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The Runners Pilates Workout – The Top 7 Exercises

Here at my blog, I do my best to provide you, my dear readers, with a wide range of cross training activities and workouts to help supplement your roadwork.

So today’s is Pilates day, and hopefully by the end of this post you will have a straightforward and simple Pilates workout routine you can do anywhere anytime.

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Image Credit – Way Pilates via Flickr

So Pilates?

Pilates are low impact exercise that will put a minimum stress on your body, which can be a great break from the high impact nature of running. But that doesn’t mean that Pilate are easy and got nothing to offer.

Au contraire, my friend.

Pilates require serious strength and they are very challenging. And what I really love about them is they are perfect for building core strength using only the resistance of your own bodyweight.

No need for a gym.

No need for fancy equipment.

Pretty convenient, isn’t it?

When you have a strong and stable core, your limbs will move more efficiently, improving performance and preventing injuries. The core, is after all, the power center of your entire body.

For more on core training benefits for runner, check my full guide at: The 8 Core Exercises you Should Do.

The Runners Pilates Workout Routine – 7 Exercises

Here is a routine you can do a couple of times a week.

This workout routine will help you build an injury-free body, increase strength, shed weight, improve flexibility, ease low back pain, helping you become the best runner you can be.

Perform this routine at least two time a week, more if you can, for 20 to 30 minutes each session. You can also do a shortened version of it right after a run if you are looking for a quick way to hit your core muscles before you jump into the shower.

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Image Credit – Andre Films Via Flickr

Just make sure to perform the move with good form and to always stay within your fitness zone.

1. Kneeling Sidekick

Come up to a kneeling positing facing the side of the mat. Make sure your legs a slightly apart with arms raised to a “T” position.

Next, lower your right hand to the floor and extend the your left arm out, holding your left hand behind the head, then kick forward with your left leg then bring it back.

Repeat for 8 times, then switch sides complete one set. Do three sets.

2. Side Leg Lifts

This one increases strength in the lateral hip, which can help you improve your stability and ward off injury. Plus, this move can also teach you how to engage your core as your legs work.

Lie on your right side with legs extended. Next, while engaging your core and keeping your torso steady, raise your left leg to hip heights, then swing it forward and back in a slow and controlled manner to complete one rep.

Repeat 10 to 12, then switch sides to complete one set.

3. Scissors

 

Start by laying on your back with knees bent, feet on the floor, then curl your head and neck to raise the shoulders slightly off the ground.

Next, lift your right leg one inch off the floor while extending the left leg to the ceiling, toes pointed, bringing the hands to the ankle. Inhale, then switch the position of your legs to complete one rep. Repeat by alternating back and forth so that it looks like a scissoring motion while keeping your back flat on the floor and core engaged the entire time.

Do 8 to 10 reps to complete one set.

4. Corkscrews

Here is one of my favorite core strengthening moves. Corkscrew stretches also the hips and side, and teaches you a lot about control.

Lay on your back, press the backs of the arms into the mat and roll over onto your upper back. Extend your legs up to the sky and keep them together, hugging in the midcenter of your body. That’s the starting position.

Next, lower your torso and take your hips and legs to the right side, pause for a moment, then circle your legs around to the left, taking your hips up as they go to the left side. That’s one rep.

Do 8 to 10 reps to complete one set. Aim for three sets.

5. Shoulder Bridge with Kick

Lay on your back with arms straight along sides, then lift up your hips to a bridge position and hold it there. Make sure your knees are in the same plane as your hips and collarbones. That’s the starting position.

Next, kick your right leg up and extend it, toe pointed, pause for a moment, then bring it down to starting position, then switch sides to complete one rep.

6. The Roll-up

Lay down on the floor, legs straight, arms extended overhead, and palms facing each other, and shoulders down.

Next, lift your head, neck, and shoulder off the mat, and roll up by drawing in your abs, and lifting your arms toward the ceiling while engaging your core muscles the entire time, pause for a moment, then slowly roll down on your spine through each vertebra in a slow and controlled manner until you are lying flat on the floor. That’s one rep.

Do 8 to 10 reps to complete one set. Shoot for three sets.

7. Swan

This Pilate exercise stretches the quads, hips flexors and abs, and will also help you open your front body, and expand your chest, key for a good running posture.

Plus, it also teach you how to use engage your leg muscles more thoroughly and keep healthy stride.

Lie on your belly with your hands in front of your shoulders, palms down. Make sure your shoulder pulling away from your ears.

Next, while looking forward and engaging your core, slowly lift your torso, hold it for a moment, then slowly return to starting position to complete one rep.

Do 10 reps complete one set. Aim for three sets with good form.

Conclusion

The above Pilates is simple and straighforward, so you have no excuses here. Do it often and to improve your running and core strength. Don’t worry if you are not perfect; just do your best and forget the rest.

In the meantime thank you for reading my post.

Please feel free to leave your comments and questions below.

David D

Featured Image – Justin Via Flickr

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