Many Runners figure that they don’t need to strength train or strength training isn’t worth it when they run. This is because they figured that running itself is already a great exercise to strengthen the muscles. This really isn’t the case because there are several reasons why you need to strength train as a runner.
Become a Faster Runner After Strength Training
One of the main reasons you want to strength train is because it will simply make you a better and faster runner. When you do strength training you put stress on various parts of your body and this forces the body to adapt so it can withstand the stress. When you’re running, you also put stress on your body.
By using weights and strength training, you’ll be more resistant to the impacts that your body goes through when you’re running. If you have a regular strength training routine, this is going to benefit you a great deal when you are running. Your muscles will be able to take the force that they go through each step as you run. You’ll have more powerful strides and over time, your speed with running will increase.
When your body is strong overall, you’ll be able to maintain your highest speed for a longer duration. You end up with more muscle endurance, more power and aerobic capacity. if you want to run a race, strength training is going to be critical to your success.
Better Running Form
When strength training, you develop your entire body. If you’re just running, you might not develop every muscle in the body in the correct way. If you’re running for example, you may have one knee that is weaker than the other one and not know about it. This can easily cause an injury because you simply haven’t trained both legs to the same degree.
When strength training, you’re going to be training each muscle group and strengthening each group. Overall this will lead to an overall better running form. By doing this you will prevent the body from compensating for the lack of strength. If one area of your body is weaker your body can favour that area. Your body won’t favour the right knee for example, when the left knee is a little bit weaker. When strength training, the weaker areas of the body are going to become a more inline with the stronger areas. This transitions to better running. Sage Canaday, an American long distance runner has put together a Youtube video for running form.
One of the key reasons you want to strength train is simply for the fact that it’s going to reduce the amount of injuries you get. For example, low back pain, shin splints, and other injuries can be reduced by a great deal if you strength train. By strength training the entire body as a runner you will see improvements in your running. I have also written an article on the most common running injuries and how to avoid them. You’ll be strengthening all the muscle groups that are involved in the running process. This will reduce the instances of regular injuries.
When you run, your muscles will be able to adapt to the impact that you’re putting your legs and body through. You’re going to have more endurance, more strength, and more running power. When strength training your body will be overall stronger. This will reduce the chances that you get an injury through the running process.
These are the three big reasons Runners should strength train. If you want to have a stronger body for running, reduce injury, and have an overall better running form. You need to strength train which is just going to make you an overall better runner.