Whether you’re training for a half-marathon, marathon, 10K or just want to get faster, give this Fast Legs workout a shot. During most weeks of the training season, strength workouts are built in at least once a week. This workout complements running by focusing on larger and smaller muscle groups, including core, that can make a big difference in how you feel when your feet hit the street!

Circuit 1
alternate between both exercises
*Body Weight Squats     50 reps x 3
*Box Jumps 12 – 15 reps x 3

Circuit 2
alternate between both exercises
*Deadlift   15 reps x 3
*Single Leg Elevated Supine Bridge 15 reps/leg x 3

Circuit 3
alternate between both exercises
*Mountain Climbers 60 reps/alternating legs x 3
*Reclined Figure 8s  20 reps x 3

See a definition of each exercise below.

Body Weight Squats
This exercise is great for the lower body. It strengthens through the hips, glutes and quadriceps, increases mobility and really gets the heart rate up – especially when done in high repetitions. To perform a body weight squat, stand with your feet hip-width apart and your arms extended out in front of you. Drop down into a seated position keeping your knees right over your toes. Stand back up. Try to drop down for one count and up for one count – the pace should be quick.

Reminders: Keep your back as straight as possible (pull your shoulder blades back). You don’t want to fold over your legs. This will stress your knees too much. The weight should be in your hips. Don’t let your toes point out – keep them pointing straight ahead.

Box Jumps
Standing about a foot back from a stable “box,” such as a step or workout bench, jump and land on the box, the quickly rebound down, repeating as quick and steady as possible. Advanced athletes can manage a step that is upwards of 24 inches, rebounding up and down relatively easily, however, if you haven’t done box jumps in a while, start with a step that is well under knee height. Slowly work the speed of your jumps up as you gain confidence in your foot placement. Check out his Crossfit YouTube video that demonstrates the different ways to progress to a proper box jump. It’s not a fancy production, but it really shows you how you can progress – regardless of age!

Dead Lift
Standing straight holding a weighted objects(s), such as a barbell or two dumbbells, slowly bend over with a slight bend in your knees, keeping your back straight. Pull your shoulders back as you lower down, allowing the weight to stop just lower than knee-height. Squeezing through your glutes, and straightening your knees, come back to a neutral standing position. Tip: don’t hyperextend, or lean too far back, to prevent back injury. Since you’re doing a moderate amount of repetitions, you don’t need very heavy weight. Start lighter and work your way up if you’re not sure what to start with.

Single Leg Elevated Supine Bridge
Begin by lying flat on your back with your knees bent and feet on the ground about hip-width apart.
Place your right foot on a slightly elevated object, such as a step or a medicine ball. The less stability the object has, the greater the degree of difficulty. Squeezing through your bottom, push through your right hip, extending your left leg up and off the ground (see picture). Drop back down to the ground, keeping your left leg elevated. Switch to your left leg. Tip: Draw you belly button into your spine and hold.

Mountain Climbers
Start down on the ground in a push up position. Keep your back straight and shoulder blades pulled down. Bring your right knee up and in toward your left elbow. Return your right foot back to the starting position. Now repeat by bringing your left knee to your right elbow. Concentrate on keeping your abs drawn in. This is a great whole body workout – especially honing in on the abs.

Reclined Figure 8s
Sitting with your knees bent and heels firmly planted, lean back until you feel your abs engage. Holding a medicine ball (or another weighted object, such as a gallon of milk, heavy book, etc.) firmly between both hands, move the ball into a wide, but horizontal, figure 8. Technically you’re making an infinity sign with the ball, but it sounds better to call them “reclined figure 8s” rather than “reclined infinities,” right?

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