POPSUGAR Celebrity

Strengthen and Stretch! The 12 Moves All Runners Need to Do

Jun 15 2015 - 2:30pm

Whether you're training for your ninth marathon or just want to prevent nagging lower-back pain from your weekly runs, here are the moves missing from your life. Start with these six exercises to help you strengthen your body, run faster, and prevent injury. Then follow that up with these six essential yoga poses to target tight areas that often come from running. Start doing these 12 moves regularly, and you're sure to notice a difference.

Move 1: Sumo Squat With Calf Raises

What it does: Tones the thighs, glutes, and calves.

Move 2: Side Lunge

What it does: Works the muscle on the side of the pelvis (glute meds) as well as the inner thighs.

Move 3: Seated Shin Strengthener

What it does: Tones the shins to prevent shin splints.

Move 4: Wall Sit

What it does: Strengthens the quads and prevents knee pain.

Move 5: Up Down Plank

What it does: Strengthens the arms, shoulders, and core.

Move 6: Superman Ball Lift

What it does: Tones the back to prevent back pain.

Yoga Pose 1: Wide-Legged Forward Bend C

What it does: Stretches the lower back, hamstrings, calves, shoulders, and chest.

Yoga Pose 2: Bent Standing Split

What it does: Stretches the quads and hamstrings.

Yoga Pose 3: Three-Legged Dog

What it does: Stretches the calves and hamstrings and strengthens the arms.

Yoga Pose 4: Open Lizard

What it does: Stretches hips and hip flexors.

Yoga Pose 5: Seated Spinal Twist

What it does: Increases side-to-side spinal mobility and targets the outer thighs and oh-so-tight piriformis muscle.

Yoga Pose 6: Half Wheel

What it does: Increases spinal flexibility and stretches abs, upper back, and neck.

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