It was definitely a 7 (point 3) mile kind of Tuesday around here. I’m working on building my mileage as my marathon training is ramping back up! Hopefully I’l get in just over 40 miles this week. We shall see.
So speaking of 26.2 prep, for me I think a key component to staying injury free is incorporating cross training into your schedule. Most training plans actually include it which is nice. Here are my favorite ways to get some other workouts in and mix it up. If you are looking for ideas too I recommend Pinterest and/or the Nike Training Club app. Both are helpful tools to finding new ways to work it out.
My number one favorite way to workout aside from running would absolutely have to be indoor cycling. It’s low impact on your joints, you burn a ton of calories in very little time, and build your leg muscles for endurance. During my ultra training spin cycling also helped me to stay injury free and kept me super fit for those long runs. You can take cycling classes at most gyms or find a spin studio near you such as Flywheel and/or Soul Cycle.
As far as strength training goes, this one is a great way to work the upper body as well as work on lower body movements such as squats. They are effective and there are just so many things you can do with this piece of equipment. You can find some kettlebell workouts for runners here.
Yoga is another one for me that tops the list because you can not only work on stretching the muscles but also your breathing and alignment. Even when I do a run, one of the first things I do when I go home is a quick yoga sequence in my living room. Downward facing dog, high planks, child’s pose and pigeon pose are great for the core/hamstrings and especially those hips. I make sure to do lots of hip openers to keep my lower body nice and loose. If you’re a beginner to yoga try a gentle yoga class, restorative or to crank it up a notch check out some hot or vinyasa/power.
I taught dance for a number of years at my local gym and I think it’s an excellent cardio alternative to running. Especially classes like hip hop or Zumba are great because you are doing more side to side movement, something completely different the way you use your muscles when you run.
Some people swear by barre classes and I know a ton of runners that love it because you are really strengthening your lower body. They also use light weights and resistance bands to work your entire body. It’s worth checking out to try something completely different and really work different muscle groups. Check out my review for Pure Barre in Dallas here.
What’s your favorite way to workout besides running?