As I'm sure you know Granty, I am a complete fan of quality specific hill training, which, amongst other things, will strengthen your quads.
The static exercises you could also do are:
sit upright on an upright chair, feet 6 to 8 inches apart, then slightly tense your right quadricep (muscle at top of thigh), lift your right leg with knee remaining bent, hold for a count of 3, lower and relax, tense again, lift, hold, lower etc. Repeat 10 times, then do exactly the same with your left leg.
You could then repeat the whole process with both legs. It doesn't sound very strenuous, but it's effective if done daily. You could also get yourself some ankle weights and do this exercise with ankle weights too.
Lying on your stomach, keeping your knee straight, lift your right leg backwards from the hip slightly, hold for a count of 3 and then lower, repeat 10 times, then do the same with your left leg. Build up to 3 sets of 10 on each leg. Again, you could add ankle weights as your muscles become stronger.
There are quite a few things that you can buy that aid resistance/strengthening exercises these days. Argos, and large stores of Asda and Tesco sell them quite reasonably.
If you don't get motivated in the gym, your probably like me and will find it hard to keep up gym-type excercies at home (although these are great for leg strengthening and I know I should do my squats more....) - as Trinity suggested you could try to get out in the hills and start running up them - I sometimes do a bouncy run up a hill, with high knee lift and vigorous arm movement (sort of like sprinting in slow motion). The hill can be short and quite steep or longer (300 metres or more) and much more moderate in gradient. Arthur Lydiard was big on this, describing it as:
'springing up, on your toes, not running up, but bouncing.....drive upwards with a high knee lift...........drive hard, pushing upwards with your toes, flexing your ankles as far as possible and landing on the forepart of your foot, with the heel coming down below the level of the toe.....your actions must be relaxed, with the head up and looking ahead, the hips slightly forward, the legs driving down forecfully..........your progression up the hill won't be fast but slow.'
Otherwise do fast walking/striding up steep hills as a start - or find some good steps to run up and down in your local park. So these all include running... and hills...
cycling is great for strengthening the thighs, and many mountain runners I know that live in flat places use cycling as a substitute to hill work. Cycling greatly strengthens the quadriceps and stomach muscles, while avoiding the foot strike pounding of running. The quadriceps muscles in the front of the upper leg are the engine room muscles for both cycling and running uphill.
I try to build a few strengthening excercies into a few runs - find a place with a nice view and do a few sets of squats mid run. Remember to stretch afterwoods.
- do a quick google search for leg strengthening excercises and you'll find heaps of sites with excercises to do.
So, here we go again.
As usual, we will report our mileages weekly with each week ending on a Sunday.
The average daily mileage for 2019 in the year is 5.53 miles, which is 38.72 per week.
The first week is a short one, running up to 6th January. Anyone interested, please let me have you...
Do you want to motivate yourself by starting your own streak?
Maybe do at least one long run every month? Or one race? Or at least one 1h run? Maybe a certain goal-time for a given distance? Something else? :P
Post your progress here.
Last month I decided to try and run at least a sub 20:00...
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