Leg Day Workout: Sprints + Bodyweight Exercises

Try this leg day workout next time you want a lower body burn. You'll mix sprints with bodyweight exercises.
This post was made in partnership with Finish Line. All opinions—as always!—are my own. I appreciate your support of the brands that make this blog possible. 🙂
I can’t name another running shoe that is as consistently praised as the adidas UltraBOOST (in the blogging world, anyway). And after years and years of hearing people rave about them, I finally got to give these sneakers a try as part of Finish Line’s Shoes So Fresh campaign. Honestly, they really do live up to the hype. So. Comfortable.

You know when you get new workout clothes and the prospect of wearing them gets you excited to break a sweat? Well for the first time in over a year (since the 2016 Boston Marathon, to be exact), I’m starting to get the itch to run another race with my new fresh kicks. So before we get to the leg day workout below, do you guys have any recommendations for a fun late fall 10k or half marathon?? I want in!

Finish Line activewear outfit Finish Line activewear outfitFinish Line activewear outfit

In addition to the UltraBOOSTs, I’m wearing Nike’s Sportswear Essential Crop Tank, both from my friends at Finish Line. My wardrobe resembles that of Wednesday Adams (black, black, dark black, faded black, jet black, more black) so throwing on a jean jacket walking to and from a workout helps add a bit more of a summertime feel to the getup.

Leg Day Workout – Sprints + Bodyweight Training

This is a great workout to take outside but you could easily do it in a gym using a treadmill as well. You’ll run .25 mile (400 meters) as fast as you can and then complete 10 reps of three bodyweight leg exercises. You’ll repeat that four times.

#AD This leg workout mixes sprints with bodyweight exercises. Perfect for doing outside or at the gym! Wearing @finishline @finishlinewomen #ShoesSoFresh #WeAreMore #FNLstyle

 

Exercise Descriptions

Side Lunge to Side Kick (each side) | From a standing position, lunge to the right, stepping your right foot out wide to the side and bending the knee, sliding your hips down and back (left leg stays straight). Push off your right foot to stand on the left foot as you kick your right leg up and out to the side. Return back down in a side lunge. That’s one rep. Do 10 reps to the right and then repeat on the left.

Jump Squat – Jump Tuck Combo | Squat down low and then jump straight up in the air. Land back in a squat and then do a jump tuck, jumping up as you bring your knees up towards your chest. That’s one rep.

Sumo Squat with Heel Raise at Bottom | Start standing with feet wide apart and toes turned outward. Keeping your knees tracking in the same direction as your toes, squat down. At the bottom of your squat, lift your heels, coming to the balls of your feet. Lower your heels and stand. That’s one rep.

Try this leg day workout next time you want a lower body burn. You'll mix sprints with bodyweight exercises.

WEARING | Women’s adidas UltraBOOST Running Shoes & Women’s Nike Sportswear Essential Crop Tank c/o Finish Line

photos by Nick Cosky

Marathon Training Update + A Visit to True Runner

true-runner-purchaseDisclosure: This post is sponsored by Vocalpoint and True Runner. All opinions–as always!–are my own. I appreciate your support!

This marathon training process has been a huge learning experience for me. Every day feels like an experiment. From injury prevention to gear and nutrition supplements, it’s been fun for me to immerse myself in this expansive world of long-distance running. I went into training vowing it would be a one-and-done. Cross it off the bucket list, never put my body through a marathon again. But … I’m starting to see why people get hooked on these things. The running community is so supportive! I can’t even count how many people have reached out to me, offered me advice, shared their own experience–it’s been amazing. I am 100% sure I will cry tears of overwhelmed happiness on race day haha.

In just one such example of the amazing Boston running community, True Runner offered me a gift card to come shop their store in Chestnut Hill. It’s located in the same shopping center as Sweetgreen, Drybar, Soul Cycle and Equinox so I made a nice afternoon of the trip out to the ‘burbs.  true-runner-outside

True Runner carries a wide range of shoes, apparel and gear to support all your running needs, and their staff is super knowledgeable in finding you the right products for your body, running form/gait. Specialty running stores like this are an especially smart choice if you’re newer to running and are unsure of what shoes to buy. I’m in a committed relationship with my Nikes so I decided to use my gift card on some smaller running accessories I need for the remainder of training.

I’ve just started trying out different nutrition/energy supplements during my long runs that are over two hours. I went with the vanilla bean Gu an hour into my 16-miler and liked it, but Double Espresso sounds like the EXACT thing I want in my system at around mile 12, so I got a few Clif shots to try out this weekend. I’d love to hear what your go-to’s are for supplements during long runs! 

I’ve been running with my iPhone in my pocket, so the Nike armband is going to be a massive upgrade. The Experia socks have extra padding over the heel and ball of the foot (can’t hurt!), and with the weather in Boston nearing 70 today (!!!) I figure a pair of running shorts might come in handy as I near race day. true-runner-inside

Marathon Training: Week 12

Even though last week was technically my twelfth (just took me four tries to spell ‘twelfth’ correctly FYI) week of training, with all the time off for my knee injury and then being sick, it really doesn’t seem like it’s been that long. Here were last week’s workouts:

MONDAY |  Yoga

Having run 16 miles the day before, my body was craving some yoga. I found this YouTube video and loved it–lots of great stretches and poses for the hips and IT band. Just what the doctor ordered!

TUESDAY | Strength Train (Btone)

WEDNESDAY | Run 4.5 Miles + Yoga

I ran a quick loop around the Charles River and then did the same yoga YouTube as Monday.

THURSDAY | Rowing Class 

I haven’t rowed since I stopped teaching it so I decided to hop in for a class at Btone. Rowing is an awesome option for marathon training if you want the cardio and lower body strength benefits of running but without the impact to your knees.

FRIDAY | Strength Train (Btone)

SATURDAY | Rest

SUNDAY | Run 10 Miles

Despite taking a rest day Saturday, my legs felt like led on this run. Rowing is a challenging leg workout (Thursday) and Friday’s Btone was also a low-body challenge, so I definitely paid the price on this 10 miler. On the bright side, I’m glad I made the mistake when the “long” run was only 10 miles. I’ve adjusted my plan this week so that my legs will (hopefully) feel fresh in time for Saturday’s 18-mile run.

Runners–what’s your go-to for race nutrition? Gu? Beans? S Caps? Gimme suggestions!

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Hill Pyramid Workout with Strength Training Tabatas

Hill Repeat Workout with Strength Training Tabatas (focusing on core and upper body)Hello from Maine! I’m up at my parents’ place enjoying a final morning of beautiful views before heading back down to Boston. There’s no phone service up here and I only get wifi at a couple places in town so it’s a forced unplugging that I need once in a while. 🙂

Hill Repeat Pyramid with Strength Training Tabatas

The running part of this workout is as hard as you make it–if your hill is long/steep, it’ll be a doozy. If you want more of a quick cardio blast in between the tabatas, pick an easier hill length/grade. I did this outside in the North End between teaching classes Friday on a short but steep hill (it probably took me 25 strides to get from the bottom to the top).

The hill sets get shorter and shorter as you go. First set = 5 repeats; next set = 4 repeats; all the way down to one. Sprint up the hill and jog down. If you’re doing this on a treadmill, you’d just reduce the incline and speed in between each sprint.

In between each hill set, you’ll do a tabata superset that focuses on the core and upper body. A tabata is 8 rounds of 20 seconds work and 10 seconds rest. You’ll alternate between two exercises in each tabata. For example, 20 seconds of marching plank, rest 10 seconds, 20 seconds of push ups, rest, and so on for a total of 4 minutes. Full detailed breakdown below the image.

Hill Repeat Workout with Strength Training Tabatas (focusing on core and upper body)

HILL REPEATS x5

TABATA 1

  • Marching Plank | You’re essentially just moving from low plank to high plank, up and down. Starting in a forearm plank position, press up into a high plank, one hand at a time. Reverse the movement when you’re in a high plank, lowering onto one forearm at a time.
  • Push Ups | I’m working on push ups with my hands close to my body rather than wide (because I’m bad at them and they need improving!) so I did them like this: Start in a plank position with your hands stacked underneath your shoulders. From here, roll forward slightly onto your toes so that your hands are now a little further back, aligned with your ribs (this will allow you to bend elbows to 90 degrees). Keeping your elbows close to your body, lower down to a low push up position and then press through your hands to rise back up, straightening your arms.

HILL REPEATS x4

TABATA 2

  • Full-body Crunch | Start laying on your back with legs outstretched and hovering a couple inches off the ground. Arms should be outstretched overhead and hovering as well. From this starting position, crunch up, bringing your knees in towards your chest as you wrap your arms around your knees like a wide hug. Extend back out, lowering to starting position. The goal is to never bring the legs to rest on the ground when you extend back out.
  • Triceps Pulses | Start sitting down with legs outstretched and palms pressed to the ground by your sides. From here, press into your heels to lift your butt up a couple inches and forward a couple inches so that there’s space for you to bend into your elbows, pulsing your body up and down. Keep your elbows pointing straight back when you do these; don’t let them bow out to the sides.

HILL REPEATS x3

TABATA 3

  • Forearm Plank | Most of us are familiar with a plank, so just a couple form queues: think of stacking your joints, elbows directly below shoulders. Pull the lower abdomen in to protect the low back (think of pulling up your jeans’ zipper). Squeeze the quads above the knees—notice how engaging these muscles helps straighten out your body even more. Tuck the tailbone slightly and then fire up the entire abdomen by pulling the forearms and balls of feel in towards each other (you won’t actually move, you’ll just contract the muscles). Need more explanation? I did a whole post on common plank form errors).
  • Low Push Up Hold | For this, I want your hands close in to the sides of your body (tricep push up). To get into the hold with proper alignment, start in a plank position with your hands stacked underneath your shoulders. From here, roll forward slightly onto your toes so that your hands are now a little further back, aligned with your ribs (this will allow you to bend elbows to 90 degrees). Keeping your elbows close to your body, lower down to a low push up position and hold there with your body hovering off the ground, abs held in tight.Modify by holding the push up from your knees. Just make sure your hips are still lowered so that your butt isn’t sticking up into the air. Think of lowering from your knees rather than your hips to achieve this.

HILL REPEATS x2

TABATA 4

  • Mountain Sliders (alternate) | Start in a plank position with wrists aligned underneath shoulders, abs engaged and spine straight. From here, lift your right leg and bend your right knee in towards your right wrist, making physical contact if possible. From this starting position, you’re going to slide your knee up and down your arm, zipping it towards your armpit as you pull your abs in and round your back slightly up towards the ceiling (think of a mini-cat stretch) and then sliding it back down to the wrist. At the bottom, you want the knee at a hover; try not to rest it on the floor. The goal is to keep the knee lightly touching your arm the whole time, but just keep the knee pulled in as close to the arm as possible.
  • Side V-Ups (alternate) | Start laying on your side, balancing on that bottom hip/side butt area with your bottom hand on the floor in front of you for support. Top arm is bent with hand behind your head and elbow out wide; legs should be extended and hovering off the ground. This is your starting position. From here, you’re going to crunch up and in, bending your legs and bringing your knees in towards your top elbow as you lift your torso up and in to meet them. Use that bottom hand for support, but try to push off it minimally. Slowly lower back down and extend back out to a hover.

HILL REPEATS x1

Get 15% Off My Outfit with code PUMPS15

Hill Repeat Workout with Strength Training Tabatas (focusing on core and upper body)The leggings and sweatshirt I’m wearing in today’s post were given to me by my friends at ALALA (. I love them! This is my second pair of their leggings and the fit and function are great. The material is shinier (more spandex-y, if you will) than, for example, Lululemon leggings, so they’re great for sweaty workouts. You only need to be traumatized by butt sweat showing up in a group fitness class once to agree with me that this is an important detail to include in an activewear review. I’d finish that sentence with a “LOL” or “haha” but I’m currently having flashbacks to the time I taught a row class in dark pink Fabletics leggings …

(I really like Fabletics leggings BTW, but for yoga and Pilates–would only wear the *black* ones for cardio).

Anyway, ALALA performance aside, the design is so on-trend. The print with sheer panels on the leggings is perfect and THE FISHNET THUMB HOLES on the hoodie–don’t even get me started. I feel like I’m both a trendy fitness instructor and an 80’s rock band member.

ALALA skews on the pricier side of the athleticwear spectrum, so I’m excited to give you all a code for 15% off: PUMPS15 Hill Repeat Workout with Strength Training Tabatas (focusing on core and upper body) Hill Repeat Workout with Strength Training Tabatas (focusing on core and upper body)

Enjoy the last bit of your long weekend for all those who have the day off today!

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