Strength training is not cross-training for runners. It’s just part of smart training.
Is it surprising that I don’t think strength workouts are cross-training? Rather, strength work is just part of your training as a runner.
If you struggle with injuries, lifting weights is perhaps the most valuable thing you can do to stay healthy.
Not only does a high-quality strength program prevent injuries, but it will help you run more efficiently.
Lift explosively and you’ll soon to be able to run explosively.
If you’ve ever struggled to finish strong at the end of a race – to find that “higher gear” to power through the finish – then the lifting workouts in this program will give you the strength to smash through your next finish line.
I can show you all the reasons for lifting weights – from the overwhelming consensus of the exercise science community, to my experience coaching thousands of athletes, and the “down in the trenches” testimonials from athletes and coaches in sports around the world.
If the best runners in the world are lifting weights – and you want to achieve YOUR potential – then you should be lifting weights, too.
Even though every runner will see incredible progress with the right strength training, some of us sabotage ourselves.
First, look at runners like Shalane Flanagan, Galen Rupp, or Kara Goucher (actually, look at ANY pro or collegiate runner).
Let’s consider what’s necessary for hypertrophy, or muscle growth:
For the first time, I’m revealing advanced strength workouts for serious runners who are passionate about discovering their potential.
High Performance Lifting will show you exactly how to lift – the exercises, recovery period, and proper ordering so you can focus on runner-specific strength and speed.
In 16 weeks, you will be more powerful and ready to smash your personal bests.
You’ll get administrative upgrades like this for free – as well as new interviews, workouts, and videos that are added to HPL. It’s just the right thing to do.
The High Performance Lifting program consists of four main phases of training.
The first four weeks will strengthen every muscle group in your body as well as toughen connective tissue, thicken tendons, and add durability to joint capsules, ligaments, and cartilage.
Jason Fitzgerald is a USA Track & Field certified coach and the founder of Strength Running – an award-winning blog with hundreds of thousands of monthly readers.
Randy has 30 years of coaching experience as a USA Weightlifting National Coach and has worked with some of Boulder, Colorado’s most talented distance runners on the Hudson Elite and Rojas Running teams. He’s a Master’s Olympic Weightlifting Medalist and member of the NSCA.
He is the brains (and brawn!) behind the weightlifting programming for High Performance Lifting. When your explosivity, strength, and power skyrocket in the coming months, thank Randy.
I’m from Boston, so I want to be direct: this program is not for everyone.
“I am happy to share that I ran 2:53:14 at the New Delhi Marathon in India on 3/7/21 thereby achieving a PR by over 16 mins at the distance in 12 months. I last ran a 3:09:58 at the same race in 2020.” – Shreyans
HPL is so good, it’s used by professionals.
“As an elite runner, I am fully aware of how big of an impact strength training can be both for improving performance and preventing injury. But I kept putting it off because I didn’t know where to begin or which exercises would be most beneficial.
“When I came across High Performance Lifting I couldn’t wait because it’s tailored exactly for distance runners. I’m pleasantly surprised at how easy it is to follow and incorporate into my already busy routine and can’t wait to see how it helps improve my running even more than it already has.” – Andrea
If you want to join thousands of other HPL members – including some elites – then let’s make sure this program is a good fit for you.
Does any of the below describe you? Then you should join:
Runners who understand the transformative power of an elite-level lifting program are encouraged to join below.
Because if it doesn’t work for you, then I insist you get a complete refund.
Simple as that.
Yes, a fully functional gym is required to complete the workouts in HPL.
You’ll be lifting weights like an elite runner – and they all use gyms to make sure they have the necessary equipment to get stronger.
If you have a home gym, you’ll need a barbell with a variety of plates for added weight, a kettlebell, and a rack.
It doesn’t matter if you’re new to weight lifting! You’ll still be able to perform all of the movements and lifts included in the program.
Our approach – as recommended by a USA Weightlifting National Coach who works with elite runners – has you lift weight that’s appropriate for you (and nobody else).
The first phase of training is dedicated to general strength and injury prevention so you don’t need any experience. We’ll build your skill gradually from Day 1.
Unfortunately, this won’t tell you much about High Performance Lifting! HPL is progressive and periodized, which means that the program changes and evolves over time.
If you looked at a single run or workout from a running plan, you wouldn’t learn much about the training plan. It’s just a single snapshot in time (much like if you read one page from a book).
While we don’t offer samples, you have a 30-day period to try the program before deciding if it’s right for you.
The Training Plan Library included in the Elite tier of High Performance Lifting focus on five race distances: 2-miles (or 3k), 5000m, 10000m, half marathon, and the marathon distance.
Each race distance includes three difficulty levels: beginner, intermediate, and advanced. But regardless of the difficulty level, every plan is relatively advanced with mileage ranges from 33 – 70 miles.
These plans recognize that with HPL, you will be capable of a higher workload (and will soon race a lot faster, too)!
HPL has you in the gym twice per week for about 60 minutes per training session (though about half of your lifting workouts will take slightly less time).
In total, you should plan for about two hours per week to complete all of the workouts and gain the strength, power, and coordination from those sessions.
But in reality (as you can see below) many of the sessions take much less time!
Definitely. In fact, Addie Bracy (who follows programming like this from our strength coach Randy Hauer) is the 2017 Mountain Runner of the Year – and those mountain races are all on trails!
Trail running demands high levels of proprioception (knowing where your body is in space), coordination, and strength. A running-specific lifting program will deliver these benefits.
Lifting will also help you navigate the more frequent turns, varying terrain, changing elevation, and mid-race surges needed for successful trail running.
Just like running, lifting weights has a certain amount of injury risk (as does almost every physical activity!).
But we have a 3-point approach to lifting safely:
First, you’ll learn how to abandon a lift in case it’s too heavy. If you’re struggling, you’ll know exactly how to get out of an exercise so you don’t hurt yourself.
Second, we show you how to hold the bar, what grip to use, and how to handle every implement in the gym in the safest possible manner.
Third – most importantly! – we’re absolutely adamant about proper lifting form.
That’s why we have detailed descriptions of every lift and HD video demonstrations with two separate angles so you’ll learn the form necessary to stay healthy.
We hired a professional video team to make sure every lift was recorded in HD quality with two distinct views – leaving nothing to chance.
Yes, HPL can successfully be used for Master’s runners or seniors. In fact, Randy uses this programming with some of his runners who are in their 70’s!
The only consideration that runners in their 60’s or beyond should consider is recovery. It may take longer to recover from your weightlifting (just like running), so you’ll need to lift less weight.
But strength work is universal. And strength – as a physical skill – is even more important for older runners.
Even if you’re an older runner, you’ll notice the difference:
“I wanted to thank you for your HPL program and a great training plan. Thanks to you, my training went exceptionally well with no injuries!
HPL was really the icing on the cake which helped it all come together. I finished 2nd in the 69-74 age category at the Columbus Marathon and really felt strong the entire distance.” – David
Addie Bracy (the 2017 Mountain Runner of the Year) and Maggie Callahan (the 2011 Pac 10 Steeplechase Champion) model the exercises in the program. They know the exercises because they perform the same programming with Randy Hauer in Boulder, Colorado.
Women are featured prominently in HPL because not only are the exercises appropriate for women – they’re highly beneficial for women.
This is reinforced in our interviews with Nike Oregon Coach David McHenry and elite runner Tina Muir. Both advocate this exact type of strength programming for women runners.
There are many types of lifting that are simply not ideal for runners:
I was surprised that I could feel myself getting stronger without spending a lot of time in the gym. I also saw my training runs not only improve in time, but also how I felt during the run and after.
I’ve noticed a remarkable change in how I feel. The strength in my hips and glutes is the highest it’s ever been, including my competition days in college. This leads to a much more stable feeling when I’m running.