Maximizing Your Running Routine (With or Without Kiddos)
For as long as I can remember running has been my therapy, my go-to workout, my happy place. I’ve never been an exceptionally long distance runner or even a fast runner, just a consistent 3-5 mile runner who does it more for the mental benefit than anything.
For 9 months I’ve been doing 4 strength workouts a week and 1 beloved running routine. I would run every day if it would achieve the results that I want but there’s a really good saying “run to live longer, lift to look hotter” and I want to live longer and look hotter.
Running is fantastic for cardiovascular health which is why it’s the “live longer” type of exercise. Consistent long distance running alone does not typically challenge your muscles in a way that actually builds them though.
In addition to loving the mental benefits of running I have, since both of my kids were tiny babies, incorporated them into it. I use this double jogging stroller which I can’t say enough good things about. The price, the quality and the usability are all completely amazing on it. I have three tricks for running with kids: 1. Get them involved. Ask questions about your surroundings, ask for their help in counting your repetitions and we are so lucky to live in a beautiful community that we discuss a lot of wildlife on our runs. 2. SNACKS. SNACKS. SNACKS. Pack double what you think you need. 3. Be patient. Both of my kids were resistant to the routine at first and after I had my second I really doubted that I’d ever be able to successfully workout again without one of them crying the entire time. Now it’s clockwork. They love it!
When I started training with Alyssa a huge part of my deal was that I was primarily going to be working out in the presence of my kids. Once a week she would send me these awesome running routines that incorporated HIIT (high intensity interval training) techniques with body weight exercises and intermittent running, jogging and walking. An example of this would be like “walking for 1 minute, jogging for 1 minute, sprint for 30 seconds and do 10 walking lunges.” Guys, it is soo fun. Give me a gorgeous day, two healthy kids and about an hour and OHMYGOSH! My best friend posted on Facebook the other day that the combo is “euphoric”. I couldn’t have said it better.
Alyssa told me once to “Keep your body guessing” and I keep that in mind for every run. She’s also told me that muscles have fantastic memory which is why long leisure runs don’t present a great challenge but HIIT style burns tremendous fat, calories and challenges those muscles in just half of the time. I posted a screenshot of my FitBit the other day showing 848 calories burned in one hour long workout. This is how I did that!
Here are some sample HIIT running workouts:
2 minutes light jog/ 30 second sprint/ 1 minute walking
Repeat for 25 minutes.
4 minute jog/ 30 second sprint/ 10 walking lunges/ walk 1 minute
4 minute jog/ 30 second sprint/ 30 second plank/ walk 1 minute
4 minute jog/ 30 second sprint/ 10 squat jumps/ walk 1 minute.
2 minute jog/ 1 minute run/ 25 walking lunges/ 30 second recovery walk
2 minute jog/ 1 minute run/ 30 second plank jacks/ 30 second recovery walk
2 minute jog/ 1 minute run/ 1 minute plank/ 30 second recovery walk
2 minute jog/ 1 minute run/ 15 squat jumps/ 30 second recovery walk
Repeat for length of workout.
I used to plan these workouts out before we left the house but now we have a blast putting music on and “winging it” along the way. I’ll sprint the choruses of our favorite songs and then make them count my mountain climbers. Also, I used to feel really silly stopping on the side of a busy road or intersection to put my huge butt in the air for a plank but now I think it’s hilarious. I don’t know if they’re thinking, “Damn, that girl is intense.” or “Damn, that girl needs to be doing planks.” but whatever, does it matter? Do not let that bother you. Keep it creative, high energy and have fun!
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