Can Your Body Handle Running?

Dec 12 / Build Muscle

With each stride, up to five times your weight slams through your feet, ankles, knees, hips, and spine. If your muscles are weak, you risk injury, says Bill Hartman, P.T., of Indianapolis Fitness and Sports Training. Do this drill 3 days a week to strengthen your weakest areas.

ANKLE MOBILIZER
Ankle flexibility
From a staggered stance, palms on a wall, bend your knees and shift forward until you feel your forward ankle stretch. (Try not to raise your heels.) Bring your front knee close to the wall. Hold for 3 seconds. That's 1 rep. Do 20 reps, switch legs, and repeat.

REVERSE LUNGE AND ROTATION
Hip mobility
Step back with your left foot and lower your body into a lunge as you rotate your upper body to the right. Return to the starting position. That's 1 rep. Do 3 sets of 12 and then repeat, this time stepping back with your right leg while rotating to the left.

SINGLE-LEG STRAIGHT-LEG DEADLIFT
Hip stability
Hold a dumbbell in your left hand. Lift your right foot as you slowly bend and lower the dumbbell. Once it reaches mid-shin, return to upright. Complete 12 reps on one leg, and then switch sides and repeat. Do 3 sets.

WALL-PRESS ABS
Core strength
Lie down. Now brace your core and push against a wall as you lower your bent right leg and touch your heel to the floor. Reverse the move and repeat with your left leg. Keep alternating for 60 seconds, and then rest for 1 minute. Do 2 or 3 sets.