Run Mama Run!
Hey mammas! Do you stretch after you run? Don't feel like you have time, right? Well, now you do! Here is a post-run stretching routine that is so simple...it's a no brainer! You don't need anything. Just stay standing to perform the following 6 stretches. If you run with a stroller, use the stroller for assistance as shown in the photos. Static stretching after running will help enhance flexibility and joint mobility, minimize muscle cramps, and it just feels good.
Hamstring Stretch: Kick one leg out in front of you placing the heel on the ground with toes toward your nose. Keep your knee straight and lean your trunk forward keeping your back in neutral posture until you feel a good stretch at the back of the thigh and knee. You may even feel a little stretch in your calf. Hold for 15-30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.
Quad Stretch: Reach your leg back until you can grasp your foot with your hand. Keep a neutral spine (no bending forward) and bring your heel to your buttock until you feel a stretch in the front of your thigh. For those who sit a lot at a desk, you may feel a pretty intense stretch in the front of your thigh. Hold for 15-30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.
Calf Stretch: Place your leg behind you with your toes pointing straight ahead. Press your heel into the ground as you gently lunge your body forward maintaining a neutral spine until you feel a stretch in the calf. Hold for 15-30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.
Figure 4 Stretch: Cross one leg over the other to make the Figure 4 position. The lower leg and ankle should be resting on the opposite thigh. Sit back low until you feel a stretch in the posterior hip of the crossed leg. Hold for 15-30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.
Adductor Stretch: Stand with your legs wide apart. Lunge toward one side of your body bending your knee, while keeping the other knee straight. Lunge until you feel a good stretch on the inner thigh of the straight leg. Hold for 15-30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.
Back/Hamstring Stretch: Step back behind your stroller, stair railing or tree (whatever you can find) until your back is straight and parallel to the ground. Lift your tailbone up to the sky and maintain a slight knee bend as you lean back to feel the stretch in the sides of your back and shoulders. Then, as you remain in this position, try to straighten your knees. You will feel an intense stretch at the backs of the thighs, hamstrings, and calves. Bend and straighten your knees 10 times holding for only 2 seconds.