Strength Training for Distance Runners: Core and Lower Body Conditioning Plan

Cody Harter
 Nate Millado

Whether you’re gearing up to conquer your first marathon, or simply looking to improve your speed on the track, you’re going to need a solid strength and conditioning plan to keep making gains. But figuring out the proper routine—and the right balance between lifting, recovering, and covering miles each day—can be difficult. 

That’s why Men’s Fitness and Timex teamed up with Cody Harter, a certified strength and conditioning trainer, running coach, and competitive athlete, as he took on a half-marathon. In this video, we meet up with Harter in New York City for a sneak peek of the exercises he uses in his own training.

Cody Harter’s workout routine preview

1. Front Squat 

Sets: 4
Reps: 10

2. Single-Leg Romanian Deadlift 

Sets: 4
Reps: 10

3. Elevated Reverse Lunge

Sets: 4
Reps: 10

4. Crunch variations

Sets: 4
Reps: To failure

5. Sprint Intervals

Sets: 1
Reps: 20 mins (20 sec. on, 20 sec. off)

6. TRX Jacknife

Sets: 4
Reps: To failure

Rest in between sets as needed.

The day-to-day schedule

Monday: Recover

Tuesday: Lift/Run

Wednesday: Lift/Run

Thursday: Lift/Run

Friday: Recover

Saturday: Run

Sunday: Run

For the full program and workouts that Cody used to get geared up for his race, go to mensfitness.com/codyharter.

Cody Harter is the owner of Harter Strength & Conditioning in Brookline, MA. For more training details and photos check out harterstrength.com or follow him on Instagram.