one restorative pose in the evening, such as legs against the wall, pigeon, or child's pose.


  1. I love all three of those restorative poses! I think I have just been inspired by you!

    1. Aw, thanks Gina! You inspire me all the time :)