Build Strength for Running

Build Strength for Running

Since the lockdown the amount of people who have took to running as their main source of exercise has increased.

You may of been a regular runner or taken it up as your gym has shut. So Well done for keeping moving.

Having a good base of strength to aid your running may surprise you. Building Lean muscle and moving better will help the body and your running massively.

The warm up "just jog" isn't very effective in preparing the body for a longer jog or run.

When you run gravity and force puts your joints under pressure which over time can lead to injury.

No one wants to be injured do they? You want to feel fit and better about yourself.

Now, building strength for running will not make you bulky or slow you down. In fact, quality lean muscle helps produce force which can lead to an increase in speed and endurance.

It also helps absorb force and protect the joints. Think of a suit of armour.

You don't need loads of weight to improve strength either, you are standing in the best gym available. You.

Squats, calf raises, glute bridge/hop thrusts, reverse lunges, split squats, jumps, hops, press ups, plank, rows, chin ups and crawls are all BODYWEIGHT.

Burpees though. No. Just no.

When should I do strength work? … my opinion is always before a run or jog.

But won't that make me tired for the run? Shouldn't I do it afterwards? I am trying to get a personal best to impress my Strava account.

Why should you complete a strength session before you run?

You can use it as a warm up to ready the body and the mind.

It's best to perform a strength block as fresh as possible to focus on good movement. Running is running.

You are more likely to skip the strength work after your run because you're tired, sweaty or well let's face it you want a shower and need to update strava.

Here is an example of a BODYWEIGHT warm up.

Notice there are no deadlifts, power cleans, single leg reverse lunges into a lat pull downs into a single leg burpee.

  • Squat.
  • Reverse lunges (each side)
  • Calf raise on a elevated service.
  • Rock back.
  • Press ups.
  • Glute bridge/hip thrusts.

For this example let's use the As Many Rounds As Possible training method. AMRAP.

  • Set a timer for 10 minutes.
  • Complete 4 reps of every exercise.
  • Keep your movement as strict as possible.
  • Quality not quantity (rest when you need to,don't stop for a coffee and social media check though).
  • Complete as many rounds as possible.

And you are ready for your run.

Now the above is an example. If you can perform two good press ups then happy days, keep those two quality reps.

Don't be afraid of building strength, being strong is important for life as well as family time, work and running running.

We've had members of the unit who after a block of strength training have dramatically decreased the run time/increased mileage.

Strength helps everything.


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