Walking Lunges Build Endurance

Athletes from a wide range of sports work resistance training into their routines. Endurance runners and cyclists are no exception, and the NSCA's Performance Training Journal calls walking lunges "one of the most beneficial exercises for endurance athletes." Not only will this exercise build strength and flexibility in your quads, glutes, hamstrings and calves, but walking lunges are ideal for engaging small muscles used during running and cycling.

From standing up straight, take a big step forward with one leg, landing heel first. The knees of both legs bend during the process. Your front leg's knee should be aligned with the same leg's ankle while the planted leg's knee comes close to touching the floor. Before it makes contact, push off with your back leg and repeat the motion with that foot. You've just completed one rep. To increase resistance – and the level of difficulty – carry a pair of dumbbells in each hand with a weight that suits your goals and abilities.

True Strength Moment: Just because your legs do the majority of work in your training and competition, don't neglect upper body work. Balancing out your overall fitness and physical strength will make you a better conditioned competitor while giving you a variety of athletic pursuits to occupy those days when your legs need a rest.
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