Sunday, July 22, 2012

Whatever Works

I am a runner that hates fitness.  You know, stuff like sit-ups, push-ups, burpees, squats, plank, etc., etc., etc.  Core work.  Ugh.  Stuff I should be doing on my cross-training days, of which I have 3 per week throughout my marathon training.  Since I am 6 weeks into my training plan, by now I should have done 18 days of core work.  In full disclosure, I've only done one.

Sundays are a cross training day.  Today started like any other lazy Sunday.  DJ Research was already an hour-and-a-half into his run when I finally rolled out of bed.  Luckily, Nugget was still asleep.  I made breakfast and caught up on my blogs, then Nugget awoke and we hung out watching fire truck videos.  The DJ returned, showered, and we headed out for some family errands.

When we got back to put Nugget down for his nap, I was supposed to do a core work routine.  Which I didn't want to do, of course, so I told myself to just go out for a short run.  Which I also didn't want to do, so I took a nap instead.

Forty-five minutes later I woke up famished, and headed downstairs for a bite, upset at myself for having missed my chance to workout.  I figured Nugget would be up soon, and plus I had a skype date with my mom and my sister in an hour.  Oh well.  I devoured a slice of the DJ's leftover cheese pizza and something weird happened.  I suddenly felt like a million bucks!

I threw on my running clothes and headed out the door, excited to be out but also feeling a little guilty that I was running rather than cross training. "Heeeeeeey," I thought, "I know a way to make this core work thing fun!"  I would do core work on the run!

I ran down the street and tackled a nearby big hill, focusing on form and my breathing.  Cresting the hill, I kept my pace up until I got to the neighborhood elementary school where I jumped the fence (ok, no, I just ran through the gate) to the playground, and did 5 push-ups (yes, 5! I am that bad-ass :-/ ), 45 squats, 1/2 a pull-up (c'mon, at least I attempted it), 25 leg lifts, and a 1:00 minute plank.

I then got back on the street and ran the mile loop again, tackling the big hill, keeping my pace up as I ran to the elementary school, then cranking out another set of core work.  I did this loop four times, and got home 20 minutes late for my "date."  Luckily, my mom and sister are super understanding of my crazy.

This is an unconventional way of doing core work for me, but let me tell you, it was awesome.  I was soaked by the time I got home.  The core exercises really made running difficult because I could feel how tired my core muscles were and I was focusing really hard to maintain my form.  I loved that I could see immediately how these exercises were directly impacting my running.  Plus, trying to improve my running time on each loop made me feel like I was in a relay.  With myself.

Hey, whatever works.

Do you look for creative ways to cross-train?



  1. I can't do one push up. I think you're pretty bad a**.
    I too am a runner who like to just run (slowly). I'm working on changing that up a bit too.

    1. Thanks! We're always a work in progress! Good luck!

  2. I would have loved to have witnessed your 1/2 pull up....just reading that had me cracking up. :)