Avoid These 3 Strength Training Mistakes and Become a Better Stronger RunnerAug 22, 2023
Our lives can get so busy that we may forget to add strength training into our workout routine or we may just copy the latest fad workout, but if we are serious about our running we need to start strength training like runners. Let's go into the biggest Strength Training Mistakes I see runners make. The first two I mention are major components of my 6-week strength training course for runners, RunStrong101.
1. They train muscles instead of movements.
Yes, we need glute med strength but the glute med doesn't just do external rotation like lateral band walks. The anterior (the front portion) glute med is responsible for internal rotation and works with your adductors to keep you stable through mid-stance. I like to train movements instead of muscles. Training to be able to organize your center of mass over your stance leg while staying strong and stable is an integral part of strength training for runners!
Here’s just one example of that:
2. They don’t train rotation.
To be able to move forward efficiently you have to rotate. Your whole pelvis needs to rotate from side to side. For that to happen your femurs (thigh bones) have to rotate in your pelvis and your torso needs to counter-rotate (rotate the other way) so that you can keep running and looking forward.
This concert of rotation happens so that you can minimize the negative impact of ground reaction forces on your body while storing some of that energy to keep moving forward.
Maximum rotation happens a toe-off so that by the time other the foot strikes the ground, that side of the pelvis is already rotating back, which dissipates forces and reduces the impact on the body. It’s a beautiful system; we were truly born to run! We can and should purposefully program some of this rotation into our strength training sessions so that we are strong and stable through our whole stride.
Here’s just one example of how to do that.
3. They stop when they feel good.
Strength training, like brushing your teeth, only works if you keep doing it. It is easy to find the motivation to start when you are doing so to help take care of aches, pains, and recurring injuries or to break through a performance plateau, but getting consistent and sticking to it is how you hold onto any progress you make.
If you are trying to build strength, I suggest 2-3 days of strength training. If you are at a place where maintenance is all you need, you maybe* can get away with one day of strength training, but don't stop completely. *maybe because as we age, the minimum to maintain starts to shift to two days per week. So better just focus on creating a consistent habit of at least two strength days and stick to it! Yeah?
Strength training is vital to running!
I know it is not the most exciting thing but we can make strength training more fun. Take a look at some ways we can spice up our strength training workouts in this article. If we want to break PRs we need to make sure we are training with purpose.
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