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Strength Training in Female Distance Runners: Impact on Running Economy .

Johnson, Ronald E.; Quinn, Timothy J.; Kertzer, Robert; Vroman, Neil B.
Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: November 1997
Article: PDF Only

This study determined the effects of a 10-week strength training program on running economy in 12 female distance runners who were randomly assigned to either an endurance and strength training program (ES) or endurance training only (E). Training for both groups consisted of steady-state endurance running 4 to 5 days a week, 20 to 30 miles each week. The ES undertook additional weight training 3 days a week. Subjects were tested pre and post for [latin capital V with dot above]O2, max, treadmill running economy, body composition, and strength. A repeated-measures ANOVA was used to determine significant differences between and within groups. The endurance and strength training program resulted in significant increases in strength (p < 0.05) for the ES in both upper (24.4%) and lower body (33.8%) lifts. There were no differences in treadmill [latin capital V with dot above]O2, max and body composition in either group. Running economy improved significantly in the ES group, but no significant changes were observed in the E group. The findings suggest that strength training, when added to an endurance training program, improves running economy and has little or no impact on [latin capital V with dot above]O2, max or body composition in trained female distance runners.

(C) 1997 National Strength and Conditioning Association