Yesterday I spoke about the importance of balanced weight training for track runners and shared some exercises to help boost your athletic performance. You can find the link to that post here!
Today, I’m writing about the benefits and importance of functional training and plyometric for runners today. These are your explosive movements, movements often associated with HIIT and cardio exercises. It’s a very beneficial exercise and probably a type of exercise performed by many in the gym compared to the amount of people who lift weights.
Please note: I am not a strength coach, dietician or a personal trainer. These tips are sorely based off my own opinion from what I have learned from my coaches and through research. Before you start any fitness plan, please consult with someone in that profession.
2. So let’s talk about functional training!
I like to think of this kind of training very body weight focused, and I saw this because a lot of these exercises do not even require any equipment which makes it even better. One could use their local park or track as part of their equipment as you could sprint up stairs or you can perform pull ups on monkey bars!
This kind of exercise is beneficial for track athletes as it easily strengthens your fast twitch muscles you need for track races. For example: An exercise like tuck jumps will strengthen your legs and help you become more explosive, so will squat jumps which can also strengthen your glutes and quads.
Functional training/plyometric can also be beneficial as the workouts can be similar to your running form! In your workout, you can add high knees to help with your knee drive whilst holding dumbells on each hand to help with your arm drive! Or you can perform box jumps which can help you become explosive from a low point just like you would need to for a start in a race. Here are two really good exercises you should add to your regime:
This is basically a full body exercise as everything is used once performing this exercise. Don’t start too high, build it up and increase your height each time you feel strong enough to!
Back to basics! Everybody knows this move, it is powerful and helpful in so many ways due to even the number of variations it comes with. If you want to build arm strength, start here, and if you would like to strengthen your arms for athletes, add a push clap to it and you’ll be swinging!
I hope you have found this helpful, whether you are an athlete or not. These exercises will benefit you not matter what your discipline is! I am considering posting videos as if this a Youtube thing, just to see, if you would like that, comment below and if there is anything else I can share my opinion on, PLEASE let me know! xx