whip your glutes into shape

Sunday: rest day

Monday: 10 mile bike ride instead of a 3 mile run (though … it was really slow and on a cruiser bike, so it wasn’t really a workout)

Tuesday: Went all lazy & did nothing

Wednesday: track/crossfit workout (see below)

Thursday: 3 mile walk instead of a 5 mile run (because I was too sore from yesterday)

Since I’ve been trying to meet my weekly mileage goals, I’ve seriously shirked any semblance of strength training. Not that I did a ton of strength training before, but at least I was consistent with a weights class once a week.

As anyone with a fitness orientation (runner, athlete, yogi, trainer) will tell you, strength training is really important. It shouldn’t be the first thing you cut from your fitness regimen.

So I’m making a deal with myself to drop one of my short runs each week and do strength training instead — or add strength training to a run, as I did on Wednesday.

If you’re a runner and at all skeptical about dropping miles to add in weights, let me offer three convincing reasons:

  1. It’ll make you stronger (duh) and faster (yay), especially if you build up your hamstrings.
  2. It’ll help you burn more calories. (Who doesn’t want to burn more calories?)
  3. It’ll leave you less prone to injury — and more equipped to last through your long runs.

And, let me clarify: When I say strength training, I don’t necessarily mean you need to use weights, though it’s a good idea. I simply mean any weight-bearing exercise. Using your own body weight counts, too.

Want a quick and effective workout that’ll whip your glutes into shape? Take a look at the track/crossfit workout I did on Wednesday … It’s the first crossfit workout I’ve ever done, and so far my favorite. :) (I stole it from Paula of Eat Watch Run, who I follow on dailymile.)

I’m calling it …

Let ‘er burn!

  • 1 mile warmup
  • 1 fast lap, followed by 100 squats + 25 moving lunges
  • 1 fast lap, followed by 75 squats + 25 moving lunges
  • 1 fast lap, followed by 50 squats + 25 moving lunges
  • 1 fast lap, followed by 25 squats + 25 lunges
  • 1 mile cool down

Some important notes:

  • Do not rest during the fast lap rotations! I wanted this to simulate what it feels like to run fast on really tired legs. Defeats the purpose (in my opinion) if you allow yourself recovery.
  • Do a proper squat. No cheating. (Google proper squat if you’re not confident in your form.)
  • Squeeze your glutes at the top of the squat. Go ahead, squuueeeeze.
  • Please don’t forget to stretch afterward!

I loved this workout for a few reasons. First, it was super quick. I think it was about an hour from start to finish, and that included a lot of stretching. Second, it felt tough but completely doable … and yet, I was more sore than I ever expected the next day. (I can’t wait to do it a few more times and see my progress.) Lastly, it’s open for lots of variations. I’d like to try it with pushups or burpees, extend the laps in between or turn it into a ladder (where you start with fewer squats and build up to 100, then build back down).

Try it out. Let me know what you think!

sun

Guess what happened this week? It’s officially summer in Portland. Sure, we’ve had some sunny, warm days before this. But now it’s here to stay. Yep, summer starts on July 5 in PDX.

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