If you want to maximize your running performance, it's non-negotiable.
Coordination training with appropriate resistance to handle body weight, project an implement, resist gravity and optimize ground reaction forces.
Integrating strength training into your routine, improves your ability to store and release energy efficiently.
The evidence overwhelmingly shows that strength training can:
1. Improve Running Economy (O2 cost for given speed) by 2-8% in 8-12 weeks.
2. Improve time trial performances from 1500 m - 10 km.
3. Reduce injury risk - ↑ tendons, ↑ bone mineral density, ↑ coordination, ↑ posture, ↑ kinematics
4. Metabolic systems - ↑ anaerobic quality & capacity, max sprint speed and speed reserve (= max - submax)
5. Physiological changes - change in body composition. ↓
Ultimately, improving your overall strength will allow you to express power and reactive strength.
What does improving power make you a better distance runner?
Increasing the power of each muscle fiber will result in less fibers being used to run a certain pace, fewer fibers being recruited will result in a lower oxygen demand.
Increasing the amount of muscle fibers that one can recruit will result in a larger reserve.
You can never recruit ALL your muscle fibers at once. It's the body’s safety mechanism. Elite athletes can train their body to get close to that point
With a larger reserve, you can recruit muscle fibers late in the race as others fatigue and call on fibers when a surge or kick is needed. Athletes that score high on power test have very good kicks.
Do a Standing Broad Jump Test:
Record your distance.
Divide it by your height.
What do the results tell us?
Athlete with poor power numbers: success will be in the longer distances unless power numbers improve.
Athletes with good power numbers: “could” be successful in all distance events.