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OK, so I have until the last weekend in November to train for my first half marathon. I have been very very diligent in all my running. Have only missed one day since my "official" training started 7 weeks ago. I am feeling very good.

However, my training schedule (Hal Hidgon's) calls for strenght training every monday and with two small children at home, I just can't seem to find the time unless I drag them to the gym childcare yet another day. I HATE doing that. How important is the strenght training? I did 7 miles today (longest run every) and feel pretty good after it, ran my first road race in 12 years two weeks ago (did a 10K in 64 minutes) and felt good after it. Am I gonna do the half marathon and feel awful having not strenght trained?

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If it's your first one and you're just trying to finish, strength training isn't huge. You'll be okay without it. (For the record, the amount of strength training I have done in my life is practically zero.)
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You can strength train at home! It doesn't necessarily mean you have to do weights.

Pushups are great for strength.

And a cheap exercise ball almost always comes with a wall chart of exercises that help with flexibility as well as strength.

(I used to think an exercise ball was silly, until I tried one. They work VERY well!)
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i do minimal strength training at home, i have a bowflex machine but really use hand weights more often for upper body stuff. the exercise ball, i've heard , is a great way to do core strength. if i would do any strength at all, it would be a core workout; it's amazing how strengthening this midsection of your body will help your running; it can really improve your overall posture and i'm thinking a strong core will do alot to prevent repetitive use injury.

maybe someone can recommend a good DVD????
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Yeah, core training is great for improving your form too. My famous saying " Everything is attached to your core, don't neglect training it." Good advice RR.
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Many (most?) very good runners do no strength training at all. For the ones that do strength training, many just do core work that can be done anywhere. Some strength training is beneficial, but too much is detrimental, and you can certainly get by without it. If you have to do less running in order to squeeze in some strength work, then skip the strength work. Of course this assumes your main goal is to be a better runner, instead of just generally fit.

The great coach Arthur Lydiard felt you shouldn't do strength training. I think the quote went something like "Look at Lasse Viren. Without a shirt on he looks like a plucked chicken." Lasse Viren won 4 Olympic gold medals. On other words, muscle mass, especially upper body, is a bad thing for a distance runner.
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I wouldn't change anything that you are doing with the race that close. Just focus on getting your runs in.
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In your case Kristine (given your times and projected goal) a general strength training program once a week is a very good idea.
The types of strength you require for distance running are
Muscular endurance and General endurance.
Muscular endurance involves repeating sub-maximal exercise many times eg. push-ups, squats, lunges and chins. You don't need to go to a gym to do these. Muscular endurance is also gained from the act of running itself; making running more difficult eg. hills, running in sand, water running.
General endurance is the ability of the heart to pump enough blood around the body for the required speed. The heart is a muscle.
There is not much point in being able to lift big weights overhead, such work is not required in running, all your strength training should be specific to the task of running.
Strongly disagree!
If they are very good runners as you say they are selling themselves short. Strength/resistance/weight training is an integral part of athletic training.
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Was just reading an article in running times about this very same debate. The short and dirty conclusion was that limited strength training is beneficial but many elite distance athletes to little or no strength training during their main training season. Of course we've all heard about Alan Webb being a monster in the weight room...

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Par, you nailed it! :thumbsup:
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Yeah, but Alan Webb's not a distance runner!

The mile is a full-tilt sprint... hang on to your shorts... race!

When I was in high school, I thought it was a distance event! 8O
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Good point. It seems like all the short distance runners (male) are pretty ripped.
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I agree with CC on most of this. If you are one of the few who is training to be an elite or already are an elite class runner then weight training and the resultant muscle mass are probably not a good thing. For the other 99.999% of us out here in the real world weight training can be a beneficial thing.
In Kristine25's case I don't think the lack of weight training should be significant concern.
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kidtheo, there are two basic categories of distance running:-
Middle distance. - 800 metres to 2,000 metres in a track element.
( 800m. 34% aerobic - 66% anaerobic and 1,500. 50% aerobic - 50%anaerobic )
Long distance. - 3,000 metres to the marathon in track, cross country and the road element.
(5km. 20% aerobic - 80% anaerobic and the marathon 2% aerobic - 98% anaerobic)
Alan Webb is a distance runner, he ran the 5,000 metres at Bisslet (The Golden League) a couple of months ago and the 1,500/ mile is not a sprint.
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Thanks, Phar... Yeah, I know he's run further... He's an amazing athlete, our next great hope...

I'm not denigrating him in any way.

My point was simply that when a person focuses predominantly on the mile, then strength training is going to be a much more significant part of their training.

In fact, just reading about Deena Kastor and Meb K a couple of weeks ago... The elites, no matter what distance, do some strength training...

But for us mere mortals, it's probably not quite as important.

Just my opinion (and quite possibly 57% wrong, with a margin of error of 43%).
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