Cross-training: Is it right for you?
Cross-training workouts train your muscles to help you do everyday activities safely and efficiently. Find out more in this article as we discover the benefits of cross-training workouts — and what those benefits mean for you.
Chances are being a great athlete isn’t your goal in life. Like most people, for you exercise is probably a way to maintain or improve your quality of life.
Cross training workouts are designed to train and develop your muscles to make it easier and safer to perform everyday activities. From carrying groceries to playing a game of basketball with your kids, to spending quality time with your significant other, cross-training will help you with your day to day needs.
WHAT IS CROSS-TRAINING?
Cross-training, not to be confused with the Crossfit brand that is of course based on cross-training, incorporates functional exercises which activate different muscle groups all together rather than isolating only one muscle group. Cross-training also trains your muscles to work together and prepare them for daily tasks by simulating common movements you might do at home, at work, or while playing sports. By using various muscles in the upper and lower body at the same time, Cross-training exercises also emphasize core stability.
For example, a squat is a functional exercise because it trains the muscles used when you rise up and down from a chair or pick up low objects. By training your muscles to work the way they would while doing everyday tasks, you prepare your body to perform well in a variety of common situations.
Cross-training can be done at home, at work, or even outside. Basically, you won’t have to worry about having any constraints when performing the exercises. However, you may require minimal gear such as a jumping rope and some weight, such as a single dumbbell. Once you have those, you are all set to start performing cross-training programs.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF CROSS-TRAINING
Cross-training, as we mentioned before, incorporates functional fitness exercises which tend to use multiple joints and numerous muscles. Instead of only moving the elbows, for example, a functional exercise might involve the elbows, shoulders, spine, hips, knees, and ankles. This type of training, properly applied and programed, can make everyday activities easier, reduce your risk of injury, and improve your quality of life.
Cross-training may be especially beneficial as part of a comprehensive program for older adults to improve balance, agility and muscle strength, and to reduce the risk of falls.
IS CROSS-TRAINING FOR EVERYONE?
It is always advised to consult your personal physician before you perform any fitness activities, especially for women who are pregnant.
Leading health authorities such as the Centers for Disease Control and the American Heart Association recommend a weekly amount of moderate-to-vigorous intensity exercise needed to maintain health and reduce health risks. They recommend performing vigorous-intensity exercise for 25 minutes a day, three days a week, for a total of 1 hour and 15 minutes per week (75 minutes).
We took those recommended 75 weekly minutes and broke them down into three 25 minute workouts.
We program the workout in such way that a beginner and a pro athlete will be able to perform the workout to its maximum. Even if you have no experience in physical activities, we will find the right exercise for you!
It’s also a good idea to start with exercises that use only your own body weight for resistance. As you become more fit and ready for more of a challenge, you can add more resistance in the form of weights or resistance tubing. Performing movements in the water is a low impact way of achieving functional exercise.