As some of you may know, I love to cross train. I could (and did) during most of my injuries cross train like a champion and come back from EVERY INJURY as a stronger runner…it may have taken a few months but I did indeed come back. That being said, I get asked a lot about cross training machines I use and to be quite honest…I’m quite picky. I don’t have time, energy or the patience to waste on machines I hate. That being said, I will use other machines occasionally just because I like to be a wild card.
This is getting confusing for me now…let me just talk about some of my favorite machines…
I wanted to talk about some of the random cross training I do (when I’m not feeling lazy and while still running). For me personally, if I don’t cross train, I will probably get injured. My body needs to cross train to work other muscles that running doesn’t work.
First, I’m not trying to be a jerk but I have no secrets of how to stay on an elliptical. I literally just stay on. Like I don’t stop in the middle of a run 5 miles out, I don’t stop in the middle of an elliptical session. Once my feet go on it…I stay on. I watch tv, text, tweet…whatever. Hell, I even tweet and text when I run easy on the treadmill…another reason I’m a fake runner I suppose.
I know plenty of different articles can better explain to you why cross training is important and why you should add a day or two of cross training so I’m not going to ramble too much. I will tell you though, everytime I cut out cross training I seem to get some sort of injury. I don’t have time for cross training, then I don’t have time to run…I don’t have time to get injured is most important.
Some of the machines I really enjoy to do my cross training:
The Precor 100i.
This has been my go to machine as of the last year. It simulates anything from a biking motion to a stair stepping motion and even a running motion. (It takes a lot of practice to actually get the hang of the darn thing…believe me the amount of times I’ve fallen off). I crank it up to the highest resistance (which in my gym is 20) and just go.
I have never done intervals on here but I know it’s possible. Honestly, if I could crank the machine up higher than I would…but sadly my gym doesn’t do that. I could spend hours on this thing because it’s very low resistance and I feel like it is building up my quads enough so that they are strong enough to balance all my running.
The Arc Trainer.
Another favorite of mine. I’ve been “Arcing” my life away since I first started working out in the gym around 9th or 10th grade. (way before running).
I’m most familiar with this machine and they have a number of great programs. I normally either do the cardio setting (you can adjust the level of resistance) or just manual at resistance 100. Resistance 100 creates havoc on your legs and you will be sore the next day (so good havoc I suppose).
There are so many different ways to do core work. You and I probably have a different favorite method. Right now, my favorite method is the p90x Ab Ripper DVD or the Nike training club app for iphone. (The training club is free!). I am not in a state of mind that I particularly want to sit in a gym and do medicine ball twists or whatnot…I have found doing these by myself, at my house is more effective…because I actually do them.
I personally believe that core work has gotten me through so many races. I’m hoping it continues that way. If I could just do 15 minutes of core work and continue to PR…that would be nice. I have a gym routine I do when I actually make it to the gym to do some work.
I could add something about swimming here…but I’m a lost cause with getting back into the pool.
Questions for you:
Do you cross train?
Favorite gym machine?