How to Fit Cross Training into your Running Plan

runner brooklyn bridge

runner brooklyn bridge

Training for a spring half-marathon or marathon (hello, Brooklyn)? While training for an endurance event demands a lot of time, fitting in a barre, Pilates or spinning class can have some major benefits to your finish times.

But while you know cross training is important, it can be hard to fit it in to your schedule. When I trained for my 1st marathon, I stopped going to classes. This was a terrible idea as ONLY running made me cranky and I was losing strength everywhere but my legs.

To keep sane and your legs happy – here are 3 tips I used to incorporate classes into my training plan:

1. Do You

When training for my first marathon, I followed a training plan that included 4-5 days of running a week. Looking back, I realized that running 4 days a week was not for me. My legs were tired all the time and I was constantly fatigued. Keeping a few Revolve or Sixth Street Pilates classes on my schedule would have made me a much happier runner. Only you know what keeps your body going. If spin class makes you happy–do it. Recommended training plans are not “one size fits all.”

2. Plan Ahead

It’s easier to get through that 10 mile long run with your favorite Exhale or Uplift class to look forward to. Cross-training days are built into many training plans, get creative!

3. Don’t Overbook

Make space and be flexible, but don’t overbook! This is especially true since the springtime weather doesn’t always hold up for outdoor running. One day might be perfect running weather and the next might be pouring. Allow room for the unexpected.

How do you incorporate strength and cross-training in to your running schedule?

Contributed by Jane Rosales. She recently completed her first marathon, and loves taking classes at boutique fitness studios in NYC. Read her blog and follow her on twitter.

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