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cross training
endurance training
huge muscles
push ups
body muscle
muscle weight
piano player
cold winter
ups
believer
runners
scales
exercises
all sorts
Cross Training
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Cross Training

Athletes use the term cross training when they train other sports than just the one they compete in. It is often recommended for runners because it can have good effects on the running speed and endurance and can also prevent injuries. There are countless other good reasons to do some cross training but I will not go deep into those. Instead I am just going to tell a bit about what I do myself.

Maybe I am not as firm a believer of the benefits of cross training as many other runners are, because I believe that if you want to master something you have to practice what you want to become good in, not something else. Well I know that a piano player benefits from playing scales and doing all sorts of exercises other than just playing the tunes he wants to play for the audience. And I guess the same counts for running. But I don't think doing something entirely different helps the running much. I don't think push-ups do much for the running, and in fact it can slow the runner down if he gets huge muscles in the upper part of the body, muscle weight he has to carry around when he is running. That is my opinion and I do know that not everyone agrees with me.

So, what do I do? I do enjoy bicycling and spinning, it is fun and it seems to strengthen the feet in a way that you become less tired when you do long runs. Wearing shoes when walking and running seems to make the muscles in the arch of the feet weak and you have to use those muscles on the bike which strengthens them. Bicycling is endurance training and a good way of keeping the pulse up for a long time if that is what you are aiming at.

Skiing is also something I really enjoy, but that has more to do with surviving a long and cold winter where I live. It feels good to be outside. And well, you do get stronger legs which is good. Although I must admit I think the running helps the skiing, not the other way round.

Swimming is endurance training which I think is really good if you are injured. You don't put weight on the feet which can be good, and you can vary the training depending on the type of injury you have. If you have problems with using the feet, you can swim with your arms and still get the pulse up. Besides, swimming is fun, and outside in heated pools here in Iceland. I like being outside :)

Hot yoga is the only form for training I do inside a gym. I find it good for stretching all those stiff and sore muscles and just going deeper into the yoga positions I sometimes do myself at home. In Iceland it seldom gets very warm outside and I do sometimes enter races abroad in warmer climate. I think the hot yoga also helps me to get used to the heat.

Winter bathing is yet another outdoors activity I sometimes let my friends trick me to do. For me it is very different from swimming in a heated pool and the biggest challenge is to endure the cold. But it gives a lovely sensation all over which lasts for several hours and I believe it is good for the body to have to adjust to different stimuli.

Dancing is the best. Who doesn't like dancing? Going out with a group of friends and just dance the night away is my idea of having fun. Plus it is really good training and being in a good shape makes it even more fun.


Street Talk

Hey when i read your article what jumped out at me was to master something you have to practice what you want to be good in. One of my old coaches used to say that. He said you have to run to be a good runner. Makes sense. You got the example of lance armstrong who ran a marathon. Yeah he has endurance but he is just the average joe runner even though he is the best cyclist.

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Great article. Cross training is a great way to keep fit, and have plenty of friends that do also, Thank you

Reply
  about 8 years ago

It helps a lot having friends to play with outside

Reply
  about 8 years ago

Sounds to me like you are keeping yourself fit by cross training. Great article.

Reply
  about 8 years ago

the cross training isn't enough :)

Reply
  about 8 years ago
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