At enduraLAB, our goal is to build a more complete program that will not only produce healthy runners but also allow our athletes to reach their true potential. We do this by creating a program that includes:
- Form & Mechanics
- Stability & Mobility
- Strength & Balance
- Power & Speed
- Fuel & Recovery
enduraLAB Run Program Elements
Form & Mechanics
Whether your running a marathon, lifting a barbell or playing a round of golf, poor technique will produce poor results and increased rates of injury. Gray Cook states it very well in his book, Movement, where he discusses recreational athletes and their drive for a number. Who cares about how much do you squat or your 5000m PR if the squat was shallow or if your technique caused you to have to take a week off. When you perfect technique and fundamentals, the numbers will take care of themselves. In endurance sports, inefficiencies are magnified due to their repetitive nature. We would never ask you to perform a deadlift with poor form, so why would we allow you to run with poor mechanics (and striking the ground with over 2.5x your bodyweight 150-180 times a minute)?
Stability & Mobility
Stability should be the starting point of any endurance athlete. Adding more volume or more intensity to an athlete with poor dynamic control is only opening the door to a host of injuries. As a runner, you have to be able to make rapid micro-corrections to keep your joints properly aligned. At the LAB, we'll show you what good position looks like and help you find the correct spine, hip or foot position to optimize your performance. We'll also teach you how to engage the correct systems and strengthen them to make sure you're able to maintain proper alignment for races up to 100 miles.
Mobility can steal from your performance. Our coaches understand where runners need mobility and the techniques to achieve it. After all, having more flexibility than you need for the mechanics of running provides no advantage. In fact, it can create problems.
When you look at optimizing endurance you need to look at what variables need to be improved. Endurance is based on cardiovascular performance (heart rate, stroke volume and heart contractility), the strength of your skeletal muscles and how efficient your muscles are extracting and utilizing oxygen. Unless you have 25-40 hours to devote to training each week, the plan you found on the internet or a traditional running program is not going to cut it. While the 80/20 style of polarized training is great for building endurance, the recreational runner rarely has the fitness, time or discipline to complete these programs as designed. At enduraLAB, we understand how the body builds endurance and design a program to do it more effectively, giving you more time for your career, friends and family.
We know, through studies and experience, that intelligent strength training provides the following benefits to the endurance athlete:
- Improved running economy
- Improved muscle endurance
- Reduction of fatigue in postural muscles
- Improved muscle capillarization (aids in oxygen transportation)
- Improved neuromuscular coordination
- Reduced risk of injury
- Stronger bones
- Strong connective tissue
Your time in the gym should primarily be spent getting strong and developing clean and functional movement patterns that enhance balance, symmetry and stability - not pushing though several repetitions of an exercise with poor form competing for time. Most endurance athletes that are new to strength training will need to focus first on volume (lighter loads, high reps) and form to prepare the body for more intensive work. When sufficient work tolerance is achieved, the athlete can begin on neuromuscular recruitment and rate of force development (using heavier loads and more explosive movements). Most endurance athletes should strength train 2-3x/week
Power & Speed
Once an athlete has created a strong, stable platform it is important to train the body to generate power, or force over a short amount of time. We do this at the LAB with speedwork and high intensity resistance training (olympic lifts and plyometrics). While this training only requires a short amount of time, form and proper recovery is critical. Done correctly and in the right doses, it is one of the best ways to optimize your muscle fiber recruitment and running economy.
Fuel & Recovery
No one can run away from a bad diet. We will help you debunk the old techniques of carb loading and show you how we can eat to improve body composition, recovery time, performance and overall health. We'll help you develop strategies for race-day hydration and nutrition. After all, you must fuel the machine.
Recovery is most often overlooked by endurance athletes. We are more focused on cramming in more volume, making sure we make our deadlines at work or getting in our quality time with the family. We're not suggesting you take away from any of these, but we have to understand that we need to balance the stresses of life and training with recovery. We'll show you recovery techniques and help you find the ones that work best for your schedule and goals.