Cross trainers are the ultimate in cardio vascular exercise when it comes to physical fitness.
Unlike running, cross trainers give you a full body workout with high intensity and low impact.
This high intensity is key with respect to getting an effective fat burning workout. The other important factor mentioned here is the low impact.
If you currently or have ever suffered from joint problems, whether they are knee, ankle or back; you will know that running further aggravates this pain. Even if you haven’t suffered from these problems, running with poor form or with improper footwear can certainly contribute to this.
This is where working out on the cross trainer takes the high impact part away from the exercise.
The other word often used to describe this equipment is an elliptical machine. Elliptical meaning round or a circular. The very essence of the cross trainer is that your legs move in a circular (or elliptical) motion, thus eliminating impact to your joints.
The other reason I opt for a cross trainer over a running machine is the fact that you can get a full body workout in the same amount of time as you would only get a lower body workout on the treadmill.
You can push and build your arms, shoulders, chest and back using the elliptical machine. By using pushing and pulling motions on the hand bars, you are effectively toning your upper body while you workout your lower body which is just an efficient way of working out. Two for the price of one!
Also with many of the best cross trainers which you will find at crosstrainerhome.co.uk on the market, you also get hand pulse sensors. These are ideal if you are looking to workout in a specific heart rate, beats per minute range. Particularly if you are doing LISS (low intensity steady state) or HIIT (high intensity interval training) type of cardio workout.
Riding your bike is another great way to keep fit. With bike riding, you, of course need to have good weather out doors. If its raining outside, your workout will be disrupted and probably will not be as productive or as enjoyable as possible.
One alternative to working out on your bike indoors is having a stationary exercise bike. These are really great. They give you the means to get a good workout and are fairly inexpensive. The downside to exercise bikes is that they don’t portray true to your real bike. Now this may not be a problem if you are a casual bike rider, but if you are training for a competition this would be an issue.
Exercise bikes are great but they are simply that. Exercise bikes. The position of the seat, the resistance, the movement – they are all different to how your actual bike will perform.
Magnetic trainers, otherwise known as turbo trainers are the solution. They allow you to ride / workout on your actual bike indoors. The way they work is you rest your front bike tyre on a ramp. Your rear wheel will be on the trainer. Some of the simple trainers simply allow you to ride your bike at your own pace. The more advanced trainers actually do more. They give you control with the resistance and a lot more.
Bike trainers need not be too expensive. The starter trainers can cost you around $50 or £30 and can go all the way up to a thousand or even beyond. But for that kind of money you do get a good quality piece of equipment.
When running, you want to take especially good care of what you are wearing on your feet.
As well as comfort you want your running shoes to be able to breathe. Most higher-end Nike Air trainers do allow this. They “pump” air into the shoe so your feet needn’t get too clogged up and sweaty while you run.
Believe me, there is nothing worse than sweaty feet when you are running, its demotivating and just plain disgusting.
The other thing to consider when looking at foot wear for the feet when running is comfort. If the shoe is too tight, then its painful, if its too loose then it can become very irritating and not to mention; dangerous.
So keep the sneaker comfy!
Balance and composure is the other factor to check. If you are not stable as you are running you could cause yourself long term injury which you may be unaware of at the time, or short term pain.
If you need any more advice on running shoes click here.
For those weight lifters out there, like me 🙂 will also need a special pair of shoes for lifting weights.
Most movements are fine whatever shoe you wear, however, when you are doing dead lifts or squats, you will need flat shoes.
Weight lifting is a very good way to stay fit, build muscle and burn fat.
However, when lifting weights, you have to be very cautious. While weight lifting proves to be one of the best ways to strengthen your body while you sculpt it into the shape you desire, it can also be quite dangerous.
If you are lifting heavy then you want to be more careful. Lifting heavy, while having amazing benefits, also can be quite dangerous.
Besides the obvious threat when lifting, you also want to make sure you have good posture when deadlifting or squatting.
This is where good shoes comes into play. Form and posture is everything when you are squatting or deadlifting. Poor form and poor posture can cause extremely serious injuries. Both long and short term.
Wearing shoes which are raised can add to a posture being bad.
This is is why many sports therapists recommend wearing flat shoes. Flat shoes force your back to be straighter than it would with raised shoes.
If you dont have flat shoes when doing these lifts, then I recommend wearing no shoes and just working out in your socks.