There is no one perfect program, which is OK—change is essential to effective training anyway. Gambetta lays out some useful guidelines: “I always say that within a seven- to 10-day training cycle I want to see pulling, pushing, squatting, lunges, and step-up movements, along with rotational and bracing type of movements.”
This is a sample workout of the types of movements that cover the recommendations. You can do those in any number of ways (the cable machine is great for this, too), but this is an easy dry-land workout that you can do anywhere with an elastic band.
» Walking lunges with a twist/optional medicine ball: With every lunge, twist to both sides.
» Elevated pushups: Put your feet up on an elevated surface such as a chair or a TRX suspension device.
» Rows (with elastic band around mid-torso level doorknob): Wrap a resistance band around both sides of a doorknob, leaving the door open. Hold one end in each hand and slowly pull your arms in until your hands are level with your chest and your elbows are behind your torso.
» Bear crawls: Get on all fours (feet, not knees) and crawl forward.
» Step-ups: Depending on ability level, step up onto a stable surface and drive the knee up to the chest. Arms can mimic a running motion.
Do 8–10 reps of each. Do twice a week during race season. You should feel like you’re working, but the point isn’t to reach muscle failure; it’s to challenge your muscles without wiping you out.