Many serious runners totally dismiss strengthening exercises or any other exercise aside from their normal running routine. But strength-training exercises are essential, especially for those who do massive amounts of running in a given week. Your muscles need more than just a good, long run. Runners sometimes worry about muscle loss in certain areas of the body, and strength training not only maintains healthy muscle mass but also improves running performance. What’s more, strength training helps reduce your risk of injury because it builds strength and support in the muscles that carry the inherent pressure from running. Injuries such as fractures and Achilles tendonitis are often a result of a lack of strength and support while running, as well as improper coordination and balance. Neuromuscular capabilities are improved upon through a regular strength-training regimen. The key to picking the right strengthening exercises for a runner is finding exercises that target the muscles that help with balance. Runners often report increased running speed, stamina, and endurance after just a few weeks of strength training. Here we take a look at all the benefits that come with the integration of a strength-training program to enhance your running routine, and why it’s so important for the avid runner to perform strengthening exercises on a regular basis.