Tag Archives: core strength

Pilates for Runners

Pilates is a wonderful addition to any training plan, especially for runners.  It builds strength, stability and power without being high impact and can also increase mental toughness.  A technique based system of moves designed to develop muscle balance, increase muscle control, improve mobility and mind body connection, practice is a must do for faster running.  Here are the biggest benefits you’ll receive when you add pilates to your program.

Create muscle balance.  Pilates focuses on every muscle in the body not just the big ones we use over and over.  Strengthening weaker muscles while maintaining stronger ones means pilatesyou’ll perform everything from daily activities to running a marathon with more ease and less risk of injury.

Lengthen to strengthen.  Pilates encourages muscles to stretch and reach.  Since running doesn’t require most muscles to move through an entire range of motion, pilates will make muscles stronger from end to end.  Strong muscles all the way through makes them able to produce more power with each contraction and that means faster running.

Low impact.  After all those miles on the road, track, trail and treadmill, it’s nice to give your body a break with a workout that keeps you off your feet.  Not only will the variety of a pilates session give your body a new challenge, your bones will appreciate the break.

Better breathing.  Pilates teaches you how to use your diaphragm and use the full capacity of your lungs for each breath.  Deeper breathing keeps your heart rate down, lowers recovery time and keeps muscles going longer.  Less cardiovascular stress when running through fuller, deeper breaths means faster finish times.

Relax.  Deep breathing combined with long, slow, full range of motion movements give you an opportunity to relax.  The concentration required to perform moves correctly also means you’ll have to clear your head of the day’s stress and pay exclusive attention to what your body is doing.

Add pilates to your routine on any day you want a good strength workout, any time you need a good recovery stretch or whenever you want to give yourself a new challenge.  Your posture, breathing, balance and running will all improve.  Click here to find a quality instructor near you!

Coach Meredth

June Push-Up Challenge – 30 Days

Welcome to June and the 30 Day Push-Up Challenge!

This month Team FitNice is taking on a Challenge.  We’ll complete a designated number of push-ups each day in the month of June to get stronger this summer.

Join in on the fun by taking these simple steps:

1.  Like FitNicePT on Facebook

2.  Visit each day for your daily dose of push-ups

3.  Share pictures, comments and brags about your progress.

The challenge will introduce you to not only standard push-ups but two other varieties.  Plank push-ups and T push-ups are included to help build a strong foundation for your fitness goals.  Including push-ups in your workout routine will help build midline, core, shoulder, chest and triceps strength and stability.  This can help improve your golf swing, your running posture, your strength training power and make every day activities easier to accomplish.

A stronger, more stable upper body is an asset to any athlete and June’s 30 Day Push-Up Challenge is a great way to start building one.

If you want to get a sneak peak, check out these push-up videos on our YouTube Channel!

Push-Ups

T Push-Ups

Plank Push-Ups

push-up challenge

I can’t wait to see how far you get over the course of our 30 Day Push-Up Challenge!

Coach Meredith

Strong Core, Strong Body

Having a strong core means more than being able to show off your abs on the beach, and powerful muscles connecting your upper and lower halves have lots of benefits beyond attracting the opposite sex.  Core muscles are the link between upper and lower body muscles, bones and joints.  Because all movement starts at one end of the body and moves through every inch of it, weak core muscles can go so far as to impede proper movement in the arms and legs.  Balance and stability also come from having strong muscles in your trunk and that means fewer falls and injuries.

Everything you do on a daily basis uses your core muscles.  Whether you’re standing up, sitting down, bending over or playing a sport, the basis for each movement is in your middle.  The major core muscles are the transverse abdominis working to stabilize the spine, the internal and external obliques rotating the trunk, gluteus maximus, medius and minimus stabilizing the hips, and the pelvic floor muscles that support organs and control urination.  Other groups of core muscles include the rotator cuff helping the shoulder joint, shoulder blade and clavicle work together and the erector spinae which run up the spine on both sides to keep you upright and assist the obliques and transverse abdominals.

Giving your spine and shoulders the support they need means better posture, making you look slimmer and breathe easier.  All this sitting up straight also eases the chronic low back pain many people suffer with.  Any sport that involves upper body movement is improved by providing increased flexibility and more power to rotate your trunk around your spine.  As you work to strengthen your core, you are not only gaining flexibility and decreasing low back pain, you are implementing a completely well rounded fitness program that will ultimately help you reach any fitness goal you set.

There are hundreds of exercises you can practice to increase the strength of your abs, obliques and lower back, and you don’t need a single piece of equipment for most of them.  Add a swiss or medicine ball to your fitness equipment stash and open up the door to many more choices.

Want help adding core training to your program or developing a brand new core strength training routine?  Ask us!  Info@FitNicePT.com