T Nation

Maintaining Strength, Physique

Obviously when most people approach a strength or hypertrophy program their goals are just that. But how do you take one of these programs and approach it with the mind set of just trying to maintain, and not move in a negative direction?

The reason I ask is because I am training for a marathon and still lifting. I am looking to keep as much strength and muscle while on the marathon program, but the lifting isn�??t the focus right now. Has anyone had a similar experience? Thanks

I’m relatively sure you would lose strength just because some of your muscles fibers would switch to slow twitch muscle fibers.

Why are you training for a marathon? If it is for cardiovascular reasons, there are other things you can do so that your strength is not sacrificed.

Your best bet is to lift as hard as you can. If you really don’t want to gain any strength, don’t progress any, just keep using the same load. However, if you can progress with the weights while focusing on your marathon training, you might as well.

I would drop the overall volume of your training since you will be really hammering your recovery efforts due to your marathon training. At some level, you obviously cannot train for marathons and expect to keep all strength/hypertrophy gains (but it sounds like you knew that anyway).

Potentially something where you keep the weights higher and cut overall volume would be a good thing in the interim while you are working through your marathon. Maybe a week or so post-marathon you could then return to your physique goals and approach them with more focus.

Eat a lot.

If you don’t want to waste away you need to be chowing down like you mean it.