Body Weight Strength Training for the Runner and Triathlete

by Devin Blessing, DPT, OCS >> Request an Appointment

It’s well-understood in literature that strength training is beneficial for runners and triathletes. The challenge for most of us is finding ways to fit it in with our busy work and life schedules along with training for our sport. It’s helpful to have a series of body weight exercises to give yourself a strength training stimulus no matter where you are. Because the following series doesn’t require any equipment, it’s a great program to follow while traveling, at the office or at home.

Single Leg Bridge (3 x 15 reps)

The single leg bridge trains hip extension and strengthens your glute max, which is an important muscle for generating power while running and on the bike. Perform with or without a resistance band.

Side Plank w/ Hip Abduction (3 x 30 sec)

The side plank with hip abductions trains your lateral core and lateral hip stabilizers. These muscles are crucial to keep you healthy while running. They contribute to keeping your hips, knees and feet injury-free.

Plank Thread the Needle (3 x 8 reps each side)

The thread the needle is a fun plank variation that targets rotational core stability. Controlling rotational forces with both running and swimming is helpful for performance and injury prevention.

Wall Sit w/ Calf Raise (3 x 60 sec)

This wall sit variation will train your soleus along with making your quads burn. Your soleus is exposed to forces as high as 8x your body weight while running. Because of this, soleus strengthening is critical to any runner’s program.

Pogo Hops (3 x 30 sec)

Pogo hops are a great way to train storage and release of energy in your gastroc/soleus complex. If you can’t get out and run, they are a great way to give your calf and achilles a running-specific training stimulus. These are also a great performance test if you are rehabbing a calf or achilles injury to clear before running. Progress from double leg to single leg pogo hops for an additional challenge!

Evolve your home workouts with these body weight strength exercises and let us know what you think!

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