Like many of you, I really didn’t like to warm up before a run for a long time. It took too much time and I figured I’d stretch out on the run.
But I actually like the warm ups now and not just because I was getting injuries when I wasn’t warming up, but because it helps me prepare for the run a little better. Gets my mind right.
It’s because of this element of my running that I follow runners on Instagram, especially the ones that share warm up drills and stretches and why I use Nike Training Club. (When will NTC see me as the important influencer I am?)
Anyway, I feel it helps me get my day started right and it’s kinda groovy. Like those skip drills that are reminiscent of the Melbourne Shuffle. I love those, but I admit I only do them when I’m sure none of my neighbors are around to see me out in the street before I start my jog.
I like how far stretching has come, too, from when I was sort of an athlete in my late teens and twenties. The dynamic stretches are great and I feel much better after doing those before a run than when I used to just stretch.
I also hit more muscle groups in my warm ups. I’m doing my back, shoulders, neck and engaging my core (cool way to say stomach muscles and lower back, eh.) I loosen up my hips and so the runs aren’t as jarring when I start out.
So here’s my list of the things I do in warm up almost every time:
- Alternating Knee Hugs
- Dynamic Quadricep Stretch
- Hurdle Step
- Ballet Kicks (Also called leg swings)
- Reverse Lunge Reaches
- Forward Fold (Really awesome. Thanks Coach Jess of Runners World.)
- Standing Hamstring stretch
- Calf Stretch
- Lateral hip openers
- neck and shoulder rolls (Very slow)
- Dynamic chest stretch
Things I do when I don’t think people are watching:
- Karaoke (both the running drill and the singing)
- A skips and attempt at B Skips
I got my stretches from a combination of participating in sports in high school and college and from: Nike Training Club, Runners World — Especially Coach Jess, Chari Hawkins’ Instagram Account — she’s got loads of good stuff about stretching and technique. Sarah Hall’s accounts pretty good too. I follow some other runners, like Hayden Hawks, but that’s mostly because he runs in really cool places.
If you need more info, just ask in the comments.
Keep on running, keep on writing.