Cross-training for runners

Movement Practices and Cross-Training for Runners

As runners, we all get in the habit of JUST running. Switching up our activities and adding movement practices and cross-training for runners can give our bodies a break and actually help improve our performance. Check out this short list of some key elements to take your training to the next level!


While great for the heart and mind, running places a lot of impact on the joints. Sometimes your body just needs a break! Cross-training for runners is essential to protect your joints deload from heavy mileage weeks, and train your body and muscles in a novel way. Great cross-training options include swimming, anti-gravity treadmill, circuit training, and cycling.


The importance of having a strong core gets tons of attention because it is super important to help our running form. Your core provides stability for your pelvis when your feet hit the ground. But what if you are doing the wrong core exercises?  If your pelvis stability is lost, your hip, knee, ankle, and foot mechanics can be affected. This can lead to blisters, aches and pains, and even injury.

At Back 2 Normal, we suggest that runners try a practice Pilates to improve core strength. Pilates is a method of exercise that incorporates intentional, focused and flowing movements, correct spinal and pelvic alignment, all with an emphasis on proper breathing. 


Training for an event can be tough physically and mentally. If you’re struggling to train after an injury or to keep yourself on track through a tough training schedule, consider adding a mindfulness practice to your training program.

Yoga and meditation are great tools for mindfulness. Our yoga philosophy at Back 2 Normal is centered around self-care, balance, and mindfulness through a one-on-one approach. Yoga is a great compliment to any fitness program to enhance flexibility, performance, and recovery.


Training for any race puts a strain on your body. This, in addition to the repetitive stresses of daily living and other emotional, mental, and environmental stressors, can be accumulated in your connective tissue, which surrounds every joint, muscle, nerve, bone, and organ. “Stuck stress” accumulates, causing dehydration in the connective tissue, which interferes with the body’s natural healing process; and starts a domino effect of aches, pain, stiffness, neck and low back pain, digestive problems, and injury.

In other words, staying mobile is extremely important! When we are free of “stuck stress,” your body functions more easily. You can accomplish this through spinal mobility work using just your body weight, using bands to assist you with mobility, or using the MELT program which is a breakthrough technique that directly addresses these issues to rehydrate the connective tissue, rebalance the nervous system, and mobilize your connective tissue and joints in preparation for training.

Author Note: Let our athletic performance and recovery specialists help you develop the best movement practices to improve your performance, aid recovery, and prevent injury, and help you reach your goals. At Back 2 Normal we offer a wellness-focused & supportive environment that can help you on your journey!

Anika Arevalo, PT, DPT, Physical Therapist & Pelvic Health Specialist has been a licensed physical therapist for 7 years, earning her undergraduate degree and Doctorate of Physical Therapy from the University of Miami. Her background is in orthopedics, sports medicine and pelvic floor rehabilitation for males and females. She is also certified in dry needling and is a certified level 1 running coach through Road Runners Club of America. Her passion is patient care and using an integrative approach to lead to healing. She is an avid marathon runner and yogi.

Join thousands of like-minded women for an inspiring weekend full of fun and camaraderie. Run, walk, skip, jump or race! Don’t miss out, sign up today and join the fun!