5 Indoor Workouts for Runners

Elliptical

The movement of the elliptical machine closely resembles actual running, making it an effective indoor substitute.

"If running is your primary form of exercise and you care about running better," Fitzgerald says, "then the alternatives of running that you choose to do, the more running specific they are, the more the benefits will translate back to running. The elliptical was designed for that, so it's a good choice."

Even though elliptical machines are non-impact, it's a full-body exercise with all your bodyweight coming down on the pedals.

To replace running with a session on the elliptical machine, try to do a workout with the same combination of heart rate levels as you would on a normal run. The time should be about the same too. This should give you a similar workout to running on the street.

According to Fitzgerald, your maximum heart rate on a bicycle is never going to be as high as it is while running, but it will come pretty close on an elliptical machine. You actually have to work much harder to reach your maximum running heart rate on a bicycle.

More: Your Elliptical Cardio Blast Workout

Alter-G

The Alter-G is a new kind of treadmill that allows anti-gravity running and reduces your bodyweight up to 80 percent.

The Alter-G is an ideal machine for injured runners because it allows them to run without putting weight and pressure on their lower body.

Fitzgerald believes that the Alter-G is one of the most innovative running inventions since the shoe because there's pretty much no injury that prevents you from continuing to run on the machine.

More: 3 Low-Impact Workouts for Runners

Bicycle

Cycling doesn't translate directly into running, but it's still a fantastic way to strengthen your lower-body muscles and core as well as work your cardiovascular system.

Fitzgerald suggests you shorten the workout time and increase the intensity. This breaks up the workout and makes time go faster.

Try this interval set: Pedal easy for five minutes. Then, pedal like crazy for one minute, easy for two minutes, hard for one and then easy for two. Complete this set 12 times and then do an easy cooldown pedal for 10 minutes.

More: How Indoor Workouts Can Help Your Run

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