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Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance

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Cross Train Your Way To Sporting Success

“118 pages of PROVEN techniques for spicing up your training regime, and achieving unimagined new levels of strength and speed – all this while actually reducing your chances of injury…”

Once upon a time, ‘cross training’ was something only a few runners did.

Traditionally, they cross trained to minimise the loss of fitness during periods of injury. Unable to run as normal, they’d typically take to the pool to maintain the cardio side of things while keeping the weight off whatever leg part had suffered injury.

But no longer. Today, no elite athlete worth their salt is ignorant of cross training.

Because with the growing popularity of cross training sports such as biathlon and triathlon came the realisation that cross training wasn’t just about the rehabilitation and prevention of running injuries. Used intelligently, it could actually enhance running performance.

And not just running…

So coaches and athletes from a number of different sports have become increasingly aware of the potential benefits of cross training.

But there’s still a lot of uncertainty about which particular cross training exercises to do with particular sports – and how to fit a cross training dimension into your training and conditioning regime. Because, let’s face it, most of us are already hard-pressed to fit our existing sports commitments in. So how on earth are we supposed to cross train as well?

That’s what makes my brand new special report such an essential read.

Because Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance explains, in words of one syllable, exactly what cross training is – how it works, which forms of cross training are right for YOU, and how to amalgamate a proper cross training program with your existing sports commitments.

NB: implemented correctly, a cross training program can actually reduce the volume of training you need to do annually, while both raising your game and lessening the likelihood of injury… And cross training’s FUN!

As a registered member of the Peak Performance website, you’re invited to order your copy today at an exclusive discount price – but for a LIMITED time only.

(More details on how to get your copy below.)

First let me tell you a bit about the six expert sports medicine professionals who wrote the report for us – each of them specially selected for their first-hand experience in this area.

You can be sure their advice is informed, up-to-date – and highly pertinent to anyone seeking to raise their performance, add new spice to their training regime, and reduce the likelihood of injury.

  • Andrew Hamilton BSc Hons, MRSC, ACSM is a member of the Royal Society of Chemistry, the American College of Sports Medicine and a consultant to the fitness industry, specialising in sport and performance nutrition
  • John Shepherd MA is a specialist health, sport and fitness writer and a former international long jumper
  • James Marshall MSc, CSCS, ACSM/HFI, runs Excelsior, a sports training company
  • Nick Grantham is a strength and conditioning coach who has worked with elite athletes for the past 10 years. He now heads up the strength and conditioning team at GENR8 Fitness
  • Professor Alison McConnell is currently professor of applied physiology at Brunel University. Her research interests are in respiratory limitations to exercise performance
  • Professor Andy Lane is professor of sport and learning at the University of Wolverhampton
  • Ulrik Larsen Bphty MAPA is an APA sports physiotherapist and clinical Pilates consultant specialising in the rehabilitation of sports injury

The collective wisdom of these six specialist contributors – each of them highly experienced professionals working with elite athletes across a range of different sports – adds up to several hundred dollars worth of advice and input.

And right now you can get it for a tiny fraction of its real value.

Whether you’re an athlete or coach, you’ll find that Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance is packed with plenty of useful, actionable information.

Answers to such key questions as:

  • why cross training brings such powerful psychological benefits to athletes – not just physical (p. 17)
  • Why certain specialised cycling techniques can massively boost leg speed in non-cyclists (p. 27)
  • Which point in a runner’s training year is the best from a cross-training point of view (p. 22)
  • The No 1 risk of cross training – and how to make sure you avoid it (p. 17)
  • How and why cross-training can add years to older athletes’ competitive careers – even if you take it up relatively late in life (p. 24)
  • How ball sports players can use cross training to become a more powerful thrower and hitter – and at the same time reduce the likelihood of those all-too-common shoulder injuries (p. 57)
  • Why triathletes themselves – for so long the ‘kings of cross training’ – need to revisit their understanding of what cross training is, and how they should be integrating it into their run, swim and bike training (p. 67 onwards)
  • A cross training breathing technique that guarantees you a lift in sports performance – and helps asthmatics to better manage their condition (p. 82)

So order your PDF copy of Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance TODAY, at our special, 42%–discount price and access it immediately in your download area.

Click here to go to our special, 42% discount offer and get your PDF copy. Or read on to learn more about Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance

 

Why Almost Every Sports Person Can Benefit From Cross Training

Before we get into the nitty-gritty of cross training benefits, we explain what cross training actually is – because there are a number of misunderstandings that serve to confuse many of those who have not experienced firsthand the benefits of cross training for themselves

Cross training refers to any mixture of exercise types carried out on a regular basis in addition to a main sport or activity. Most commonly, cyclists who swim, rowers who run and runners who cycle are all examples of cross training.

However, cross training can include more than one extra activity – the classic example is triathlon, which combines running, cycling and swimming into one sport.

Moreover, cross-training doesn’t necessarily involve combining sports such as cycling and rowing. A cyclist who engages in yoga to keep flexible; a boxer who practices plyometric exercises to improve speed and power; a rugby player who does Pilates to improve core strength – these are all forms of cross-training.

This understanding is crucial, because it opens up so many new avenues to training for strength, power, speed and flexibility – all without added risk of injury. Indeed, in many cases, a primary benefit is reduced incidences of injury. (More on this below…)

So in the first section of Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance, we discuss the principal advantages of cross training, and how you go bout achieving them. For example, we’ll show you an easy way to lose those surplus pounds of body fat – without risking injury the way you would if, for example, you increased your weekly running volume.

And we explain how to develop both your maximum heart stroke volume and blood volume – again without risk of overtraining or injury

One of the most interesting aspects of this chapter is our explanation of the three main ways in which cross training works to prevent injury – arguably the single greatest benefit of this approach to training, and not just for older athletes.

The discussion homes in on the specific benefits for cyclists, and for those whose sport involves a high volume of running.

Finally, we home in on the limitations of cross training. Because this approach to training, wonderful though it is, must be understood in the round. You can only get the best out of it, if you’re fully aware of its risks and limitations, few in number though they are.

The chapter concludes with a list of cross training exercises that are particularly suited to runners.

Click here to go to our special, 42% discount offer and get your PDF copy. Or read on to learn more about Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance

 

Bike Training for Non-Cyclists: which of these two-wheel, performance-boosting ‘secrets’ do you know?

As a serious athlete, you’re no doubt very aware that one of the most basic laws of exercise physiology is ‘specificity of training’.

Quite simply, if you want to excel at a particular activity, you need to train specifically for that activity in order to generate the required physiological adaptations. This is particularly true for sports that demand high levels of skill. So for example, swimmers who want to excel at their sport should principally train by swimming. Likewise cyclists should cycle and runners should run.

So if you’re not a cyclist or triathlete, I hear you ask, why on earth should you get a bike? Simple. You’ll be a fitter, stronger, more competitive athlete – but only if you know what you’re doing.

Which is why, in the next section of Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance, we share that performance-busting information with you.

NB: this information is not just relevant to runners, but to any speed and power athletes – no matter how far removed from pedal pushing their sport might be.

Our discussion kicks off with a study, by researchers from California, into the effectiveness of cycling cross-training between competitive seasons in female distance runners. NB: these are competitive athletes like you and me, not untrained subjects. So the findings are highly relevant.

In particular, the researchers wanted to find out whether substituting a whopping 42% of running training volume with cycling would maintain 3,000m track race performance and VO2max measurements during a five-week recuperative phase at the end of the cross-country season. So eleven college runners were assigned to either:

  • a run-only training group;
  • a run-and-cycle training group, which performed the two different activities on different days.

Both groups trained at 75-80% of maximum heart rate. Training volumes were similar to the competitive season, except that cycling made up 42% of the volume for the run-and-cycle group.

The benefits were obvious, and two-fold – both of which we discuss in full in this chapter, to your advantage.

The chapter concludes with a look at how certain specialised cycling techniques can be used specifically to improve leg speed in non-cycling athletes. It’s an amazing example of the way in which one sporting activity can profoundly improve the way the human body performs a completely different exercise.

Click here to go to our special, 42% discount offer and get your PDF copy. Or read on to learn more about Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance

 

Ball Players: cross training techniques to make you a far more powerful thrower and striker

So much discussion about cross training focuses on running.

In a way this is understandable. After all, running is such a common activity in sports. What’s more, cross training as a concept has its origins in rehab for running injuries, as mentioned earlier.

That’s why the next section of Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance makes a particular point of dealing with non-running training. It’s aimed fair and square at those ball players who have a frequent need to throw or strike a ball, be it large or small.

So whether you’re a golfer, cricketer, basketball player or tennis player, be prepared to find out something that could revolutionise your game. Quite literally….

The discussion’s starting point is this: throwing a ball, or striking balls with an object, be it a bat or a golf club, all involve the use of the shoulder and the trunk. Coaches looking to improve a player’s game, or deal with shoulder injury, often look at a problem somewhere in the shoulder and then concentrate on strengthening that area specifically.

However, sportsmen and women use their whole body in order to generate power at the end of their action and if other parts of the body are not strong enough or have limited range of movement, then injury may manifest itself in the shoulder as they try to overcompensate.

So the next section of Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance presents a cross training strengthening routine that can not only increase the speed and power of a throw or strike, but also reduce the likelihood of injury.

First we set out the basic biomechanics, just so we understand which muscle groups come into play, how and when they do. Then we look at a range of exercises designed specifically to strengthen these muscles – and in a way that will dramatically enhance your ability to throw or hit a ball.

Perhaps best of all, this programme can dramatically reduce the incidence of shoulder injury in ball players. A big plus for athletes… and their coaches.

Click here to go to our special, 42% discount offer and get your PDF copy. Or read on to learn more about Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance

 

Attention Triathletes: swim, bike and run cross training is simply not enough nowadays – not if you want to be truly competitive…

Many triathletes tend to have a traditional ‘endurance training’-based paradigm, centred on volume of training and time spent training for the actual event itself. There’s almost a ‘badge of honour’ for the number of hours spent running, cycling or swimming.

Triathletes will spend hours completing endurance sessions in the hope that they can squeeze a little bit of extra performance from their cardiovascular system, but are reluctant to spend just a couple of hours a week in the gym.

Unfortunately this is a pretty flawed approach, not least because there is a mass of research showing that volume of training is one of the main culprits of overtraining and injury incidence.

In a nutshell, the triathlon community has overemphasised the benefits of endurance-based training and underestimated the benefits of strength training – with the latter’s many benefits outweighed by the fear of gaining too much bulk, loss of flexibility and diminished ‘feel’ of their sport.

In Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance we show you how to put together a specific cross training program for musculoskeletal strength and flexibility that enables triathletes to fulfil their true potential.

First we explain why strength training won’t endanger a triathlete’s performance – quite the opposite, in fact! Then we put together a program that allows you to get the most bang for your buck – gaining the maximum strength gains from the minimum amount of time. After all, triathletes have a pretty full training diary as it is!

The programme includes the two core training exercises that no triathlete should avoid – plus four strength training exercises that will bring astonishing results in a very short space of time. And all this in just two short training sessions each week.

NB: the chapter is fully illustrated throughout, so there’s no uncertainty over how to perform the exercises correctly.

Click here to go to our special, 42% discount offer and get your PDF copy. Or read on to learn more about Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance

 

Inspiratory Muscle Training: did you know you’re almost certainly not breathing as well as you should?

For most athletes and coaches, it’s always been assumed that there is no respiratory limitation to exercise performance. After all, maximal oxygen uptake is not limited by the transfer of oxygen across the lung, but by the ability to transport and utilise it.

This being the case, what possible advantage could there be to increasing the ability of the respiratory pump muscles to ventilate the lungs – so-called Inspiratory Muscle Training (IMT)? Furthermore, the respiratory muscles were thought to be ‘super human’, and immune to fatigue, by virtue of their continuous activity throughout life.

The first questions about these assumptions began to surface in the early-1990s, when compelling evidence emerged that the inspiratory muscles (specifically the diaphragm) exhibit fatigue in the same way that other skeletal muscles do. This was followed by evidence that the work and associated metabolic demands of the inspiratory muscles during intense exercise were far greater than anyone had anticipated.

Not only that, but the inspiratory muscle would in effect actually ‘steal’ blood (and oxygen) from the exercising limbs in order to meet their own metabolic demands.

Any coach who was confronted with such evidence would instantly conclude that the respiratory pump muscles were a dangerous weak link and warranted specific training. However, the sport scientists were so bogged down by their preconceptions about there being no respiratory limitation to maximal oxygen uptake that it took a further five years, as well as overwhelming direct evidence, to persuade them that IMT is genuinely ergogenic.

Today, sports scientists know that IMT can bring about the following:

  • Lower intensity of effort sensations (breathing and whole-body)
  • Lower blood lactate concentration at equivalent intensities of exercise
  • Lower heart rate at equivalent intensities of exercise.

What’s more, these improvements are achievable on the basis of just 3 minutes training per day – an eminently cross trainable program!

So in Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance we explain exactly how IMT works, and what specific benefits it’ll bring to an athlete who integrates it into his or her daily regimen. We also show you how to adapt generic IMT to the postural and other demands of your specific sport, so you get the maximum ergogenic benefit.

Because there’s nothing you can add to your daily routine that requires so little time, yet provides such a large guaranteed benefit to your sports performance.

IMT also has a further plus for thse 20% of athletes with asthma. Because one positive side-effect of the training is improved management of asthma symptoms. Indeed, at least one IMT training product has proved so effective that its now obtainable on the UK National Health Service by prescription.

Click here to go to our special, 42% discount offer and get your PDF copy. Or read on to learn more about Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance

 

Swimmers: cross training can be hugely beneficial – but only if it’s done the right way

Land work for swimmers is becoming increasingly popular, although it is by no means a new concept.

Researchers and swim coaches have been expounding the virtues of ‘land-based’ training since the late 1970s. However, many ‘land-based’ cross training programmes simply don’t hit the mark when it comes producing a really positive impact on performance.

That’s because most coaches pay lip service to strength training by simply ‘bolting on’ a circuit session at the end of one of their pool sessions. Although well intentioned, they try and cover everything from injury prevention and rehab through to power development in one 30-minute training session a week.

So in Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance we explain how to put together a proper land-based cross training programme – one designed to give swimmers new levels of explosive swimming performance.

The chapter includes details of four exercises that’ll help you develop explosive starts and turns – plus full details of the correct way to perform these exercises. Because done incorrectly, they’ll have little effect. Worse, they may even increase the likelihood of injury.

The discussion closes with full details of a conditioning programme for an elite breaststroke swimmer.

 

Details of your special discount offer

As a registered member of our Peak Performance web site, you qualify for a copy of Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance at a special 42% discount. Place your order today and you pay just $34.99 (£21.69) (£20.99) instead of the full price of $59.99 (£42.99).

You save 42%.

Cross-Training: why and how to cross train for maximum performance is one of a series of special reports from Peak Performance, the sports science newsletter. This practical work book is not available elsewhere.

Order your copy today and receive the following additional benefits:

  • Immediate Access: You will be able to access Cross-Training immediately from your personal download area.
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