On June 8th, 2019, adventure racing enthusiasts from near and far will descend on Snowdonia National Park for Quest Wales. The run, cycle, kayak event will take participants on a picturesque route, tackling challenging terrain across the three different disciplines.

One of these enthusiasts is Bernard Smyth, a Quest regular and owner of specialist functional strength and conditioning personal training group, Ultimate Conditioning.

With Quest Wales comprising running, cycling and kayaking, Bernard trains individuals and groups of people to take part in events such as these across the country. While getting the miles in out on the roads and trails is important, Bernard believes the training that you put in at the gym is equally important and lists his top reasons why.

IT COMPLEMENTS YOUR RUNNING AND CYCLING TRAINING

Gym-based exercises should form a significant part of any Quest training plan, but it can often be met with the question ‘why should I strength train? It’s another hour on my training schedule that I could be running or cycling’.

The answer is that strength training for sport has many benefits when implemented correctly, from increasing your strength and power, to increasing mobility and stability about your joints.

“With the longer distances on Quest events (Quest Wales offers 25km, 42km and 53km distances) being like an endurance event, this will be a welcome addition to your training. Quest offers three different disciplines, as well as uneven terrain, so it’s crucial to prepare and optimise your body, and endurance and strength levels.

IT HELPS STRENGTHEN YOUR LEG MUSCLES AND PREPARES YOU FOR THE CHALLENGE

If you want to be faster, stronger and reduce your risk of injury you need to focus on a gym plan designed specifically for the task of throwing yourself down a mountain as fast as you can or climbing a 10% incline on the bike. Adventure racing presents some unique challenges that you must prepare for accordingly.

During your main workout, focus on strengthening your body by including single leg exercises that demand our bodies to stabilise the musculature around the hips, knees and ankles. These are the exercises that mimic the demands of adventure racing. Bear in mind that conventional squats and deadlifts should still be utilised occasionally. From single leg squats and walking lunges to half kneeling shoulder press and renegade rows, these movements are preparing your body to what lies ahead in Snowdonia.

IT’LL HELP YOU ACHIEVE A PB

Ask yourself, how long have you been trying to knock a few seconds off your running time goals or off that hill climb you test yourself on? It could be that your strength training isn’t as consistent as your running and biking. Show the gym the same level of commitment and I guarantee you will set a PB.

IT’LL HELP AVOID INJURY

The undulating terrain can put additional strain on your joints, particularly your lower body. By homing in on single-leg exercises, you’re giving yourself the best opportunity to strengthen your muscles and reduce the risk of injury. The last thing you want is an uneven step making you pick up a niggle and affecting your adventure race experience.

Download Bernard’s full training plan for free by accessing this URL and follow the subsequent instructions:  https://bit.ly/2tPuY36

Quest Wales is part of the Quest Adventure Series which encompasses several one-day adventure races. Already well-established, events across Ireland in Killarney, Kenmare, Glendalough and Achill attracted over 8,000 participants in 2018.

Entries start at £75.00 and you can register at https://www.questadventureseries.com/race/quest-wales/.