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6314 Views 17 Replies Latest reply: Jun 19, 2011 6:02 PM by rb77 1 2 Previous Next
M.J. in Springpatch Pro 154 posts since
Mar 17, 2011
Currently Being Moderated

Jun 14, 2011 11:58 AM

What do you do for cross/strength training? Kettlebells?

For those who run 3 or 4 days a week, what do you do on your off-running days?  I know I should be doing something on those days.  I've done a few different things, but nothing has really "stuck".  I am leaning towards strength training.  I have heard/read a lot of positives about kettlebell training.  If you've used kettlebells, what has been your experience?


Thanks in advance for your input!

As Stuart always says: Run Happy!

Started C25K: 3/13/11 Completed C25K: 5/12/11

FatAss 5K: 5/14/11

New Balance Girls on the Run Community 5K: 5/21/11

5th Annual MMC Burn Center 5K Run/Walk: 6/4/11

Women's Distance Festival 2-Miler: 7/9/11

Scheel's Inaugural 5K Run/Walk: 7/16/11

Red Ribbon 5-Mile Run: 10/22/11

  • flamomof3 Legend 1,928 posts since
    Dec 14, 2007

    I do upper body workouts and walking on the days I don't run, I work my leggs and lower body out after I run. I have a set of dumbells that use so no need for me to buy kettlebells

  • walkerof3 Rookie 6 posts since
    Jun 9, 2011

    I do a 20 minutes strength training workout 2 x's a week (I turn 60 on July 16th).  I am a male just for the record.  I recommend resistance bands.  It is amazing how wonderful they truly are.  My workouts are for toning and stamina only, not really building muscle.  I do from one exercise to the next and never stop.  This workout is effective without a doubt.  I also have purchased several body bars from over the years.  I have the 24, 18, 15, and 12 lb. 4' length ones plus the 4, 6, and 9 lb. smaller ones I use to warm-up and warm-down with.  I also have a body shaper bar from Tony Little I bought off the HSN and it is awesome.  I use an 8 lb. weighted ball also and have a few dumbells.  The kinds of exercises a person can do is endless plus you can do some one time and others the next time.  Then there is one of the best exercises in the world- the push up.  Right now I don't do them, but when I did, I would do a set of 10 in between exercises and end up doing 10 sets of 10 during the course of the workout.  Even doing the modified with your knees on the ground are good if you can't do the standard push ups.  I hope this is of assistance.  I was blown away at how fantastic resistance bands are.  I live in southeast Iowa.

    Run with patience the race set b4 us
  • BradW44 Pro 119 posts since
    Jun 15, 2010

    I do a number of things with weights as well as alot of pushups, sit ups and dips.  There are a couple of things, however, that have helped me way more than the others.  The first one is punchung a heavy bag.  You would be hard pressed to find a better upper body workout.  The other thing that has done more for my running than anything else is mountain biking. Not just riding on trails but off road jumping logs up and down hills, etc.....its a real full body workout thats really fun as well.  Its alot more time consuming but I love it.  Good luck!


  • Marykb Legend 1,347 posts since
    Jan 16, 2008

    I do kettlebells.  I started back in January doing the Kettleworx program.  Now granted, it is probably considered "kettlebell lite" but it works for me!  I notice a LOT of improvement in my core strength and toning in my arms.  A stronger core really helps us as runners.  Also some improvement in the strength of my quads and glutes which has helped relieve some of my knee issues.  And a KB workout really gets your heart rate up too.  It is a good all around workout. 


    BTW,  dumbbells and kettlebells are NOT interchangeable.  A dumbbell is a stable weight that works by isolating muscle groups.  The kettlebell is an unstable weight that engages your core and uses many more muscles in your workout.  You can do exercises that engage hundreds of muscles at the same time vs dumbbells that isolate only a few at a time.

  • Marykb Legend 1,347 posts since
    Jan 16, 2008

    I've been using Kettleworx  and I love it.  The first set of workouts is a six week program and you do it 20 minutes, three times/week.  You alternate Cardio, Resistance and Core workouts.  You do a different workout every time so it never gets boring  - in other words the six week program has 18 different workouts which get progressively more difficult.  I did the first six weeks, then did the Advanced program which was another six weeks.  Right now I am just doing the Advanced program over again.


    I have to tell you although I got great results, I was never sore.  I don't know if that will be true for everybody, but I never had any problem with soreness and it didn't interfere with running.  I think it is actually a very good complement to your running routine.


    Good luck, hope this works out well for you!

  • Marykb Legend 1,347 posts since
    Jan 16, 2008



    Expensive - YES!  (I bought mine during the brief time they were sold at Target and got it for a pretty good price.  But yeah, it is costly)


    Not suitable for beginners:  Yes, I would concur with that.  Although it implies that any person, in any condition, can do the six week program, it just isn't true.  I have worked out for years and have been trained in proper form,  yet I still found the routines challenging!   Someone who is a true beginner couldn't hope to keep up and would have no idea how to do the exercises properly.


    Poor production quality:  No, I don't think so at all.  In fact what I like about it is the quality of the production!  If you've seen the informercials, then you know what it looks like.  I'm kind of surprised to hear it was reviewed that way.  ?????


    Anyway, as far as cost goes, I see your point!  Maybe you will come across someone selling their set of DVDs at a yard sale or something.  Never know!

  • squilky Pro 91 posts since
    Jul 18, 2007



    If you like the methodically approach of Couch to 5K, then I would recommend the 100 pushup challenge. It's a similar approach to the couch to 5K program in the sense that you slowly build up the number of reps. You do an initial evaluation of how many pushups you can do, and based on that number, that dictates the plan you follow. As others have pointed out, the pushup is a wonderful all around exercise. By varying the width and position of your hands, you can focus more on your shoulders, chest, arms etc.


    I just started my first week of the 100 pushup challenge a week ago, and I really like it. I do couch to 5k on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday and the pushup challenge on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and rest on Saturdays.



    Couch to 5k completed: 7/15/2011

    USPTO 5K 10/16/2011; 29:14 110/238

    Bull Run Festival of Lights 5K 12/31/2011; 31:30 324/683

    Primal Mud Run 4/14/2012; 1:29:29

    Cody's Crew 5k 9/16/2012 31:15

  • Marykb Legend 1,347 posts since
    Jan 16, 2008

    I have heard of the 100 pushup challenge.  I always wondered, though, how it applies to different ages and genders.  100 pushups would be phenomenal for me - a 48 year old woman - but might be standard practice for my 24 year old son.

  • Ericd3043 Legend 266 posts since
    Aug 2, 2009

    LOL - 100 push ups   For me, I am lucky to do 10 before giving up.  I am working on sit ups though to 100, but nothing organized.


    For me, I do a couple of things - cheaper and seem to work:

    1) We have the XBox 360 already and got the Kinects accessory to do the workout games.  Yes , they are games - but for toning and cardio - nothing like it.

    2) The Running Times Magazine has a series of videos on some strength training.  This month's magazine has 8 basic exercises - donkey kicks, etc.  After 1/2 hr with that - I am beat and know I did it.


    Between these 2, I try to do the strength / core exercises 2-3x per week depending on schedule.  Usually my off day or low mileage days.  I am supposed to have 2 days off - but I use one for pitching softball.  The other is my rest day but I may put in one of the ideas listed above if I have time (and if my long run does not kill me first)


    Good luck in what you do - If it works, keep it up!

    My race times (2012)

    Race Schedule for the year:

    May 6th Frederick Running Festival 1/2 Marathon

    May 28th Run through the Park, Ligonier 5k

    August Tentative - 5 miler in Chambersburg, PA

    October Baltimore Running Festival Marathon (also the 2nd part of the MD Double challenge)

    Personal Best :

    5K : 28:32 Run through the Park, Ligonier PA

    5mile : TBA- Marine Corp 5 Miler in August, Chambersburg PA

    10mile : 1:44:52 Cherry Blossum Festival Run, Washington DC

    Marathon : 5:01:22 Akron Marathon

  • walkerof3 Rookie 6 posts since
    Jun 9, 2011

    You can always start with doing modified push-ups, the kind where you have your knees on the floor.  Start with 5 of them; do 3 sets and rest 1 minute between sets and go from there.  Tony Little has many workout dvds and he does modified push-ups for beginners and encourages people to start at that level.  Best wishes.

    Run with patience the race set b4 us
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