Updated: May 7, 2020
Strength training workouts are essential for runners.
This strength training workout is a great addition to any running training plan.
While it may be tempting to skip the extra workouts in your training plan after completing your weekly mileage, doing so may quickly result in both physical and mental burnout – not to mention an injury that may take you off your feet for weeks.
Strength training workouts, like the one below, are packed with healthy benefits for your entire body. These strength exercises build muscles not just in those running-specific areas, but throughout the rest of the body as well.
Taking the time to strengthen your core and upper body in addition to your lower body provide an extra source of power on the run. A strong core helps maintain healthy running posture, even as you start to fatigue. Strong arms provide extra power for those hard workouts and long runs, propelling your body at an even faster speed.
Although many runners find themselves dreading weekly strength training workouts, squeezing in some regular strength exercises doesn’t have to feel like such a chore.
Runners can strength train right at home.
This simple strength training for runners can be completed right at home in your living room. It’s packed with bodyweight exercises to make things as simple and convenient as possible.
Many strength training plans involve heavy weights and fancy machines at the gym – but these types of workouts are not necessary to stay in running-shape.
These running-specific exercises target all of the muscles you’ll need to stay strong and injury free during training. Fitting in a strength training workout each week could be as simple as completing these exercises at night while watching TV.
Free Download: 30 Day Strength Training Challenge for Runners
In about 30 minutes, this strength training workout will help strengthen your lower body, core and upper body, all with the use of your own bodyweight.
Creating a healthy routine involves so much more than just running. Taking a bit of time each week to focus on some strength training exercises might be just what it takes to nail your next PR, safely increase your distance, or achieve those lofty goals.
Try this Strength Workout for Runners to stay strong and injury free during training!
At Home Strength Training Workout for Runners
- Squats x 25
- Lunges (alternating legs) x 20
- Side Lunges (alternating legs) x 20
- Jump Squats x 25
- Jump Lunges x 25
- Sumo Squat Pulses x 20
- Leg Lifts (on back – alternating legs) x 40
- Left Side Leg Lifts x 20
- Right Side Leg Lifts x 20
- Leg Lifts (on stomach – alternating legs) x 40
- Bridge Hip Lifts x 20
- Bridge Hold x 30 seconds
- Single Leg Bridge Lifts x 10 (each leg)
- Single Leg Bridge Hold x 10 seconds (each leg)
- Clamshells x 20 (each side)
- Superman Lifts x 20
- Superman Hold x 30 seconds
- Bosu Ball Leg Extensions x 20
- Donkey Kicks (alternating legs) x 20
- Straight Leg Sit Ups x 20
- V Sits x 20
- Raised Leg Sit Ups x 20
- Russian Twists x 40
- Elbow Plank x 60 seconds
- Side Plank x 30 seconds (each side)
- Tricep Dips x 20
- Bicep Curls x 20
- Forward Extension x 20
- Tricep Extension x 20
Strength Training Workout for Runners: in Pictures
Stand with your feet about hip width distance apart and bend at the knees to lower your body as if you were about to sit in a chair. Continue until your thighs are parallel with the floor, and then rise back up to standing.
Step one foot forward and bend at the knees to lower your body towards the floor. Continue to lower until your front thigh is parallel to the floor, and then straighten back to standing. Bring your feet back together and step forward with the opposite foot to continue.
Take a large step out to the side with one foot, and then bend the knee to lower your body towards the floor – keeping your inner leg straight as you do so. Straighten back up to standing and bring your feet back together. Step out to the other side with the opposite foot to continue.
Sumo Squat Pulses
Stand with your feet spread wider than hip width distance apart, and lower your body as if you were about to sit back in a chair. Continue to lower until your thighs are parallel with the floor, and then hold. Pulse up and down slightly in this position.
Lying on either your back, side or stomach, raise one leg at a time into the air. Keep the leg straight while doing so, raising it until it creates a 45 degree angle. Lower it back down to the floor and repeat.
Lie flat on your back with your knees bent and soles of your feet planted on the floor. Using your hips and core, lift your torso off the floor, creating an angle between your knees and shoulders. Lower back to the floor and repeat.
Single Leg Bridge
Return to your starting bridge position, with soles of your feet planted and knees bent. Lift one foot off the floor to extend a single leg straight into the air. From this position, lift and lower your torso as you did in bridge.
Lie on one side, propping your head up with your hand and bending both knees. Keeping your feet stacked, lift your top knee into the air as far as comfortable. Lower back to the stacked knee position and repeat.
Turn face down on the floor with legs straight, extending your arms directly above your head. In one motion, lift both arms and both legs from the floor, bending the back to do so. Continue to rise up as far as comfortable, and then return to the floor.
Stability Ball Leg Extensions
Lying flat on your back with your knees bent, bring a Stability Ball in front of your feet. Plant both feet firmly on the ball, and roll out to straighten both legs. Next, roll the ball back in towards your body, bending your knees to do so.
Begin on your hands and knees, with palms planted firmly on the floor underneath your shoulders. Lift one leg into the air, keeping the knee bent as if you were trying to make a footprint on the ceiling. Lower your knee back to the floor and repeat on the opposite side.
Straight Leg Sit Ups
Lie completely flat on the floor with legs extended straight. Bring both hands behind your head and use your core muscles to sit up with your upper body. Lower back to the floor with control and repeat.
Lower to the floor, lying flat on your back with arms extended straight above your head and legs straight. In one motion, lift both legs and arms from the floor, moving them towards the center of your body to create a V shape. From the V, lower back down to the floor and repeat.
Raised Leg Sit Ups
Rest your feet on an elevated surface such as a chair or couch, and lie down on your back. Bring both hands behind your head and use your core to lift your upper body up towards your knees. Reach forward to touch one foot with the opposite hand, and then lower back down to the floor.
Begin in a seated position, with your knees bent and feet planted on the floor in front of you. Lean back slightly with your upper body, lifting your feet to hover a few inches above the floor. Quickly move both hands back and forth to each side of your body while keeping your feet elevated.
Lower down on to your elbows and walk both feet out behind you until your legs are straight. Distribute your weight evenly between your elbows and toes, keeping your back flat so your body forms a board. Hold this position.
Lying on one side with your feet stacked, prop yourself up on your elbow and lift your hips from the floor. Hold this position.
Stand in front of a sturdy surface or object, such as a desk or chair. Reach your hands back behind you to rest on the edge of the surface, and walk your feet out in front of you. Bend at the elbows to lower your body towards the floor, and then straighten to rise back up.
Using a dumbbell in each hand, drop your arms down at your sides. Curl one arm, bringing the dumbbell up towards your chest, and then lower. Repeat on the opposite side.
With your arms down at your sides and a dumbbell in each hand, lift one dumbbell in front of your body, keeping your arm straight as you do so. Lower back down to your side and repeat with the opposite arm.
Keeping a dumbbell in each hand, lean forward slightly and bend your arms to bring the dumbbells next to your sides. Extend one arm straight back behind you, and then return to your side.
Try incorporating this strength training workout once a week to stay fit and healthy throughout your training. You can even complete it right at home in your living room for the ultimate convenience! Your body will be grateful for the extra muscle and power during those hard workouts and long runs.
Conquer your goals and stay injury free with this simple strength training program!