Even though I would still push myself, I used to think of cross-training days as an “easy day” simply because I was not running. I have changed my tune! I have recently taken more of an interest in runners who periodically train for triathlons. There are so many benefits including less pain and muscle balance (read: better figure). I have also been in rah-rah mode since I learned that runners actually have the easiest time training versus an athlete from one of the other 2 sports. Runners are accustomed to the pounding of the pavement and so we can easily transition from biking to running. A runner’s cardio is also already conditioned for intense exercise, so runners have the capacity to take on swimming and biking. A swimmer commented that he had the cardio for the running, but his legs were aching from the pounding of the hard pavement.
A Note for Those Training for a Half/Marathon:
Cross-Train: This is identified simply as “cross.” What form of cross-training works best? It could be swimming, cycling, walking (see below), cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, or even some combination that could include strength training. What cross-training you select depends on your personal preference. But don’t make the mistake of cross-training too vigorously. Cross-training days should be considered easy days that allow you to recover from the running you do the rest of the week
–from Hal Higdon’s adivce to the novice
So, this has inspired me. I am now taking my cross-training days more seriously and enjoying them! I can’t wait to begin biking and swimming. (Mental note: find out when traffic is light at the gym’s pool)