running vs cycling

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by big Den, May 28, 2005.

  1. big Den

    big Den New Member

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    can anyone tell an injured runner doing base phase training at 75% hr if the benifits of cycling at 75% carry over to running
     
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  2. Walrus

    Walrus New Member

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    This is a totally non-scientific answer, but I found that when I gave running away (due to knee issues) I got right into cycling and have progressed pretty well. Now when I break into a run, I really struggle. Maybe it's the different muscle groups used in cycing vs running...?

    I'm sure it wouldn't hurt though...surely cycling will give you a good cardio work out for when you get back in your running shoes.
     
  3. BikingBrian

    BikingBrian New Member

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    I used to be a long-time (9 years) runner and duathlete before turning completely to road cycling. In my experience, the cardiovascular benefits of cycling do, indeed, cross over to running. However, as the previous poster stated, since the muscles used are very different, you can probably count on some soreness in returning to a running-centered or running-only regimen after cycling for a period of time. Because you may be able to keep a good portion of your cardiovascular fitness, when you start running again it would be wise to be very careful about how soon you increase your mileage; your lungs and heart may be able to handle what your muscles and tendons are not ready for, leading to, ironically, injury again. That has been my experience, anyway, I'm sure there are others on the forum, particularly triathletes, who are more knowledgeable.
     
  4. ed073

    ed073 New Member

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    Not sure about the "science" behind it, but from regular dealings with triathletes and elite runners, the concensus seems to be that running fitness translates pretty well to the bike, but not vice versa.

    Dunno why.
     
  5. djwright4341

    djwright4341 New Member

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    So who here is in the military? Reserves or otherwise. I'm in the Army Reserves and I really struggle with the 2 mile run we have to do. I also absolutely hate running. I don't have a running partner where I live, and I just can't make myself stick with it. However, I do like biking and ride to work as often as I can. With all the deployments I've had lately, I'll have my first 2 mile run coming up in a little while. Do you guys think my biking will help me with this short a distance running? Prior to taking up biking, it was the cardio portion that would give out before my legs on the run so I think biking will have helped. Or should I just try to force myself to pound pavement to prepare for the stupid run?
     
  6. Walrus

    Walrus New Member

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    I would definitely get out and do some running. The biking will help a lot, but I find that the muscle groups used are different. If your cardio is good, then maybe you could work on your leg strength while biking ie. push a harder gear at lower cadence?
     
  7. kennf

    kennf New Member

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    I agree with what everyone else has said. You gotta get some run time. I've found that if I train very hard on the bike for an extended period and try to go for a run, my chest will feel incredibly tight and I'll have a hard time breathing regardless of my aerobic fitness. After about two weeks of running, it feels like everything sort of opens up, and I can breath easy. Must be the road shock thing. Also, my legs (mostly calves) are sore for a week if I haven't been running consistently.

    I've also noticed that long time runners who switch to cycling generally do very well, and progress quickly. I don't know why running would be better at building an aerobic base than moderate cycling, but it seems to be the case.
     
  8. Smartt/RST

    Smartt/RST New Member

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    This is THE big pit fall when you've not been running but have been maintaining some level of cardiovascular fitness through a different modality.
    As a runner, you should know what your paces were before you were injured; make appropriate reductions to those paces when you return and run by pace, not by how your breathing or heart rate is.
    As far as fitness transfer goes, always assume that your training is specific to what you are doing: to improve your run, you need to run...etc.
    There is a small amount of fitness transfer from running to cycling (and not vice versa), but only if your fitness level is quite low. IOW, the more trained you are in any sport, the less and less cross-training will effect your fitness in your choosen sport.
     
  9. BlueIcarus

    BlueIcarus New Member

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    My recreational opinion:

    On a recreational level, for me works best to get my cardio fitness running on weekdays and enjoy bike @ weekends. Two reasons:

    a) I can get more benefit in less time by running. Easier to get my HR up running
    b) I feel running benefits my cycling but not the opposite. On a local
    fitness board, everyone who runs and cycles experience this.

    But for sure on an amateur/pro racer, things are different. I do MTB at weekend
    just for the fun of it. And sounds strange, but I also enjoy my 30-min running sessions....
     
  10. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    That's something that I've never quite understood. I just don't get it. I know that seems to be the general (nay, overwhelming) consensus but I'm just not buying it.

    I've always been able to get an equally gruelling 30 minute session on the bike just by bumping up the MPH so that I am out of my comfort zone. In fact, that's why I quit running altogether! Why beat up my knees and back when I can accomplish the same thing with zero impact (sans falling off the bike :eek: )?


    Any coaches out there want to chime in? Ric? Andy? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?


    I do understand that it's harder to switch from cycling to running due to the impact the joints receive. I completely concur with that. No arguments there. But I just can't accept the other as being a universal truth. I can see where people would feel that is true, however, how people feel about something does not make it a scientific fact.

    I NEED ANSWERS, BONES!! :D

    P.S. I'm not attacking you personally IC. I would just like to know the absolute truth as opposed to the relative truth.
     
  11. frenchyge

    frenchyge New Member

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    I'm not sure how hard you run, but when I used to run on a treadmill it would typically show about 1100 kcal/hr. That's jogging at a couple mile pace (5.5-6.5 minute miles), not sprinting. 1100 kcal/hr is 1278 watts, and there's no way I could keep that up for very long on a bike. Of course, I could also run faster if I was really pressed for time (or being chased by a bear :p).

    I know that's not very scientific, but that's my experience. I think the fact that the bike supports most of your body weight makes the big difference.
     
  12. wilmar13

    wilmar13 New Member

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    Well I tend to agree with Dr. Morbius, if you burn more calories running than on the bike you are riding too slow!
    But this is a good point, without the proper muscle conditioning perhaps you can't push yourself hard enough on a bike, so that is why non-cyclists can get a better workout from running.

    For a conditioned cyclist about the only arguement about results in small time that makes sense to me is that it takes less total time because of gear requirements. Getting a better workout in 30 minutes of running vs. 30 minutes of riding at the same exertion level is BS (for conditioned cyclist)...however if you have ONLY 30 minutes you will get about 29min and 30 sec of exercise from running but only 25 minutes from cycling (times may vary but you get my point).
     
  13. roadhog

    roadhog New Member

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    I'm active Army, but in a situation where I don't have to do regular PT with a unit or anything. I control all facets of my own fitness program. I run and cycle (and swim, but not relevant in this discussion it seems), but cycle much more than run. I agree that you need to do SOME running at least for the 2-mile test, but I don't think all that much. If you have trouble meeting time requirements, work on some interval training to increase speed (and perhaps pain threshold). But if you are keeping a good fitness level through cycling then it shouldn't take too much running to perform adequately on the test...
     
  14. BlueIcarus

    BlueIcarus New Member

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    Hey don't worry Doctor Morbius, I don't feel attacked at all :D
    I know from your posts that you never agree with this 'intensity' issue.

    I just CAN'T mantain the same intensity on the bike compared to running due
    to:
    a) Traffic lights. I must stop every couple of minutes.
    b) Traffic itself. This is Madrid, Spain. Probably one of the most traffic-intense
    cities. Yeah and angriest drivers against cyclists. Sometimes the traffic is as slow as 10 km/h.

    So If I just put a couple of running shoes and go to the park 4 minutes from home, I can get my intensity where I want and all the time I want it there.

    To clarify my point, two facts:
    a) At the winter I just stayed at my Tacx Flow trainer. No running. Just staying at the zone I want, all the time I wanted. But now the weather is OK
    and prefer to do something outside. That leads me to running
    b) I wish I had a seconday road/trail nereby just to do my workouts everytime I want. If it was like this, I won't run I'll be out with my bike all the time

    Hope you understand my view,

    Oscar
     
  15. madisongrrl

    madisongrrl New Member

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    In the book Going Long, doesn't Gordo say that biking fitness seems to translate to running fitness but not the other way around. I'll have to look it up again....and I'm not sure that there is any science behind this either...it might just be anecdotal
     
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