Last week I had a consultation with a new client named Emma. We sat down and discussed some typical topics - her goals, current training, injury history and so on when she said something a little out of the ordinary:
Me: Have you had much strength training experience in the gym?
Emma: Yes. But to be honest I don't really enjoy it and would rather not do it most weeks.
Me: Ok, why do you do it then?
Emma: Because I love running, and I think it's worth doing a bit of boring stretching and lifting each week so that I stay injury free and can continue to run.
I could see where Emma was coming from. Personally I enjoy the gym but if I was given the option between an hour of stretching, squatting, lunging etc or a 10k trail run listening to some tunes, I'd pick the latter every time. If you're reading this I imagine you would too! However, the injury prevention benefits of strength and conditioning are very well documented and backed substantially by science. Therefore, if it's something you're avoiding or haven't thought about until now, I really would suggest that you consider starting. For more information on how strength training actually prevents injury, take a look at one of our past articles here.
It doesn't have to take up hours of your time every week and it's not essential to join a gym. It could be a couple of short bursts of bodyweight exercises on your non-run days, or one longer session per week. The fact remains that doing a little bit of something you dislike to be able to do lots of something you really enjoy in the long term, seems like a very good deal. And who knows, you may end up enjoying it!
If you have any questions about the above or would like to book in your own consultation in central London or Kent, please get in touch.
By Marc Brown