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  • Campbell Craig

Strength Testing for Phases 3 & 4

Updated: Feb 23, 2020

Throughout a block of strength training it is important to continually progress your loads as tolerated so that your body continues to respond. Every exercise will have suggested reps to perform, such as 3 sets of 10 reps. Once you can achieve 3 x 10 with good technique, add more weight to keep stressing the system. Simple. As important as it is to vary your strength training, when should you progress to the next phase or new exercises?

How Long Before New Exercises Are Required?

Up to 12 weeks is a good amount of time to perform your strength program before your body has adapted to the stimulus and you start to reach the dreaded land of diminished returns. To keep those neurons firing they need to be stimulated and to achieve that they require variety and load. However, although 12-weeks may be the upper limit of time you should commit to a single program before it needs freshening up, I prefer to use strength goals as targets for progressing. This allows those with more experience of strength training to move ahead to where they can be challenged, and prevents the busy hustle and bustle that is life from pushing people into more aggressive exercises than their tissues are conditioned for. Here is a simple battery of tests that you can perform at home and track your progress over time.

Calf Strength Goals for Runners

Quads Strength Goals for Runners

Hamstring Strength Goals for Runners

Glute Max Strength Goals for Runners

Side Glute Strength Goals for Runners

Adductor Strength Goals for Runners

Would you like a fancy template to fill in and track your progress? Send me an email at and i'll send it through.

By increasing your tissue tolerance, you are protecting against risk of injury. Strength is not likely to change running mechanics but instead serves to raise the the tissue capacity ceiling. This allows you to run at a lower % of your total capacity for longer. Check out the full range of strength training programs for runners right here. Please get in touch with any questions.

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