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End State Conditioning – Running Better Without Running More

Being able to run is synonymous with being fit but even among the avid gym goers and regular fitness buffs you will hear one proclamation from 80% of people:

“I f@#king hate running”

And it makes sense why people hold this opinion; running easily can lead to injury if done improperly, running long distances seems boring and repetitive and, last but not least, the time investment is immense. Lucky for all of you I’ve been experimenting with a new conditioning style that, for me at least, has increased my endurance, speed and enjoyment from running. All it absolutely necessitates is two gym days and one day for running  per week. Allow me to introduce you to End State Conditioning.

I enjoy running, I’m weird like that, but I don’t do it as much because it takes a lot of time investment to really feel like it’s worth the effort for running training. I believe that as a base level of fitness I should be able to run 1.5 miles easily but as my running became more and more spaced out this became harder to accomplish.  I knew I could devote the time for a decent run once a week but couldn’t do more than that. Eventually I started fiddling around with higher intensity bursts of cardio after a workout and found that I started to be able to run with ease once more.

Side note: the reason I say 1.5 miles is because this is my absolute basal level of cardio fitness I will allow myself to steep to. If a race comes up that I want to run  it is much easier to climb to 13.1 miles from this point isn’t than it is to do it from 0.

The basic tenets of end state conditioning are this:

  • Two days after particularly exhaustive workouts (such as a legs day or deadlift day) use a stationary bike at a medium resistance and attempt to complete between 1.25 miles and 1.50 miles in 5 minutes.
  • If you can’t complete 1.25 miles in 5 minutes lower the resistance, if you complete more than 1.50 then increase the resistance.
  • Once a week complete a run of your desired length, after 2-3 weeks of this you’ll notice the run becomes much easier.

This method is great for those that wish to engage in training for running without investing the huge amount of time to specifically training for it. My belief is that it works to get you conditioned to that end state of cardio where your legs are burning and you have to push through but without the muscular exhaustion that comes from all the running done prior.

If you’re serious about running training check out our 3-part series entitled “Running Machines”  Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

And if you really want to break down the science of running check out: