8 week Running specific strength and conditioning plan, reusable, starts any date

Training Load By Week
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours: 02:00


8 week running specific strength and conditioning plan

I am so glad I pestered Coach Steve to create this running specific strength plan at the start of the season - not only did I manage to hit my marathon goal time with ease - I also felt strong like an Ox

Gavin McAllister and Smart endurance training plan user 2018 season


Plan outline
This 8 week (2 hrs a week at peak) strength program is designed for a runner is looking to maximize their chances injury prevention and build powerful muscles for running.

It breaks sessions into upper body and lower focus and outlines which running specific muscle groups you are targeting and why.

Perfect for adding into an existing plan to minimize risk of injury

Each of the exercises in the plan is video demo-ed in a handy kick off document with key safety tips/pointers useful for the absolute beginner to the more experienced gym bunny.

The program also outlines recommended progression in terms of increasing weights and/or intensity and with approx 2 hours a week in total to complete all exercises - can easily be integrated with a full training plan.

Alternatively perfect for the off season to ensure you are strong and ready to hit the ground running come next race season

NB Best used with access to a gym and standard weights equipment but non gym options provided

Typical week
2 sessions a week

What do you get in this plan?
• How to use the plan documentation including video links on how to correctly execute the prescribed exercises
• Email access to the author

Have a question? Click here to ask me directly and I will respond within a few hours
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Not the right plan for you? Click here to view my other STRENGTH plans


Sample Day 1
0:30:00
Upper body set focus

1. Bench Press (chest; builds core to assist with injury prevention ) - 3 sets x 6 reps
2. Lateral Pull-downs (upper back;builds core to assist with injury prevention) - 3 sets x 6 reps
3. Dumbbell Pullover (works all muscles in catch phase of freestyle stroke) 3 sets x 6 reps
4. Calf Raises (lower legs/calves; helps push-off for running) - 3 sets x 10 reps
5. Backward Lunges (adductors and glutes; targets all muscles used in push phase of hilly running) - 3 sets x 20 reps [alternating legs]

Sample Day 2
0:30:00
Leg set focus

1.Leg Extensions (upper legs/quads; supports weight-catching phase of running and builds additional muscle mass necessary for half-marathon distances and up)
3 sets x 6 reps

2. Leg Curls (upper leg/hamstring; boosts pull-through for running)
3 sets x 6 reps

3. Squats (glutes and quads; generates strength necessary for hilly running)
3 sets x 6 reps

4. Leg Press (glutes and quads; most important exercise for developing power on bike)
3 sets x 6 reps

5. Bicep Curls
3 sets x 6 reps [alternating arms)

3 sets x 6 reps

Sample Day 4
0:30:00
Upper body set focus

1. Bench Press (chest; improves core strength - necessary for injury avoidance) - 3 sets x 6 reps
2. Lateral Pull-downs (upper back; improves core strength - necessary for injury avoidance) - 3 sets x 6 reps
3. Dumbbell Pullover (improves core strength - necessary for injury avoidance) 3 sets x 6 reps
4. Calf Raises (lower legs/calves; helps push-off for running) - 3 sets x 10 reps [alternating legs]
5. Backward Lunges (adductors and glutes; targets all muscles used in push phase of hilly running) - 3 sets x 20 reps [alternating legs]

Sample Day 5
0:30:00
Leg set focus

1.Leg Extensions (upper legs/quads; supports weight-catching phase of running and builds additional muscle mass necessary for half-marathon distances and up)
3 sets x 6 reps

2. Leg Curls (upper leg/hamstring; boosts pull-through for running)
3 sets x 6 reps

3. Squats (glutes and quads; generates strength necessary for hilly running)
3 sets x 6 reps

4. Leg Press (glutes and quads; most important exercise for developing running power)
3 sets x 6 reps

5. Bicep Curls
3 sets x 6 reps [alternating arms)

Sample Day 8
0:30:00
Upper body set focus [rep increase]

1. Bench Press (chest; improves core - good for injury prevention) - 3 sets x 8 reps
2. Lateral Pull-downs (upper back; improves core - good for injury prevention) - 3 sets x 8 reps
3. Dumbbell Pullover (improves core - good for injury prevention) 3 sets x 8 reps
5. Calf Raises (lower legs/calves; helps push-off for running) - 3 sets x 15 reps [alternating legs]
6. Backward Lunges (adductors and glutes; targets all muscles used in push phase of hilly running) - 3 sets x 20 reps [alternating legs]

Sample Day 9
0:30:00
Leg set focus [rep increase]

1.Leg Extensions (upper legs/quads; supports weight-catching phase of running and builds additional muscle mass necessary for half-marathon distances and up)
3 sets x 8 reps

2. Leg Curls (upper leg/hamstring; boosts pull-through for running)
3 sets x 8 reps

3. Squats (glutes and quads; generates power for hilly running)
3 sets x 8 reps

4. Leg Press (glutes and quads; most important exercise for developing power when running)
3 sets x 8 reps

5. Bicep Curls
3 sets x 8 reps [alternating arms)

Sample Day 11
0:30:00
Upper body set focus [rep increase]

1. Bench Press (chest; improves core - good for injury prevention) - 3 sets x 8 reps
2. Lateral Pull-downs (upper back; improves core - good for injury prevention) - 3 sets x 8 reps
3. Dumbbell Pullover (improves core - good for injury prevention) 3 sets x 8 reps
5. Calf Raises (lower legs/calves; helps push-off for running) - 3 sets x 15 reps [alternating legs]
6. Backward Lunges (adductors and glutes; targets all muscles used in push phase of hilly running) - 3 sets x 20 reps [alternating legs]

Steven Moody 2017 Triathlon Ireland Coach of the year
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SMart endurance solutions

*Triathlon Ireland coach of the year award winner 2017 based on athlete/peer voting*

Coach Steve has over 20 years experience in endurance sports racing, including numerous IRONMAN and 70.3 finishes (including 2xworld champ qualification)

As a full time coach (TP level 2, Ironman U certified), Steven specialises in helping time Age Group triathletes and runners realize their goals.

See http://www.smartendurancesolutions.com/testimonials/ for sample client feedback