Monday, March 9, 2009

Modern Torture

Now that I'm back running outside in the sun again (hallelujah!), I think I'd rather spend an hour on The Rack than one more minute stuck on an elliptical machine.I now understand why everyone being tortured on the rack in these old pictures is always so thin: They probably spent the previous week stuck on an elliptical before finally saying, "No way the Rack can be as bad as this, bring it on!"

With today being my off-day from running, I was looking for a gym alternative to the ellipti-rack torture I've endured over the past few weeks of rehab. Unimpressed by the many "lazy man" machines that fill the cardio areas of my gym (seriously, if you can read a magazine while talking/texting on your cell phone during your "workout", it might be time to reconsider the way you try to burn calories), I ventured up to the old "exercise machine graveyard" in the attic searching for an alternative.

Up there on the Abandoned Planet, I found a dusty old VersaClimber. For those of you unfamiliar with this machine, I believe its name comes from the German for "QuadKiller". After 30 minutes (and 4,000 feet of climbing) on this thing, I was begging for mercy - talk about a killer workout!

...and you know what? There was no TV Screen, headphone jack, or even a bottle holder - It's just a good old-fashioned butt-whooping machine! I swear I've had less wobble in my legs after a 50 mile run.

I know there's no better way to train your legs for climbing hills than to actually run in the hills, but I'm pretty sure regular workouts on the VersaClimber will go a long way to helping me in some of my mountain races later on this year.

Having been surprised by this unknown-to-me machine, I'm wondering what else is out there for great cross-training workouts. Anyone have a special way they work up a sweat in some original way? I'm all ears (I'll try to hear you over the crackling sound of my burning quads)!


AnthonyP said...

Someone once told me that those Versa Climbers were killer workouts.

Dan Rose said...

I was wobbling and gasping for air like I just ran a 4:30 mile. From what I've read this evening, I guess VersaClimbers burn more calories than any other machine out there. After just 30 minutes, I belive it!

Steve Stenzel said...

That "QuadKiller" looks awesome!! Just ANYTHING but the elliptical!

Dan Rose said...

AMEN, Steve!