There are a lot of studies that prove strength training will improve your running. Overall, weight lifting has a lot of benefits. It is easy to get caught up in following your running plan, but cross training is important too. My personal favorite benefit of weight training (besides making me faster!) is that muscle burns more calories. Building muscle and lean body mass means that your body will be a calorie burning machine, even on your rest days. I do enjoy feeling strong as well.
Below is a sample week of how I balance strength training with my half and marathon training (and riding my horse on the weekends. Before you keep reading – just a note that you CAN accomplish the same effect without weight training every day. I know my particular plan is about 1.5 hours of gym time. Believe it or not, I do that because I LIKE it. The gym is my escape and it is what makes me happy. You don’t have to do it that way. It is what works for me, and what works for you might be different.
Definitely check out Katie’s Fitscript for another plan that works AMAZINGLY well for Katie. Link here. I hope I can be like her when I grow up lol. But seriously, she has a great balance to life, exercise and eating.
– Monday: 7 miles with chest and shoulders
– Tuesday: 3 miles of hills with legs and abs (I do legs earlier in the week so that my muscles have time to recover for either a long run on the weekend or riding my horse)
– Wednesday: 5 miles with speed work and back and abs (I train core 2-3 times a week, to cut down on time, I will superset exercises and throw abs in there)
– Thursday: 8 miles with biceps & triceps
– Friday: long run – if I’m not riding, I will use this as a cross training day and train abs or do yoga as well
– Saturday: long run or a 2-3 hours horseback riding
– Sunday: rest day, I will try to stretch my hamstrings and do a little yoga and foam rolling as well
I do my workouts before work because I hate working out at night. I will still go after work if I have to, but it isn’t when I feel my best. I’ve always worked out on an empty stomach which is controversial on some websites haha. I take preworkout & Beet Elite before I leave for the gym. Every other long run I use a carb gel or Gu Chomps, but also train sans Gu.
If it is a longer than 13 miles, I will also eat a banana before my run. My goal while training for the marathon is to experiment with eating more before my long runs.
As soon as I get home, I ice my knees and have protein powder. After I take a shower and feed my dog, I have breakfast which is always 6 egg whites, a piece of sprouted grain toast with 1tbsp nut butter and a banana.
Feel free to ask questions! Thanks & happy training 🙂