Whether your fitness goals are to lose weight, improve your sports performance, or bounce back after an injury, strength training is going to be an important part of your weekly training schedule. Anyone who does sport from runners to triathletes to golfers need some form of strength training as part of their fitness routine. The team at Sundried Activewear tell us why...
One of the most common running injuries - runner’s knee - is caused by weak quads and tight hamstrings. IT Band Syndrome, another incredibly common injury among runners, is caused by weak gluteal muscles. Because these injuries present themselves in joints such as the knees, people rarely realise their true cause and therefore don’t take the right steps to remedy the problem. By doing regular strength training at the gym, you can effectively strengthen your muscles and therefore reduce your risk of developing an injury.
It is a commonly known fact that muscle burns more calories at rest than body fat. This means that someone with a high percentage of muscle mass will naturally burn more calories in a day than someone with lower muscle mass and higher body fat. Therefore, by doing plenty of strength training and working your muscles, you will increase your metabolism and improve your chances of losing weight and burning fat efficiently without having to drastically change your diet.
This one may seem a little obvious, but strength training could give you the physique you’ve always wanted. While running and other cardio-related exercises will help you burn calories and fat, strength training will build and shape your muscles, giving you an attractive physique and changing your overall appearance. Not only this, strength training gives what is called the EPOC effect - Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption - also known as the ‘afterburn’ effect. What this means is that you continue to burn calories and fat even after you’ve finished your workout, therefore improving and accelerating your training results.
It is very common for people who run to neglect strength training as they think they should just be putting in the miles in order to improve their performance and race results. However, incorporating weight training into your training regime is hugely important as it can really make a difference to your performance. Strength training is proven to improve VO2 max, reduce the risk of injury, and improve your strength and power, all of which are the recipe for a great runner. For cyclists and triathletes, a strong core is paramount to achieving proper position on the bike and giving maximum power through the pedals. Working on a core strength programme at the gym is something all cyclists and triathletes should be doing on a weekly basis.
Research has proven that weight training increases bone density and with osteoporosis and related health problems being so prevalent, increasing your bone density is something you should definitely be doing in order to stay healthy throughout your life. Being strong doesn’t just apply to your muscles; having strong bones is vital for leading a healthy life and will allow you to stay mobile and active as you age.
About the author: Alex is a qualified personal trainer and nutritionist, as well as a marathon runner and endurance cyclist. Alex is part of the brand Sundried, a premium ethical active wear brand homegrown in the UK. With an ethical ethos, their latest collections are made from 100% recycled materials including plastic bottles and coffee grounds.