Friday, September 5, 2008

Client Sports Fitness Question Of The Week, 10

One area of your body is often under-trained when you are training to improve your running speed. Read this client Q & A.

Client Q: I'm trying to improve my running speed and I need to know if I'm leaving any training method out?

Mark's A: You may not have given your lower legs enough training attention. The lower legs can provide 20% to 25% of the power needed for an explosive start. When you plan your workout routine, include more lower leg exercises like:

1) Explosive standing dumbbell calf raises (go as fast as possible to failure 3-4 sets). You can progress to one-legged calf raises.

2) Explosive lifts on the leg press with only your toes lifting the weight (3 sets/20 repetitions). You can progress to one-legged lifts.

3) Barbell calf raises using jumping motion (explode upward on your toes as if you are jumping). Do 3 sets of 20 repetitions. Progress to one-legged raises.

You can work the calf muscles more frequently than other muscle groups (up to 4 times a week) because they bounce back faster.

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Mark Dilworth, BA, PES
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