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Why Runners, Swimmers, and Cyclists Should Cross Train

4 Reasons to Cross Train, and How to Do It

Maybe you love to swim but hate lifting weights, or maybe you'd never step foot in one of your gym's fitness classes because you'd rather be on the treadmill. We all have our favorite ways to exercise, but sticking to the same workout can lead to unwanted consequences, especially overuse injuries. Here are four reasons to cross train and what type of cross training you should be doing.

  • You'll learn a new skill: You'll never know how good you are at something else until you try it out. You may find that you're a fan of Zumba or finally understand why everyone loves yoga once you expand your horizons.
  • You'll beat boredom: As much as you love your sport of choice, workouts can get tedious if you rarely do anything else. Instead of sticking to your normal five-days-a-week run, add a few strength-training or stretching moves to keep your workout routine full of variety.
  • You'll balance out your body: One of the most important reasons to vary your workouts is to ensure that you give all your muscles the attention they need so that your body stays balanced. An overdeveloped set of muscles can lead to injury since the stronger parts of your body will be overcompensating for the weaker parts.
  • You'll have more endurance and speed: Making your body stronger overall is a good way to ensure that you'll perform better at your first exercise love. Not only will your body be balanced, but you'll be strengthening your muscles overall as well.

Ready to add some variety to your workout? Read on for some cross-training ideas for runners, swimmers, and cyclists.

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Susi-May Susi-May 5 years
I feel like training for triathlons has cross training built in — but still important to strength train when doing all the cardio and to work in the lateral plane with side to side motion. Running, biking, and swimming all emphasize forward motion.
stilllearning2b stilllearning2b 5 years
Another reason to cross train is it gives you some humility. I am confident in the gym, but swimming really throws me for a loop. It has helped me to be more understanding with those who aren't as comfortable in the weight room.
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