Hello from Ives & Christy
Our desire is that the ula and us blog inspires, educates, and provides practical tips and tricks to help you conquer your individual summits.
A few months back I shared the following strength test that any new mama should progress to complete before hitting the pavement for a long run. I mentioned that I would be sharing dynamic moves to progress to once you have successfully completed 30 reps of each of the moves presented in the post.
Today, I will be diving into four dynamic moves that will help you strengthen your core, glutes, quads, and hamstring as you begin to balance and move your body simultaneously. Running is a high impact, plyometric exercise and it's important that you take your time progressing back into it. These are just a few uni-lateral (one-leg), plyometric exercises to add to your arsenal to build strength, agility, and endurance. These moves can be done in conjunction with the strength test moves, but be sure you feel ready and aren't compromising form.
Similar to the strength test you should aim to complete 30 reps of each move. My suggestion is to break them up into a workout. For example, perform 10 reps of each move progressing to the next move with a short break in-between (30 seconds) and repeat the circuit 3X with a 1-2 minute rest between each circuit. These are just guidelines, so take it at your own individual pace. You can start with 1 round of each of these moves and each week add an additional round until you have worked your way up to 3 rounds. You will need to alter the reps and rounds depending on your current strength level. Only perform each move until you begin to compromise form and work your way up from there.
As a note, the following moves include all 3 planes of motion: sagittal (forward and backward movement), frontal (side to side movement), and transverse (twisting top and bottom half of body). This is purposeful, by working all three planes of motion you are increasing your functional fitness. What this means is that it reduces your risk for injury when performing every day tasks such as loading groceries, picking up children, doing house work, and essentially being a mama which I have learned is the greatest workout of all.
Move 1: Side lunge balance to reverse lunge. I have linked a demo of this move, but you will be balancing on a single leg as you move into a side lunge, balancing on the same leg at the top when standing, and quickly moving into a reverse lunge (perform on Right and Left leg).
Move 2: Side lunge static hold and hop. Step out into side lunge and sit back into the glutes, while opposite leg is extended straight. Feet facing forward. Push off the bent leg slightly as you hop and your feet leaves the ground and lands lightly back down. Progress to holding a light to medium weight and perform on Right and Left leg. When ready you can add a knee drive into the hop (without a weight), demoed here.
Move 3: Speed skaters. I linked a demo of this move. This is a great one to build hip and core strength, cardiovascular endurance, and agility. Head should always be above the heart and try to transition as quickly as you can without sacrificing form.
Move 4: Lunge Jumps. Start small by only lowering halfway into a lunge. Drive opposite leg back into a reverse lunge, goal is for your calve and hamstring to create a 90 degree angle on both legs, but again start small. Push off of your front heel as you switch and land lightly with the opposite foot forward. Get your arms involved to mimic running, opposite arm forward. Once you feel confident, take your lunge all the way down into a full lunge
Additional ques to consider for these moves:
Let us know what other uni-lateral moves you have added to your strength routine in the comments below and if you give these moves a try, tag us @ula.and.us and hashtag #ULAMOVES. We can't wait until we can move with you in person soon enough!