Originally posted at http://www.thememoryjogger.com.au/gym-for-core/ on 27 Nov 2o14
My fund raising activities have been slow due to work, but I am progressively getting my schedule in order. Taking on a new job as a CEO a couple of months back has demanded my time and attention. It’s going well, but there is plenty to do and I’m still learning the business.
That said, no job is worth sacrificing your well-being so I know I need to commit time to training, family, friend and interests other than just work.
An important part of my training regime is regular gym work with a major emphasis on core as well as endurance. Having lived with arthritis for nearly 15 years, I’ve had to manage my body and be careful with the amount of impact activity such as running that I undertake.
Also, you might think you run with your legs, but a strong core is a major benefit for running endurance events. When you start to fatigue, a strong core will help maintain form even when it is hurting. Breaking form is one sure way to bring a run undone and create pain and suffering in places you didn’t even know you had!
Why? Well, when you’re absolutely knackered nearing the end of a long run, your coordination and posture can suffer, causing you to slow down and break form. A strong core developed through a variety of core-strengthening workouts will improve your coordination and posture throughout a run, even in the latter part of a marathon or ultra marathon when you will undoubtedly need it most. Afterall, the strength in your limbs are intimately tied to the strength in your torso.
Core strength training is key to reinforcing the way that your pelvis, abs, hips and lower back work together. When you are fit, well-toned core muscles work in sync and ensure that when your foot hits the ground, your trunk remains solid. A good core prevents any wobbling in your torso and keeps you from deflecting energy.
Core strength training also improves stability and balance, two qualities that you’ll lose without practice, and when you are running trails and different terrain, this is even more important. A strong core and good balance help you recover from missteps and stumbles – and if you’re anything like me you have a few of these on a big outing!
Supplementing any core work, I try to spend some time on the elliptical machine (cross trainer) and the stair master (I hate this machine). Working on the running muscles with as little impact as possible.
Given my dodgy hips, I also work hard on my hip adductors and abductors. I figure the stronger they are, the less I’ll hurt and less trouble they’ll give me.
So well I may not have ripped abs and an awesome six-pack, my core is pretty good – but it could be better. More planking (side and front), more supermans, more crunches, more bosu and more medicine ball ab twists combined with a weights session designed to build strength not bulk.
MDS looms closer everyday and I know that any shortcuts in training will catch me out later on – and I don’t want that to be while I’m trekking across the Sahara Desert in 50 degree heat!
Crunch, crunch – Happy Running!