Runners Should Make Time For Strength Training
Runners need more than just cardio workouts to become faster, stronger, and more injury-resistant. One type of workout that can be very beneficial for runners is strength training, specifically barbell exercises. Here are five great barbell exercises for runners:
Deadlifts are a great way to build strength in the lower body, specifically the glutes and hamstrings. These muscles are essential for running, as they help to stabilize the hips and propel the body forward. To perform a deadlift, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, grip the bar with an overhand grip, and lift the bar up to your hips. Be sure to keep your back straight and engage your core throughout the exercise.
Squats are another great lower body exercise that can help runners become stronger and more powerful. Squats target the quads, hamstrings, and glutes, and can help to improve balance and stability. To perform a squat, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, grip the bar with an overhand grip, and lower your body down into a squat position. Be sure to keep your knees in line with your toes and your back straight throughout the exercise.
Lunges are a unilateral exercise that can help runners to develop strength and balance on each leg individually. Lunges target the quads, hamstrings, and glutes, and can help to improve hip mobility and stability. To perform a lunge, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, step forward with one foot, and lower your body down until your back knee touches the ground. Be sure to keep your front knee in line with your toes and your back straight throughout the exercise.
The overhead press is a great exercise for runners because it targets the shoulders, which are often neglected in running workouts. Strong shoulders can help runners maintain good posture and avoid injury. To perform an overhead press, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, grip the bar with an overhand grip, and lift the bar up to your shoulders. From there, press the bar up overhead until your arms are fully extended.
Bent-over rows are a great exercise for runners because they target the upper back, which is important for maintaining good posture during running. To perform a bent-over row, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, grip the bar with an overhand grip, and lean forward until your torso is almost parallel to the ground. From there, pull the bar up towards your chest, squeezing your shoulder blades together as you do so.
When transitioning between these barbell exercises, it can be helpful to have a device like Dualbell on hand. Dualbell allows you to use your dumbbells as weight plates on your barbell, making it easy to switch between barbell and dumbbell exercises in one workout. This can make the transition between exercises more fluid and easier, and can also save you time on clean-up.
Incorporating these five barbell exercises into your running workouts can help you become a stronger, more powerful, and more injury-resistant runner. Be sure to start with light weights and focus on proper form to avoid injury. Happy lifting!