Many distance runners tend to neglect weights training and purely focus on aerobic and anaerobic activity. However, strength training can aid in running in enhancing performance.
For a runner, when going to the gym, the focus should be on gaining strength and power rather than a metabolic or cardio session. Maximum strength has displayed significant improvement in performance for endurance athletes, and there are various reasons to support this.
The first reason is improved running economy as this is a significant factor in running performance. The stronger a runner is, the more muscle and tendon or elastic energy you must work with, and in turn, the more work the musculoskeletal system can do with each step.
Increased power input is another pivotal factor in developing muscle performance. The healthier you are, the more capacity you must build your power to assist you in endurance events.
Reduced risk of injury is another critical point when relating to strength training for distance runners, as stronger and more robust bodies have a lower risk of injury.
Maintaining good performance form under fatigue is crucial in distance events to reduce energy wastage. Many practical strengthening exercises can assist with upper body strength.
Lastly, there are a few key takeaways from this article:
- Maximal strength training has an essential place in a runners training schedule
- A stronger runner will conserve energy while their muscles take more of the load
- Strength is the cornerstone of developing power
- Strength training is effective at reducing your risk of injury