Which Is Better, Strength or Endurance?
Muscular strength and endurance are equally important, so there is no correct answer to this question. It depends on your level of fitness and what your fitness goals are. Strength and endurance can be improved with either program, especially if you understand the relation between the two. Muscular strength and endurance are closely related in that it requires a certain amount of strength to develop endurance.
For example, in order to develop upper body muscular endurance through pushups, you must have the strength to do at least one pushup. The inability to do a pushup is a lack of strength, not a lack of endurance. For the most part, the same exercises are used to increase muscular strength and endurance. The only difference is the amount of resistance and the number of repetitions one completes in a set. In general, muscular strength is best developed by high resistance (heavy weight) and low repetition (short time period) exercises, while muscular endurance is improved by using less resistance (low weight) and higher repetitions (or a longer time period).
You can have strength without endurance. However, it is nearly impossible to develop muscular endurance without also developing strength. There are weightlifters who can bench press over 500 pounds, as long as they only have to push it up one time.
However, some of these lifters are unable to do twenty pushups. So endurance training supplemented with a weight program is beneficial. While training with low weight may not give you the strength to push up 500 pounds, it will give you the ability to deliver flurries of fast and effective kicks and strikes.
If you don't knock an opponent out with your first punch, then you'd better have some endurance left to finish the fight. Also, if you don't have the stamina to run away when your options run out or to escape when you see an opportunity, you will have one less option for an exit strategy in a fight.
One way to examine endurance is to consider your ability to convert oxygen into energy and carry away the waste product — lactose. The build up of lactose in the cells is what gives you that burning feeling in your muscles as they begin to fail. Lactose that is not flushed out of the cells during the cool down after your workout is also partly responsible for causing you to wake up sore the next morning.