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Digital Subscriptions > Women’s Running > May 2019 - POWER UP! > Putting your back into it

Putting your back into it

Your back is holding the rest of your body together and yet it’s oft en neglected, says exercise scientist Anne-Marie Lategan. Here’s how to make it strong and flexible

Most runners don’t think that much about training their backs. But your back muscles are the part of your body which holds everything together. A natural spine with good posture will ensure that your centre of gravity stays over your feet, which helps reduce injuries. Thus the better your posture, the better runner you’ll be.

► Warm up

Jog on the spot for one minute. Swing your leg 10 times from side to side and then forwards and backwards to mobilise your hips. Extend your arms sideways and rotate your body from side to side 10 times. Repeat all the exercises twice before starting your workout.

► Sets and reps

Perform 15 repetitions of the first seven strength exercises in this workout, then repeat the workout again. Make sure you train your back at least once a week.

► Cool down

Use the last three exercises as your cool down. Hold each position for 20 seconds. Your muscles should relax, which will enable you to stretch a bit further. Hold the position again for 20 seconds. Repeat it again before changing over to the other side. In total you should hold each stretch for 60 seconds.


Increase the intensity of the workout by using a stronger resistance band or a heavier weight. Repeating the exercises three to four times will also make your workout harder. Another option is tempo, where you slow your moves down. Use three counts to go up, hold the position for two secs, returning to the start position in three counts.


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About Women’s Running

In the May issue of Women’s Running, we are fast and FIERCE. We uncover 15 ways that running can make you more powerful, physically and mentally, and we’ve put them to the test. We also investigate the controversial topic of disordered eating and running: what are the warning signs to look out for in ourselves and others, and how we can support people who show symptoms of this harrowing and broad reaching mental illness that is unhappily prevalent in our community. We speak to journalist and author Bella Mackie on how she used running to manage the symptoms of her anxiety - so well, in fact, that she wrote a book about it. And we review tons of kit, including trail backpacks for days off the beaten track, some stunning neutral shoes, and fab all-weather jackets. Plus, we’ve got a training guide for a five-mile race, the ultimate marathon nutrition guide, and a lustworthy compo from Ultra - win three pairs of shoes worth £360!