Category Archives: Workouts

6 Favorite Workouts for Runners

Need running inspiration? Here's 6 favorite workouts for runners by runners. | happyfitmama.com

It’s another edition of Monthly Workouts for Runners BY Runners. Here’s the previous month’s workouts if you missed them:

Stuck Inside Workouts for Runners

Two-a-Day Workouts for Runners

Upper Body Workouts for Runners

Injury Prevention Exercises for Runners

Hill Workouts for Runners

Speed Workouts for Runners

Core Workouts for Runners

Dynamic Warm Up for Runners

Yoga & Stretching for Runners

This month the focus is on our Favorite Workouts for Runners.

Runners are unique. We all have our favorite workouts. Some may like a speed workout. Some may love a tempo. Some may love a good progression run.

For me, if I could combine a run with a strength workout, it would be the best case scenario. Of course, with time constraints, it doesn’t always happen that way. Since I’m always short on time, my favorite workout would include a little strength and a little running (OK, maybe more running than a little would be ideal!).

This strength and running combo uses 6 exercises, done for 60 seconds each. You can do one round and call it good or do up to three more for a full body workout in less than 20 minutes.

Follow that up with running for 30-60 minutes for a well rounded favorite workout kind of day for me!

My favorite workouts for runners combine strength building moves with some time running. Check out this easy and quick workout for runners. | happyfitmama.com

And here are even more favorite workouts from 5 of my running friends.

Pin away so you have a stash of workouts on hand whenever you need it.

Allie shares her workout to shave 10 minutes off your half marathon time.

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Sarah shares her Go-To strength moves.

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Nellie shares her favorite workout when NOT running.

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Carly shares her favorite strength workout for anyone.

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Laura shares her favorite progression run for half and full marathon runners.

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Linking up with Wild Workout Wednesday and the Coaches’ Corner.

What’s your favorite workout?

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4 Running Workouts to Increase Speed

Pick up the pace with these 4 running workouts to increase speed. | happyfitmama.com

You want to be a faster runner.

You’ve increased your time running. You’ve increased the distance you are running.

That’s one of the easiest ways to get faster as you build strength and endurance.

But running the same speed for every single run is not doing anything in getting your fix for the need for speed.

If you want to run faster, you’ve got to run faster.

We all can agree on that, right?

Jazz up your runs with adding in 1-2 speed workouts per week. Speed work taxes your body A LOT.  Your body needs time to properly recover from hard workouts. Growth occurs during rest and even easy runs in between hard sessions. Remember those days are vital for improvement.

Here are 4 different running workouts to increase your speed.

Fartlek

Besides being a really funny Swedish word that makes every giggle, Fartleks are incredibly effective in building speed. And they are one of my favorite workouts. Just ask my coaching client, Dawn, who scored a major PR (and BQ) at Chicago – I gave her oodles of Fartleks in her marathon training plan. Why do I love them? They are easy to do anywhere. They aren’t as intimidating as run x:xx pace for xx amount of time.

Pick up the pace with this simple Fartlek Workout to increase your running speed. happyfitmama.com

Hills

While training for Mount Washington last spring, I grew to love hills. Ok, not LOVE them. But I grew to appreciate that they do in fact make you a stronger, faster runner in the long run. The old saying, hills are speed work in disguise, is absolutely true.

Build strength, stamina and speed with this dynamic Hill Pyramid Workout for Runners. happyfitmama.com

Intervals

Doing short, intense bursts of speed builds up your stamina and endurance. To reduce the chance of injury, if you are a new runner or new to speed training, start with hills and Fartlek training before trying interval work.

Try this interval workout on the track treadmill or road to increase your running speed. | happyfitmama-comTempo

Tempo runs scare the running tights off me more than any other workout. You want me to run that fast for that long?!?! With other speed intervals, it’s always a shorter period of running at a faster speed. But with tempos, it’s faster that easy pace, but not so fast that you are out of breath. More of like a comfortably hard pace. If you can talk easily, it’s too slow. If you can’t talk at all, it’s way too fast. It’s meant to help you run faster and harder for longer periods of time by increasing your anaerobic threshold. Consistently doing Tempo runs usually give me the biggest reward in gaining speed.

Try this simple tempo workout to increase your running speed. | happyfitmama.com

Even if you aren’t training for a specific race or goal time, adding any of these speed workouts to your weekly rotation can help you become a more efficient and stronger runner. Plus, it just makes it fun!

Pin it now and save for later.

Linking up with Wild Workout Wednesday and the Coaches’ Corner.

What’s your favorite speed workout?

Which one scares the running tights off you?

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6 Core Workouts for Runners

Strong runners need a strong core. Here's 6 core workouts for runners to keep you strong and injury free

It’s another edition of Monthly Workouts for Runners BY Runners. Here’s the previous month’s workouts if you missed them:

Stuck Inside Workouts for Runners

Two-a-Day Workouts for Runners

Upper Body Workouts for Runners

Injury Prevention Exercises for Runners

Hill Workouts for Runners

Speed Workouts for Runners

This month the focus is on core workouts.

When I was sidelined with my first running injury, the importance of a strong core was drilled into my head by my physical therapist. I knew that core strength was important for a runner (and everybody) in injury prevention. More and more research shows that any lower body injury (feet, ankles, knees, hips) stems from a weak core. I thought I was doing a pretty good job in training it. I did my planks and side planks daily holding each for 3-4 minutes. I worked my low back and hips 3x/week in yoga or with other exercises. So when Heather started testing my core strength and balance, I was shocked at how poorly I scored.

Here’s a simple way to test your core strength:

With bare feet, stand facing a full length mirror.  Shift your weight to your right foot. Your left food doesn’t even have to come off the ground. Watch what happens to your body.  Does your hip stick out as you shift your weight to the side? Does your entire body lean over? Do you fall over?

If any of those happen, it means that your core is tight, but not strong.  Every time you take a step your body is out of balance and you sway from side to side.  Walking is essentially a series of one-legged stands.  If you can’t stand on one leg without some part of your body sticking out to that side, you end up rocking or waddling when you walk.  A truly strong core is mobile and relaxed enough to allow you to shift your weight from side to side without all that extra unnecessary motion. The same applies with running.

The core area is made up of your abdominal muscles, back muscles and the muscles around the pelvis. These muscles are vital in:

  1. Improving your balance and stability
  2. Posture
  3. Makes activities of daily living (ADLs) easier
  4. Improves your athletic and fitness performance

FYI – While I am a certified RRCA Running Coach, I am not your coach. Listen to your body and it’s limitations. Please check with your physician if you are new to exercise or have any questions regarding your health and exercise.

Strengthen your running when you strengthen your core with this core workout for runners. happyfitmama.com

And here are even more Core Workouts from 5 of my running friends. Pin away so you have a stash of workouts on hand whenever you need it.

Nellie brings a great workout specifically for anyone who’s had Diastasis Recti.

Nellie Core Workout

Carly has a great workout that features Quadripeds. FYI – I had to Google what that was. I call it Bird Dog but Quadriped sounds so much cooler!

Core Workout for RunnersLaura’s Pilates inspired workout will make you feel your core for sure.

Core Workout for Runners This Runner's Recipes

Sarah has a quick workout that can easily be done post run.

Keep your core strong with this quick core workout for runners-RunFarGirlAnd Allie has a killer video of all your favorite (or least favorite) core moves.

There you go – get working on that strong core now!

Linking up with Wild Workout Wednesday and the Coaches’ Corner.

What’s your favorite exercise for working your core?

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