4 STRENGTH EXERCISES 4 WORKOUTS FOR RUNNERS

Welcome to the latest edition of workout Wednesday! If you've been hanging around here at the strength and running blog, you know that I am a huge proponent of strength training for runners. As a long-time runner myself I understand that runners sometimes have a bit of resistance (pun-intended) to strength training. It's not that they don't know that it's important or understand that it helps make them faster, stronger and less prone to injury, it's just that they don't enjoy the time in the gym like they do on streets, trails or track. I get it. They don't want to spend a bunch of time in a gym taking away from the their time on the road. After all, there are only so many hours in the day and it's hard enough to find the time to get out and run, how are they supposed to find additional time to strength train? 

I have good news for you. You don't need to spend hours in the gym pumping iron. You can spend 12-25 minutes three to four days a week, either immediately before an easy run, at a different time of the day or on an off day from running. 

The exercises in these circuits are compound exercises which means we are working multiple joints and muscles at once for the most effective and efficient workout. This full body workout can be structured a few different ways using some basic strength exercises that are great for runners. 

This post contains affiliate links which means that if you click on a link in this post and make a purchase I make a small percentage of the sale with no additional cost to you. No one is getting rich here, it just helps with the running (pun-intended) of this blog. Thanks, as always, for your support.

EQUIPMENT USED IN THIS WORKOUT

Medicine ball
Resistance bands
Interval timer

 download a free printable PDF of this four exercises for runners workout

download a free printable PDF of this four exercises for runners workout

THE STRENGTH EXERCISES FOR RUNNERS

SINGLE LEG DEADLIFT 

Standing on one leg, keep your knee soft (slightly bent) and perform a deadlift by bending at your hip while keeping your back straight and neck neutral. Extend your free leg behind you in line with your body. Lower until your back is parallel to the floor. With your back straight return to the upright position.

SQUAT WITH SHOULDER PRESS

With your feet hip width apart push your hips back, brace your core and lower until your thighs are parallel to the floor (like you are sitting back in a chair) or as low as your flexibility allows. While holding a medicine ball, touch your elbows to your knees in the low position. Push up to standing while pressing the medicine ball above your head into a shoulder press.

CURTSY SQUAT WITH CHEST PRESS 

Holding a medicine ball or weight to your chest, stand with your feet hip apart. Cross your right leg behind the body and to the left. Bend left knee 90 degrees, or as low your flexibility will allow, toes pointing forward. In the low position straighten your arms to press the ball out from your chest. Bring the weight back to your check and return to starting position. Alternate sides.

BACK LUNGE WITH RESISTANCE BAND ROW 

With your feet hip width apart and your toes pointing straight ahead, take a large step backward with your right leg, so your right knee almost touches the floor and your left leg lunges at a 90 degree angle. While static in the low position, use a resistance band to row your right arm back keeping your shoulders down and elbow close to your side. Push back up to starting position. Always row on the same side as the leg that steps back.

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4 WAYS TO STRUCTURE YOUR WORKOUT

13 MINUTES: TABATA-STYLE

Using a Tabata timer app or an interval timer, perform the below exercises as indicated:

TABATA ONE:
SINGLE LEG DEADLIFT RIGHT SIDE- 20 SECONDS
REST 10 SECONDS
SINGLE LEG DEADLIFT LEFT SIDE - 20 SECONDS
REST 10 SECONDS
REPEAT FOR FOUR MINUTES
REST 30 SECONDS BEFORE MOVING ON TO NEXT CIRCUIT

TABATA TWO:
SQUAT WITH SHOULDER PRESS - 20 SECONDS
REST 10 SECONDS
ALTERNATING CURTSY SQUAT WITH CHEST PRESS - 20 SECONDS
REST 10 SECONDS
REPEAT FOR FOUR MINUTES
REST 30 SECONDS BEFORE MOVING ON TO THE NEXT CIRCUIT

TABATA THREE:
BACK LUNGE WITH ROW RIGHT SIDE - 20 SECONDS
REST 10 SECONDS
BACK LUNGE WITH ROW LEFT SIDE - 20 SECONDS
REST 10 SECONDS
REPEAT FOR FOUR MINUTES

12 MINUTES: 30 SECONDS EACH EXERCISE

Set the timer for 30 seconds x 6 and complete the circuit below.

SINGLE LEG DEADLIFT RIGHT SIDE - 30 SECONDS
SINGLE LEG DEADLIFT LEFT SIDE - 30 SECONDS
SQUAT WITH SHOULDER PRESS - 30 SECONDS
ALTERNATING CURTSY SQUAT WITH CHEST PRESS - 30 SECONDS
BACK LUNGE WITH ROW RIGHT SIDE - 30 SECONDS
BACK LUNGE WITH ROW LEFT SIDE - 30 SECONDS
REST ONE MINUTE
PERFORM THREE TIMES

20 MINUTES: AS MANY ROUNDS AS POSSIBLE

Set the timer for 20 minutes and perform the below circuit as many times as you can in the time frame. Move through the exercises quickly but with controlled movement. No sloppy reps!

SINGLE LEG DEADLIFT RIGHT SIDE - 8 REPS
SINGLE LEG DEADLIFT LEFT SIDE - 8 REPS
SQUAT WITH SHOULDER PRESS - 12 REPS
CURTSY SQUAT RIGHT SIDE WITH CHEST PRESS - 8 REPS
CURTSY SQUAT LEFT SIDE WITH CHEST PRESS - 8 REPS
BACK LUNGE WITH ROW RIGHT SIDE - 8 REPS
BACK LUNGE WITH ROW LEFT SIDE - 8 REPS
 

THE REP PYRAMID

The first time through the circuit perform each exercise for 6 reps.
Rest for one minute
Repeat the circuit but this time perform 8 reps for each exercise
Rest for one minute
The third time through perform 12 reps for each exercise
Rest for one minute
8 reps for each exercise
Rest for one minute
6 reps for each exercise
 

SINGLE LEG DEADLIFT RIGHT SIDE
SINGLE LEG DEADLIFT LEFT SIDE
SQUAT WITH SHOULDER PRESS
CURTSY SQUAT RIGHT SIDE WITH CHEST PRESS
CURTSY SQUAT LEFT SIDE WITH CHEST PRESS
BACK LUNGE WITH ROW RIGHT SIDE
BACK LUNGE WITH ROW LEFT SIDE

Do you find the time for strength training? 

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