Skip Your Warm-Up!
Running economy refers to an individual's energy utilization during bouts of aerobic workout. Many factors can affect this including the quality of our warm-up. Skipping drills can help prime our bodies for long bouts of cardiovascular work. Try adding these 7 movements into your warm-up before your next bout of cardio: 1. A-Skip - Drive your knee up slightly lifting yourself off the ground. Keep your toes lifted as your knee drives up. Add a small skip when you land on the same foot, and then switch. Keep movements primarily in the sagittal plane (front to back).
2. B-Skip - Just like the A-Skip, except after you drive your knee up, you then extend the knee. Knee extension happens passively as you then snap the leg back down with your glutes and hamstrings, pawing your foot to the ground.
3. A-Skip w/ External Rotation - Just like the A-Skip, except after your foot returns to the ground and you skip, the same side leg drives up to the side, externally rotating away from the body. Alternate legs after every 2 reps, or switch after 30 seconds.
4. Carioca - Starting slow, face sideways and cross your trailing leg in front and then behind and you continue in the sideways direction. Continue facing the same direction as you come back.
5. Butt-Kickers - Draw the keep up in a straight line towards the bottom of the butt or top of the hamstrings. To do this, allow the knee to come forward, but not quite as high as the previous movements.
6. Power Skip - This has all of the same points as the “A” skips except you are going for more height. Momentum is created by driving the knee up while forcefully pushing off the ground.
7. Strides - Strides are just controlled sprints. Gradually increase speed for 30-40 meters and then maintain high speed with proper form for another 40-60 meters. The key is not to strain or sprint all out, instead try and make it look easy.