Effects of a concurrent strength training and endurance training on running performance and running economy in recreational marathon runners




Pfost, Joshua

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



As recreational marathon running increases in popularity, more people are likely to sustain running injuries and/or seek information on how to improve running performance. For physical therapists to treat these patients, they need to know the best interventions to utilize. Because I had easy access to them, I searched the databases PubMed and EbscoHost to find this article. This article matched my keyword searches of "marathon"� and "strength training,"� and it was among the most applicable to my research question of, "how does strength training affect marathon performance."� This study divided 22 recreational marathon runners into a control group and a treatment group. Both groups underwent monitored endurance training but only the treatment group did strength training. The researchers wanted to see how adaptable the runners' skeletal muscle was and if running economy and performance would improve via strength training. The authors follow a logical flow of ideas going from global to specific, and they cite good, albeit older, studies to back up their statements. They clearly state their research questions. The methodology has pros and cons. The researchers blindly and randomly separated the subjects into two equal groups. However, with attrition, the control group was significantly reduced which (1) negatively altered the gender ratio and (2) made the two groups no longer equal. Additionally, the researchers did not cite articles about the reliability of their measuring tools, nor did they did any further blinding. The results focus primarily on the numbers of the study. Each variable is analyzed by its p-value, effect size, and time intervention effect. However, the data tables are very scattered and poorly oriented, little explanation of the results is provided, and no clinical significance was provided. In the discussion, the authors focus their attention on how strengthening was achieved and why that didn't elicit improved performance by the runners. They compare their findings to outside literature to explain significance (or lack thereof.) Additionally, they list their limitations and ideas for future studies. However, the authors introduce their bias by asserting that runners should still weight lift despite their lack of evidence.