Dr. Mike Young Explains Metcon Workouts for Runners

There are so many types of training sessions available to runners. But most of us have never tried Metcon workouts – so Dr. Mike Young is here to explain them for us.

Dr. Mike Young

Metcon workouts are also known as metabolic conditioning workouts. They’re high-intensity sessions that can include a variety of modes of exercise.

Us runners are not used to this! Unless you’ve run circuit workouts, you’re probably not used to combining many forms of exercise into one workout.

Don’t be surprised if a Metcon workout includes:

  • Running
  • Cycling
  • Rowing
  • Gymnastic movements
  • Strength exercises
  • Any combination of these forms of exercise

They’re put together to condition the metabolism. In other words, to enable you to work at a near maximum intensity for a prolonged period of time.

They sound very much like a running workout – like a challenging hill workout, for example.

But the crucial difference is that they don’t have to include any running. And that makes them useful for runners who may not be ready for a hard workout (or who want a different, less-specific workout).

I’ve brought Dr. Mike Young onto the podcast to discuss metcon workouts for runners (and more topics) in more detail.

You can also sign up here for our free course on runner-specific strength training.

Metcon Workouts for Runnners with Mike Young

Mike Young metcon workouts

Mike and I aren’t just discussing Metcons. We’re also touching on a controversial topic in the fitness industry: lifting with free weights vs. machines.

Some folks become very passionate about using free weights. They think because machines require very little stability (if at all) then they’re inferior and don’t produce as much gains in strength, coordination, and overall fitness.

But the debate isn’t that simple.

And Mike Young is the perfect person to debunk these myths and explain how and why runners should be interested in Metcon workouts.

He is the Director of Research and Performance at Athletic Lab. A Lead Instructor for both USA Track & Field and USA Weightlifting, he also works with elite athletes and has consulted with the MLS, MLB, NFL, PGA, and NHL.

An internationally recognized researcher, coach, and educator, Mike has the unique distinction of attending all three US Olympic Training Centers as an athlete, sport scientist, and coach.

He has degrees in exercise physiology, coaching science, and biomechanics – not to mention his prowess publishing multiple peer-reviewed journal articles.

This conversation focuses on strength training for runners and how to think more productively about certain types of strength workouts and whether or not machines are appropriate for runners.

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Resources & Links from the Show:

While there’s no official podcast sponsor for this episode, we’re celebrating STRENGTH with SR’s free strength course (strength = speed).

If you haven’t yet committed to a strength routine in your training, you’ll learn:

  • How most runners prevent progress by making the same 3 classic mistakes in the gym
  • The real goals of lifting that are specific to endurance runners
  • How other runners have used strength training to improve their Personal Bests
  • Example exercises, full routines, and more

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