Cross Training Explained
Cross training is a training routine that involves several different forms of exercise. Cross training conditions different muscle groups, develops a new set of skills, and reduces boredom. Cross training allows you to be able to vary the stress placed on specific muscles or even your cardiovascular system. Cross training also reduces the risk of injury from repetitive strain or overuse.
Cross Training a Better Approach to Fitness
Experts say cross training can help us with the tasks of our daily lives. Implementing a variety of activity into your routines almost certainly guarantees that you will be more functionally active … and that you can complete day-to-day tasks with much more ease.
Cross training helps us to avoid injuries related to everyday activities. Climbing stairs, working around the house or yard, or taking the dogs for a walk takes much less effort when you're "functionally fit.” It's also easier to avoid injuries related to those everyday activities.
Professional athletes make cross training part of their regimes. While professional athletic trainers once believed it was most important to work on those muscles directly related to a particular sport, experts now say cross training is a much better approach.
Cross training is making its way into the average person's fitness routine. Cross training is making its way into the average person's fitness routine, with more and more "weekend workout warriors" discovering its benefits.
Cross training utilizes muscles from different parts of the body. Cross training takes into consideration that many muscles in different parts of the body contribute to one single activity. So to get the most out of any activity safely, you must pay attention to all the muscles in your body that are involved, not just the ones directly related to that activity.
Cross training doesn't require specific exercises. Experts say you don't even have to do a specific workout to get the effects of crossing training if you live a varied and physically active life.For people who are simply looking get the most out of their workout time, cross training doesn't require specific exercises. In fact, as long as you create variation in your activity, you're cross training!
Cross Training for Particular Sports or Fitness Activities
There are specific activities that make up an ideal cross training routine. For people devoted to a particular sport or fitness activity, there are specific activities that make up an ideal cross training routine. For example:
- If running has been your only activity, your cross training routine for overall better fitness would include strengthening exercises for the pelvis and hips, as well as weight workouts to build the upper body.
- If you've been doing only weight lifting regimens, you would add a cardio workout to your regimen.
Vary cross training activities between aerobic conditioning, strength training, endurance, and balance. To vary activities between aerobic conditioning, strength training, endurance, and balance you need to vary the workouts that emphasize each one of those areas.
Cross training for optimal success. For optimal success plan two to three days of flexibility and strength training, and three to five days of aerobic focus. But don't worry if you don't have that much time to devote to exercise.
Make sure fitness is a priority in your life. The most important thing is to make sure fitness is a priority in your life. If you're currently exercising twice a week, then simply finding time for one more workout during that week will help you burn more fat and make more progress.
You don't even have to do a specific workout to get the effects of crossing training. Experts say you don't even have to do a specific workout to get the effects of crossing training if you live a varied and physically active life.
Best Way to Achieve Cross Training
Cross training is doing two or more different types of exercises during a single workout session. A cross training example would be doing a Pilates or yoga class which incorporate the components of strength development and flexibility in the same workout session, while an indoor cycling class will develop the muscles in the legs while improving aerobic capacity.
Cross train by varying what you do from session to session. Cross Training can also mean performing a single type of workout during each session, but varying what you do from session to session. You can concentrate on cardio during one session, strength training and balance in another, and flexibility in still another. Then just keep mixing up the combinations so your body has variety.
Cross training is easily confused with “circuit training.” Because variation is key to cross training, it's easy to confuse it with the rotating workouts involved in "circuit training." But experts say the two aren't necessarily the same. Circuit training is just doing one exercise after another, but that doesn't always ensure that the routine is incorporating strength training, cardio, flexibility and balance. For true cross training you must utilize many activities to ensure complete fitness gains.
Sample of Cross-Training Routines
If you have time to cross train every day, you can do a different cross training session per day. If you normally only workout a couple times a week, you can cross train by just doing two of the sessions per week.
Session 1: Jog for 20 minutes; stretch for 5-10 minutes; do weight training or any other exercise that builds lower body strength for 30 minutes.
Session 2: Walk briskly for about 20 minutes, adding hand weights to increase the impact. Stretch for 5-10 minutes, then lift weights or use resistance bands for upper body strength for 20-30 minutes.
Session 3: Use a rowing machine, exercise bike, or treadmill machine for 20-30 minutes; stretch for 10 minutes.
Session 4: Swim for 20-30 minutes; then do Pilates, yoga, dance, or another activity that involves balance and flexibility, for 20-30 minutes.
Session 5: Walk briskly for 20 minutes; then train your upper and lower body using weights or resistance bands for 20 minutes.
Session 6: Walk at a comfortable pace for 30-45 minutes; then do Pilates or yoga for 20-30 minutes.
Session 7: Jog at a varied pace for 30 minutes; stretch for 10 minutes.
Cross -Training Bottom Line
Cross training strengthens the muscles, bones, joints, cardiovascular system, improves flexibility, balance and coordination and reduces body fat. By using the cross training technique you can get better results and with fewer injuries.