Weight lifting for cross training (Read 78 times)


    I’m looking for some advice on how to add weight training into my running schedule. I’d like to keep it down to two days a week and would like to focus on full body. Everything I’ve done up to this point has been bodyweight pushups, squats, lunges, and planks, but I don’t feel like it’s doing the trick. Any advice on what exercises I should do to optimize my running as well as my full body strength . The only set of weight I have are dumbbells that go from 5lbs to 20lbs. Thanks for the help.


      You can do some of the same body weight exercises just holding the dumbbells - squats and lunges at least.

      And you can do a lot for your arms with those dumbbells - bicep curls, tricep extensions, shoulder press, rows, etc.

      There are also plenty of at home workouts for runners such as Runner's World IronStrength.


      If you want to get into bigger strength gains, you'll want to consider joining a gym or getting a barbell and plates. I found a program called StrongLifts 5x5 that helped me. It has a simple phone app to track things, but isn't necessary to use at all. It focuses on 5 exercises and encourages you to do 5 sets of 5 reps with heavier weights. The exercises are squat, deadlift, barbell row, overhead press and bench press.


      I still do those as the main "compound" exercises of my routine, but also do more things such as pullups, bicep curls, dips, triceps, lunges (front and side), and other stuff.


        I do this circuit twice (I got it mostly from Pfitzinger's Advanced Marathoning):


        10x push up

        15x lat row (10-15 lb dumbbell, 1 side at a time)

        15x bench dips

        15x swan (back contractions)

        15x shoulder press (again, 10-15 lb dumbbell, alternate sides)

        15x glute bridge (1 side at a time)

        ~40x seated runner (sitting on medicine ball, 10 lb dumbbells, simulating optimal arm motion for running)

        15x chalice squat (15 lb dumbbell, focus is on good form, not on high weight/intensity)


        Currently I run 70-100+ miles per week and am training for the marathon, so obviously your strength training might be considerably different depending on your goals. Also, I occasionally swap exercises in and out if I find something that I think might be more effective. I also do separate core workouts 4-5x per week.


        In college I competed at 1500-10000m and my coach changed up our strength training just about every year, so I have had experience across the spectrum of intensities that a runner might pursue in strength training. For myself, I've found that a relatively low intensity circuit like this, which emphasizes desirable neuromuscular patterns without adding much extra fatigue, works best. Also, with a simple, relatively quick circuit it is easier to make this aspect of training habitual, meaning I'm more likely to carry it out consistently long-term, which is more effective than taking on a time consuming, intense, elaborate strength training system and burning out on it after a few weeks/months.


          Thanks I was looking at a 5x5 workout. I was wondering how well it would work for a distance runner. I don’t have a bar yet and I won’t be able to get into a gym anytime soon. I feel like I can adapt my dumbells for now.


            Keep doing what you are doing, but add pull ups.  Increase the difficulty of the variations you are doing until you are doing one leg squats, one arm push ups and one arm pull ups!  Oh, add a bridge or glute raise movement.  At that point you are covered full body 360.

              For what its worth, I added the Starting Strength novice program to my training schedule twice a week. Run 4 days, lift 2 days. Cut my Half Marathon PR by over 6 minutes. www.startingstrength.com


                Thanks strambo I’ve been doing dumbbells for about a month and no matter how much weight Or how many reps I do I don’t feel I’m getting as much cardio on my strength training as I was with body weight.


                And thanks empty sea I’ve notice a considerable difference since I added in strength training.