Housekeeping: I sent out a group email Wednesday. If it’s not in your inbox or your spam folder, write me at akronrun@thebeaconjournal.com and I’ll fold one into a paper airplane and fly it to you.



The first time I saw our training plans, I had to ask what the word “cross” meant. When the answer came back that it was shorthand for “cross training” I had to ask what “cross training” meant. Yeah, I was as newbie as newbie can be.

I’ve come to respect cross training for it’s role in running. I have no doubt that running five days a week would either end in injury or boredom for me, so I follow the rules and run three times a week and set aside two days of rest.

That leaves two days a week to explore other fitness activities - or “cross training.” Sometimes I count our Downtown Walkers toward my cross training requirement. We've been logging a brisk walk of nearly 2 miles during lunch on Tuesdays and Thursdays. This summer, I might give biking a try. I haven’t been on a bike in decades. Literally, decades. (I hope it's just like riding a bike.) At least once a week I go to the gym and do the elliptical and a couple of machines the staff recommended for leg strengthening. Swimming is another option.

But maybe you don’t belong to a gym or have access to a pool or bike and are looking for exercises you can do at home, especially on foul-weather days. Here’s a Runner’s World article on 10 exercises for runners that they say can be done in 30 minutes, twice a week: http://www.runnersworld.com/strength-training/10-essential-strength-exercises-for-runners They even included videos, making it super easy to understand. And they don't look all that hard to execute.

There are a couple pieces of equipment they use that I’m sure you don’t have at home, but you can get creative. They say stability ball, I say ottoman. They say workout mat, I say carpet. They say kettleball, I say bag of potatoes. They say dumbbells, I say Heinz Tomato Ketchup. Hey, where there's a will, there's a way!

- Paula