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Strength and Conditioning for the Endurance Runner

Thankfully, the general misconception that endurance athletes should only perform lightweights for a high number of reps has been exposed for quite a while now. It’s well understood that the majority of an endurance athletes’ time in the weights room is better spent lifting heavy weights (>80% of their 1 Rep Max) for a small number of reps (3-5 typically), as well as plyometric training (lifting a light load, explosively for a small number of reps) as this has been shown to have benefits such as helping maintain one’s running economy in the late stages of races. (Barnes et. al, 2013)

 

However, what isn’t as well understood is how to go from being a runner with little/no experience with weight training to one that can safely and effectively implement it into their training.

 

Firstly, learning correct exercise execution is critical so that athletes know how to do the exercise correctly when under load. This will not only minimise the risk of injury but also allow the athlete to perform the lift in the most efficient way, thus allowing for more weight to be lifted for a given amount of effort.

 

How does resistance training fit into the endurance runners training programme? The comprehensive answer to this question is too long for this article and will differ for each and every athlete. However, to answer in general terms, resistance training can be periodized. This means splitting up the year (macrocycle) into blocks with specific goals (mesocycles). Many runners will be familiar with the concept of periodisation and apply it to their endurance training, the same can be done with their resistance training, alongside their current training.

 

How resistance training is periodised will differ depending on the coaches ideology. In general, however, athletes will perform a strength endurance phase in the off season, a basic strength phase during off-season and pre-season, a strength/power phase during pre-season and then peaking and maintenance phases during competition season. (See Table for a visual representation of this)

 

Period General Preparatory Specific Preparatory Precompetitive Main Competitive Post Competitive
Stage of Competitive Season: Off-Season Off-Season/Pre-Season Pre-Season In-Season Post-Season
Phase: Strength Endurance/ Basic Strength Strength/Power Peaking or Maintenance Active Rest
Intensity: Low- Moderate

30-75% 1RM

Moderate-High

80-95%

1RM

Low to High

80-95% 1RM

30-85% 1RM

Low to High

50-90% 1RM

 

Low
Volume: High:

3-6 sets

12-20 reps

Moderate

2-6 sets

2-6 reps

Low

2-5 sets

2-5 reps

Very Low Low

*Post-Season does not necessarily have to include resistance training.

 

I hope this gives you a better idea of how resistance training can fit into a runners training schedule in order to benefit your performance. If you wish to get a more in-depth understanding on how trainers at SOMA can help implement these concepts into your training, please contact us.

 

References:

  • Barnes, K. R., Hopkins, W. G., Mcguigan, M. R., Northuis, M. E., & Kilding, A. E. (2013). Effects of resistance training on running economy and cross-country performance.

 

How You Can Finally Build Lasting Motivation For The Gym

 

 

 

‘You don’t need motivation, you need discipline!’ Scroll through the fitness pages of social media and quickly you will come across this misguided comment. In reality, when trying to build long term habits, there’s only one significant factor that will influence whether this habit will stick in the long run. This factor is called intrinsic motivation. (Texira, 2012)

Intrinsic motivation can be defined as the innate, natural propensity to engage one’s interests and exercise one’s capacity, and in doing so, seek and conquer optimal challenges (Deci and Ryan, 1985). In other words, intrinsic motivation is enjoyment derived the process of doing an activity, as opposed to partaking in something solely for the outcome goals. In terms of the gym, this would mean the process of attending the gym would have to be enjoyable, as opposed to only attending for the outcome goals of a more muscular body or heavier squat PR (these being examples of extrinsic motivation). There’s

absolutely nothing wrong with setting these outcome goals, in fact it’s openly encouraged as they can help a great deal but having this extrinsic motivation without a plan on how to build intrinsic motivation for the process of achieving these goals often leads to abandonment of these goals for the vast majority of people.

 

So how can you build intrinsic motivation if you don’t actually enjoy going to the gym? Well, in there’s 3 psychological needs that need to be fulfilled in order to achieve intrinsic motivation for an activity: competence, autonomy and relatedness (Deci and Ryan, 1985). As a personal trainer, I strive to achieve all three of these needs with my clients. Firstly, I help them feel competent by teaching correct technique and forming exercise plans bespoke to their anatomy and ability, so that they are challenged but not out of their depth. Autonomy is given, as the client is always in control of what the goal of the programme is, as well as what foods they eat, in order to achieve their nutritional targets. Lastly, myself and everyone at Soma help clients build relatedness by creating a welcoming and supportive atmosphere that clients look forward to being part of.

With extrinsic motivation towards New Year’s resolutions often tailing off at this time of year, I hope this article can provide you with the guidance you need to get back on track!

 

References:

  • Teixeira, P. J., Carraça, E. V., Markland, D., Silva, M. N., & Ryan, R. M. (2012). Exercise, physical activity, and self-determination theory: a systematic review. International journal of behavioral nutrition and physical activity, 9(1), 1-30.

 

  • Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (1985). Cognitive evaluation theory. In Intrinsic motivation and self-determination in human behavior(pp. 43-85). Springer, Boston, MA.

Written By

Coach Shay Ward

Do this for BIGGER TRICEPS!!!!!

Do this for BIGGER TRICEPS!!!

When training our arms we have to consider the anatomical carry angle of the individual. 99.9% of the time the little rope in the gym is not going to cut the mustard unless you have the shoulder width of a 3 year old girl.

Our coaches here at Soma Fitness take all of these things into account when programming sessions for our personal training clients. These fine details are what separate the average coaches in most facilities to the high level personal trainers that Soma Fitness provides. If we take you through an exercises we can explain to you the intent behind why we are doing it.

LEARN TO LIFT PROGRAM

Who is this program for ?

  • Are you new to weight training and want to understand how to get strong or get big?
  • Do you want to learn how to execute exercises correctly and be more efficient with your time in the gym?
  • Do you play a sport and want to improve your physical performance?
  • Receive 1-1 or small group coaching (more cost effective).

Why should you join?

  • Learn to lift correctly and safely.
  • Learn the foundations of strength training and muscle building.
  • Training programs tailored towards you and your goals.
  • Personal bespoke nutrition plans.
  • Get coached from an ex-professional athlete and current sports science student and personal trainer Tim Jeffers.
  • Train in clean and safe private gym.

RESERVE YOUR SLOT TODAY

What can we do for you? – Video

Our personal training coaches here at Soma Fitness can help you overcome all the problems you need solving around your health and fitness goals. Our coaches can help take care of all the areas that require you to succeed:

– Structured training programs tailored toward your goals and your lifestyle.

– Bespoke nutritional plans to fit your requirements and your goals.

– Coaching of correct exercise execution, training is a skill it’s not just about throwing weights around, make your workouts more efficient and effective.

– Improve lifestyle habits that may be hindering your progress.

– Build confidence within your body.

– Feel stronger and healthier.

Contact us to book in your FREE consultation with one of our coaches

 

Client Success Story – Paul Richards Moto Racer Gets Back On His Bike

Paul Richards began his coaching journey with his personal trainer at Soma Fitness originally for some strength and conditioning for his moto racing. After having an accident on his bike and sustaining bad injury, he worked with us to rehabilitate himself and he decided to retire from the sport. After getting back to pre injury condition Paul achieved his body composition goals and is now stronger more muscular and leaner than ever and is back racing his bike again. A true success story that we have been honoured to be a part of here at Soma. If you would like to achieve more, improve your physique and overall health contact us and book in your FREE consultation with one of our coaches.

CLIENT TESTIMONIAL – DAKOTA DITCHEVA – WORLD CHAMPION THAI BOXER & MMA FLYWEIGHT CHAMPION


Dakota Ditcheva has been performing her strength and conditioning at Soma Fitness to improve her athletic ability. Dakota is a tremendous athlete and in the time she has been training with our coaches here at Soma she has picked up an MMA title and we hope to work with Dakota and help her become the strongest athlete she can be and eventually assist her to get into the UFC and become a UFC champion.