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  • powered
    replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    >I believe that strength training is truly
    >overrated for runners and athletes in other
    >non-strength sports. Unfortunately, most people
    >just don't understand what strength is and what
    >athletic advantages that superior strength can
    >and cannot confer.

    Why don't you enlighten us? Please make sure your answer as some physiological reason and not just a guess.

    Leave a comment:


  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    I believe that strength training is truly overrated for runners and athletes in other non-strength sports. Unfortunately, most people just don't understand what strength is and what athletic advantages that superior strength can and cannot confer.

    Leave a comment:


  • powered
    replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    I disagree with this completely.
    >There are tons of elite runners who aren't on
    >any kind of weight program, yet they obviously
    >excel in this athletic edeavor! For that
    >matter, most of the runners who do lift weights
    >are not truly strength training - the light
    >weight, high-rep lifting and circuit training
    >regimens typically employed by endurance
    >athletes do not qualify.


    Hmmm, little piece of bad logic here! The fact certain elite runners excel without lifting is absolutely no proof that they wouldn't do even better if they did lift. We can't know either way so your point is not really valid. I heartily agree with the second part of your statement, though!

    Leave a comment:


  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    >ALL
    >athletes that are well clear of puberty, should
    >be on some kind of weight program, IF they wish
    >to excell in ANY kind of athletic endeavor.

    I disagree with this completely. There are tons of elite runners who aren't on any kind of weight program, yet they obviously excel in this athletic edeavor! For that matter, most of the runners who do lift weights are not truly strength training - the light weight, high-rep lifting and circuit training regimens typically employed by endurance athletes do not qualify.

    Leave a comment:


  • powered
    replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    The upper body doesn't need to be bigger, just stronger. Faster running comes from the amount of force exerted against the ground, but as stated above, in relation to body weight. As the amount of force increases so does the amount of torque applied against the upper body. The upper body aids in reducing torque by swinging the arms in the opposites direction, thereby counteracting the torque. The abs, obliques and low back muscles must work to stablize the trunk, keeping it from turning to the side (thats why they must be strong)and maintaining an upright position as the same time. The arm drive is the critical factor in countering the massive power developed by the leg drive however, so shoulder strength is very important. The upper body does not play a critical role in creating speed, only in maintaining it by allowing the runner to run straight. The power plant is the legs.
    Having a big chest may intimidate opponents, but in reality that chest development comes from the recruitment of massive amount of mitochondria, capillaries, and fluid. There is an increase in myofibriles as well but in significantly less proportion. Mitochondria benefits only the aerobic metabolism (bringing oxygen as fuel) which the sprinter should never use, while myofibril material is the portion of the muscle that causes tension-or what we see as strength.

    Doesn't make a whole lot of sense for a sprinter to have a big chest.

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  • miler manque
    replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    It's seemed to me that some, maybe most, of the top American sprinters are heavily muscled in their upper bodies -- a lot of extra weight to carry. Granted that the upper body in sprinting is important -- you're using the entire musculature in the effort to move forward fast -- it still seems a bit much. What's the theory? (Not to imply that skinny Kim Collins is the way to go, either --)

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  • powered
    replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    Many of the posters on here are missing the point of weight lifting. The workouts typically described for xc are, in reality, a repetition of what the athletes are doing in the running portion of the workout. Doing multiple sets and reps with minimal rest between them will put the lifter into an aerobic metabolism, which they are already doing in their running. Because of that, they show marginal improvement over just running alone. In addition, they will show minimal strength gain by that type of workout because the fiber recruited to sustain the workout will be predominantly red or slow twitch. In essence the workout is telling the system it needs to be able to carry the load longer and that is not strength its endurance.
    Running is already doing that.
    Hill running for "strength" is not efficient. The body will adapt to the load rather quickly and gains will be much harder to come by. A proper lifting routine would provide the necessary strength gains on a continual basis much more rapidly then hill runs.
    Then what should the purpose of lifting be? To increase leg strength as much as possible, but in relation to body weight. The higher the ratio, the longer the athlete will be able maintain a higher rate of speed simply because less energy is required to propel the body on each stride. Less energy used, more available during the course of the race.
    XC runners that lift, like the current crop of sprinters, are using a basic bodybuilding routine, which makes no physiological sense for any athlete. A well designed lifting plan will add tremendous strength with minimal increase in mass.
    Bottom line: lifting is not the issue, it's how you lift.

    Leave a comment:


  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    >You might find it interesting to read about Percy
    >Cerruty and his training methods. As I recall, he
    >included weight training in his runners'
    >programs, along with his infamous sand dune
    >workouts.
    I have spoken to one of Percy's athletes (Percy sadly passed away) and he followed the weight training for some time: they would often lift very very heavy weights. He did however run all of his PB's from 3-10k the year he gave up the wieght training and added an extra 50k per week to his volume (taking it from 160k/week to 200-220k/week) But he says that he will never know if the weights made him strong enough to handle the extra volume??? He does know that he would not have handled the 200k weeks and the Cerutty weights at the same time. Incidently he has a 27:38/10k road PB from the 70's.

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  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    In "Lore of Running", Dr Tim Noakes says one universal rule of running is that strength training is beneficial. Even ultra-marathoner Yiannis Kuoros improved into his 30s and 40s after adding strength training.

    However, how you train for strength appears to be the argument here.

    Leave a comment:


  • KEL
    replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    You might find it interesting to read about Percy Cerruty and his training methods. As I recall, he included weight training in his runners' programs, along with his infamous sand dune workouts.
    In terms of general fitness for younger runners, the proper use of weight training can develop functional strength as well as increasing important tendon and ligament strength. The strength programs should be individualized in accord with the athlete's needs and goals.
    Along the same lines, hill running can be very beneficial or distructive, depending upon technique and programing.

    Leave a comment:


  • dl
    replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    No, ask the Ethiopians what they're doing! :-)

    I didn't mean to imply that calisthenics are weight training. But some kind of strength training IS important. Spending a lot of time in the weight room is not.

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  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    Sorry guys, calistetics and core work is not weight training.

    If you wish to know what to do, look to see what the best do and then apply what you can to your own program.

    If you wish to produce runners who get lapped in the world championships, then continue to do what we are doing.

    Ask Frank Shorter, Bill Rogers, Craig Virgin (who won the world cross champs) if they ever did any weight training when they were at their best.

    Leave a comment:


  • dl
    replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    The Ethiopians do tons of calisthenics and core work. Look how good their women's running form is compared to that of the Kenyans.

    Leave a comment:


  • Guest's Avatar
    Guest replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    Regarding energy systems, at some point in every runing race, you should become a sprinter.
    Not that the fastest rested will outsprint everyone else, but in a crowded XC finish, :03 over the last 400m can mean alot of points!
    I agree with your idea- never ignore any energy systems.

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  • tafnut
    replied
    Re: Weight Training for XC runners

    "I would generally disagree when working with high school kids. I like developing a general fitness level as well as event driven training."

    You are already wise beyond your years. High School is exactly the time to inculcate a life-long pursuit of general fitness. The older you get and the greater your ambitions to excel in one particular pursuit will skew your training more in one direction, but the total fitness thing MUST still remain. Shot putters who never do anything aerobically are in for trouble. Marathoners who do no muscular training are in for trouble.

    Leave a comment:

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