3 Ways To Build Muscle With Running

3 Ways To Build Muscle With Running

Most people think the weight room is the only place you can build muscle and that the treadmill or trail only benefits your cardiovascular fitness. The thing is, you can pack on muscle without barbells and plates. You might even be able to build muscle with running.

The Benefits Of Running

You see, in order to build muscle (an effect called muscle hypertrophy), you first have to stress those muscles via exercise. “The stress causes microtears in the muscle, which the body calls on satellite cells to repair,”. Once repaired, those muscles become stronger and bigger.

Running puts every muscle in your body to work (though your lower body does the brunt of the work, your core muscles and arms get in on the action, too). The catch? If you place the same stress on your muscles all the time, your muscles adapt to that stimulus and your gains plateau,. So, if you don’t progress the pace, distance, and/or intensity of your runs, you don’t build that precious muscle.

“To continuously build bigger, stronger muscles, you must increase the intensity of your runs,”. This is known as the progressive overload principle.

For this reason, new runners reap the most mass-building benefits from running.

3 Ways To Build Muscle With Running

Ready to upgrade your running routine to pack on more muscle? Put these three tips to work.

1. Run Faster, For Shorter

Muscles are made up of two main types of fibers: fast-twitch muscle fibers (also known as type II) and slow-twitch muscle fibers (also known as type I).fast-twitch fiber muscles are primarily responsible for building muscle mass, while slow-twitch are responsible for building muscular endurance.

So, if muscle mass is your goal, Flores recommends doing more sprints.

Your move: Focus at least 30 to 50 percent of your running workouts on sprints. “If you’re running three times a week, at least one of those runs should be an internal sprint workout,”.

2. Do Hill Sprints

“Hill sprints will bring you some serious quad and leg development,”.

The sprints will work those fast-twitch muscle fibers, plus running at an incline works your hamstrings, glutes, and quads to a greater degree than flat jaunts,.

Try it: Find a steep driveway, hill, or trail and complete 10 rounds of sprinting up and walking down. “The more exhausted you feel after each sprint, the greater the muscular benefit,”.

3. Wear A Weight Vest

Weight vests, which are available in varieties ranging from 10 to 50 pounds, put an increased load on your muscles, leading to greater muscle breakdown, says McCall. “Wearing one [while running] can absolutely lead to strength gains,”.

However, since your joints will not have yet adapted to the added load, you’ll need to increase your weight slowly. Failure to do so can harm your connective tissues, leading to inflammation and injuries like strains and stress fractures,.

Don’t have a weight vest? Do not strap on ankle weights or carry hand weights as an alternative. “Both will alter the gait of your stride and ultimately do more harm than good,”.

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