Marathon season is fast approaching, which for all those with a spot in a race, means the miles are starting to rack up, the long runs are getting tough and your feet will have seen better days.
When the going gets tough it can be all too easy to let running take over your training schedule, at the expense of other sessions. While running should definitely dominate your sweat time, Master Trainer Danny is here to tell you why it shouldn’t be the only focus…
So you’ve signed up to run the London marathon and have started hitting the road in the cold and although you are wearing six layers and seem to be enjoying it, you can’t help but miss the warmer, sweaty atmosphere of your favourite 1Rebel reshape sessions (with me of course 😉). But you can’t do Reshape as you either don’t have time or you don’t want to lift weights, as that will add muscle, which weighs more than fat so will slow you down, right? …..wrong!!!
By adding one to two Reshape sessions into your weekly training schedule (Lower Body & Abs if you can make it), will help you build strength, which will result in you being less likely to pick up an injury, while also helping to increase your speed. Winning combo hey?
The best strength exercises for you to add to your training programme are squats, deadlifts, lunges and planks. These are all big compound movements that work the entire lower body and core, and are all exercises which you’ll commonly find in Reshape.
When performing these exercises, we are trying to add power, so we want to pick up that dumbbell that we’ve never used before (remember, going heavy doesn’t mean getting bulky as the brilliant Bryony explains) and aim for 4-6 reps. If you feel you could have done more, go heavier.
After each rep give yourself time to breath and then go again. It can be easy in Reshape to feel like you have to keep going constantly, but trust us, it’s better to go heavier and have more breaks, than the weights be light enough for you to sustain reps the whole time.
We need to go heavier as we need to hit those muscle fibres that don’t get used during your normal sessions. This does mean that yes, you might get DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness). However, by hitting the road for a light run the following day or stretching properly, you will relax the muscles and will be back ready for your next session or training run.
Because of the amount of running you will be doing it is very unlikely that you will be adding muscle mass and instead you will achieve lean, strong legs that will help you push through that distance with a smile on your face and legs that won’t hurt for days on end (well maybe one or two).
When hitting a session let your instructor know that you are training for a marathon so that they can give you pointers for the programme they are following.
The benefits of Reshape don’t just stop there though. Those dreaded hill runs and sprint rounds have a huge number of benefits on their own.
Adding sprints to your programme will help increase your overall running speed. When sprinting you activate fast twitch fibres which helps you increase your power so you can go faster. Hill climbs are ideal if you’re running a hilly marathon, but they are also good for strengthening your knee joints and surrounding muscle fibres; particularly important as you start to tire in the final stages of a race.
Looking to take your running and strength training to the next level? Our Head of Fitness, Jodie, is running a Strength For Runners workshop this Saturday at Angel. More details here.