Home workouts for runners: Exercises you can do in your living room 

No access to the gym? If you’re stuck at home but would like to keep up with your strength training routine, the good news is there are many exercises you can do in your living room. 

Running is so much more than just running. In order to become a better runner, run faster and stronger for longer, you need to be dabbling in ancillary work like strength training. 

Strength training is important for runners because it helps you build stronger muscles, tendons, ligaments and connective tissues.

It improves your speed and power and lowers your risk of injury. It also contributes to better running form. 

In other words, it helps you run more efficiently. 

In fact, in a 2016 study, it was shown that “strength training can significantly improve maximal- and reactive-strength qualities in competitive distance runners”.

If you’d like more information on the topic of strength training, check out my complete guide to strength training for runners, including tips on how to incorporate it into your training plan if you’re a runner. 

The best place to start is to familiarise yourself with some basic body weight exercises.

Body weight exercises are great for beginners because you don’t need any equipment to do them (your body is the resistance/weight).

These exercises can be done in your living room. In fact, they can be done virtually anywhere in your house if you have the right living space.

exercises you can do in your living room

Home workouts for runners: Exercises you can do in your living room

The body weight workout

All of these exercises do not require equipment, so they’re perfect if you don’t have equipment at home to work with.

You will simply be using your own body weight as a form of resistance. 

But if you’re interested in purchasing some equipment, then check out my blog on the best home gym equipment for runners

Complete each of the following exercises for 1 minute. Once you have finished the whole set of exercises, repeat two more times. 

Remember to take a 2 to 3 minute rest in between each set.

  1. Squat
  2. Forward lunge
  3. Burpee
  4. Inchworm
  5. Plank
  6. Hip bridge
  7. Single-leg squat
  8. Side plank
exercises you can do in your living room

The kitchen sink workout

This workout name may be a bit misleading as you don’t need access to your kitchen sink to complete it, but you’ll be using a lot of things that you commonly find in your kitchen.

Once you’ve mastered some basic body weight exercises like the ones in the workout above, then you can start to look at incorporating some weights.

If you don’t have access to gym equipment, then it’s time to get creative!

Household items like cans of beans, cartons of milk, bags of flour and bottled water can all be used as weights. 

Progression in the form of added weight, difficulty or resistance is necessary to avoid your body getting used to a particular workout (i.e. hitting a plateau in your training).

Complete each of the following exercises for the recommended reps. Once you have finished the whole set of exercises, repeat two more times. 

Remember to take a 2 to 3 minute rest in between each set.

In brackets next to each exercise, I have indicated what you can use as the weight. 

  1. 12 x goblet squat (bag of flour)
  2. 12 x overhead press (can of beans)
  3. 12 x reverse lunge (can of beans, either side)
  4. 12 x push ups 
  5. 12 x upward row (can of beans)
  6. 12 x Russian twists (bag of flour)
exercises you can do in your living room

The HIIT workout

HIIT is by far one of my favourite types of workouts. HIIT stands for high intensity interval training.

There are many HIIT workouts for runners out there which are fun, versatile and challenging! 

Even better, these exercises can be done anywhere! Even from your own living room. 

It can take as little as 15 minutes to complete a workout so it’s great if you lead a busy lifestyle. You can find out more about HIIT in my blog post HIIT workouts for runners.

Here are a few HIIT workouts that you can try depending on your preferences.

With HIIT, the key is to use the work to rest ratio safely so you don’t tire yourself out too quickly.

Do the following exercises using a 2:1 work to rest ratio. So complete each exercise for 60 seconds then take a 30 second break before starting the next exercise.

Between each round of exercises, take a 2 to 3 minute rest for recovery before starting the next round.

Round One (60 seconds work, 30 second rest)

  • Mountain climber
  • Squat
  • Forward lunge
  • Bicycle crunch
  • Sit up

Round Two (60 seconds work, 30 second rest)

  • Jump squat
  • Jump lunge
  • Glute bridge
  • Plank
  • Russian twist

Round Three (60 seconds work, 30 second rest)

  • Inchworm
  • Squat thrust
  • Jumping jack
  • Single leg plank
  • Burpee
exercises you can do in your living room

The core workout

Your core is extremely important while running. A good core means you are able to hold a strong and stable position for longer, thus allowing you to hold proper form and posture.

The good news is that there are lots of core exercises for that you can do in your living room to help you become a stronger and faster runner.

You can learn more about the importance of your core as a runner in my blog on essential core exercises for runners.

Complete 10 to 12 reps of each of the following exercises and repeat for 2 or 3 sets. Remember to take 1 minute break in between each set.

  1. Side plank dip
  2. Superman pull
  3. Bicycle crunch
  4. Side plank with arm reach
  5. Single leg plank
  6. V-up
  7. Glute bridge
  8. Inchworm

 

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