Cycling for Cross Training

Posted on Posted in Motivation

By: Arden Burrows

 

Arden

 

Running is a great sport for getting active and staying happy and healthy. This winter though, I found that the repetitive motion of running on the frozen concrete was beginning to take a toll on my body in the form of little, persistent injuries. I was starting to get tired of always having to bundle up and trudge through yet another cold, snowy and windy run. Don’t get me wrong, I love running and all it adds to my life, but sometimes you just need a change of scene.

 

This winter I started to add more cross training days into my running routine, more specifically, cycling. Unfortunately, it’s a bit chilly to go outside for a bike ride right now so I had to resort to the stationary bike. I have to admit that the stationary bike is not the most entertaining form of exercise but it is a great way to stay warm while you workout and you can listen to music or participate in a spin class if you want the time to pass a bit quicker.

 

Not only does stationary biking help break up the monotony of running; it is also a great cross training activity. Cycling gives your legs a break from the pounding of running while using some different muscles. I find that biking really works my quads and so it is also a great way to increase muscular strength in that area. Finally, cycling is a good way to keep up your cardio on days that you aren’t running.

 

But where can you find a stationary bike?

 

Community centers often offer free spin classes, so keep your eye open for those. Additionally, your school might have stationary bikes and students are sometimes allowed to use them. Look out for bike clubs at school as well – often they organize quick workouts and are free for anyone in the school to join.

 

Here is a sample workout that is quick but effective. You can increase the tension to make it more difficult:

 

5 min. warm up, easy cycling

3×2 min. hard, 1:30 min. rest in between

3×1 min. hard, 1 min. rest in between

5×30 sec. hard, 30 sec. rest in between

3×1 min. hard, 1 min. rest in between

5 min. cool down, easy cycling