Tip: Lunge Warm Up as Need to Do, not Nice to Do - NikeRunning.com
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May 1st 2012, 8:51pm | 2073 views
Lunge Warm Up as Need to Do, not Nice to Do
There is a famous strength and conditioning coach I admire named Vern Gambetta, whose roots are in Track and Field. When he is helping coaches design their training plans he often asks the question, "Is that exercise/routine/workout a Need to Do or a Nice to Do?" While I know it looks a bit odd and will likely make you sore the first couple of weeks you do it, the Lunge Warm Up is definitely a Need to Do routine. The five simple lunges that compose the warm up will get you moving in all three planes of motion: sagital plane, frontal plane and transverse plane. But unlike a dancer who is moving in all three planes of motion throughout a practice or a performance, a runner spends most of his or her time in the sagital plane, with just a touch of transverse plane movement. As a runner you have a better chance of staying injury free if you can retain the athleticism you brought to running, and if you can move well in all three planes of motion.
Unfortunately most runners loose a great deal of athleticism as they run more miles. That doesn't have to happen. You can still be functionally competent in all three planes of motion while logging lots of miles, but only if you engage in routines and activities that foster that type of functional movement. So commit to doing the lunge warm up before each run, even if your quads are a bit sore for a few days. Soon the soreness will be gone, and the strength and symmetry you gain from doing the warm up before every run will help keep you injury free — allowing you to run more miles and at higher intensities.
*Coach Jay's advice is provided as general training information. Use at your own risk. Always consult with your own heath care provider for questions relating to your specific training and nutrition.