8 months of lifting

I have been meaning to finish this post for a while! When I started writing it, it was actually called “6 months of lifting.”

One of the biggest mistakes I’ve made in running (besides just generally sucking at it) was not balancing the miles with any kind of a strength/conditioning routine. I was just kind of getting by on infrequent and/or once-weekly cross-training (cycling or swimming) and/or half-ass lifting but whenever I’d start doing longer runs or any kind of speed work whatsoever, I’d start feeling beat-up all the time. I was icing my knees every night, and a shin or a butt cheek or ham string always felt tweaked.

I’m pretty lazy when it comes to any kind of non-running activity so I’m not sure what finally convinced me to commit to an actual 3x weekly routine but now that I’ve been doing it a while, I’m finally starting to see results and enjoying the work instead of viewing it as a chore.

I haven’t taken measurements or anything like that (sorry no before/after pics!) but I am definitely stronger. I don’t feel wrecked after long runs. I have not needed to ice my knees in a while, and I don’t feel like I’m always on the verge of an injury. That said, I am still a total baby lifter and I’m still adjusting my routine so pleeeeease don’t laugh at me or take this as me offering guidance. If anything, I’m putting it out there so you people can tell me what’s missing, or what’s redundant, or just, oh my god Marie what are you doing.

Floor exercises (3 sets):
Burpee with a pushup) Actually, fuck burpees. I did them for a few weeks and then I decided I hate burpees WITH A PASSION so I went back to just doing pushups.

Ankle touch
Single leg bridge with a butt-raise (I don’t even know what you really call this, I swiped the move from Jillian Michaels.)
Scissors (vertical)
Scissors (horizontal)

With dumbbells (3 sets): 
Tricep pushbacks in a lunge
Tricep extensions
Seated overhead arm raise
Lateral arm raise
Bicep curls

Floor with dumbbells (3 sets):
Chest press
Chest fly with double-leg raise (one of my favorite steals from Jillian Michaels!)

More fun for leg day (3 sets):
Box jumps or sumo squat jumps
Single-legged calf raises with a kettle bell OR both legs with dumbbells
Deadlifts (standard with barbell). I honestly had to watch some videos on YouTube to refresh my memory on deadlifts because it had been forfuckingever since I did a deadlift. I found this one the most helpful. (I don’t like the over/under grip though. I probably don’t lift enough weight for it to be necessary.)

And I recently discovered (THE HARD WAY) that box jumps and sumo squat jumps are NO SUBSTITUTE for a good ol’ fashioned conventional barbell squat. So I started doing those again too and I swear to god, my quads looked mightier after just two days.

So, discussion questions? What is your favorite lifting/conditioning/strength move that makes you feel #SWOLEAF? I don’t think it gets much better than squats and deadlifts.

Also how the hell do you find the TIME? How do you balance strength/conditioning with running? I don’t do any swimming or cycling anymore. I’d have to give up a running or lifting day and I refuse to do that.

Keep it simple.