Have Better Gains, Endurance and Sex: The Benefits of Crosstraining

Alain Saint-Dic
Alain Saint-Dic, Health and Fitness Editor at 20something, brings over nine years of experience in the health and fitness industry. Though he studied pre-law, his love for the human body, it's adaptive ability and unlocking the largely untapped potential of human beings led him to pursue a passionate career in health, fitness, and athletics.

Most of us tend to fall into certain categories when it comes to our mode of fitness expression. A few of the large groups you’ll find are cyclists, runners, and lifters. We are extremely dedicated to our crafts, and though we may dabble in a few other modalities, if anyone inquired about our preference, one would jump to mind immediately. Luckily, pushing your body to its limits is a gratifying process no matter how you choose to do it, however, there are benefits to switching it up every now and then.

Endurance for Lifters

Hardcore lifters have a tendency to shy away from cardio activities, because unless they’re at a certain point in the year, endurance activities do pose the risk of taking away from hard earned muscle gains in the gym. However, endurance activities have great crossover benefits for lifters.

  • Circulation– A lot of the body’s efficiency comes down to how well your body circulates blood. This leads to increase in oxygen and nutrient uptake level, hence, leading to more effective workouts.
  • Muscle Endurance-Although muscle endurance is best trained in the gym with high volume workouts, no one ever suffered from having a solid base of cardiorespiratory endurance. If your energy systems are fine tuned all around, you can have longer and harder workouts.
  • Sex– Speaking of longer and harder, combine your short burst lifting for muscle mass and strength, with an aerobic base, and you may get some extra mileage out of your body in the bedroom.
  • Shreds– If you supplement properly with BCAA’s and don’t kill off your gains, endurance activities can reveal the hard work that you’ve put in during the gain season.

Lifting for Cardio Hares and Bunnies

Cyclists and runners deserve a lot of admiration. There really is no limit to how they can push their bodies, and there are a lot of previously sedentary people who take on this challenge and seriously kill it over the years. In addition to putting in long mileage on their hearts, lungs, and legs, adding lifting to an endurance regimen could help you crush your next race.

  • Glutes and Hips– Two of your largest prime movers and power producers, lifting for strength will give you added power to these muscle groups, translating to more force production on the road, leading to faster times.
  • Gains– This isn’t about bulking, but about putting on the barest of lean muscle mass to further your training goals.
  • Sex– Did I mention sex already? Yeah, same as above.
  • Being Well Rounded– If you look at the elite level of endurance sports, you’ll find that runners and cyclists lift. There’s just something to be said for adding strength in all of the muscle groups that you’ll be using in your next race.

So 20somethings, I challenge you to explore your options when it comes to training and working out. I promise, you’ll reap additional benefits, and your body will thank you when you’re smashing lifting and endurance PR’s.

How do you like to crosstrain in your workouts?

Comment below!

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