For me, cross training is not so much something I do because of concrete improvements that I expect from it, but because someone said it was a good idea.
I picked the erg, because I’m familiar with rowing mechanics, and it uses muscles in a very different way than running. I’m considering putting street tires on my mountain bike and riding that in the spring, but right now that’s both optimistic (last time I fired it up the gears ‘popped’ about every 5th rotation of the pedals) and far off.
So in the mean time, I row. This weeks workout started with the stupid ‘resistance’ control set all the way to 10 (most people seem to think ‘higher number = better workout’) so I couldn’t get my heartrate up into the zone; my muscles were so strained it was more like light weightlifting than rowing. When I figured it out and set the resistance down near 1-3, it went a lot better.
I’ve adopted a stair interval for these rowing workouts; 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 minute rows, with 1 minute breaks between. I started paying closer attention to my pace and power last night, so I pulled at about 25 s/m through every ‘row’ cycle. About 25s from the end of each row interval, I’d pull a ‘Power 10’ which would leave me within a second or two of the interval. I was consistent enough to just count strokes by the end of the workout, and be pretty close to the interval. Next time, if I catch the resistance early, I’ll be the workout will be really consistent and strong.
I did forget to turn off my HRM at the end of the workout (I didn’t remember until it beeped in protest of my low heartrate in the car) so the numbers for this workout are all useless. But I suppose doing it is more important than writing it down, anyway.
My legs are tired, but my knee is fine, and tonight is my pace run. 4 miles in 48 minutes is the goal. Just gotta find someplace to do it where I won’t get run down by a truck.