Many distance runners avoid weight training and specific conditioning because the methods and benefits are not clearly understood. Properly periodized weight (strength) training is one main component that should not be overlooked. The strength-training program should be specific for the runners need to be designed and periodized to develop and aid running. Below is sample routine.
15 Minutes - Warm up
Squats – 3 sets x 15 reps
Lunge with single arm cable push – 3 sets x 10 reps per side
Swiss ball isometric chest hold – 3 sets x 30 seconds
Lunge with single arm cable pull – 3 sets x 10 reps per side
Low pulley woodchops – 3 sets x 10 reps per side
Sit ups – 3 sets x 15 reps
Swiss ball hyperextension of back – 3 sets x 10 reps
15 Minutes – Cool Down
While I have given the basic start on strength training routine for distance runners you could also take a look at the main 5 laws of a strength-training program for runners.
Develop joint flexibility
Develop tendon strength
Develop core strength
Train movement NOT muscles
The training should be periodized just as physical training and nutrition throughout the year, it should include the proper frequency, intensity and type. The training cycle should be more endurance type (higher repetition, moderate weight) strength training programs at the start and more throughout the year. Secondly the training cycle should also have a focus on sub-maximal strength (moderate to heavy weights with less repetitions) with an objective of improving strength and any muscular imbalances that could affect gait and performance.
The pre-race cycle should focus on functional strength movements that support sports biomechanics, and again the race training cycle should also be more on functional movements with reduced load preferably using body weight. During the off-season take a complete recovery from strength training for 2 weeks.
The gold rule for long distance runners - TRAIN THE MOVEMENT NOT MUSCLES