Dedicated strength training is the FOUNDATION upon which other aspects of fitness are built. Getting stronger (not bigger) will improve your cardio, make you better able to hike up a mountain, and empower you to take on life without worrying if you’re strong enough to do something on your own. Training strength DOES NOT make you big and bulky, only your nutrition can do that. Training strength IS NOT bad for your knees or back and is totally safe with good coaching and programming.
Let’s say you’re doing a conditioning workout with 35# dumbbell snatches and your max DB snatch is 70#. Each rep requires 50% of your strength to complete. Now let’s say you complete a strength cycle and up your max to 105#. Now each rep requires 33% output, and you are going to feel and perform so much better! Not to mention you’ve drastically reduced your risk of injury because your muscles don’t get stronger in isolation, you’ve also beefed up your ligaments and tendons in the process of getting stronger. This same idea is also true if you want to hike a 14er, each step you take will feel significantly easier of you’re stronger, meaning you can hike farther, faster. As you become an intermediate athlete (typically 3-6 months or so of consistent training) adding dedicated strength sessions will be the biggest bang for your training buck. Strength work needs to be consistent and a priority, which is why we typically run it in cycles.
Starting in September you have an excellent opportunity to get to work on your base level of strength. Our barbell club is a great way to develop the basics of strength training while having some dedicated time to focus on your lifts.