Balance Your Imbalance

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Editor’s Note: This article is part of our Run College “Optimize Your Stride” course, available exclusively to Outside+ members. You can read more about the course and its offerings here. Already a member? Register for the course here.

Welcome to Level 1!

Now that you’ve mastered proper positioning and postural endurance, it’s time to make your brain sweat!

In Level 1, we’re going to help you find and feel specific muscles–the ones you use to stabilize and steer as you run. This section of the course features 5 different neuromuscular workouts. As you master the exercises, you’ll feel differences in your movement. You are building a critical foundation for a more durable and efficient stride. 

You’ll cycle through these 5 workouts for 5 rounds total. Don’t skimp. Don’t skip. Don’t feel compelled to rush ahead. We are laying the groundwork here and it’s important to do all 25 workouts to build new muscle memory.

The good news is you do have some flexibility with this section of the course:

  • You can do these workouts daily, or you can do more than one of these per day.
  • While you may “feel” some new muscles, nothing in this series will be significant to affect your run workouts.
  • Once you’ve done all 5 rounds, you may progress to Level 2. All the skills you learn in Level 1 will directly transfer into Level 2.
  • Note: If you’ve got any trouble areas annoying you, Part 1 is a great way to help correct some of the irritation you’ve been dealing with. If these exercises help, you can continue doing them as a warm-up before every run, or before speed workouts.

Equipment Needs:

  • Resistance band, ideally medium-strength about 4-5 feet long
  • Swiss ball, 55-65 cm
  • Foam roller
  • Medicine ball
  • Kettlebell, 10lb-25lb, or other weight you can hold in your hand, such as a gallon jug
  • If desired, a MOBO Board (

Okay, enough explanation. Let’s get to it!

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Ink Pad Press Out

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Roller Dogs

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Swiss Ball Band Twist

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Seated Spine Twist

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Dowel Hip Hinge

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