Training for a triathlon involves strength and flexibility as well as increased endurance and stamina. Not only will a triathlon put all the muscles of your body to the test, but it will challenge your breathing and endurance as well. To help prepare for a triathlon, one of the best ways to train and prepare is through cross-training.
What is Cross Training?
Cross training involves mixing multiple exercises and training types to focus on whole body fitness. The training includes a mix of aerobic activities, flexibility training, and strengthening exercise.
A typical cross-training schedule can involve yoga, aerobics, weights, swimming, and sports. You can also mix exercise types into one work out for example, aerobic exercise followed by weight training.
In general, exercise routines should incorporate several target muscle groups including the core, arms, legs, glutes, and back.
What are the Benefits?
By varying the exercises and levels of intensity, you will help reduce injuries that can occur from muscle overuse, as well as injuries that can result from repetitive movement for long periods of time. This type of training also encourages flexibility, which can help to further prevent muscle injuries and keep you properly stretched during your workouts.
Improves Fitness on Multiple Levels
Not only are you going to improve your cardiovascular health, you will also improve your flexibility and muscle strength as well. While aerobic activity, weight lifting, and flexibility training on their own, can improve your fitness and health, they will not have the same overall effect on the body as combining together.
Works Out All Muscle Groups
Through a variety of exercises, all of your muscle groups are addressed and involved in the workout. Very few exercise types by themselves are able to target as many muscle groups as cross training.
While workouts are important to triathlon training, sometimes repeating the same workout can become boring and cause you to lose motivation or become lax in your exercises. Making exercise more varied and exciting helps to beat the boredom and keep you focused.
Trains you Multiple Disciplines
As with any triathlete, learning to master multiple sports is a must. By cross-training, you will not only be increasing your overall muscle strength and fitness, but you will improve your running, swimming, and biking skills by having all of the muscles groups properly trained and ready.
While there are many types of exercises you can include in your cross training program, below is a list of exercises that will help get you in top shape for your next triathlon event.
- TRX – TRX is the use of suspension bands to create workouts for strength and flexibility training. Different muscles can be targeted through the use of varying amounts of tension and specific body positions. TRX is a great training tool for triathletes as you not only get a good workout, but you can perform exercises that specifically target areas needed to achieve the strength and flexibility required for swimming and biking.
- Strength Training – As with any athletic competition muscle strength is not only important to speed but to endurance as well. It is important that triathletes target all of the primary muscles by using varying strength training techniques.
- Rowing – One of the best overall upper body workouts is rowing. While the training of the muscles in your arms is obvious, it also helps to strengthen your core and back muscles.
- Yoga – Yoga is a great way to increase overall flexibility. This added flexibility not only helps triathletes prevent injuries while training or during an event, but also helps them to improve their stride and swimming stroke.
How Tailwind Endurance Can Help
The coaches at Tailwind Endurance understand the needs of triathletes and the importance of cross training. If you are training for a triathlon, contact one of Tailwind’s knowledgeable staff today to get started on a training program fit for your needs.