Canadian Running

Single-Sided Core Workout

Loading one side of your body at a time is a great way to strength-train for running

- By Jon-Erik Kawamoto

In the olden days, it was thought that a good core exercise isolated the abs and burned like heck. Although satisfying to some, this method of training your abs doesn’t challenge your core the way it’s challenged when you run. To better improve your core’s functional strength and stability, you’ ll have to integrate your core muscles with the rest of your body (and forget about the burn). A great way to do this is to load your exercises unilateral­ly (i.e., focusing one side of your body at a time). Doing exercises with an offset weight challenges your body to maintain alignment and balance, and it requires your core and peripheral muscles to work together. This also happens with every stride you take when you run. In running, you never have both feet on the ground; therefore, alignment, efficiency and balance are very important for a smooth and strong running gait.

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