March Core Exercise

Well here is this months Core exercise.  See if you can spot this months guest ‘demonstrator’ – and no he hasn’t been whisked into hospital!!

With training suspended this is a great time to build up that core strength I keep telling you to do.

Are you doing your abs properly, are you getting the best results? Although the abs exercises may not be new to you, just ensure that you are doing them for the maximum benefit. And if you can’t see your 6 pack remember subcutaneous belly fat lies above the abdominal muscles, and will hide your washboard six-pack stomach.  🙂

The Oblique Crunch

This exercise works the oblique abdominals that control our trunk rotation and contribute to our background trunk strength and stability.

Lie on your back with your knees and hips at 90 degrees. Your lower back should be in neutral, neither flattened to the floor nor arched away from the floor. Your pelvis should remain in contact with the floor throughout.

For the crunch, take your shoulder towards your opposite hip (not your elbow to your knee, or your knee to your elbow!) You are aiming to shorten the distance between your shoulder and your hip.

Repeat 30 times to each side, returning to flat between each crunch. Alternate sides helps with the rhythm but do not rush. Breathe out on the shortening phase, and in as you uncul.

The Stretch – gluteals (buttocks!)

First, I want to explain the difference between corrective static stretching and dynamic stretching.

Corrective static stretching – this requires you to hold your stretch still for at least 30 seconds. The Golgi tendons (stretch receptors) within your muscle fibres recognise your steady state and allow the muscle to relax and subsequently retain length. I have chosen a range of stretches, last year and this, for the whole body, to keep balance and symmetry, and counteract all the time that we spend sitting down. Areas that feel in tension should be stretched daily, with a whole body stretch once a week.

Dynamic stretching – these flexibility exercises are movements that exaggerate the way muscles and soft tissues stretch during running. These can be done as a part of a gentle warm up. These exercises loosen the muscles in tension, increasing the elastic responsiveness, preparing the muscles for the workout ahead. These stretches are not held still but are bouncy and through joint range.

OK. Let’s get less technical. This month’s corrective stretch – lying gluteal stretch.

Lie on the floor with both knees bent and your feet on the floor:

Cross one leg over the other. Keep your spine in contact with the floor and in neutral:

Use your hands to gently pull the bent knee up towards the opposite shoulder. The stretch is felt in the buttock.
Hold for at least 30 seconds:

Repeat on the other side.


Good Luck. put in the effort and you’ll be stronger and less prone to injury when racing recommences.



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