I have been on a running training plan for the Marine Corps which has me running 5 days a week and my legs are sore most days and have stopped lifting weights for my legs. I know that lifting legs is crucial to increasing overall body strength, so my question is, does an intense running program compensate for not lifting legs in the sense of release of hormones etc.?
I don't think running has high enough resistance on muscles to produce a hormonal response similar to large muscle mass, compound lifts (squats/deadlifts).
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Short answer is no it won't.
I'm assuming your running program is focused on middle to long distances--say over 1 mile runs since it is for the Marine Corps.
Have you seen any runners who run long distance that have huge legs? They usually have lean low bodyfat legs, but not large muscular legs.
When you say hormone response--are your referring to elevated levels of Growth Hormone and Testosterone? I could be wrong, but once again endurance work doesn't do much there, and probably in excess would cause a lowering.
Depending on your goals. I wonder if you would be better off with 3 running days and some focused time in the weight room.
yea i mean elevated levels of GH and Test. the running program itself is a mix of sprints, leg PT(squats, lunges, calves), medium distances, and long distances.
Im already in the gym 5 days a week, so would adding a whole leg day or adding one exercise every few days be better for my legs? so i could do chest and then a few sets of squats, then two days later do shoulders and like extensions or leg press, then two days later do arms and straight leg dead lifts, something like that?
Check out this article about a study about hormonal response. Basically if you want optimum hormonal response, start with a compound movement first.
ok thanks for that article, good read. looks like ill be adding some heavy squats back in haha
There are tons of ways to put legs back into your weight training. But the most common ways are to do:
1.) Full body weight training program 2-3xweek
2.) Upper body/Lower Body Split, training upper body 2xweek and lower body 2xweek
3.) Chest tris one day/back biceps another and then legs, take a day off and repeat (more of a bodybuilding approach)
4.) Hit one bodypart daily for 4-5 days in a week
With all of your running, I'd think you'd be better off with option 1 or 2.
you want to choose one exercise running or bodybuilding because when you do bodybuilding and then you gone for running at morning or evening you lose your weight.You need maximum focus and strength to get the most out of your weight training sessions. If you don’t believe me, try it each way for one week and you’ll see what I mean!
It really depends what your goals are. If you're looking to gain some solid mass on to your legs - you will most likely need to push some serious weight to get there. Running won't give you the same outcome, but you will build endurance in your legs which will help you in the long run; whatever your goal.
my goal for now is build endurance so i can drop my 3 mile time. my muscles have plenty of meat on them now hahah
What does the running program look like? I did years of cross country and track in middle school and high school and never got much muscle mass in my legs until I started lifting. Now I'm doing both and I'm making pretty insane gains in both leg size and endurance with something like this:
Monday heavy squats, quad dominant
Tuesday jog 2-3 miles
wednesday hill sprints
friday squats, hamstring dominant
the running is 5 days a week, 2 days of sprints, one of a medium length run, 1 of a long distance run, and 1 of a PT.
if i add a lifting day back in i would do it on one of my running off days probably
You want the real story? Hormone responses to compound movements mean nothing. They are not sufficient to elicit any training effect and have virtually nothing to do with why compound movements work so well. The whole GH/test thing and squats is simply gym myth which has been so pervasively perpetuated as to now having become accepted as "fact'.
You should strength train. Studies have shown that marathoners who replaced 20-30% of their training with a proper resistance training protocol improved their running times...
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ok thanks chris mason