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Strength Training Workouts for Runners

First Set

  • Squats jumps - 1 min
  • Star plank walkout - 1 min
  • Sumo squat with bicep curls - 1 min
  • Shoulder presses - 1 min
  • Single leg dead-lift with weight - 1 min right + 1 min left

Second Set

  • Tower on knees (weights optional) - 1 min
  • Side plank lifts - 30 sec right + 30 sec left
  • Toe touches with weights - 1 min
  • Lateral lunge with weights - 1 min + add hold for 30 seconds
  • Bent over rows - 1 min

Repeat each set 3x

  • Focus the first round on getting the exercise
  • Focus the second round on form
  • Focus the third round to fatigue

Strength Training Exercises for Runners

Squat jumps

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Lower body down into a squat position and then push off the floor with an explosive jump. Keep your core engaged throughout movement and focus.

Works quads, hamstrings, glutes, back, abs and improves flexibility in ankles and hips.

Star Plank Walkouts

Start in a standing position with feet wider than shoulder-width apart (if using a mat, feet will be just off the mat), roll down through spine until hands touch the floor, and then walk hands forward into a plank. While keeping your core braced, walk hands to outside of mat (or wider than shoulder-width), pause, then walk hands back in under your shoulders, walk your hands back to your feet, and then roll your body up and back to the start position.

Works the whole body with a focus on the core.

Sumo Squat with Wide Bicep Curls

Stand with feet wider than shoulder-width apart (approximately a foot wider), toes turn out to 45 degrees and lower your hips down into a squat. Press feet firmly into the floor and engage glutes to lift yourself back up to the start position. Arms turn out to the side at 45 degrees, lower arms as you lower your hips, and curl biceps as you straighten your legs back to the start position.

Works whole body, focuses on glutes, inner thighs, hamstrings, calves, hip flexors, quads, and biceps.

Dumbbell Shoulder Presses

Hold dumbbells by your shoulders, with your palms facing forward and elbows out to the sides. Feet stay firmly planted on the floor hip-width apart. Keep your spine straight while bracing your core and press weights above your head by extending the arms.

Works shoulders, triceps, trapezius, and rotator cuff.

Single Leg Dead Lift

Hold a pair of dumbbells, and raise one foot off the ground just a few inches behind you. Brace your core and lean forward keeping your back flat. Dumbbells should hang inline with shoulders. Do not allow your shoulders to round forward. Press the standing leg into the floor, engage glute and hamstring muscles to lift back to start position. Repeat all on one side then switch to the other.

Works back, glutes, hamstrings, and core muscles.

Tower aka Kneeling Leg Extension

Kneel on a mat or cushion with knees hip-width apart and press your shins into the floor. Brace your core and slowly start to lean back keeping the spine straight. Use quads to lift back to start position.

Works quads, abs, glutes, and back.

Side Plank Lifts

Lay on your side and prop your body up by the elbow, lining up your elbow under your shoulder. Feet stack on top of one another and legs stay straight. Engage the core, lower hips to the mat, and use obliques to lift back to start position. Keep glutes and abs engaged to support core.

Works abs, internal and external obliques, glutes, and adductors.

Weighted Toe Taps

Lay flat on your back, take one free weight and hold it between both feet. Slowly lower toes to the floor but do not allow your back to raise off the ground. Contract abs and lift feet back to start position.
Advanced option: Try hold crunch (upper torso contraction) throughout reps for 1 minute.

Works abs, back, and hip flexors.

Lateral Lunge with Weights

Start with feet hip-width apart, step your right foot out and bend the right knee sending your hip back. Focus on engaging the right leg as you press through the heel to come back to the start position. Repeat on the left side.
Advanced option: Add free weights to challenge the muscles.

Works adductors, abductors, hip flexors, glutes, quads, and hamstrings.

Bent Over Rows

Brace your core, hinge forward at the waist. Keep a soft bend in the knees and feet firmly planted on the floor. Squeeze your shoulders together and pull weights closer to the waist to focus on your mid back. You can switch the pull position to the chest to focus on the upper back on the alternate set. This move can be used as a weightlifting routine to increase strength and size. For our purposes, I advise lighter weights since we are focused on cross-training and strengthening our overall core muscles. (If you prefer to do this move for bodybuilding, use higher weights and count reps, do NOT use this as a timed exercise).

Works back muscles focusing on latissimus dorsi and rhomboids.

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