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April 26, 2018

Core Routine for Runners: The Dozen


I was introduced to the "The Dozen" in the winter of 2012 by my favorite Oregon running family. I love this set of core exercises for its efficient targeting of core muscle groups, and because no gym equipment is required! You can do this on a grass field, in your hotel room, or really anywhere you can lay on a flat surface. This blog has become one of Oiselle's "greatest hits" since we published it in 2013. Do The Dozen (or "The Dirty Dozen" as it has come to be known) 3 times/ week for best results, as an adjunct to your running or other sports, and you will help protect against injury. Hear from The Dozen's creator:  

"Of course you realize that I didn't invent any of these exercises...only orchestrated the collection to be a balanced set of front/back/side core exercises with just enough arm work to encourage my high school runners to be both tougher and less injury prone. If you get busy they should take you about 15 minutes post run...a small investment of time that can pay big dividends to any runner."  

dirty dozen v2-1.jpg.pngPIN IT!




d | November 24, 2013 at 3:57pm

Thanks for this! Is there a

Thanks for this! Is there a way to get more specific descriptions of these exercises?

Laura | May 11, 2014 at 3:59pm

Thank you!

Thanks Dr Lesko! Love these as I'm getting back into running from rehabbing a hammie since xc nationals!

Adrienne | July 9, 2014 at 8:29am

Strong runner

Started doing this routine this week and man I feel it! Getting stronger slowly! :)

Diane | June 29, 2015 at 5:19pm

The Dozen

Wish you could post videos of some of these. Not sure I'm doing them correctly!

Sarah | August 5, 2015 at 6:08pm

Hi Diane! We are working to

Hi Diane! We are working to get a video archive of these that we will post to youtube...keep your eye out for when we post it! Thanks! Sarah

Penny | September 16, 2015 at 6:33am


Until they get their video posted, Youtube is your friend when it comes to proper form in exercises :)

KC | September 16, 2015 at 1:37pm

Yes, please add video or

Yes, please add video or description. Not sure how to correctly do a few of these.

Sarah | September 28, 2015 at 3:12pm

the video is live!

the video is live!

Sarah | September 28, 2015 at 3:13pm

the video is live!

the video is live!

Laurie | January 16, 2016 at 7:02pm

question about pushups

What do you mean by "decreasing 10, 9, 8, 7..." for pushups? Does it mean do 10, then do 9 more, then 8 more, etc? I am just not understanding! Thanks!

Sarah | May 24, 2016 at 2:29pm

Decreasing sets of pushups

Yes! Do 10, then short rest, then 9, etc. etc.

tami | June 1, 2016 at 2:32pm

10 push ups

10 push ups rest 9 push ups rest 8 push ups rest etc etc

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