Run Your Marathon Stronger

Start Stronger – Finish Stronger

How Much Weight Training Should Marathon Runners Do?

Endurance athletes, like marathoners, should include two 15-30 minute long functional strength training sessions a week.  

Beginners start out with 1 round of 8 to 12 repetitions per exercise. Use a variety of 8-10 exercises to target all major muscle groups. 

Use Body-weight Exercises Frequently

As strength and endurance improve, gradually build it up to 3 rounds of each exercise.

Where Can I Do My Strength Exercises?

The gym is a good place with all the equipment usually available.  If you do not have access to a fitness room you can train at home or outdoors. 

Get Some Small Equipment

Invest in some small inexpensive equipment like a resistance band and some hand weights like dumbbells.  You can find lots of exercises online that can be done with this simple equipment.  On nice days you can try an outdoor fitness park or find a playground in your area.  

What Are Examples Of Outdoor Strength Exercises For Runners?

Exercises #1 – Bench Dips with Leg Lift

Targets your arm and core strength. Sit down on bench, place hands right next to your thighs.

Get A Stronger Upper Body!

With a shoulder width grip, slide your bottom off the bench, and walk your feet away from the bench. In this so-called ‘reverse bench’ position, bend your elbows to lower your torso. To make the dip move more challenging, lift one foot off the ground. After 10 reps, switch to the other leg.

Exercise #2 – Bulgarian Split Squats

Targets your leg and hip strength. Stand in front of a bench or similar object, facing away from the object. Bring one leg to your rear and place foot on top of the object.

Strengthen Your Legs!

Keep your back straight, but slightly bend your hips forward (avoid arching your back). Bend the rear leg and lower the knee towards the ground. Make sure the knee up front does not get pushed forward over the toes. Move your arms on your sides like during a run. Repeat 10 times and switch legs.

Exercise #3 – Star Planks

Targets your core and shoulder strength. On an elevated object, start in a side plank position. Keep both feet close together, engage your core and align ankles, hips and shoulders.

Improve Your Posture!

Raise the top leg and the top arm at the same time into a star position. Hold for 1-2s and lower back to the side plank position. Repeat 10 times and switch sides.

How Do I Benefit Of Functional Strength Training?

By choosing exercises that target stabilizer muscles and your core, you can improve your coordination, balance and range of motion.  

Mix It Up!

Also, finding functional strength exercises that are specific to your sport can help you to avoid a muscular imbalance.

Can I Gain An Advantage For My Marathon Run?

Absolutely. The goal in the marathon is to keep good form into the later stages of the race.  If you can maintain proper form you can breathe better and avoid an early onset of fatigue.

Avoid Fatigue Later In The Race

Having to slow down or change your stride rate can lead to an overuse injury. Functional strength helps you to finish strong!

Finish With A Smile On Your Face!

More functional strength exercises on my blog

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