Weight Training For Marathon Runners
isn't always a runner’s top priority but if it isn’t part of your fitness program at all, you're
missing out on more than just buff biceps!
training is a useful supplement to a runner's roadwork because it strengthens muscles and joints,
which can improve race times and decrease injury risk.
is easier if your whole body is working with you," says Andrew Satchwell from
absoluterunning.com "A runner with strong legs
but weak arms and core muscles will always be slower than a runner with total-body
A common mistake
made by runners is to adopt a strength training program incorporating a standard gym routine
involving bench presses, biceps curls, and leg extensions. While these moves might make you look
good, they will do little to improve your running.
Think about it:
How does pushing a weight away from your chest help you run a faster 10-K?
In fact, lifting
weights the way everyone else does may even increase your injury risk, because typical workouts
often lead to strength imbalances between muscle groups and around joints.That's why runners need a
strength-training workout that targets key muscle groups and keeps them
Here are some
helpful points for you to remember:
Work your back: Building your posterior chain is especially important for runners.
The muscles on the back of your lower body propel you forward and the muscles on the back of your
upper body help you maintain an upright running stance. Slumping forward decreases your ability to
run efficiently, requiring you to exert more energy.
Target Your Core: Your core is the foundation from which all movement is
initiated. It includes all the muscles of your midsection and hips that support your spine and
allow you to flex, extend, and rotate your trunk and hips. Strength in this muscle group will
enable you to fire up a powerful stride and finish-line kick when the rest of the pack is
Variety: Building muscular endurance with light weights and high repetitions
should be combined with lifting heavier weights for fewer reps to increase overall strength. Strong
muscles enhance the stability of your joints--which reduces the wear and tear on ligaments--and
make you a better sprinter and hill climber.
Multitask: The key to an efficient workout is emphasizing compound movements --
exercises that require you to move more than one joint at a time. For instance, exercises like rows
and lunges give you greater benefits in less time than single-joint isolation exercises such as
bicep curls and triceps extensions.
Another way to
get the most from a workout is to combine two movements into one. For example, rotating your torso
as you perform a shoulder press doubles your gains.
Satchwell's absoluterunning.com is the UK's
leading specialist provider of running holidays for individuals, clubs and
If you'd like to train for your first
marathon and you want to find out more about running a marathon, 'Marathon Training For
Beginners’ will teach you all you need to know. It is one of the most effective marathon training schedules for beginners available on the internet, ideal for
anyone that wants to learn how to successfully run a marathon in the shortest possible time.
Click here for more details.
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