Dropping the Weights

My plan for 2016 does not involve lifting weights (through machines) as part of my strength-training program.

Before I caught the running bug, my primary focus was bodybuilding and power lifting. Yes, I willing chose barbells over running shoes. Well, that has all changed, and the light was brightened when trained for and ran my first 10k – taking first place in my age group was a great feeling. And it hasn’t happened since. Nonetheless, I was hooked on running!

I lost about 35 pounds as I transitioned from weights to running. While my pace times increased in conjunction with the weight loss, I also discovered what running injuries were.  Some of these injuries were so bad that it caused me to miss two marathons and two ultra-races. If you have ever had an injury the last thing you want to happen is to do the training and miss the big day.

Looking back, there’s a chance that all of my injuries (e.g. IT band and runner’s knee) could have been prevented if I had instituted some type of strength training plan along the way. So, with 2016 off and running (pun intended), I am going to use the exercises below to maintain my current injury free body.

Another idea behind this strength training plan is to increase my pace. The goal is to perform exercises that mimics running as much as possible, so this plan will not involve machines. I will institute the use of free weights and exercise bands as necessary.

I also realize when I cross over the 20 mile mark I start to feel fatigued, and this begins to affect my pace. From my research, this maybe the reason I start to cramp. The more I change my stride the more I cramp…so it seems. Maybe these exercises will help circumvent these cramps during the next race.


  • Jump rope
  • Lunges
  • Jumping Lunges
  • Squats – single leg
  • Push ups
  • Sit ups
  • Plank
  • Side Plank
  • Pull ups

How do you stay strong and injury free?

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