Cross Training: The Value of VarietyIN ORTHOPEDICS
Stuck in the same old exercise rut? Want to try something different but don’t know what? Try what athletes have done for centuries—cross training. Since the days of Olympic decathlons and pentathlons, athletes have cross-trained because of the variety and intensity involved in participating in different athletic activities. The term “cross train” might seem mysterious, but it simply means to vary your exercise program so that the aerobic components complement the strength and flexibility training components.
Cross Training Benefits
One of the main reasons people stop exercising is boredom. Monotony can easily set in after becoming set in an exercise routine. Cross training can spice up your routine by incorporating multiple sports, activities, and workouts. The American Council on Exercise (www.acefitness.org) states that because cross training involves a variety of activities, it also involves a variety of muscle groups, bones, and joints. Risk of injury is decreased, and overall fitness and performance levels are increased.
How do you incorporate different exercises without compromising your current workout? Follow these tips for keeping your workout creative with cross training.
- Take a 15- to 20-minute jog to a pool. Swim for 15 to 20 minutes. Then jog or walk back to your home.
- Stretch and then bike to a local park or trail head. Do 10 to 15 minutes of yoga followed by a 30-minute hike or walk. Make sure to maintain an elevated heart rate.
- Try a combination of five-minute activities within a 20-minute period. For example, walk on a treadmill for five minutes, ride a stationary bicycle for five minutes, use the stair machine for five minutes, and then take a five-minute walk.
To warm up and cool down, make sure each workout opens and closes with low-intensity aerobics and stretching. As always, consult your physician before starting any new exercise program.
|Optimum Cross Training
To get the most out of your cross-training workout, Runner’s World magazine (www.runnersworld.com) recommends the following:
Sources: acefitness.org, runnersworld.com, WebMD.com© 2013. True North Custom Media. All Rights Reserved.