[00:00:00] Do you work in an office? Do you work from home? Do you sit a lot? If you do that and you want to run and stay healthy over time, this video today is for you. Absolutely. I’m going to show you the one exercise that’s really, really important to help a particular muscle group that kind of degrades when we spend too much time sitting.
[00:00:32] I’m Jesse Funk, the founder of Solpri.com and the host of this show, Runner’s High, where we talk about everything running and endurance related. Often you’ll join me here in the sun room. Sometimes we get out and hopefully soon I’ll be doing more demos like I am in this particular video today.
[00:00:48] I want to talk about a particular exercise I think is often overlooked. It was pretty popular in the 80s. If we think about all those spandex and leotards and all those workout videos and it needs to make a comeback. This is something that I dealt with this year as I went through this whole injury cycle and realized, “Hey, I need to be doing this more. I need to be addressing this muscle group more” and the exercise is clamshells.
[00:01:17] Yeah, we’re talking about exactly what we think we’re talking about. There’s that machine where you don’t want to look anybody because you’re working your groin muscles and your glutes in particular. We’re worried about clamshells on the floor, which I’m going to demo here in a moment.
[00:01:32] But the problem is when we work from home, when we are in office and we sit so long, we’re not engaging our glutes, so we need our glutes for stabilization and push off during running. And when they become weak, there’s a number of things that can happen. But one of the things is like you can end up with this like flippy leg thing. If you seen people run, they have this the running and they flip their legs out instead of bringing them up and forward, knees come in, legs flip out.
[00:02:01] That’s a really, really weak like glute hip area. That’s not likely to happen just because they got a little bit weaker. But you can’t get pain problems when you’re running because you haven’t spent any time on this. This is something I dealt with this year and it felt like, why is this a problem? Like I’m doing plenty of running. It should be okay.
[00:02:22] But again, there are little things because of the repetitive nature of running. If you do something just a little bit off thousands and thousands of times with all those steps that we do through every single day, year after year, then it can exacerbate problems. And when we’re not engaging our glutes because we’re sitting all the time in our modern life and our modern society, then it doesn’t actually have a chance to kind of get stronger and be used throughout the day.
[00:02:51] So we have to spend extra time looking at these particular things, working on them so that they become strong and we can continue to run well without injury in the future. So let’s get on to the demos. Hop on the floor. I think I’m going to go into the kitchen. We’re in the middle of decorating for Christmas, so there’s stuff everywhere in the house and I think my dog Toby is going to join us. So I’ll see you in the kitchen here in a second.
[00:03:16] Okay. We made the leap. This is just a nice place for us to have floor space. When the house was built in 1930, they didn’t think anything about shooting video. So we always have to make kind of accommodations in the house. But so to demonstrate the clamshells, it’s exactly what you think it is.
[00:03:31] So you lie side, your legs form a 90 here. And then what’s important is that you actually place a hand on your glute because you want to feel the activation here. So when you’re doing this, it’s very simple. You really only need bodyweight. You don’t have to do anything else to start out. So put a hand on your glute and you’re just going to turn your leg upwards and down and you should feel right in your glute that that muscle activating as you go up and down three sets of ten, like you’re good.
[00:04:08] And then after you’ve done that for a minute, then you can add resistance bands, which you can buy a number of different resistance bands on Amazon, but you really want to make sure that you’re activating the correct muscle.
[00:04:22] So if you’re not sure where you could move, this is when you’re feeling your glute, then you can actually, — I always just pull up anatomy charts online to go — okay, am I actually focusing on the correct muscle and use that as a guide to go, okay, I am feeling the right area. It is moving.
[00:04:40] That’s what’s like tightening when I’m doing that movement and then you go from there to “OK, I’ve got it, I’ve got my three sets of ten, I’m feeling stronger” and the resistance bands and then move on from there.
[00:04:55] Now the spirit of showing this particular exercise is to realize, number one, like — we all probably sit too much, which is the huge emphasis of this video. But beyond that I want you to think about like, are there any other activities I do too much that could be a detriment. So maybe you do like maybe you work a repetitive, like factory kind of job and you do some particular motion over and over and over.
[00:05:24] That means you probably need to work on doing like the opposite motion. This comes up running. Especially when you’re swimming. Something might I’ve experienced with like you do this motion where you’re pulling through the water. So you really need to work on this opposite motion because you’ll get an imbalance and they can create problems.
[00:05:46] Similarly, here, we’re resting too much. We’re not engaging our glutes. So I want you to think about, “Okay, do I sit too much? I should do the clamshells.” But beyond that, “Is there anything else I do too much that could create an imbalance or like a muscle group that I’m not engaging?” This is really the key to injury prevention is something we don’t spend enough time on because we focus on like, “Oh, this is going to get me faster, but not this is going to help me stay healthy.”
[00:06:14] It’s kind of hard to get into this mindset, but if you can, it helps with that consistency in your running so that you can become faster without getting sidelined. So do you have any questions for me about running, you’d like to see address in a future video leave them down in the comments below and I’ll see you next time on the next episode of Runner’s High.