Strength Training For Runners: 10 Strength Exercises You Should Know
If you’re a runner, you know that staying injury-free is key to maintaining your fitness level. And one of the best ways to stay injury-free is to incorporate strength exercises into your running training. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the best strength exercises for runners and how they can help keep you healthy and on the road!
What Is Strength Training for Runners?
Strength training for runners is any type of exercise that helps build strength in the muscles and bones. This can include lifting weights, doing bodyweight exercises, or using resistance bands. Strength training is important for runners because it can help prevent injuries by strengthening the muscles and connective tissues around the joints. Additionally, strength training can improve your running economy and also increase your power and speed, while keeping muscles resilient to fatigue.
Benefits Of Strength Training For Runners
There are many benefits of strength training for runners, which is why it’s such an important part of a well-rounded training plan. As we mentioned, strength training can help prevent injuries by building up the muscles and connective tissues around the joints. This is especially important for runners because we put a lot of stress on our joints with all the pounding from running. Additionally, strength training can improve your running economy, which is how efficiently you use energy while running. This means that you’ll be able to run at the same pace with less effort, which can lead to faster times and improved performance. Additionally, strength training can also increase your power and speed.
If you want to improve your running, there are 10 key strength exercises that you should implement into your training. These exercises target the major muscle groups and help you run faster and longer with less effort.
10 Strength Exercises To Improve Your Running
Here are the 10 strength exercises to improve your running:
1. Glute Bridge
The glute bridge is a great exercise to target the glutes. The glutes are one of the key muscles used while running. To do the glute bridge, lie on your back with your feet flat on the ground and your knees bent. Then, lift your hips off the ground until your thighs and torso are in line with each other. Hold for two seconds, and slowly lower your hips back to the starting position. Repeat for 10-12 reps.
Squats are another great exercise to target the glutes. To do a squat, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your hands at your sides. Lower your hips down as if you were going to sit in a chair. Be sure to keep your back straight and your knees over your ankles. Hold for two seconds and then stand back up. Repeat for 10-12 reps.
Lunges are one of the best exercises for targeting the quadricep muscles. To do the lunge exercise, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your hands at your sides. Take a large step forward with one leg and lower your hips so your knees are bent at 90-degree angles. Keep your front knee over your ankle, and don’t let your back knee touch the ground. Hold for two seconds, then push off with your front leg to return to the starting position. Repeat for 10-12 reps on each leg.
4. Wall Sits
Wall sits are an exercise for targeting the quadriceps, which are important to runners. To do a wall sit, stand with your back against a wall and your feet shoulder-width apart. Slide down the wall until your knees are at a 90-degree angle. Make sure your knees are over your ankles and hold this position for 30 seconds to one minute. Repeat for three to five sets.
5. Hamstring Curls
Hamstring curls are one of the best exercises for targeting the hamstrings. To do a hamstring curl, lie on your back with your legs straight and your feet flat on the ground. Lift your hips off the ground and place a towel or resistance band around your ankles. Curl your legs up towards your glutes, contract your hamstrings. Hold for two seconds, then slowly lower your legs back to the starting position. Repeat for 10-12 reps.
6. Hip Raise
The hip raise is another exercise for targeting the glutes muscles. To do a hip raise, lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the ground. Lift your hips off the ground until they are in line with your thighs and torso. Hold for two seconds and then slowly lower them back to the starting position. Repeat for 10-12 reps.
The plank is a great exercise for targeting the core, which is an important muscle group for runners. To do a plank, get into a push-up position with your hands shoulder-width apart and your feet hip-width apart. Lower your hips so that your elbows and forearms are on the ground and hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds. Repeat for three to five sets.
8. Side Plank
The side plank is a great exercise for targeting the obliques, which are another key muscle group for runners. To do a side plank, lie on your side with your feet stacked on top of each other and your elbow directly under your shoulder. Lift your hips off the ground and hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds. Repeat for three to five sets on each side.
9. Russian Twists
Russian twists are a great exercise for targeting the obliques and helping improve your running. To do a Russian twist, sit on the ground with your knees bent and your feet flat on the ground. Then, lean back slightly and twist your torso to the right and then to the left. Repeat for 10-12 reps on each side.
10. Pilates Scissor
Pilates scissor is a great exercise for targeting the core. To do the Pilates scissor exercise, lie on your back with your legs in the air and your hands at your sides. Lower your right leg towards the ground and raise your left leg towards the sky. Repeat for 10-12 reps on each side.
How Often Should You Do Strength Exercises?
Most strength exercises should be done two to three times per week. However, if you are just starting out, you may want to start once or twice a week and gradually increase as you become more comfortable with the exercises.
Remember to listen to your body and don’t do more than you are comfortable with. You should also focus on quality over quantity, so make sure you are doing the exercises with proper form.
If you are new to strength training, it is always a good idea to consult with a certified personal trainer or running coach before starting any new exercise.
Now that you know some key strength training exercises for runners, get out there and start incorporating them into your training!