7 Ways to Become a Better Runner Without Running

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These exercises may look easy (and even silly), but they’re the road to boosting speed, building endurance, and staying injury-free

Stay Injury-Free

Whether you’re new to the sport or a veteran marathoner, injuries are a runner’s biggest enemy. And while if you want to run faster and farther, of course you have to actually run, it’s equally important to spend a little time not running.

Just as preventative maintenance can head off the need for costly repairs for your car, a little prehab can prevent the need to repair your body. These seven simple tips will save you from common injuries, improve efficiency, and make you stronger and healthier when running and in your everyday life.

Learn How to Stand

In our age of deskwork, many of us stand (and sit) incorrectly, with our backs arched and bellies sticking out [left], says physical therapist Jay Dicharry, author of Anatomy for Runners. This translates to poor posture in running and lower back pain.

The solution: Stand with arms at sides and notice where your weight falls (typically it’s the back of the feet). Drop the front of your rib cage slightly until you feel the weight shift to the middle of your feet [right]. Rotate arms so thumbs point outward. Practice standing and sitting like this whenever you can. When you run, think again about dropping your ribs, and also about making the back of your neck long.

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