WOW, thank you so much for the feedback from yesterday’s post. Sounds like (hopefully) people understood what I was trying to convey! I was very worried about that! And just in case I wasn’t clear yesterday…. I get passed ALL THE TIME!!!! I mean seriously. Living on a college campus… the Indiana University XC team makes me look like I am running backward. No joke. But I myself LOVE when they give a wave, smile, etc.
… And from the sound of it, so do you guys! So I will continue with what feels natural! Being Merry about Running 🙂
Oh, and this sunset happened the other day.
….I mean Praise the Lord, huh? Gorgeous.
Now, on to the topic of the day…
I always seem to get on these “kicks”… sprinting…spinning….HIIT…CrossFit…weightlifting…
(FYI running is a constant throughout these obsessions!)
But, I love getting into new activities and discovering alternative ways to challenge myself!
My new thing as of late? PLYOMETRICS!
Plyometrics— “Jump Training” to develop our fast-twitch muscles, power, and speed.
And boy have I spent an embarrassing amount of hours researching the benefits, practice, and incorporation of plyometrics into running workouts. Lots of articles, demo videos, blog reading from other runners, etc.
- Running Drills for Form and Strength (video)
- Running Plyometrics (video)
- Running Times: Improve Running Economy with Plyometrics
- Runner’s World: More Evidence in Favor of Plyometrics
Here are some “bites” from the articles:
“Eighteen competitive distance runners followed a six-week plyometrics program in addition to their usual training, while another 18 runners of similar ability carried on with their normal routines. Before and after the six-week period, the runners did a series of tests, including two sprints and a 2400-meter (roughly 1.5-mile) time trial. The plyometrics group lowered their 20-meter and 2400-meter times by 2.3% and 3.9%, respectively, while the control group didn’t improve on the tests at the end of the six weeks.”
“The studies have shown that even less than two months of this [plyometric] type of training will translate into tangible improvements in the efficiency of a runner.“
“Plyometric training has been shown to be an important part of training a distance runner to recruit muscle fibers most efficiently.”
Whelp… sounds pretty good to me! I read lots more articles but don’t feel the need to bore you all. You get the point!
So what are some Plyometric exercises?
-Well, really anything that gets you “bouncing”… quick movements, up on your toes, minimal contact on the ground, engaging fast twitch muscles… just a few examples:
- squat jumps
- long-jumps (hops)
- single leg jumps
- box jumps
- Single leg Hurdles
And Running Times even puts it into a nice little Schedule for us 🙂 They are so considerate to planning it out for us…
|Week||Single Leg Hops||Bleacher Hops||Double Leg Bounds||Alternate Leg Bounds||Squat Jumps||Depth Jumps||Box Jumps|
|1||2 x 10||2 x 10|
|2||2 x 10||2 x 10|
|3||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10|
|4||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10|
|5||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10|
|6||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10||2 x 10|
**If you click on THIS link, you will see the article, this schedule, and a description of the workouts at the bottom of the page!
There is so much info out there that if you Google/YouTube some workouts and techniques you will find lots of great advice!
The Kenyans and other TOP marathon runners use this drills on a weekly basis… if nothing else it is a great warm-up or cool-down to our runs to loosen us up (while building our strength and speed!)
News in MY Running Life
In semi-related news… I have out of the blue pulled a little muscle in my hip/groin. Literally cannot remember doing it or anything, but I woke up on Monday and it was bothering. I ran 6 miles on it, which, shockingly enough, did not help ha.
SOOOOO…. I am taking time off of running! Doing weightlifting, stretching, abs, pushups, crosstraining, PLYOMETRICS… and funny enough I am absolutely not worried/upset/stressed about this. I think I have finally learned that I go through “running spurts” and I will not at all lose any speed/endurance if I take a week–or two– off! In fact, knowing my body as I do, I will feel GREAT when I come back! It will be perfect as the Richmond Marathon is around the corner!! 🙂
Have a Great Wednesday my Friends! You are all lovely, such kind people! I love your comments and feedback and sharing running/stresses/LIFE with you all!
Have you done any Plyometric work for running or other sports? Thoughts?
What are you most looking forward to this weekend?!