Cross Training Methods
Weights & Core:
Core exercises are crucial in helping a runner keep their form while running. Incorporating weights or body weight exercises into the weekly regime can increase speed and strength. 2 days a week add 5-7 core exercises, 15-20 repetitions (e.g. crunches, v-sits, planks, Russian twists, bridges, supermans). Also try 1-2 sets of 15 lunges with 10-20 pound weights, 15 squats with the bar, 30 dips, 10-20 pushups.
Swimming & Aqua Jogging:
The best x-training option to reduce impact on body. Lap swimming or running in the deep end of the pool with an aqua jogging belt it perfect for raising the heart rate. Aqua jogging is a very close simulation to the motion of running. Proper form necessitates a tall posture with head up and legs working like pistons, essentially doing "high knees." Avoid leaning forward or trying to cycle the legs through as though on a bike. Drive the arms through the water, exaggerating good running form. 30-45 minutes of aqua jogging or swimming at varying levels of intensity will provide a good cardio workout.
A weight bearing, lower impact exercise. Mimics the motion of running. 30 minutes on the elliptical including 5 minutes easy to warm up and 5 more to cool down. Use the middle 20 minutes to either play with intensity or hold a steady, more challenging pace.
A great way to strengthen the quads and improve your turnover ratio without impact. You can focus on your speed without having to incur the pounding. Please remember that form is critical in cycling. If you are taking a spin class, ask the instructor to review your form.
If you prefer to ride outdoors we suggest having your form assessed at a local bike shop. Riding at a moderate pace outdoors for 60 minutes is roughly equivalent to the work of running at a moderate pace for 20 minutes. Longer outdoor rides of 90+ minutes will be most beneficial, while spin classes work at a high intensity and typically last 45 to 60 minutes.
A great way to increase flexibility and strength while practicing controlling the body and mind. On a physical level, yoga restores balance and symmetry to the body, making it the perfect complement to running. Runners are often drawn to yoga to deal with specific issues, such as improving flexibility or helping with an injury.