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Author Topic: How do I train legs with weights and run 3-4 times a week?  (Read 2326 times)
Lunarr
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« on: February 15, 2012, 12:43:37 AM »

Been running a lot, joining races, usually in the 5k (3mile) category. I've stopped training legs since I'm running a lot, and I'm training upper body 2 times a week.

I know it's foolish to not train legs and just rely on running, but how do I integrate training my legs with my running sked as it is? When my legs get sore, it's hard to run properly.
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« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2012, 04:20:59 AM »

running is leg training... what are your goals?
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jpm101
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« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2012, 09:21:13 AM »

Lunnar: Going to have to decide if your a lifter who enjoys running. Or a runner who enjoys lifting.

Some of the runners I come in contact with will include (besides all the ham/leg stretches) step-up's (added DB's) and their version of Sissy squats (another form of stretching with a full ROM). And some do squat and use regular leg curls. Because with only running, the legs do not get anywhere near a proper ROM to take advantage of their full potential. Getting regular leg exercises in, seems to help with their running. Might add that cross country and steeplechase runners are a whole different breed of athlete.

Throwing in a couple sets of squats, leg curls and/or step-ups might prove to be an advantage for you. Might add that upper body work does help also. Good Luck.
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« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2012, 10:54:22 AM »

I run 3 times a week, tues/thur I run 2 miles flatout followed by sled pulls and tire flipping. On sat I run at least 6 mile trail work, last saturday it was 9 mile - training for a 15K.
 On tues afternoon I do my squats, on thurs afternoon i do deadlifts, mondays bench, fridays overhead presses. Wed and sundays off.
 I weigh 212 and disgust myself but my legs are like iron.

 Lifter who enjoys running, btw.
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« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2012, 01:08:12 PM »

My first year of bodybuilding was back when I was 15 and still in high school.  In order to get our drivers license we have to pass physical education.  Its' required by the state.  So this was one of my classes for the first semester or 18 weeks.  The only thing the class involved was running everyday for 40 minutes.  

Well I had to get my drivers license and I had to grow some big ol' chunky thick legs to haul around these massive lats, pecs, arms, delts, etc.  So what was I to do?  I had no choice.  I made it work.  The first two or three weeks were rough.  Even at the young age of 15 I went all out on leg training.  I was taught how to bodybuild at a very young age by a very good up and coming bodybuilder.  The first workout he ever took me through was Leg extensions, Leg Press, Hack Squats, Smith Machine Squats, Leg Curls, stiff leg deadlifts.  This was the first time I EVER trained legs.  Had only been lifting weights period for about 4 weeks.  Every exercise consisted of 4 sets and rep ranges in the 15 to 20's.  I couldn't quit or give up or take it easy because I knew what he (my bodybuilding trainer) was doing.  He was testing me.  I was the youngest guy in a gym full of seasoned and competitive bodybuilders.  I knew I could learn a lot.  I knew If I completed this I'd be one of them.  When he took me through this workout several of the other bodybuilders were standing around watching and laughing.  But I never gave up.  After that I earned their respect and that was all that mattered to me.  A 15 yr old in the company of 21-45 year old bodybuilders who decided to take me under their wing.

So even though I had to run everyday for school, it was state required, I was going to let my new "family" down either.  I forced myself to run everyday with severely sore legs.  Once my body started getting used to weights the running got a lot easier.  I just got use to it.  After a while it was nothing.

Honestly though, nothing is better for leg development then some hardcore strength training to build up those white fibers, then some running to activate those red fibers.  You should have some phenomenal looking legs after a couple months or so.  The only thing I'd try to be careful of is making sure you plan both types of training out to where one doesn't hinder the other.  Recuperation is up to you.  The more your body gets accustomed to this type of trauma the faster you'll recuperate week from week.  So I wouldn't be to concerned about one or the other effecting the others gains.  Just make sure they're not performed so close together that they hamper each other's training though.  See what I'm saying?  

Good luck with everything.  
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Lunarr
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« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2012, 08:07:35 PM »

Thanks for the advice guys. Lately, I've been a runner who enjoys lifting because I'm moving up in races. I usually run against pro athletes and young guys (I'm 46). Over here in the Philippines, pro athletes and Kenyans join races to get easy prize money. The winners run 3m/5k in 15-17 minutes. My fastest is around 21 minutes, and I'm usually in 5th or 6th place. I enjoy running, but I feel that my legs are not as strong as before, even with all the roadwork. So I'll process your advice and act on it. Thanks again!
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oldtimer1
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« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2012, 04:32:51 PM »

Train your legs once a week on a day you don't run.

 Another approach is since you're not a competing bodybuilder is to train upper body only.  Sprinting and distance work will take care of legs. I know this is something most lifters will object to.

I try to combine running and lifting.  It's a tough thing to combine.  As you know most bodybuilders just do walking on a treadmill or very light cardio.  You know as well as I do if you blast a 5 mile run your legs will be shot the next day if you try to do legs in the weight room. 

Right now I'm doing a split lifting one day and running the next. So it's chest and back one day and the next is a run. The day after is legs and the day after a run. Lastly it's delts and arms followed the next day of running.  It's not the best system to improve optimally in lifting or running but it's a compromise.

There was a hard core lifter who was an actor named Brad Harris.  He was very involved in running and he only trained upper body. 
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« Reply #7 on: February 19, 2012, 11:18:34 AM »

Just do it. Unless you are a competitive bodybuilder, this isn't going to hurt your progress.  I've been a lifter and a runner since I was 14...during track season, i would back off a bit on the heavy leg training, and only do it on an off day, and i'd be fine. 
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« Reply #8 on: February 19, 2012, 01:15:22 PM »

Just do it. Unless you are a competitive bodybuilder, this isn't going to hurt your progress.  I've been a lifter and a runner since I was 14...during track season, i would back off a bit on the heavy leg training, and only do it on an off day, and i'd be fine. 

i'm leaning towards this in my old age... i'll never want to run marathons but i'm thinking 5-10K runs would be a fun challenge... and the long term health benefits of running are well documented.
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Lunarr
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« Reply #9 on: February 19, 2012, 09:28:48 PM »

Thanks guys! I've done leg training this week. Legs are really sore. So I'm doing brisk walking while I can't run just yet...
Oldtimer, I've heard about sprinting in lieu of leg training but i was training more for the 5k runs and aiming for a shorter finish.
Will sprints get me ready for a 5k?
Yeah, I've heard of Brad Harris. I think he was in Hercules with Lou Ferrigno.
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oldtimer1
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« Reply #10 on: February 20, 2012, 08:19:23 AM »

There isn't an elite 5K guy that doesn't include sprinting in their workout.  Why wouldn't it improve your 5K times?  I would once or twice a week include 10 sets of 400 meter sprints. Not all out but with the goal of completing the 10 sets. In between you can walk fast/slow jog a 200 meter rest.  Another approach that's more into the endurance side is 6 x 800 meters. The rest in between is a very slow jog for 400 meters.  Sometimes after your distance runs you can include 6 x 100 meter.  

Doing speed work will really help get your legs strong.  To much distance work will leave you with endurance but that endurance will leave you when that gun goes off and the pace is fast.  Running slow mile after slow mile doing nothing but distance will leave you unable to maintain a fast pace. Training at speed will train your body to run at speed. I'm not getting into the science of anaerobic, lactase or other terms.  Just make it simple. If you train at a fast clip you will race at a fast clip. This is where your interval work will keep a serious spring in your legs when you get to that starting line.  

Another way to build strong legs is jumping. Go into a lunge position of one leg in front of another and jump as high as you can switching legs each time. There are many jump variations but this is another way to improve your times.  
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Lunarr
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« Reply #11 on: February 20, 2012, 10:25:46 PM »

Thanks oldtimer1!
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oni
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« Reply #12 on: February 21, 2012, 02:39:33 AM »

There isn't an elite 5K guy that doesn't include sprinting in their workout.  Why wouldn't it improve your 5K times?  I would once or twice a week include 10 sets of 400 meter sprints. Not all out but with the goal of completing the 10 sets. In between you can walk fast/slow jog a 200 meter rest.  Another approach that's more into the endurance side is 6 x 800 meters. The rest in between is a very slow jog for 400 meters.  Sometimes after your distance runs you can include 6 x 100 meter.  

Doing speed work will really help get your legs strong.  To much distance work will leave you with endurance but that endurance will leave you when that gun goes off and the pace is fast.  Running slow mile after slow mile doing nothing but distance will leave you unable to maintain a fast pace. Training at speed will train your body to run at speed. I'm not getting into the science of anaerobic, lactase or other terms.  Just make it simple. If you train at a fast clip you will race at a fast clip. This is where your interval work will keep a serious spring in your legs when you get to that starting line.  

Another way to build strong legs is jumping. Go into a lunge position of one leg in front of another and jump as high as you can switching legs each time. There are many jump variations but this is another way to improve your times.  


I'm a cyclist that competes at a national level in TT sprinting, while this is not running the concepts still apply
Listen to this guy, this is what you need to know..
Do one training session running for 5k at a speed just under your lactate threshold. Once you have done the 5k, do the 400m sprint intervals. You can jog, walk, sit down, whatever between the intervals it doesn't really matter as long as you do them less than 10 mins after the 5k
On another training day do more intense interval training like tabata, this will improve your VO2MAX (other training day increases lactate threshold)
Then you want to be squatting at least once a week. 1-5rm work is great, do it once a week it will really help but also do some squats in the 25-60 rep range with only a second between reps and 20-30% of your 1RM.

You don't need to spend 3-4 days running to get good at a 5k. Get as good as you can with 2 days then add days afterwards as you see fit
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oldtimer1
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« Reply #13 on: February 21, 2012, 08:40:13 AM »

Another thing is most serious 5K guys train in cycles. Maybe dividing the year into 4 cycles. The first is nothing but long distance endurance runs.  The second is cutting down the distance runs. The third is including intervals. The last is increasing the amount of interval days.

A rough guide could be something like this.

3 months of 5 to 6 days a week of distance runs varying from 5 miles to 10. Have some weekend racing days of 10k road races or personal time trials.

3 months of 5 to 6 days a week of distance runs varying from 4 to 8.Continue 10k road races on weekends when the opportunity presents itself.

3 months of 5 to 6 days a week of distance runs from 4 to 6. Two of those days will be interval work of 10 x 400 meters and 6 x 800 meters. Run a couple of 5K road races when you can.

3 months of say, Monday: 5 miles, Tuesday: 2 miles hard, Wednesday 10 x 400 meters, Thursday interval ladder of 800-600-400-400-600-800, Friday 6 x 800 meters, Saturday casual distance run or go all out on a 5k road race.

Another thing is to take 2 to 3 days off before the race you really want to break a personal record.

This isn't a prescription but a guide to be adapted.  Also as you can see this isn't the training of a casual runner but someone who is really dedicated to improve at the distance of 5K.  

Check with your doctor to see if you have some kind of medical condition that could prove fatal training for a race.

If you are just a casual 5 K  road race guy just adapt what is good for you. I'm into lifting weights to the detriment of my running.  I just lift to much.  I was an ok sprinter in high school and college on the track team.  Through the years I gave up on running and just lifted weights. Now in my 50's I realize it was a serious mistake in terms of leaness and health.  Now my runs are pathetic but I'm working on it. My goal come this June is to run come close to breaking 20 minute 5K.  I might be dreaming but that's my goal.  
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oni
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« Reply #14 on: February 21, 2012, 07:16:15 PM »

I have a copy of Verkoshansky's book "Block Training System in Endurance Running" it's mostly aimed at middle distance endurance sports
Am I allowed to post it here or is that kind of thing PM only?
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chaos
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« Reply #15 on: February 21, 2012, 08:42:35 PM »

I have a copy of Verkoshansky's book "Block Training System in Endurance Running" it's mostly aimed at middle distance endurance sports
Am I allowed to post it here or is that kind of thing PM only?
Post away, start a new thread and if it garners interest I'll sticky it.
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Liar!!!!Filt!!!!
oni
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« Reply #16 on: February 21, 2012, 08:52:21 PM »

Post away, start a new thread and if it garners interest I'll sticky it.

http://www.getbig.com/boards/index.php?topic=416273.0
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Lunarr
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« Reply #17 on: February 22, 2012, 09:42:44 PM »

New posts. Will take note, thanks! My fastest 5K was 21 minutes, but I felt like I was killing myself, running after teenagers. A student I passed near the finish line went over to me after the race to shake my hand as if to say "not bad for an old fart"
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