In the recent years strength training has become a popular addition to runners training regime. But what is the best strength-training program and why does picking heavy things up in strange positions help?

The best strength-training program would be inclusive of all major aspects of fitness:

  • Muscular strength
  • Flexibility
  • Mobility
  • Muscular endurance
  • Cardiovascular endurance
  • Diet

How would the addition of such a strength-training program? Let me give you a couple reasons:

 

  1. Running form is highly correlative with your general posture:

 

The better your posture is the more efficient that your running is. There fore you will cover more ground in less time. The best strength training program for you will address muscular imbalances that cause poor posture. If you are able to find equilibrium in your body you will feel lighter on the ground, stronger and greatly reduce your risk of injury.

 

  1. Increasing muscular strength will help you exert higher energy levels:

This one is easy! The stronger you are the more force you are able to produce. How ever it is important to build strength in the right areas. A program designed to build muscle strength in groups and movement patters you use when running will yield better results then your basic power-lifting program of body building websites. For distance runners lifting extremely heavy is actually counter productive. It uses different energy systems and you will most likely put on mass. Distance running programs should involve low weight, high reps, and little rest. When building a strength-training program consulting with a certified personal trainer or strength coach is a great way to get you started on the right path. Through a few sessions you can improve your technique and discover imbalances you never knew you had.

 

  1. You Can Incorporate Cardio into Resistance Training:

In Langley, BC I run a class called “the Runners Circuit”, this is a great way to keep your heart rate up for extended periods of time, while you work on developing muscle strength! It’s also very time efficient! I’ll give you its not quite the same as running, but it defiantly helps.

  1. Makes Hills Easier:

One of the most difficult aspects of running is those dreaded hills. One of the reasons why people struggle with hills is that they do not only have the muscular strength, but also muscular endurance! Essentially, if you build up enough strength the hill should not be as big of a limiting factor! Well its still going to suck, but not quite as much!!

Well the list can keep going on and on but I’m going to stop here. Quick little review, add the best strength training program into your routine that fits with your fitness journey, don’t just run! Preparing your body for the impacts of running, evening out muscular imbalances and developing muscle strength and endurance can really take your running to the next level!

Justin Massar,

BA Kinesiology , NSCA-CSCS,

BCAK, NCCPII Sprint/Hurdles

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