Merging simple yoga-based poses with strength-training challenges the core, hip and thigh muscles in ways that running doesn’t and helps minimise muscle imbalances that can lead to injury. These movements are synched to your breathing (inhaling or exhaling).
Complete this routine two or three times a week during rest, cross-training or ‘easy days’.
Raise the bar
Start with lighter weights than for usual strength training. Then increase reps and add sets before trying heavier weights.
Why? Strengthens glutes, hip flexors and upper back.
How? Stand with feet together. Inhale, raising arms (shoulder-height). Exhale and shift weight onto right leg and raise left leg behind. Inhale and stand. Do 10 and switch legs.
Why? Opens your hips and strengthens your legs, arms and shoulders.
How? Stand with your feet wide apart, legs turned out 45 degrees, weights in both hands. Exhale while bending your knees (don’t lean forward) and raising your arms to the side and overhead. Inhale while lowering the weights and straightening your legs. Do 10 reps.
Why? Builds strength in your thighs, core, triceps and shoulders.
How? Stand with your feet together. Inhale while lowering your hips and raising your arms overhead. As you exhale, lean forward and lower your arms. Inhale again and extend your arms past your hips. Exhale again and squat deeper, then return to start. Do 10.
Why? Improves balance and hip mobility and strengthens the back.
How? Stand with your feet together. Inhale, lifting your right knee, curling your left arm up and your right arm back. Exhale and lunge back with your right leg, alternating your arms. Inhale and return to the knee raise; exhale and lunge. Do 10, then repeat with the left leg.