X-train

Is it bad that I get annoyed with people who don’t cross-train? (One of my many, many pet peeves, trust me.)

I love cross-training. And from a physiological perspective, cross-training is so important.
A lot of runners, like real runners (I don’t consider myself a real runner, I don’t know why) find that they have better, faster, and longer runs when they run 4x’s or less during a week. So what does that tell you?

Your body gets tired. Your legs get tired. Sometimes, less is more.

Cross training is not only important for overall health, but will actually allow you to improve in your “sport” (i.e. running faster, longer, etc.)

Cross training helps prevent injuries by correcting muscle imbalances.
It helps prevent burn out, and it helps maintain cardiovascular fitness while reducing your risks of injuries by preventing overuse.

Win, win, and win situation.

If your only form of exercise is running, you’re only exercising those muscles and joints that you use to run (duh). Your body will eventually adjust to the stresses of running, and you will no longer burn as many calories as your body used to when you first started running.

Cross training prevents your body from adjusting, which is GOOD!
By correcting muscle imbalances, your body reduces it’s risk of injury.
Think about it: the repetitive motion of any exercise over and and over and over again is going to fatigue your body in a negative way. I know from experience that running too much will burn you out, and once I got my butt on an elliptical, I was thrilled to drip sweat and not have to run.
However, the reverse is also true: there was once a time when I used to do the elliptical almost every day for 1+hours, and it became ridiculously easy for me. And then I got bored. And then I vowed to never step foot on an elliptical again. And then that all changed when I was running so much these past few months and I couldn’t wait to get back on the elliptical to workout and not have to run. Not only was I doing myself a mental favor, but I was doing my body a favor too by working out other muscles and giving my primary running muscles a break! That way, the next time I hit the pavement, my legs were rested and refreshed, but I didn’t have to skip out on a workout the day before in order to rest my legs, I just had to CROSS TRAIN.

I hate it when people don’t cross train or aren’t aware of the importance of cross training. Just like when people don’t lift weights (which, by the way, is a form of cross training!) Do yourself a favor and cross train 1-2x’s a week and do your body some good.

And for your viewing pleasure: Bowzer! I really, truly hope that I love my first child as much as I love this dog.

The love of my life.


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4 thoughts on “X-train

  1. I tend to cross train when I get a running injury, and as I get older these get more common. For example, when my knee started getting tweaky after a 10K last spring, I took some time off running to try to strengthen it on the stationary bike and swimming. Eventually, I ended up doing a lot of weight training to strengthen it and now, while it still complains if I push it too hard, I’m back at the same weekly running mileage.

    Anyway, I love your blog and that dog is a cutie! Thanks for writing your blog!

  2. I injured myself training for my first half a few years ago, because I ran five or six days a week. Since then I’ve figured out that I can run pretty much as far as I want, as long as I don’t run on consecutive days. Now I run three days a week, and try to do something else on two other days, like riding, a weight class or yoga.

    It works for me. I PR’d a half in October and was barely even sore. And that was after a month of baking and testing Fall Food recipes, most involving unbelievable amounts of heavy cream and butter.

    If only we could convince all the serious runners of this methodology.

    Or we could just kick their asses on the race course.

    • Maybe you’ve found the secret: eat heavy cream and butter while decreasing days of running! You lucky duck! =) I wish that worked for me. Maybe I should try it?

      I’ve cut back on my running lately, so we’ll see how my half marathon training goes once I’m back into it! Let’s see how much ass we can kick! =)

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