CrossTraining for Strength

Occasionally, I still design training programs for Strongman and Powerlifting competitors.

zydrunas savickas

And the hardest thing about designing those programs is that these guys never, ever want to do anything except train for strength.

No rehab/prehab work, no HIIT, no flexibility/joint mobility work and certainly no cardio.

They are all too afraid that if they do any of that stuff, they will lose strength.


No matter what I say, they don’t want to listen.

So, when I read the excerpt to this study, I actually laughed out loud….and then sent out a bunch of emails beginning with “I told you so”.

The Study

Researchers compared a traditional resistance training program designed to increase strength with a CrossTraining style of program that combined strength & endurance training.

The study lasted 16 weeks and was tested on 38 sedentary, apparently healthy males (25 yr +/- 8 mo).

Subjects were age matched and assigned to 1 of 3 groups.

  1. A control group (Con)
  2. A resistance training group (Res)
  3. A crosstraining group (Cross)

After 16 weeks, no changes were found in the strength of the subjects in the Con group .

But surprisingly, after 16 weeks, researchers found that both the Res group & the Cross group were equally effective at “eliciting improvements in strength”.

They concluded that “concurrent resistance and endurance training (CrossTraining) does not impede muscular strength gains and can be prescribed simultaneously for the development of strength in sedentary, apparently healthy males and thus may invoke all the physiologic adaptations of resistance and endurance training at once.

So, for all of those guys who think that doing some HIIT or (shudder) cardio is going to steal all of your strength…RELAX


CrossTraining (done properly) can give you the best of both worlds.


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