You love biking. To and from work; cycling to the grocery store; it’s your go-to weekend activity and at the gym, the exercise bike is the only piece of cardio equipment you will go on. You love biking. And it’s your way of maintaining your fitness level. Recently though, you’ve experienced a plateau in your conditioning. It’s been weeks since you’ve observed an increase in your fitness level. To top it all off, your biking legs are constantly sore and it’s become increasingly difficult to push yourself to your cardiovascular limits. What’s the solution?
What is cross training and what are the benefits?
Cross training is the method of incorporating a variety of exercises into your current training program to allow for consistent improvement and strengthening of all of your body’s muscles. Cross training allows you to target some muscles, while allowing other (already sore) muscles to rest, recover and improve. This gives you the ability to push yourself to your fitness limits, while significantly reducing your risk of injury. Whether you are an athlete, gym rat or occasional exerciser, you can benefit from applying cross training to your current fitness regime.
Not convinced? Here are more reasons supporting the benefits of cross training.
➤ reduced risk of overuse injuries
➤ preventing boredom and lack of interest in maintaining fitness level
➤ breaking fitness plateaus
➤ achieving higher athletic conditioning levels
Cross Training 101:Variety is the key.
To incorporate cross training in your cardio exercise routine, try:
Running, swimming, biking and sports activities within each week.
To incorporate cross training in your resistance training routine, try using:
Resistance bands, dumbbells, machines, bodyweight exercises, barbells, kettle bells, body bars, TRX
To incorporate cross training in your flexibility routine try:
Hatha yoga, power yoga, static stretching, dynamic stretching
Change it up. Try new fitness activities. Break plateaus.
“Foundations of professional personal training” Human Kinetics; 2 edition (July 22 2016).