Most female runners who start off with a cardio dominant routine form lean muscles. I started this way. I was a cardio junkie. I always stated, “You’ll never see me carry weights.” Never say never.

At my leanest, I weighed in at 125 lbs proudly. Now, according to my average BMI, I was in the correct weight class for a 5’5’’ female. Only until, I saw previous pictures did I realize my pride in being lean was actually starting to look “too” lean. (See photos below. Weight 125lbs and no strength training)

I would get upset when older women would point it out. I would think they were wrong. I was lean because I worked hard!

As a runner, I had the misconception that if I lifted weights I would get too heavy to progress my speed. Well after observing Olympic track athletes, I stand corrected. More muscle is necessary to be faster!

Second misconception is that building muscle happens quickly. Yeah, right!

I’ve been strength training for four months consistently and have mild improvement in my appearance. I actually pick up weights and enjoy it! It’s made me faster, it’s protected me from injury, and I’m looking a little fuller. I now sit at a happy 144 lbs.

I still struggle balancing the quantity of cardio days versus the quantity of strength training. Any suggestions?

  1. How often do you strength train?
  2. What’s your go to gym move?
  3. Pre Workout versus No Pre Workout: What’s your preference and why?

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