Balancing Weights and Running

Because of the winter weather advisory Monday morning, we decided to forego our morning run for a run after work (unfortunately it was still on the treadmill since the sidewalks weren’t the safest to navigate). So I tackled a 30 minute run on the treadmill for a little more than 3 mile run and hit the weights for what I felt was a long-awaited reunion with a grunt session.

I love to weight lift...but I have to run... Halp!

I’ve always been a weights girl–I was never afraid of bulking up “too much”. Lifting weights made me feel powerful, which is my ultimate goal. Plus it helped me feel like I wasn’t helpless and I could handle all the barn chores on my own (have you ever thrown 50-pound hay bales more than 250 times in a summer morning?).

So all this training for my half marathon has limited how much weight training I have done because I wanted to concentrate on running, and stretching, and I was afraid to do too much because I didn’t want to be too sore for my next run. However, after trying to hoist a 14-pound canister of cat litter out of my truck bed Sunday I realized I needed to get back to some weights.

After my treadmill run, I happily headed to the free weight section and started my circuits. Lately I’ve liked doing 3 different exercises in succession 3 times (i.e., 10 bicep curls, 10 triceps extenders, 10 reverse butterflies, and repeat). If you do it with enough intensity you can really work up a sweat and work your muscles. I did an upper body circuit, then lower body (simple: shoulder-width squads, lunges, plie squats), then some core work and a little more upper body. Great workout!

I’m already a little sore in my hamstrings from the squats–which is sad, because I used to be able to do so many and not blink an eye. But I know these types of exercises are needed for strong running as well, so how do you balance the weight training and running training?

I’d like to do more weights through the week, so I’ll just have to incorporate different exercises before I can figure out which one works the best for running (meaning not tiring my legs or making them too sore to the point of it effecting my running), but still gives me the results I always look for.

How do you balance weight training and running training? I could use the advice!


3 thoughts on “Balancing Weights and Running

  1. Those are called super sets! That’s what I do because it helps to keep the heart rate up and continue burning fat, which is my goal right now. I would recommend doing upper body days and lower body days. Your muscles need a day or two to recover and repair. I do two days of lower body and then two days of upper body. I’m sure you already know, but make sure you’re doing light weight with more reps. It should keep you from bulking up and only work on tone and strength!

  2. I wish I knew the answer as I have been wondering the very same thing. My biggest problem is time – I can either fit in the miles or the gym. Not both! Good luck and if you find the answer then please let me know!

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