Should I do strength exercises if I’m a runner? 

Yes! Absolutely you should. For decades the fitness world is often separated by people who run and people who do strength training. It’s a rare sight to see an avid runner venture into the gym and conversely a gym junkie seen pounding the pavement. Often it can be an element of intimidation or lack of knowledge that reduces a person from exposing themselves to the stressors of the other. In this blog, I will be unpacking the necessity for runners to be complementing their training program with adequate strength training.

Runners need strength! There are no if’s or but’s about it. If you are pounding the pavement for thousands of steps at a time, you must provide your body with the strength to be able to cope with this!

Off pure force alone, you place double the amount of force through your body with each running stride to what you do walking. Therefore you must be exposing your body to more than just bodyweight loading.

Now I am not sitting here, writing to you, stating that if you are a recreational runner you must now go to the gym and lift heavy weights five times a week. Not at all! What a runner must do is expose their body to loads greater than their body weight a few times a week to allow their body – muscles, joints, tendons, ligaments – to cope with the loads and forces you are placing on your body when running.

Muscles need strength to generate power, joints need muscle strength to reduce joint loading, and tendons need strength to cope with the repetitive nature of running. All of this doesn’t simply just happen from running more.

Ask any runner that may have injured themselves from running and the two typical causes of such an injury were either one of the below or a combination of the two:

  • Running volume overload
  • Inadequate strength in the appropriate tissue

Running is an amazing sport. One that is therapeutic both mentally and physically. Here at Limbr we appreciate this and have experience in dealing with all forms of athletes. Whether you are an elite marathon runner or someone who enjoys going for a gentle trot for a few kilometres, we have seen it all.

Every athlete requires a specific assessment and diagnosis of their biomechanical patterns and potential deficiencies, specific treatment and self-release methods as well as a tailored strength program to help their body cope with what they love to do.

Please reach out if you have any running issues, we are here to help!