I must admit that I’d ignored strength training for quite some time. I was pretty good about warm-up and stretching, when I started taking running more seriously, but strength training is something that I neglected, maybe did every once in a while when I “felt like it”, and I am lucky that I got away without getting injured in the first couple of years.
I quickly realized though that strength training doesn’t just protect me from injury, but that it makes me a stronger, faster runner as well.
I now have a few dedicated strength training sessions per week.
My approach has been varied over time. I’ve put together my own strength exercise list to follow at the gym. I’ve used various apps and websites to scour for exercise inspiration.
My main focus is on lighter weight exercises and core/bodyweight training, because I want to strengthen my core and lower body for running. I don’t lift heavy weights at this point (maybe once I have access to a gym again, I’ll try, but so far the barbells have intimidated me), but I do arm/shoulder exercises as well.
My gym offers exercise videos through their app, but there is also a ton of free resources that I’ve especially taken advantage of since the lock down and the gyms being closed.
The Adidas Training app by Runtastic was the first app that I’ve used when I started running (before I got a GPS watch) and I have also used their cross training exercise resources for quite a while.
I’ve also used the Nike Training Club app quite a bit. They also offer free workout sessions and exercise resources.
And, maybe lesser known, but the JeFit app is also a great resource if you’re looking for exercises for specific muscle groups.
I’ve periodically done TMAC20 workouts and most recently have started to take strength workouts through the Peloton App with ( and thanks to) my friend Tanja. I really like that the app offers a ton (!) of shorter, 10-min and 20-min classes, that you can easily fit into your day. You really don’t have to set aside a whole hour to get the benefit, so there is really no excuse to not throw in a 10-min class, even on a busy day. You’ll be surprised how much of a difference it makes, if you make it a habit.
Do you include strength training in your exercise routine? What’s your favorite way to get it done?