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  • Writer's pictureBrittany Peterson

Pre-Run & Post-Run Activation Drills

Updated: Jul 10

At Peak Run Performance, we value the holistic approach to training. Obviously, most of us runners want the glamorous workouts that will catch us a new PR or a top finishing place, however, if a runner gets sidelined by injury, it can be devastating. This is why at Peak Run Performance we prioritize doing the "extra things" outside of running. Of course philosophy, customization and knowledge is put into the training design and the training progression, but there is equal thought put into injury prevention resulting in making gains toward progressing fitness and reaching goals.

What we'd like to introduce in today's article are the benefits of Pre-Run and Post-Run Activation Drills. The idea with these "workouts" is to add an efficient 10-minute routine to warm up the body for optimal running performance. This can ensure correct activation patterns which promotes proper biomechanics to carry over into optimal running form, no matter the prescribed run for the day. On the opposite end of the run, the "deactivation" routine targets easing the body back into a recovery state.

Adding routines such as these helps with injury prevention, building neuromuscular efficiency and therefore, promotes greater running economy gains. Many of us find ourselves battling chronic issues, muscle tightness or other lingering sensations and "niggles" throughout the body. These drills can be an essential addition to elicit proper firing throughout your body and work on problem areas in order to promote full usage of the major muscle groups and reinforce efficient and sustainable running form. The deactivation side can be an area to lightly reinforce the activation pattern and muscle firing prior to getting into a resting state. It is also a time where one could address the "niggles" and provide mobilization, range of motion drills or soft tissue work to promote blood flow and repair in order to manage pain, promote recovery and minimize risk of or progression of an injury.


There are many workout designs and templates for pre-run and post-run activation drills. This is our philosophy at Peak Run Performance:

  • Lower Core Activation

  • Glute Activation

  • Single Leg Standing / Foot and Ankle Activation

  • Range of Motion

  • Light Re-Activation

  • Blood Flow / Stretching / Promotion of Recovery Process

The following videos will demonstrate a 10 minute routine for the Pre-Run Activation and Post-Run Activation/Deactivation Routines.

List of exercises:

  1. Hip Flexor Stretch

  2. Lower Core Activation

  3. Double Leg Bridge

  4. Single Leg Bridge

  5. Toe Taps (with lower core activation)

  6. Ankle Mobility (in single leg standing)

  7. Calf Raises

  8. Half Squat Side Steps

  9. Dynamic Squat Side Steps

  10. Squats

  1. Relaxed Form Drills

  2. Cobra Stretch and Lifts

  3. Front, Back and Side Bends

  4. Hip Hikes and Dips

  5. Gentle Core and Glute Activation Exercises

  6. Post-Run Stretching

Video Demonstrations:


Test out these routines and continue to follow us for more recommendations and information to optimize your running and performance!


Peak Run Performance Coach Brittany Peterson

Brittany Peterson is a Running Coach at Peak Run Performance and a professional trail and ultra runner with the Nike Trail Team. She has had several wins in key races throughout the world and has been a 3-time finisher at the Western States Endurance Run, with 2 of her 3 results being in the top 5. She comes from a background of track and filed and road marathon running as well and loves coaching athletes of all ages, abilities, in all terrains and with any goal in mind.

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