You’ve heard it said: cross-training can sometimes be as important as running itself. Cross-training allows for better overall fitness by helping prevent injury and exercising muscles that are neglected during your regular running routine. Take a look at this list of our favorite cross-training activities to add to your workout repertoire!
Cycling is a great way to give your leg muscles an aerobic workout without the impact that comes with running.
Calories burned: 400-740 per hour at a moderate speed
Not only will a hike mix it up, but it can help improve your cardio fitness and muscle strength.
Calories burned: 450-600 per hour
Lifting weights helps you target the muscles that you don’t use while running, and can actually help improve your “running economy.”
Calories burned: varies greatly depending on the weights used
Swimming engages your core and helps work your upper body, all while giving your joints a rest.
Calories burned: 400-550 per hour
Yoga helps your flexibility, gives you a mental break, and allows you to stretch your muscles that might be tight from running.
Calories burned: 175-350 calories per hour
Using the elliptical is a great option for low-impact aerobic activity. Plus, elliptical machines engage both the upper and lower body, something that running does not do.
Calories burned: 540-750 per hour at a moderate pace and resistance
Walking uses the same muscle groups as running, but at a lower intensity that will help in active recovery. Make it social by inviting a friend or family member to take a walk with you.
Calories burned: 177-300 per hour at a leisurely pace
An exciting aerobic activity, Zumba helps strengthen some of the muscle groups that you use while running — specifically your hip-stabilizers and calves.
Calories burned: 500-650 per hour
Not only is rollerblading fun, it is a great way to build endurance and tone your muscles!
Calories burned: 300-700 calories per hour
While it’s not considered a high-intensity activity, kayaking offers a time for your legs to take a break and gives you an opportunity to engage your upper body.
Calories burned: 280-450 per hour
Try one of these activities this week in place of a running workout. And of course, don’t forget to log your next cross-training workout in Runkeeper!
Feature image via Matthew Hillier