Born to run? Koko FitClub of Ridgefield on running, cross training and strength training
Running is fantastic cardio exercise, but for runners looking to increase performance, running alone won't do it. In an article in the American Runners Association Magazine, Paul Krause, MD, suggests biking, swimming, rowing, inline skating, yoga and strength training among other cross training activities, noting that mixing it up allows runners to become more complete athletes for many of the points made above.
The benefits of cross training are undisputed. Commonly attributed benefits include reduced risk of injury, enhanced weight loss, improved overall fitness and reduced boredom. Further, it can allow you to continue to train when injured by choosing an exercise activity, which focuses on other muscle groups or works the injured muscle(s) differently. For endurance athletes the benefits of strength training are numerous: increased muscle tone, strength and endurance. For those of us just trying to stay in shape, adding strength training to our running program helps us keep our metabolisms from slowing down by building or maintaining our lean muscle.
So runners should strength train and that can take many forms, including lifting weights or using one's body weight. Using weights generally requires knowing what you are doing in terms of exercise sequencing, reps and weights or working with a personal trainer – an expensive option, and activities such as yoga and Pilates use your body weight; however, while there are plenty of opportunities to push your weight away from the body, there are few exercises which involve muscle contractions from pulling toward your body (e.g., a chin up).
There is an option to which we at Koko FitClub are partial that being Smartraining where the workout sequencing, the weight for each set and the pace of the specific exercise are determined for you based on your level of fitness and your goals. All you need to bring is a good attitude. In fact, we even have a specific program for you called "Born to Run".
Peter Buckley is the owner of Koko FitClubs of Fairfield County.Koko FitClub of Ridgefield located at 88 Danbury Road. Read more about Koko FitClub here.