Stretches For Runners : Week 3 of Half Marathon Training

It’s week 3 of half marathon training! How’s everyone doing?  Remember the schedule isn’t written in stone. Adjust it to work with your life. I write my weekly training schedule in my new Commit30 planner. I’m loving the way this planner is laid out… just waiting for my stickers to arrive.

commit30
Commit30 and pens.
commit30
My week at a glance. There’s room for everything!

 

I adjusted this weeks training by switching out the hill repeat workout for a trail run. Definitely just as tough.

Peter's Canyon
Got my hills in at Peter’s Canyon

I was so relieved that my back and hips felt fine (I’ve had some issues lately) and my plantar fasciitis seems to be healed (Yay!) because the run was brutal! It was a scorching 88 degrees with killer hills. Hopefully, you too have been running and getting in some hills. You might be feeling a little stiff and/or sore, This weeks topic is aimed at helping those sore muscles.

Stretching

Most runners are notorious for not stretching (at least not as much as they should) and I too am guilty of skipping my post run stretch on occasion most days.

Stretching becomes more important as you start building weekly mileage. If you are new to running, now is the time to make it a part of your routine…before you develop bad habits, like yours truly. 😉 I struggle with making time for post run stretches and it affects how I feel some days. I honestly can’t say why I don’t stretch enough, because when I do, it feels soooo good.

Things I do to UP my chances of stretching:

  • Yoga: I schedule a yoga class. Most classes focus on stretching  the lower back and hip flexors…two of the tightest muscle groups for runners.
  • Get a foam roller: Let’s just say I have one. I know people who love theirs. I have yet to develop that kind of relationship with mine. Maybe I should add it to my goals. Oh wait, it is on my goal list…oops
  • foam roller
  • Recruit a partner: Sometimes I can get my daughter to stretch with me. I can run for miles alone but ask me to stretch for 10-20 minutes and I want company. 
  • Search the internet for new stretches: This is mostly just for fun (I end up on FB watching random videos) because stretches haven’t changed much over the years but occasionally I come across one that I’ve forgotten about.

 

cat stretch

5 Stretches you should be doing:

  1. Standing Quad  

    standing quad stretch
    Stand tall and pull foot up towards buttocks.

    standing quad 2
    For added stretch. Push foot into hand.
  2. Butterfly 

    butterfly stretch
    Stretch inner thighs. Push knees towards ground with elbows.
  3. Pigeon

    pigeon pose
    Bend one leg in front while stretching the other out behind you. Stretches hip flexors.
  4. Runners Stretch

 

runners stretch                                                                     Foot should be flexed for a better stretch behind leg.

extended runners stretch

    For added side stretch.  Btw, this is my daughter, she’s a dancer. I am so not this flexible!

     5.  Child’s Pose  

Childs pose
Lower back stretch. I love this one and could relax like this forever! You can put arms at your sides if that is more comfortable.

 

There are so many other stretches you can do but these will get you started. I will try to add 1 or 2 stretches weekly until the end of this training series.

***Remember, I am not a coach, physical therapist or professional trainer. I am simply someone who has been running for a long time and have learned a few things over the years, mostly from reading a lot and through trial and error. Please take what you read here as friendly advice and follow at your own risk 🙂 ***

As always, thanks for reading! Next week is all about cross training.

Leave me a comment or question. I love to hear from you! Please share this post if you like what you read. Thanks!

Keep running!

                Denise

 

 

 

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