It is running season…
Which means, most runners are training for some sort of fall race, from 5K to 26.2, whichever distance it may be, us runners are out there running.
And although, running is our main priority right now, our focus… some of us runners start to worry…
I want to weight lift, but I need to run…
I want to do yoga, but I should run…
I want to ride my bike, but I gotta get out there and run…
Recently, I have been receiving tons of e-mails regarding how to balance a disciplined running plan and fit in weight lifting, yoga, etc.
Well let me tell you this…
Cross training is important.
Strength training is important.
Yoga/ stretching is important.¬†
I started running 6 years ago. I became so passionate about running that all I did was run. During the colder winter months after my fall marathon I picked up Bikram yoga. I loved it and became a regular, but still I ran.
When I trained for my first marathon, I followed my training plan religiously – I never missed a run. When I trained for my 2nd marathon, I did exactly the same thing, sometimes I even ran on the day that called for cross training.
However, after spending 9 months in 2012, running in a natural running shoe (newton), focussing on running form, in February 2013, I started weight lifting. I wanted to get stronger to improve my running, and I did. I got stronger, I improved my running. It was shocking I was running a little less, but I was running better than ever.
I am now running faster and further. The combination of being stronger and running with a more efficient stride/form, allows me to run faster, further, with less effort.
My point is you do not have to run every day to be a great runner. Running everyday, could actually make your running suffer, from burn out or injury. It is so important to incorporate strength training, cross training, and stretching in the mix. The stronger you are the less injury prone you will be, and the more your running will improve.
So to answer the question … How do you balance a disciplined running plan and strength training, cross training, stretching. How do you do it all?
It depends on your fitness level, comfort level.
Rookie: If this is your first race (first full marathon, first half marathon, etc.) follow your running training plan. Focus on your running. Stretch after your runs. Rest on your rest days. Cross train once a week. Strength train once a week.
Veteran: If this is your second, third, tenth, time racing this distance, then it is okay to use your training plan as a guideline. At this point, you can tweak and customize you plan. This marathon training season, I have been lifting weights on days when I run short and easy. I always do leg day early in the week after my long run has already been completed.
I also advise taking tons of photos to record your journey as an athlete. This way you can keep track of your progress visually. ¬†Take advantage of photography. We have cameras on our phones, and we are lucky we have technology at our fingertips.
With that being said…
Because it is tuesday, I thought it would be the perfect time to honor Transformation Tuesday. So I am posting some progress pics, in hopes to inspire and motivate.
The above photo was taken in March 2013. The bottom photo was taken in August 2013.
Arms are seeing some major gains! This photo was taken in August 2013.
Anyway I hope these photos inspire and prove to you that you can balance both training plans. And that in the end being stronger is just going to enhance your overall fitness level.
Questions for You…
- How do you balance your training plans?
- Do you sometimes do two-a-days?
¬© 2013 sweatdaily