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Boston Marathoner Cross-Trains Her Lean Body

Posted Apr 16 2009 11:01pm
Marathoners are not known for lean bodies so listen to how my "lean and toned" friend Janet cross-trains for the Boston Marathon. You don't just go to the Boston Marathon---you have to qualify for this very prestigious event (happens this Monday).

In short, Janet cross-trains her body and she just happens to like running alot! Just yesterday, part of her workout was to ride on a bike. Janet also regularly strength trains, swims and of course, runs.

Personally, I don't ever see myself running a half marathon or marathon. But, if I ever decide to train for a marathon, I will cross-train like Janet. I would want to be a "leaned-out" marathoner like her!

So, here are some cross-training tips for runners:

1) Lifting weights should be a big part of your training regimen. Two to 3 days a week of full body weight training will strengthen your core and overall body. A strong core is a prerequisite to being a strong runner. A strong body will also help you recover faster from races and injuries. Plyometric and speed training should also be a part of your overall training program. Having more power and speed will give you an advantage over your competition. Speed and plyometric training increases your chances of injury. Proper warm-up is critical. You could include one day each of speed and plyometric training (not consecutive days).

2) Mastering proper running mechanics will make you a more efficient runner and protect you against injuries.

3) Don't over-train your body. Research shows that the lowest number of running injuries occur when you run three days a week. Each added day increases your chance of injury. Also, don't run too many miles in a week. Those who run 20 miles or less a week experience the lowest number of injuries.

4) You need rest between exercise days and walk breaks during long runs.

5) Proper warm-up. Dynamic stretching (using your muscles to warm-up your muscles) has been shown to prepare your body best for strenuous activity. A sample dynamic warm-up could be a 5-10 minute jog, prisoner squats, cone/ladder drills, lunges, etc. Static stretches would be done after your workout.

Follow Janet's progress in Monday's Boston Marathon on Her Fitness Hut!

"Exercise is not my life.....exercise makes my life better!"

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