Try This Workout: Moves Like Lanni

Lanni STWMLast month after the Scotiabank Vancouver Half-Marathon, I had the opportunity to chat with Lanni Marchant, Canada’s marathon record-holder and recent bronze medalist in the 10,000m at the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games. The incredible thing about so many of our Canadian athletes is that they really care about their fans and are so kind and generous in sharing their training experiences. Lanni is no exception and it’s amazing to see how she’s become a hero for Canadians and women runners all across the country!

We were talking about developing speed and training on the track and I asked Lanni if she had a favourite workout she could recommend. She mentioned something called “The Brazilian,” which she describes in this post on her blog. 

The Brazilian involves a lot more than running. It includes crunches, push-ups, supermans, and lunges, followed by a 100m sprint, running drills, and then even more sprints! I am telling you, the first time I did this workout I screamed on my last interval because I was in so much pain. Lanni’s version of the workout is pretty intense and obviously tailored to an elite level athlete (which I am not), so I asked my Coach Brock Armstrong to modify the workout into something I could fit into my training. Here’s what he came up with:

Lanni Marchant’s Brazilian Workout, Modified for the Recreational Athlete:

Warm-Up: 5-10 minutes of full body movement.

Main Set:
Repeat this set 4 times, increasing the final sprint distance each time:
10 crunches, 10 push-ups, 10 supermans, 10 reverse lunges
100m all-out sprint
20 reps of a running form drill. Choose one from this video:
90 second easy jog
200m sprint
Back to the top for a total of 4 intervals, increasing from 200m to 400m, 600m, and finally 800m on the final interval. Get ready for the HURT.

Cool Down: 5-10 minutes of easy jogging after stretching out any tight areas.

Moves Like LanniLooks OK on paper, right? But those core exercises really add up and the final 800m sprint will really test your pain tolerance! Can you see the pain on my face? The first time I did this workout, I had to stop for 10 seconds during my final 800m sprint. The second time I did this workout I controlled my pace and didn’t fade at the end. Woo! This is definitely a workout I plan to keep in my training regimen and my goal is to increase the number of intervals as well as the distance of the final sprint as my speed improves over time.

If you’re looking for something new to do at the track, I definitely recommend trying this Lanni-approved workout! It’s easily modified to fit any runner’s skill level or preferred distance by adding or removing intervals. Right now I am focusing on shorter distances, but this workout could also be used by the longer distance runner. As Lanni says in her original blog post: “As my season progresses, the intervals will lengthen, and eventually the entire workout is replaced with more marathon-specific intervals.”

Let me know if you try this workout! Tweet me @jennapettinato and tell me how it goes. Good luck!


A Witness to Running History

I haven’t posted on here in FOREVER. It’s not that my life hasn’t been full of running adventures, quite the contrary actually. Last Sunday I had a front row seat to witness history being made as Lanni Marchant and Krista DuChene both broke the 28-year old Canadian Women’s Marathon Record in 2:27:59 and 2:28:32 respectively at the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon. Since I was working for the race, I was able to sneak in between all the photographers at the finish line and snap this pic.

lanni STWM

Canadian Women’s Marathon Record Holder, Lanni Marchant (2:27:59)

As a runner, a Canadian, and a woman, this moment was pretty special. The smile on Lanni’s face as she crossed the line was so big that you couldn’t help but smile (and cry) along with her. Lanni is my age which is just so crazy and awesome at the same time. Women and girls everywhere have a shiny, new role model who they can look up to. I’m currently reading Katherine Switzer’s autobiograpy “Marathon Woman” and it really is astonishing to think that just 46 years ago in 1967, when Katherine was training to run her first Boston Marathon, women’s running events didn’t go past 800m and the women’s marathon wasn’t even considered an Olympic sport! It would take 17 more years until the women’s marathon was included in the 1984 Olympics.

Today, when I think of my running role models, so many of them are women. There are the famous women runners I look up to like Lanni and Krista, Kara Goucher, and Lauren Fleshman. But more importantly there are the women runners that I am lucky enough to call my friends. These are the women that I talk to on a regular basis, who I run races with, who inspire me with their blog posts and training goals, and racing triumphs. They’re the women who continue the amazing tradition of women’s running that trailblazers like Katherine Switzer started for us 46 years ago.

Jen and STeph

With Stephanie after the Niagara Women’s Half-Marathon in 2012.

A lot of my running friends have blogs, so here are 3 of my favourites! I hope you find them as inspiring as I do.

1) Stephanie McAulay was one of my first running friends and just set a PB with a 3:53 marathon at Scotiabank last week! Stephanie is always challenging herself to new goals and she’s one of the toughest and most talented runners I know. Here’s her blog:

2) Christa Davidson is one amazing woman who has overcome an alcohol addiction through running and just completed her first marathon last week! I am constantly inspired by Christa and was lucky enough to run a 20k race with her this summer. Here’s her blog:

3) Linda Nguyen has been a HUGE running inspiration to me and we have had the pleasure of running a lot together this year. Last month we did our 35k weekend challenge together and our plan for 2014 is to run a marathon. Linda is athletic in every sport and is one of the few people who is part of the Spartan Race Trifecta Tribe. Linda doesn’t have a blog, but you can follow along all her running adventures on Instagram at and Twitter @lindamnguyen.

Who are your running role models? Which women inspire you to lace up and crush your goals?