Strength Training For Runners Level Three
Supported Single Leg Squat
- Use a stool or bench which is about knee height
- Start with the stool behind you. Face straight ahead with your feet, knees, hips and shoulders aligned.
- Take your weight on one leg, and put the toe of your other foot on the stool.
- The thigh of your leg which is on the stool should be perpendicular to the floor (ie your leg shouldn’t be extending back behind you.
- Bend the knee of your grounded leg into a squat position. 45 degrees is low enough, however you can go as low as 90 degrees.
- Keep your knee in line with your foot. Don’t let your knee roll in our out. Using a mirror can be helpful
- Try to take the weight on your front leg, and just use the leg on the stool for a little bit of stability.
- Return to the start position and repeat
Combined Single Double Heel Raise
This is the same as the level two exercise. It’s important to get this one right, and really strengthen your calf and Achilles Tendon. You’re aiming for 3 sets of 20 repetitions at this level
- Helps to get you ready for single leg heel raise, but not quite as difficult
- For calves and Achilles
- Feet hips width apart shoulders and hips facing straight ahead
- Come up on two feet slowly, then down on one leg slowly
- Let foot drop down to just underneath step
- Put your other foot back on the step, and come again into a heel raise again with both feet
- Emphasis is on the downward movement – keep it slow and controlled. This is crucial for strength building.
Side Leg Raise
This is the same as the level two exercise. You’re aiming for 3 sets of 45 repetitions at this level
- Similar to clam –works the muscles on the side of your hip
- Getting you ready to do more advanced hip stabilising exercises in a standing position
- Lie on your side with your legs straight, hips and shoulders lined up one on top of the other
- Point the toes of your top foot up towards the ceiling/sky
- Lift your top leg up to a bit above hip height, and return
- Be careful to move in a slow and controlled manner
- You can put your fingertips on the ground if you need the stability
- Works some of your core muscles
- Lie on your back
- Feet comfortably flat on the floor
- Place your fingers underneath the small of your back.
- Bring the knee of one leg up towards your chest, to around about a 45 degree angle at your hip – bum still flat on the floor
- Keeping the same amount of pressure on your fingers from the small or your back, lift the other leg slightly off the floor and extend it out about half way.
- Return to start position.
- Alternate legs, being mindful of keeping your pelvis steady when you are swapping legs
Side Bridge / Side Plank
- Working some of your core muscles, particularly your obliques on the underneath side of your torso
- Lie on your side, legs out straight, hips at about 180 degrees
- Weight on elbow, elbow not quite directly under your shoulder, just lightly in towards your torso
- Push your hips up towards the ceiling, coming up with your hips and shoulders aligned, so that your weight is on elbow and feet
- Return to start position and repeat.
- If you find this too difficult, you can also support yourself on your hand, until you get stronger.