Did you know just adding a 20-minute strength training session a couple times a week can improve speed, prevent injury and increase efficiency in runners? Often runners overlook the importance of strength training, whether you are a weekend warrior running 5ks or a seasoned marathon runner strength training is a necessary addition to your training schedule.
Contrary to popular belief, lifting and other forms of strength training will not make you bulky. By adding a couple short strength training sessions you will begin to see your running speed increase. To put it simply, the stronger your legs are the more force you can drive into the ground propelling you forward more quickly. You will begin to be able cover more distance in fewer strides increasing speed and efficiency.
Research shows improved efficiency after adding strength training into runner’s workouts.1 Efficiency is the amount of energy it takes to run a certain distance, lift a specific amount of weight or do any task. The stronger your muscles are the more efficiently they work leading to less oxygen and energy stores needed to perform the task.
The American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation found that almost 70% of runners get injured each year. Shin splints, runner's knee, IT band syndrome and other injuries plague many runners due to lack of strength training. Adding strength training can help strengthen weak areas that lead to these common injuries. Focusing on strengthening the abductors, glutes and core can help prevent many common running injuries.
If you are interested in learning about ways to incorporate strength training into your running schedule contact Viverant today to get a plan that will meet your individualized needs.
1. Kris Beattie, B. P. (2016). "The Effect of Strength Training on Performance Indicators in Distance Runners." Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research.
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