Strength exercises are essential for runners. Remember that only strong legs with sufficient musculature can guarantee you a good competition speed.
What strength exercises are best for runners?
It will depend on what types of races you are going to do, for example:
100 meter runners will need to train for explosiveness .
Hurdle runners will need strength training focused on explosiveness, but tailored to their specific needs. Thus, the weighted and jump squat is a staple in his routine.
Marathon Runners . They will have to train the resistance , yes, but also the strength. In general, they will use less weight but more repetitions in their sets.
And what would happen to the long-distance runners?
Strength training for long-distance runners
These types of athletes, as you probably already know, are the ones who do races ranging from 800 to 3,000 meters . Therefore, your training has to involve a good resistance capacity . But also enough power to achieve optimal speed.
Obviously, the explosiveness will not be as necessary as in short distance runners. The latter need to get an impeccable start, while those in the background can correct a worse start throughout the race.
What can your training consist of? The idea is that they have an athletic body, with a strong muscle . The training is not directed so much at hypertrophy as at strength. Therefore, once a certain muscle tone is achieved, aim for low repetitions with a lot of weight in all exercises. This will increase power and speed in the race.
Do not forget to have a balanced body. Even if you are going to work with the legs, the upper body is essential to avoid developing injuries. These would be the basic exercises:
Pulled up Once you master them, we advise you to do them weighted, so you will develop more strength.
Rowing to the chest Fundamental for a well worked straight back.
Bench press . The chest exercise par excellence. You will improve the strength in your push.
military press . For shoulders balanced with the body. Do this exercise with a free weight, never on a machine.
You can complement with some isolated exercises : push-ups, bottoms, lateral dorsal work or inclined press. However, what is truly important will be in these exercises, which, after all, are the multi-joint ones.
These are the essential exercises for a long-distance runner:
Squat . Do 4 sets of 5 repetitions with the maximum weight you are capable of lifting. Try to gain weight every week, no matter how little.
Dead weight . With open bar. Keep the same routine as described above.
Bulgarian squat . It is very important to work the posterior chain and to gain power in your legs.
Press leg . To add large loads of weight and improve power.
You can complement this routine with box jumps, hip trust or quadriceps work.
A core adapted to the race
Finally, don’t forget to include abdominal strength exercises about 3 days a week. Integrate them with your training in the most functional and intelligent way. Think that the core, in a race, is essential, to guarantee your endurance at all times. Therefore, do not ignore it in your training.
How to divide a distance runner’s strength routine
Now that you know the exercises, it remains to see how to schedule them throughout the week. Here is a suggestion on how to focus on improving your musculature for the race:
Day 1: Lower body .
Day 2: Upper body .
Day 3: rest. In this case, you can complement the routine with resistance training for the race.
Day 4: lower train .
Day 5: Upper body .
Day 6: Rest from weight lifting. Again, the resistance training option may be the most recommended.
Day 7: total rest. You can take advantage to improve mobility or to stretch .