Strength training for runners: challenge yourself, change yourself

We all know that strength training is a vital part of being a better runner and keeping the injury punks away.  Plus a bunch of other awesome super powers.  As a cardio queen, I wish Target sold a bottle of super powers that do the strength training part for me.  But since that’s highly unlikely, I’ve decided to put on my big girl panties and do it myself.  Dang, now I sound all grown up and stuff.

I am so over hearing words like cut out, take away, loose and all of the other stuff that comes with the new year.  I say let’s add to what we’re already doing.  So for the month of February my goal is to add more strength training, foam rolling + stretching.  It’s time to challenge myself and become a better runner.


Challenge yourself, change yourself.

My super smart PT ninja told me it takes approximately 4-6 weeks of solid training to build strength so by the end of the month we will be on our way to becoming a stronger runner.  Superpowers not needed.


  • Pick 3 exercises a day, 3 times a week that work the glutes + core.  Of course I encourage you to work other muscle areas as well.
  • Run
  • Foam roll
  • Stretch
  • Drink coffee
  • Tell us about it on the Challenge Loop
  • Encourage each other
  • That’s it
  • No really, that’s it

How I can help you help yourself:

  • Encouraging you + updating my progress on the Challenge Loop
  • Monday check in/progress/motivational post.
  • Provide links to runner specific strength building exercises


If you would like to join in:

  • Sign up for Challenge Yourself, Change Yourself on the Challenge Loop.   They have an awesome app to make checking in easier.
  • Use hashtag #challengeyourself on social media.

To get you started, here are some great exercises for runners from the beautiful Blonde Ponytail.  She’s all smart and stuff and is a certified NSCA-CSCS trainer and well, I am not.

{click image for workout}


She has strength building workouts for home, gym and core so check them out.

Another option is to check out this post about the exercises my PT ninja makes me do.  Winking smile

Who’s in?

For those who regularly do strength building, what are your favorite exercises?

How will you change yourself this month?


18 Comments on “Strength training for runners: challenge yourself, change yourself

  1. I have been a fan of my arm weights lately- my leg muscles are kickin’ it (no pun intended) but my arms always feel so weak!

    I have also been doing squats and Russian twists more lately too- loving the core workout that gives me!

  2. Oh I’m totally in on this. LOVE IT. Heading to the Challenge Loop next. I took the past few months off strength training while training for my marathon so I’m back at it. This will totally help keep me on track. Favorite exercise, Upper body-Bicep curls(who doesn’t want cut guns????) Lower Body-Dead Lifts (because as a runner I have weak hamstrings and low back). Let’s kill it this month girl!!!!!!

  3. I was really bad about strength training up until about 2 years ago. That’s when I started doing Jillian Michaels’s videos. 6 wk 6 pack was the first one I did, it completely changed my midsection. I was so excited to see my body change beyond what running had done for me. That got me hooked. I’m on my 8th one!
    I need to get the foam roller, I have runner’s knee and need to do more stretching!

    • I’ve always wondered if her DVD’s work. Sounds like I need to get my paws on them.
      You will have a love/hate relationship with the foam roller but it works.

    • Pilates for all over strength training. Circuit work with cardio bursts are also a fave of mine. I think I have a good balance of cardio to strength these days, and I definitely notice the difference in my body when it’s off.

  4. Pingback: I have no shame | Skinny Chick Blog

    • That thing hurts so good. It’s the perfect size for my calves & major bonus points for being small enough for traveling!

  5. Love squats! It makes my booty big and perky… but unfortunately, I put on muscle a little too fast and it makes me much heavier as a long distance runner. That means I get to stick to things like planks and push-ups during my marathon training.

  6. Pingback: Strength training check in + a little Monday motivation | Skinny Chick Blog

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