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Old 07-18-06, 07:33 PM   #1
suzieqtwa
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running to biking due ( to injury)

Hi,
Im new to this forum. I was a long distance runner for about 4 years...running 7 miles a day plus. I was in the middle of Marathon training this year ,and I got plantaer fasiitis ,and an accute case of tendonitous in my ankle (or what used to look like an ankle). Its been 2 months of therypy ,and I still cant put a shoe on cause my skin is so senstive from the swelling.
Anyway I decieded to take up biking. I havent ridden a bike since I was a kid ,and Im 52 now. It looks like fun ,but I want to do it for fitness. I dont even know how to begin ,or how does it compare to running. Do you get that same high??? I still need to buy a bike. The reason I got injured was because I never stretched ,and became to obsessed with how many miles I could run. I ignored the symptoms ,and ran through the pain. Are there any sites to help you get started with out injury??
Sorry so many questions ~ Suzie
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Old 07-18-06, 07:35 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum Suzie..you will find lots of knowledgeable folks here that don't mind answering any question. I am sure you will get tons of responses and lots of good advice!
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Old 07-18-06, 08:10 PM   #3
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Try googling up runners anonymous for the ten step program You came to heavy duty running at an advanced age and physical ailments such as that are typical byproducts of such a training program. Bicyclists don't seem to get the same endorphin release that runners do in the zone or the withdrawal pangs when they have to back off for some reason. Biking is inherently less efficient timewise than running for aerobic training unless you approach it in the same way you did your running: intervals, hill training, time trialing, eventually getting a power hub and computer downloads of your training efforts to moniter your physiology. OTOH recreational riding can be extremely enjoyable and far less likely to result in disabling injury that is stress induced such as your fasciitis. Triatheletes are legion and good riding partners for one with your background, they are fairly intense about their riding, don't doodle around, which can be problematic when recreational riding with groups of disparate riders. When I stopped racing long ago I had a hard time riding recreationally: ride 12mi and stop for a candy bar, ride 15mi further and stop for a coke etc. With time you will make contact with like minded riders and find a compatible group to ride with, as noted you might want to start with tri riders first. In my area there are several clusters of female riders that get out and ride hard certain days of the week in small groups for companionship and
to make riding more interesting. A decent bike can be had for $600-1200 to start with, one that will be more than adequate for the first two yrs. Conditioning is much more important than the bike to start with. 10spd rear clusters add nothing to the bike that 8 or 9 spds dont have. If you are under 66" in size you might want to look at women specific bikes, unfortunately these are usually more like $1500 and up.
Proper fit is important early to make the transition to biking comfortable. Crotch, neck and possibly hand-wrist areas are likely to be early problems until you get acclimated to the bike position. Shoes should not be tight, better a bit loose on the feet-that is what velcro is for, to tighten things up. Feet swell; inserts/foot pads are a good idea as bike shoes tend to not have inside padding, so the shoe should be large enough to accomodate an insert ($5-20 of the 'Dr Scholls' type to start). Consider getting pedals that allow recessed cleats for ease of walking. Some road pedals are incompatible with recessed cleats, many are not.
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Old 07-18-06, 08:10 PM   #4
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Hi Suzie--

Welcome aboard.

You definitely can get that "same high" on a bike. I've been cycling for 30 years, and I love it more than ever. Here is a link to some good info on getting started, written by Sheldon Brown, an opinionated but highly regarded source of all kinds of bike info:

http://sheldonbrown.com/beginners/index.html

I know from personal experience how painful plantar fasciaitis can be. The good news is that with rest and rehab, you will get better. The human body has remarkable restorative powers! Keep us posted on your progress and good luck!
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Old 07-18-06, 08:18 PM   #5
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Suzie; Welcome. Back issues & Dr's instructions to aviod running are what movivated me to return to biking. Many good folk here. Bob
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Old 07-18-06, 08:36 PM   #6
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Same High? No much better minus the injury, fitness gains same or better because you won't be sidelined due to injury.
I have to force myself to run and swim, but look forward to every bike ride.
Anything with 2 wheels is good, personally prefer roadbikes.
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Old 07-18-06, 08:42 PM   #7
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Suzie, welcome to bicycling. Have you thought about the type of riding you would like to pursue? Road, Mountain trail, or multi-use paths (MUPS)? My guess would be road based on your comments about liking distances, but mountain is always a blast.
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Old 07-18-06, 08:52 PM   #8
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I am a former runner also. I disagree about being able to get the same endorphin high on a bike. You can't. Just not the same. On the other hand you will have a blast and not hurt yourself.

I took up inline speed skating too. I find that has more similarities to running. Good luck...unfortunately Plantar Fasciatis is about as difficult to heal as it is to spell.
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Old 07-18-06, 08:54 PM   #9
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Hi Suzie

Make sure you get a bike that fits you perfectly. Try to find a biking group in your area

Biking is generally much less impact than running. Your body is fit and used to running so you may feel strong enough to ride far and fast but I'd suggest being a little slower then you may want to be until you have gotten your body accustom to riding. I also came to riding due to aches and pains from running for years, now I'm nursing an injury of over use. I think I simply did too much fast riding too soon...

Be Safe, have FUN!
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Old 07-18-06, 09:13 PM   #10
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Two very important words: Bike Fit. See if there is a top end bike shop in your area that will make sure your new bike fits your body. In the case of your ankle you did not say which tendon. But shoe type, fit and shoe placement on the pedal may be very important to avoid reinjury. Hope that all goes well.

p.s. i disagree with anyone who says you can't get the high from riding that you can from running. I have done a lot riding and running. If you get to the point that your foot allows it, trying to set a cycling PR on a 15-20 mile course will get you that feeling.
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Old 07-18-06, 09:30 PM   #11
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Thankyou all for your input. I went through a withdrawl (like that of a drug when I couldnt run). I was depressed ,and couldnt (and still cant)snap out of it. All this is very new to me as Im still going through therapy. The tendon I injured is the par...something. The one in the back of my heel next to the Achilles tendon. Im so frustrated. I am a very beginner to biking . I dont even own one yet ,but looking very forward to learning. I need that high. Im looking for a bike that I can go distance on. I will look through the site ,and start from there. Thanks again
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Old 07-19-06, 12:39 AM   #12
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No high in bicycling????? I disagree. Coasting down a long hill while you zig zag is every bit as much fun to me as doing barrel rolls or loops in an airplane.
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Old 07-19-06, 06:17 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monoborracho
No high in bicycling????? I disagree. Coasting down a long hill while you zig zag is every bit as much fun to me as doing barrel rolls or loops in an airplane.
Decending - different high - epinephrine (adrenaline)

Runner's high is more from endorphins.

You can get an endorphin high on the bike, especially during a very long ride. I like to mix my endorphins and epinephrine by riding long while dealing with traffic--or, during fast decents.

To the OP, there's many of us who have switched from running to biking. Someone else who just posted about it is DougG, but a forum search (is it working now?) will locate others.

Last edited by NoRacer; 07-19-06 at 06:26 AM.
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Old 07-19-06, 01:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suzieqtwa
Thankyou all for your input. I went through a withdrawl (like that of a drug when I couldnt run). I was depressed ,and couldnt (and still cant)snap out of it. .............I dont even own one yet ,but looking very forward to learning. I need that high. Im looking for a bike that I can go distance on. I will look through the site ,and start from there. Thanks again
Welcome Suzie:

Looking at all of the responses to your post from all over the place makes me realize how much I enjoy this forum. You will find some very interesting and helpful folks with a vast amount of knowledge and even a greater amount of opinion. They are aslo willing to share their experiences and joke a bit along the way.

I think back to when I was a kid (still think I am) and had a black Schwinn 3 speed. It was my entry into adventure and sometimes a bit of insanity. It was really fun. I bought my four year old grandson a sudo mountain bike / bmx bike and a book called "Mike the Bike". I've enjoyed riding up to three miles at a time with Tanner and reading "Mike the Bike" and listening to the companion CD. It brings back some great memories.

As far as finding a bike make sure that you start out with something comfortable. There are all kinds of bikes out there ranging in price from $ 89.95 to $8,995.00, but the thing to keep in mind is FIT and COMFORT. Go out and visit http://www.rivendellbicycles.com/ and get a sense of how they define bike fit and comfort. I think it is a good compromise to what I find at many of the Local Bike Shops (large and small), who get all wrapped up in road bikes that are not nearly as comfortable as a touring bike (hard to find at a local bike shop), hybrid (comfort bike) or a mountain bike, which can be used on the street very effectively with different tires.

Heal soon! Borrow a bike and go out for an easy/short ride with friends. You will find it a really enjoyable experience and most of all it will help you get over the loss of running, which you seem to be grieving over. I can relate to how your feeling as I heal from surgery and am impatient to get back on my bike!
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Old 07-19-06, 02:05 PM   #15
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Main thing is to get out and try a cycle. Any cycle- Make certain it fits roughly and see how you get on. Then you will find out that the bike you have is OK- Doesn't fit- too highly geared- got the wrong tyres on- Is the wrong colour. That can happen if you go out and spend a lot of money on a new bike too- So Just get out and ride.

An ex runner here that used to run Competitively as an amateur but injuries starting to come in made me realise when to stop. 10 year break from excessive training and I started riding. You can get the same high- Once the body gets bike fit- The butt gets attuned and you are on about your 3rd bike. Took that long for me to take the plunge and get a respectable bike. Different muscles to build up- Different attitude to take on board and different training regime if you want to cycle without getting bored. But on top of all that- As a way of retaining the fitness you still have without injuring yourself- Can't think of a better way.
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Old 07-19-06, 07:31 PM   #16
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Ive looked at all the sites ,and Im so excited to get started...biking 101 for me. I just want to have fun...I dont think Ill be racing, or anything (but who knows). Im concerned about the seat. I remember I rode a bike ,and couldnt sit for a week. : ) Do they fit you for a seat? I have to build up all new muscles. I love everyones opinions. Each one is different ,but all seem to agree how much fun it is,and its injury free inless you get hit. Thank you so much Ill let you know when I get a bike.
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Old 07-19-06, 07:34 PM   #17
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When I started, the first few rides of even a few miles made my butt cry in anquish, but you do get used to it. For some finding the right saddle is like searching for the holy grail. Now, I think I could sit on a piece of wood all afternoon and be ok. As you can imagine, it's all very personal.
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Old 07-19-06, 07:38 PM   #18
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Suzie, I too am a runner in injury recovery. I'm 54 yo, have been running since '94, and have 13 marathons and countless shorter races under my belt.

I've been on the bike for 2 months now and I'm really making it work. I have a competitive spirit and I regularly placed in the top 3 in the races I ran. While biking is non-competitive at this point, I get my highs by going farther and/or faster once or twice a week.

It can be a suitable replacement so listen to the advice of the others and make it work. I have ...
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Old 07-19-06, 08:54 PM   #19
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Also check out the "running vs cycling" thread in this forum.
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Old 07-19-06, 09:06 PM   #20
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The reason I got injured was because I never stretched ,and became to obsessed with how many miles I could run. I ignored the symptoms ,and ran through the pain.
Different sport, same personality, different injury. Get out and ride.....good luck
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Old 07-19-06, 10:00 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suzieqtwa
Ive looked at all the sites ,and Im so excited to get started...biking 101 for me. I just want to have fun...I dont think Ill be racing, or anything (but who knows). Im concerned about the seat. I remember I rode a bike ,and couldnt sit for a week. : ) Do they fit you for a seat? I have to build up all new muscles. I love everyones opinions. Each one is different ,but all seem to agree how much fun it is,and its injury free inless you get hit. Thank you so much Ill let you know when I get a bike.
Seats can be a personal thing, and wide-and-cushie isn't more comfortable for long hauls, ..but you will also want to get some padded biking shorts. At first you'll feel like you've got a load in your diaper, but it makes a big difference.

I'm also a marathoner who had to give up running. Biking isn't quite the same endorphin rush and hills are much more painful on a bike, but eventually you'll get sort of sickly masochistic about hills and start looking for more. It's a great feeling when you're hurting bad, loosing your spin on a long steep hill, and you just stand up and crank defiantly over the top. That's when you'll get that endorphin rush.

(and wear yellow on crowded roads)
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Old 07-19-06, 10:13 PM   #22
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I did the same thing more than 15 years ago after nearly 20 years as a runner. I'm 61 now, and I love cycling...but when I dream of stuff like that, I still dream of running. It's hard to give up something you've done so long.
There are lots of advantages to riding, though, My knees almost never hurt now even when I do big (for me) miles. You can GO somewhere--three hours of riding will take me 45 or 50 miles. . . OK, 40 or 45 miles. . . while three hours of running just left me hammered and back where I started. I can ride to the store (I live nine miles from the nearest supermarket) and back with a small load of groceries, something I couldn't do easily on foot. I used to run alone most of the time, except in organized events, but I've made some good friends in cycling and often go on group rides (I still like getting out by myself, though). And mountain biking is an entirely different experience. I live near a national forest, and if I burn out on the road bike, I can be in great mountain bike country in 10 minutes. I wouldn't give it up...but I'd still like to be able to go jog a couple of miles occasionally.
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