5.30 Brighton: Training Tip 2

Training Tip 2 – Core Stability

Today we’ll focus on core stability.  Simple exercises to strengthen the muscles around the core (abs and dorsal), which are really important for your balance and posture.

It’s a common mistake to neglect this muscle group & focus only on the legs. It’s good practice to include core stability exercises into your running/walking training sessions. We prefer doing it before going out for a run/walk as it’s a very effective warm-up exercise (at least twice a week).

How does it work? Simple. Focus on keeping the same position for a certain amount of time (start with 15 seconds & build up in 5 seconds each time you do it). Focus on keeping a straight horizontal line through shoulders-back-butt-heels. When you first try this exercise it will feel strange & your bottom will likely be sticking up too high, focus on keeping it low, this gives stronger core engagement. Pull in from the belly button to work the core band of muscles & protect your lower back.  The aim is to hold your position, making sure you don’t dip your hips too far towards the ground. It’s a good idea to practice in front of a mirror or with a partner to make sure you get it right first time, once you recognise the feeling of the correct body position you can do it anywhere.

Here are our 5 variations.

-Forearm plank (holding the position with your forearm and toes)

-Straight-arm plank (holding the position with your hands and toes)

-Dynamic plank from forearm to straight-arm

-Dynamic plank mountain climbers using your legs

-Side plank (holding the position with one forearm and the side of one foot)

Start by holding the position for 15 seconds. In the following weeks, your goal would be to hold the position for a whole minute.

If you feel you can easily do these exercises then try combining them as follow:

-15 secs straight arm plank + 15 secs forearm plank

-15 secs right side plank + 15 secs left side plank

?  watch the video of our plank variations below  ?


Right, now that you’ve engaged the core and warmed up we can continue with the rest of our training! Today we try to run/walk without any interruption, with a slight progression in between.


Target 5’30”/km for runners. Duration: 25 minutes


– 5 minutes at a natural pace just to warm up the legs

– 15 minutes in progression, 3 blocks of 5 minutes; gradually increasing the pace at each block

– 5 minutes of slow run/jog to cool down

Target 53 minutes for walkers. Duration: 20 minutes

– 5 minutes at a slow walking pace

– 5 minutes of brisk walking

– 5 minutes at your fastest walking speed

– 5 minutes of jogging

Have a great training session and remember, it’s much more fun to do it with a friend!

Team 5.30