Circuit Training Routines for Strength Endurance & Fitness

A well-designed circuit training routine can be a beneficial addition to any endurance athletes training program

At one point, many endurance athletes avoided strength conditioning for fear it would be detrimental. However, studies have shown that this is not the case and even heavy resistance training can aid endurance performance.

Long-term strength endurance is required by athletes such as distance runners, swimmers, cyclists, triathletes and rowers for example. Sports such as soccer and filed hockey also require good muscular endurance, but the intermittent nature of these sports requires short-term strength endurance and it is developed in a different way.

For sample circuit training programs that develop short-term strength endurance click here

Alternatively, if its just general fitness you require, see these sample circuit training workouts.

Sample Circuit Training Routines (long-term strength endurance)

Here the parameters for designing a circuit training routine for an endurance event:

Circuit training guidelines for long-term strength endurance

The following circuit training examples show how the parameters above alter within the suggested ranges for various sports:

Sample circuit training routine for a rower


Sample circuit training routine for a triathlete

5K/10K Circuit Training Routine

The sample programs above focus only on muscular endurance development through the use or resistance exercises. The circuit training routine below however, combines strength exercises and endurance exercises. Its useful for individuals who dont have the time to take on separate strength and aerobic endurance training programs:

  • Rest Between Stations: Time it take to move between exercises
  • Rest Between Circuits: 4-5 mins
  • No. circuits: 2-3
  • Load: Bodyweight or were weights used 30-50% 1-RM

Warm up – 10 to 15 minutes of light jogging

  1. Run 800m at race pace
  2. 20 Burpees
  3. 20 push-pus
  4. 15 single leg squats either leg
  5. 30 crunches
  6. Run 800m at race pace
  7. High box steps with jump (20 each leg)
  8. 20 bench dips
  9. Dumbbell lunges (20 each leg)
  10. 15-20 double crunches
  11. Run 800m at race pace
  12. 20 squat to presses
  13. 20-30supermans
  14. Run 1500m at race pace

Cool down – 15 minutes of easy jogging, stretching


Bompa TO. (1999) Periodization Training for Sports. Champaign,IL: Human Kinetics

Fleck SJ and Kraemer WJ. (2004) Designing Resistance Training Programs: 3rd Edition. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics

Scholich M. (1992) Circuit Training for All Sports. Toronto: Sports Books Publishers