I got a couple of questions on the Facebook page, so I thought I would take a post and attempt to answer them.

Speed Work for Beginner Runners

Actually, I think beginner runners can do the same kind of speed work that any other runner does.  If you run 400M in 70 seconds or 3 minutes, the goal is to improve right?  So with that said, here is what my typical track workout looks like:

800 Workout

10 Rounds

  • 800M Run
  • Rest 4:00

Try to keep the times the same for all ten rounds.  It’s tough, especially at the end.

400 workout

10 Rounds

  • 400M Run
  • Rest 3:00

Do these types of workouts 3 times a week at a track, taking note of what your times are and watch them get faster and faster. 🙂

Weightlifting for Beginners/Runners

So maybe you are a Lift Heavy Run Long follower, and want to start lifting some weights.  How do you get started?  My obvious solution is to run to the nearest Crossfit Gym and sign up.  You will not regret it.  It will change your life in a way that will make the cost of membership insignificant.

For whatever reason, you may not be able to do that so what do you do?  It is my humble opinion that if you are any kind of athlete that you need to be squatting, under a barbell, regularly.  Not in a smyth machine or whatever they are called, but with a real 45 lb. barbell (35 for women?).  So start with squatting.  If you can’t naturally squat below parallel then you need to maybe practice with a pvc pipe or just bodyweight squats. Go check out some of this information on how to properly squat at Technique WOD.  Once you think you’re ready to load some weight on your back, go to the gym.  Most globo-gyms will have at least a real squat rack with a bar.  Get in there and start doing 5 sets of 5 a couple times a week.  You don’t have to put a lot of weight on the bar at all.  Just get to squatting and get your form right.  A@# to grass if you will.  Once you get your squat down, try adding something else.  Take a look at Stronglifts 5×5 for a good example of a routine, or check out Positive Health Wellness for a good article on 12 Reasons Why Strength Training Should Be A Fitness Goal.  Remember, ladies, lifting is not going to make you bulky like Ahhhnold.  It will just make you awesome!

Box Jumps:  What do they help?

I’ve thought about this for a couple of days, and I really don’t have a good answer for what benefits you get out of box jumps.  Box jumps are a great movement to add to any of your workouts.  Do them with burpees and pull-ups or deadlifts.  If I am looking for explosive power or looking to increase my vertical jump, I’m going to squat heavy and do a lot of Clean and Jerks.  If I can already squat heavy, I’m going to squat more.  My standing still box jump PR is 40.5 inches.  I think that’s pretty good.  I got there by squatting heavy and a lot of Clean and Jerks.  That’s my reasoning anyway, and I’m not stopping there.  I want to jump higher, lift heavier and run longer so I will continue to improve in every aspect of my training.

That’s that.  Thanks for the questions. Remember, I’m answering from experience and what has worked for me and others that I know.  My goal is to be the strongest and fastest long distance runner in the world.  Even if your goals are not similar to mine you will still benefit from the same training that I do in some way.  I believe that.

Lift Heavy, Run Long