Discover cross-training with Marie-Claude Perron

Cross-training is a high-intensity training program that uses functional or everyday movements. Each workout is different in order to engage every muscle in the body rather than targeting specific muscle groups.

Cross-training is a group workout that is recommended for anyone looking to get back into shape, stay in shape or improve their overall fitness, including children and the elderly. Training sessions are led by certified trainers and encourage teamwork and foster a sense of community. People in a group motivate one another, push each other, and feel pride in seeing their colleagues succeed. In short, it’s an individual workout with all the advantages of a group sport.

What about injuries? When cross-training is properly executed and supervised, it’s a very safe sport, but the risk of injury can be high when certain positions are executed poorly and the right steps are not respected. It’s important to listen to both your body and the trainer, as well as making sure you master every step before undertaking the next one.

  • Step 1: Get your heart and lungs used to working a lot harder than usual by stepping up your cardio. Cross-training is hard on the cardiovascular system, and without proper training, it can cause discomfort.
  • Step 2: Learn to properly execute each movement with sufficient strength, gradually increasing speed to obtain better results. Doing the exercises too quickly and without mastering their proper positions is what may lead to injuries.
  • Step 3: When you master your positions and reach an optimal speed, add weights—but not before!

Cross-training: The Pros

On top of the psychological benefits of expanding your group of friends and being part of a community, Cross-training has the advantage of demonstrating results very quickly—whether physically, on a cardiovascular level, or for general strength or health.

As cross-training hones in on everyday movements, regular practitioners move about their daily lives with ease and agility and tend to avoid injuring themselves when making normal movements. Likewise, they carry out typical tasks and activities like grocery shopping, picking up heavy bags, playing with the kids, carrying babies, mowing the lawn and gardening with much greater ease.

For children and the elderly, Cross-training is particularly useful because it teaches them (or reminds them!) how to move and maintain habits that keep them comfortable moving about in everyday life, thus avoiding injuries. Plus, it’s a great social activity!

Getting Ready

Before starting cross-training, it’s important to find a community that you enjoy and a trainer you like. Visit a few gyms, talk to trainers and do trial sessions to find a spot where you fit in, testing to see if the gym’s philosophy suits your own and if your trainer is qualified to help you reach your goals.

Experience and prior physical shape are not necessary. All that’s required is the desire to be healthy and fit and ready to push your limits with your trainer and community of fellow trainees!

Where to Go

Marie-Claude tried out cross-training at the Reebok CrossFit YUL gym in the West Island, with trainer Michael Deboever. Take a look for yourselves!

Otherwise, proximity to work or home are the main elements to consider when choosing your gym. Look for cross-training gyms scattered along your daily route, and try a few of them out to find one that’s right for you.

What to Wear

Reebok has studied cross-training in depth to create a line that is specially tailored to the sport and ideal for multi-functional movement. This collection makes working out very fluid. And keep in mind that shoes are the most important element of the workout: they should be hardy, sturdy, and have no heels, which optimizes the position of your back and are strongly recommended if you practice the sport often.

That being said, you can practice cross-training in whatever clothes you prefer, as long as you’re comfortable. Try it out in regular running shoes before investing in a heel-free pair!

Check out Marie-Claude during her cross-training session.

Products wore by Marie-Claude Perron may have become unavailable.