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Welcome new Boot Campers to Jeffersonville! The Cambridge Elementary school was hopping last Wednesday night.
Why Runners Need Strength Training
So you want to improve your running?
Runners are a unique bunch. One would be hard pressed to find a group of fitness minded people more dedicated to their practice. It’s not uncommon to hear people who love running discussing their free time in terms of miles they’ve run this week, or races they’re preparing for. Running is, for many, great stress relief. It is also a very basic, primal movement pattern that all humans should be proficient in. So, what if I were to tell you that to improve your running, you should spend less time running?
It’s true. If you love running or are just getting in to running and want to make sure you get the most out of your runs, I suggest you make time for strength training. I know what you may be thinking. “I don’t want to bulk up and get slow”. Let me put your fears to rest and share with you how a well designed strength training program will have you beating your best time, and reducing the number of injuries you may experience as a result of running.
First off, I want you to know that elite athletes in any sport have specific strength training protocols that they follow to stay on top of their game. Golfers don’t simply play golf to get better. Football players have more to their off season training than just playing football. Running is no different. Top level runners at any distance train for the strength necessary to excel. Top running coaches such as Dr. Nicholas Romanov, founder of the Pose Method of running; and Brian Mackenzie, the brain behind CrossFit Endurance both understand the role of strength training in producing athletes who can perform their best on the track, trail, or wherever your run takes you. So, let’s look at some specific ways in which strength training can benefit your run.
Running for weight loss starts with strength.
When I first started my own weight loss journey, I made the mistake of starting with a running program. By program I mean I would go and run until my bad knees forced me to stop. I’d recover for a day or two, and repeat the process. Over the course of months I lost a little weight, but nothing impressive. I improved my running distance to about 10 miles from less than 1, but my speed wasn’t impressive either. I also increased the amount of time spent with my knees locked up on me in between runs. I loved running, but my wife and friends all acknowledged what I was doing was ridiculous. I wanted to keep running.
Eventually I got smart and got in to strength training. That was the missing link in my running. As soon as I started performing basic strength exercises correctly, my knee pain started becoming less and less of an issue. I was running faster, and I was losing more weight.
If I had it to do all over again knowing what I do now, I’d spend 4 – 6 weeks building a base of strength before even running half a mile. I know I’d be able to get more out of my run, and I’d be increasing my metabolism from the strength training. My weight loss would have occurred so much faster, and I would have avoided so much injury if I had placed strength first.
Improved efficiency. Improved speed.
It stands to reason that if one can move more efficiently, and conserve energy, that one will perform better. With improved strength comes a greater resistance to fatigue. Improved core strength results in better posture allowing one to maintain proper running form for longer periods. All of this translates to better times and personal records for you. If you’ve ever spent time with a technique focused running coach, you may have noticed that certain muscles are forced to perform tasks that they may not be used to. After becoming proficient in the new techniques, and after the muscles adapted to their new demands, your running improved. With muscles that are strong and resilient to begin with, you can reap the benefits of new running skills much sooner.
Read more of this article that addresses Reduced injury. More time in training. Strength exercises for running. http://qualitystrength.com/why-runners-need-strength-training/
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