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5648 Views 50 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  melistic
<i><span style="font-size:xx-small;">Will be crossposted to my blog as soon as I figure out how to add pics in my blog posts! <img alt="smile.gif" src=""></span></i><br><br>
Squats are probably my favorite lower body exercise. There are so many things you can do with them to challenge your quadriceps, hamstrings, gluts, hips, core, lower back... Good stuff.<br><br>
Stand with your feet hip distance apart, spine nice and aligned, head neutral, shoulders relaxed and down. On an inhale, bend your knees and keep your hips back as though there were a chair behind you. You should be able to see your toes throughout the movement if you glance down. If your knees are farther forward than your toes, obscuring your view of your toes, you are doing more harm than good! Keep those hips back. This girl has great form:<br><br><img alt="" src="" style="border:0px solid;"><br><br>
As you can see, her hips are back, her knees are bent to 90 degrees, and her thighs are parallel to the floor. She is holding one dumbbell. If you can handle more weight, you can place a weighted bar across the upper part of your back (NOT on your spine), like this:<br><br><img alt="" src="" style="border:0px solid;"><br><br>
Here is an example of really bad form. And bad clothes. And bad hair, frankly. <img alt="smile.gif" src=""><br><br><img alt="" src="" style="border:0px solid;"><br><br>
See how his knees are in front of his toes? His knees should be back over his ankles or shoelaces, like the woman pictured above. She rocks. He does not.<br><br>
More later.
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Bumping an old thread but wanted to thank you for this tip. My hamstrings have been acting up in recent weeks so I gave this a try. I can definitely feel it targeting the hamstrings, and am seeing improvement just from the few times I have done them.
<i>"See how his knees are in front of his toes? His knees should be back over his ankles or shoelaces, like the woman pictured above. She rocks. He does not."</i><br><br>
He is in a much deeper position than she is plus the camera angle is such that it emphasizes his knee position. People who squat heavy realize that the upper body lean will be more pronounced even if the bar is racked across the lower traps. A tip is to push your hips forward as you ascend and try to maintain tight abs. Most people do not do full (deep) squats. If done carefully, this exercise is the king of all exercises, followed by deadlifts.<br><br>
add some plyo power to your squats with<br><br>
Split Squat Jumps, alternating sides<br><br><br>
same as the previously described split squat except that your propel yourself into the air after the squat and switch leg positions for the next one ... I love this one ... I do it in training for my running ... I had my volleyball teams do it when I coached ... and I have my water fitness classes do them all the time (we call it ski with a BIG rebound in the water)<br><br><br>
... and I love the swiss ball exercises ... I do the single leg curl a few times a week ...<br><br>
There is an excellent ball exercise book out there called<br>
"Strength Ball Training" ... med and stability ball stuff ... VERY<br>
good book ... very functional exercises ... and incorporate a lot of auxilliary muscles to maintain balance throughout the various strength moves ...
Worked for me (even though I was 44) went from 175 to 205 in my first year of serious training in a gym setting. Heavy squats plus deadlifts and all my colleaugues at work thought I was on steroids! <img alt="smile.gif" src="">
If I want to make squats and lunges a regular part of my toning/strengthening regiment, how many should I aim for and how many times a week?
I'm not an expert but I follow the 8-12 reps with 3-5 sets rule on this like most other weight bearing exercises ... if you're using weights you want to be sure you use a size that allows proper form and completion of all reps in sets with the last rep being difficult ... when it gets easy you can move up some (usually a few weeks) ... and do this 2-3x/week ... if I'm doing speed training in my runs I definitely only do the weight stuff twice a week ... recovery time is important ...
I read in People online (my source for all health related stuff, ha) that Bob guy from Biggest Loser recommended 5 X 30 of squats and lunges on both sides. I can't remember how often each week. I did that yesterday, and after today's 10 miler, I feel soooo stiff.
did you do bodyweight or add weights with dumbbells or a barbell? I only ask because I think that'd be a lot of reps with added weight ...<br><br><br>
but no matter what, if you keep doing it it'll be easier and you'll get less sore ... I was really sore the first week we did our bench press routine .. and last week was our 3rd week and I'm not sore at all and I've added weight to most of the exercises ... body adapting well ...<br><br><br>
good luck with the lunge/squats ... I think they help a lot ...
Let me let you in on a big secret about squats. People don't talk about it because it strikes fear in their hearts <img alt="smile.gif" src=""> If you want to enhance both your cardiovascular devlopment and increase your leg strength (actually your whole body will flourish) do set of 20. You will be breathing hard like you're doing intervals. So, when you're in the upright position, pause before going back down and take a few deep breaths. Some people call these breathing squats.<br><br>
Squats (go all the way down) will strenghten your entire body like no other exercise except maybe for deadlifts. I've known young bodybuilders who asked me how they could build their arms. When I put them on a heavy squatting schedule, their arms got gigger with the same or minimal supplementary arm work. My personal theory is that squats trigger the increase of GH levels. It sort of works as a catalyst.<br><br>
Lastly, I can tell you that when I ran in the mornings and lifted heavy in the late afternoon, I had my best races (sub 6 min. pace) but I was also in my 30's. I'm 60 now and credit years of heavy lifting for looking like I do now.<br><br>
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From your avatar, I never would have guessed you are sixty. I am sold on squats!<br><br>
My goal is to be able to get my non-running strength from squats, lunges, crunches, push-ups and pull-ups.
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