You know I love running, but every professional athlete has to change their training regime to try and reach their maximum potential. What I mean is that you cannot only do or play your sport to try and get better. You have to train in other ways as well.

Basketball players don’t only play basketball. They have strength and conditioning programs that help them improve their ability to meet the physical demands that playing basketball requires. Football, soccer, and even professional fighting does the same thing.

Why shouldn’t runners?

Here are some ideas for mixing up your workout routines.

Swing an Axe

That’s right. There are some great outdoors exercises that help put a little lean muscle on while working your cardio. One of my favorites is helping to split firewood when I’m out at a family cabin. 

Even though you only need to wood in the fall and winter, it’s a task you can do all year long. You also don’t need a lot of extra equipment to do it, which is nice on your wallet.

If you don’t already have one, you’re going to need to get a splitting maul or axe. You don’t need to get the best splitting axe money can buy unless you plan on becoming a professional lumberjack, but get something that won’t fall apart.

Then, you simply learn the swing, and get to work. If you’ve never done anything like this before, you’ll be surprised how winded you get, and much of a full body workout it is.

Go Vertical

Instead of going from point A to point B horizontally, try a new challenge- go up!

That’s right, rock climbing is another great way to put on some lean muscle without the fear of getting bulky, while working on your cardio.

You can do this outdoors, or indoors at a rock climbing gym like this one if you’re more of a city person. 

It does require a little gear and a partner to make sure you’re safe, but it’s so much fun it might replace running as your number one workout or sport.

Dance, Dance, Baby

That’s right. You can help get your running body into shape and have a lot of fun at the same time.

There’s nothing wrong with cutting up the rug, and it’s great for your cardio. Certain types of dance like salsa really work your wind.

You of course don’t need to go the super formal rout and just hitting a club with your friends now and then is great too, but don’t get too crazy with the spirits as that might counter anything healthy you’re doing.

The great thing about this type of activity is it’s something you can do almost anywhere and you really don’t need any special equipment, other than some nice clothes if you’re going out.

As you can see, whether you are in the city or country, or whether you’re an outdoors person or prefer indoor settings, there are plenty of ways to improve your running game without just trying to run more. Even better, you can have a blast while doing them.