5 Ways to I Like to Cross Train

Runners all know that cross training is important. It’s a ticket to potentially staying injury free. Although cross training can injure you, too.

But that pesky cross training just seems to get in the way of running, doesn’t it?

As a runner who struggles with keeping her IT band happy, I do try hard to get my cross training in.

This Friday’s focus from Cynthia from You Signed Up for What?, Courtney from Eat Pray Run DC, and Mar from Mar on the Run is fitness.

 

Swimming: joint friendly cross training
 
Swimming
It’s just a wee bit ironic that I say swimming, since it’s been half a year since I swam.

Swimming actually did seem to aggravate my IT band while I was struggling with it this summer, so I stopped swimming. And I love to swim! Just further proof that running is truly addictive — we’re willing to give up all sorts of things so we can keep running!

I won’t be going back to swimming for a while, either. After getting pretty sick after swimming last winter, I decided I wouldn’t swim in the winter, either. I have very thick hair that takes many hours to dry.

Swimming strengthens pretty much the entire body and it’s easy on the joints.

Purely Twins
Michelle and Lori, the twins behind Purely Twins, are just geniuses in my book. There are HIIT workouts, bodyweight workouts, total body workouts, kettlebells workouts, short workouts . . . you name it, you’ll probably find it here. Most of the workouts aren’t super long, either.

Check out their recipes, too. Yummy!

Tone It Up
Katrina and Karena are the dynamic duo behind Tone It Up, which I’ve only recently begun exploring.I bought their book when it was a Kindle Deal, and I like that they like to combine strength and yoga, and take a holistic approach to fitness.

I’ve been trying some of their free workouts over the last couple of weeks and I really like them. Enough so that I’ve looked at their DVDs, which, sadly, seem overpriced to me. The good news is that there are plenty of free workouts you can try. They will definitely tone you up, and most of them are 30 minutes or less.

The 10 Minute Solution Series
One of my favorite ways to get in cross training is in short bursts! And the 10 Minute Solution is perfect for that. I often use just one 10 minute segment as a warmup to a longer strength training session.

You can buy them on Amazon, from Collage Video, bookstores, and sometimes big box stores like Target, Walmart, Best Buy. Got a body part you want to work or a type of workout you want to try? No doubt 10 Minute Solution has a DVD for you.

Blogilates
I have been a big Blogilates fan for years. Cassey is just so bubbly; how could you not enjoy her?

All her workouts are free. She sells other stuff that is no doubt what keeps her afloat: gorgeous (but pricey) gym bags, clothes, accessories, and yes, she has a few DVDs, too (which are very reasonably priced).

Most of the workouts are relatively short. They’re broken down by category, but since most are based on pilates, you can expect to work your core whether or not that’s the target of the workout.

These are just a few of my go-tos for cross training. There is so much out there these days, and a lot of it is free!

 Do you have a favorite type of cross training?

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27 thoughts on “5 Ways to I Like to Cross Train

  1. Great ideas for some new things I might need to try. I am planning to get back in the pool next week. Sadly I just had my first IT band problem during my marathon Sunday and am now going to delve further into your blog to see if you have any magic exercises for the problem., I go to my first PT appointment this afternoon.

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    1. I wish I had magic exercises for IT – it’s probably something I will always struggle with. Such a pain!

      strengthrunning.com is a good resource. I used the iron strength dvd from runner’s world a lot this summer. When my runs get to double digits, I use Rocktape (adheres better than KT) & that really saves me – I might still get pain, but I know I won’t seriously injure myself. Of course I’ve never done a full!

      I’ve also never done PT, but I do go to the chiropractor regularly & it does seem to help.

      Running too fast, hills, & increasing mileage too quickly can all be culprits & the wrong shoes can contribute, too.

      I’m sorry you have troubles with it, but hopefully PT will sort you out. Good luck!

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  2. All great ideas šŸ™‚
    I am so envious of those who can swim! I am very weak in the water. Last year it made a huge difference for me while I had the stress fracture. The club I went to is about a hour half drive from me through and I just don’t want to go through that again…

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    1. OMG, I would so looooove to have a pool. Granted, most of the the summer it’s not even hot enough to swim here, but I would be in it.

      I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve contemplated jumping into a pool in the neighborhood as I was running (sadly, the neighbors I know don’t have the pools!).

      I always figure no one’s using it anyway.

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  3. I have a pesky IT band too, so all of my cross training is related to strength training. I have some 10-minute solutions, and those can get my heart rate up, so I do get some cardio at the same time. Mostly though I take it slow when I’m strength training so I can focus on the movement and the proper way to do it.

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  4. I am gonna have to check out Blogilates! I am a yoga teacher, so my main cross training is yoga! I love it. It keeps my hamstrings from tightening up and helps me stay mindful… even when I run.

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  5. I don’t know if I have one favorite cross training activity. I do enjoy strength training, yoga, pilates, walking, elliptical, step aerobics….pretty much most things. I’m not much of a swimmer. Probably because we didn’t have a pool growing up….I know that sounds funny being that I grew up in LA.

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  6. I love swimming and am lucky because I have short hair, so it dries in less than 5 minutes ! I hate putting my head under water but between breast stroke and the back stroke I get a great workout. I haven’t heard of the other things you mention…

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  7. I love cross-training, and it’s SO important! Running is my forte’ but I love the challenge of stair-training. I also love strength-training, and I’m learning to like yoga (that’s been a long journey). I’m hoping to learn more about cycling this year, and (someday) hope to get my feet wet and take swim lessons.

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