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Build Glute and Hamstring Strength for Injury-Free Speed: A Marathon Runner's Gym Workout

Get OUT of your comfort zone.

Because if you're serious about that:

marathon PR

or this training cycle being the injury-free one

or FINALLY NOT getting injured and avoiding the post-race rehab-dance...

those 15lb dumbbells sitting in your closet aren't going to cut it.

I'm coming in spicy from the start, but only because I know what you're capable of ;)

That being said...

There's absolutely no shame in home strength workouts.

Or starting with a couple of 8lb dumbbells that eventually feel more and more like concrete.

Because I genuinely believe: lifting something is better than nothing,.
Getting started and staying consistent is the hardest part.

But when your running goals expand

and you dream of running longer and faster...

You have to be prepared to GO ALL IN.

You're strength workouts have to reflect your big running aspirations.

Otherwise, you end up with a frustrating repeat cycle of running injuries that never quite seem to clear up and plague you from one race to the next...just lurking in the background.

(am I getting warm?)

Big runner goals mean BIG weights.

But big weights don't have to mean hours in the gym.

or standing there awkwardly not knowing to do.

I want to give you a place to start.

A VERY inclusive, total leg day workout for your local or home gym.

That's 3 exercises.

It's perfect for those mornings or evenings when the time crunch is real and the need to move and claim your day is even more needed.

So how about a glute and hamstring strength circuit that takes 15-20mins?

Build the running specific strength you need with a good dose of core and upper body stability thrown in.

I'll even walk you through how to use a barbell.

Let's build your confidence, and your strength, and get you ready for those big running goals.

Let's go.



3 sets each // light/medium + Heavy weights (ideally a barbell)

Bulgarian Split Squat with Weight Overhead

  • 3 x 8 X light/medium weight

Barbell Deadlift

  • 3x 8X heavy @ RPE of 8

Land Mine Overhead Squat

  • 3 x 8-10 Reps X barbell + plates as needed for RPE @ 8


Bulgarian Split Squat with Weight Overhead

  • Talk about spicy leg strength....

  • THE HUMBLING TRUTH: I was incredibly proud of my 350lb working set for my back squat. But I was absolutely HUMBLED (and embarrassed) when I realized any single leg exercises knocked me on my peach.

  • Let my mistake (and pride) be your lesson. Always be working on your single leg strength. This bulgarian split squat variation helps to keep things fresh and interesting for our squirrel-brains while continuing to build glute and quad strength while also challenging your core and upper body strength and stability.

  • If you need to: don't be afraid to start off with a lighter weight and increase it as your strength and confidence grows. In the past, I've even done these holding on to a weight in one hand vs two. Adapt to what you need and continue to build that runner-specific strength.

Barbell Deadlift

  • If you've never tried this before, you get to be brave today ;)

  • THE SECRET: the barbell doesn't have to go down the full length of your shins. When I first starting to consistently deadlift, I didn't understand why my form felt like it was changing day to day. I just couldn't nail it. But I kept showing up. And finally, it clicked.

  • Be careful that you don't squat your deadlift. It's ok to keep a slight bend in your knees. But that bend shouldn't change. All you have to think about: sticking your butt out behind you while keeping your back flat. When your booty can't go any further, that's the end of your deadlift.

  • It's going to feel like a small movement, like there should be more. And that's when we get into trouble and start to add more for the sake of more, aka squatting your deadlift. Let it be easy and let the barbell help you.

Land Mine Overhead Squat

  • these are simultaneously evil and fun. I don't know how else to describe them.

  • THE KEY: These are just a front-loaded squat but with a barbell anchored into the ground that can be raised and lowered with you. Don't shy away from this and try out a new gym-toy! A landmine is such a freaking-versatile tool that once you learn how to use it, a whole new strength world opens up.

  • Pro Tip: The cue I use (as corny as it is) is think about "knighting" yourself with the barbell at the bottom of your squat. It gives you a visual for what you're striving for.

  • Holding onto the barbell with both hands, as you descend into your squat, lower the barbell to one shoulder. As you come out of the hole (coming out of the squat), raise the barbell back up over your head. Repeat on the other side.

  • Get ready to feel super duper cool and powerful because your wrestling with a barbell, but also to get your butt whooped because these always get my heart rate up lol.




Runner Specific.

Glute building and hamstring-strain preventing.

And most importantly: this workout is hard, but in a challenging, achievable way.

Learning new exercises...

or learning how to use new gym equipment doesn't have to be overwhelming or only for the gym-sharks.

You, a runner, have a place in the gym.

The beauty of this circuit:

  • it's only 3 exercises (so minimal exposure to embarrass yourself ;) )

  • it's also incredible easy for YOU to feel confident about adding weight, making your lifts heavier, as you're ready!

That's why I like writing these more "technical" workouts for you time to time because I know you can do hard things.

And I know your best race, your injury-free training cycle, your next accomplished running goals, is on the other side of your heaviest lift.

So if you're ready to take action and you want your best, most confident, injury-free training cycle and race, you're going to want to get on the RACE READY waitlist...because doors open soon.

There's only 5 spots this round for Fall Marathon Season 2024.

And I want YOU to be on the inside!

If you're unsure and don't know if RACE READY is quite what you need, check out my FREE Strength guide for runners help get you started.

If you like it, want more, and would love a strength program designed to help you build the exact strength you need for your race...then you know RACE READY is for you. ;)

I can't wait to see YOU on the inside!

Dare to Train Differently,

Marie Whitt, PT, DPT //

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