5 Strength Training Exercises to Improve Your Running Performance

Posted by Kollin Lephart on

strength training fitness clothes

While endurance and power are essential to an athletes’ running performance, it is also essential to train for strength. Strength training helps build your core, which consists of your abs and back muscles. As a result, you’ll have better stability when you’re running, allowing you to put more to the ground when you’re sprinting. Also, a strong core allows you to run with an efficient form. What this means is that you can transfer force generated from your arms smoothly to your legs. So, you’ll use less energy and run faster. With that said, let’s look at 5 strength training exercises to improve running performance.

The Low Plank

The low plank is a full-body exercise that’s great for developing your back and ab muscles. With this exercise, you’ll need to keep these muscles engaged to allow you to maintain appropriate posture. You’ll further develop these muscles by increasing the duration of holding that position.

How to do the exercise:

  • Lie down on the floor with your elbows positioned under the shoulders
  • Let your forearms hold your body up while your toes support you from the opposite end
  • Keep your body straight in this position

The Box Squat

This is one of those strength training exercises that directly help you build muscle on your legs. In turn, you can run with increased power and improve your endurance too. Make sure to wear appropriate gear like leggings to get the most out of your workout.

How to do the exercise:

  • Lift a barbell and place it at the back of your neck, just above the shoulders, as you would for a regular squat
  • Stand in front of the box, and lower your body with your back completely straight until you sit on the box
  • Immediately, return to the initial position.

Weighted Reverse Lunges

This exercise helps develop your quads, glutes, hip flexors, and core, all of which can directly improve running performance.

How to do the exercise:

  • Stand straight with dumbells in each hand
  • Move one leg back while the other stays stationary
  • Bend until your knee almost touches the floor and repeat this process with the other leg

The Bridge

This exercise helps build your core, which will help with staying stable when running. Also, consider wearing a comfortable hoodie when doing this exercise in the winter.

How to do the exercise:

  • Lie on your back with your feet on the floor about a hand’s length away from your glutes
  • Lift your hips to your hips, back, and knees form a straight line
  • Lower them and repeat

Face Pulls

Now, it may not seem like it, but face pulls can help you run faster and with more control because they help build your deltoids—the rear delts in particular. So, it helps maintain posture even the most challenging runs.

How to do the exercise:

  • Use a cable machine with a high pulley
  • Grab the handle with your palms facing the floor
  • Keep your arms parallel to the floor
  • Pull toward your face, allowing the handles to go on each side of your face
  • Slowly return to the initial position and repeat

Last Few Words

You can significantly improve your running performance by simply incorporating these simple but effective exercises into your strength training routine. Also, make sure you wear the right fitness apparel to help avoid injury and get the most out of each rep.


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