What would you say to a training technique that resulted in a 5% improvement in running economy and an eye popping 21.3% improvement in time to exhaustion at maximal aerobic speed in as little as 8 weeks?
That's the results reported in a study published in the June 2008 issue of the Medicine & Science in Sports and Exercise (Maximal Strength Training Improves Running Economy in Distance Runners)
Subjects in the study (well trained distance runners) were asked to perform half squats, lifting 4 sets of 4 repetitions maximum. In other words, the weight they were using was so heavy they could only do 4 at a time.
While I still favor lighter resistance and more reps for distance runners, the results here are indeed intriguing.