T Nation

running & abs


When runnning sprints or jogging, how do you keep your abs tight?


just pretend like you have to take a shit.


Why would you want them "tight" whatever that means? Just curious!


Hmm. Whenever I'm jogging or running, my abs and lower back are definitely not relaxed.


Yes. Try to keep your abs tight while running. I'm sure you'll definately run as slow as possible.


I was reading an article on maurice greene and he said it helps his times.


if you want your abs tight, maybe you could flex them? hmmmm.


Ok, it's kind of tricky, because you're abs aren't really "tight" per se (ie. not maximally contracted). But if you breathe properly, and concentrate on keeping your knees high, and arms pumping, you're abs are tenser than when relaxed. It's a consequence of fully contracting ALL your leg muscles (glutes, hams, quads, and calves!), and also, lifting your leg while running for top speed.

I competitively sprinted for much of my life, and never concentrated on contracting my abs. I personally think that's a waste of your efforts. Concentrate on the height of your knees, length of your stride, and full contraction of your calves at the end of your gait cycle, and you'll do more for yourself that contracting your abs.

Hope that helps.


here's a method i have read of which is funky

imagine u have a ten pence coint (or a coin from ur own currency, whatever, a coin!)

Now imagine u have really deep cut abs and you have to insert the coin in between them, now tense ur abs so teh coin stays put, there, abs are tight :wink:


Run downhill and feel how your abs- particularly your obliques- contract, and memorize that feeling.
It's a little hard to describe..it's like you're pushing down with your elbows and your obliques while staying loose. Have you ever seen marathon runners look like they're bobbing up and down? That's abs contracting for a large part and it does help with getting your knees up and fleet feet.


Ike and charles I have a friend that said if he tensed his abs before jumping/as he jumped (he was a bball player) he could jump noticably higher, than when jumping normally. We all tried it, all had different result ofcourse but I think most of us noticed some benefit.