In nearly all cases, runners put much more emphasis on the legs and core muscles as opposed to the upper body. The ability to do a bench press with a great deal of weight is not a major asset in running. In fact, for a distance runner, carrying the muscle weight required to do great athletic feats with the upper body can even be a disadvantage. It is important to make sure that the muscles of the arms have basic strength and toning so that they won't fatigue and distort a runner's form toward the end of a race, but it is rarely valuable for runners to pursue serious goals for lifting heavy weights with their upper body.
Weight lifting for runners is a valuable addition to their training program and can help to reduce injury, but it should never be allowed to displace time spent on actually running. It should always be used as an extra benefit rather than a core component of the program.
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