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  1. #1
    Senior Member hodadmike's Avatar
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    Is running considered a weight-bearing exercise?

    I've got a friend who says running is a great weight-bearing exercise, but I'm not seeing it. Any opinions?

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    For bone density, running is recognized as outstanding if that is what you mean. The impact part of running is also important in building bone density. A neighbor was actually told to run by his doctor as he has a density problem.

    Other than that, I don't see it either except it's far more weight bearing than cycling due to the cycle's seat "bearing" most of the weight while in jogging the legs do.

    Al

  3. #3
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    Yes, when you run, you are bearing your own weight. Weight bearing exercise strengthens the bones, tendons and ligaments. And helps prevent osteoporosis.

    Cycling and swimming are not weight bearing exercises. If you want strong bones, you should definitely run some (or walk, or do aerobics) and lift weights.


    "Think Outside the Cage"

  4. #4
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roody
    Yes, when you run, you are bearing your own weight. Weight bearing exercise strengthens the bones, tendons and ligaments. And helps prevent osteoporosis.

    Cycling and swimming are not weight bearing exercises. If you want strong bones, you should definitely run some (or walk, or do aerobics) and lift weights.
    +1

    I've read studies that indicate cyclists (especially long distance cyclists) tend to have fairly weak bones, because cycling is not a weight bearing exercise and doesn't do much to build the bones.

    And so I do a lot of walking with a backpack full of textbooks, jogging on the college treadmill, and weightlifting.

  5. #5
    semifreddo amartuerer 'nother's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hodadmike
    I've got a friend who says running is a great weight-bearing exercise, but I'm not seeing it. Any opinions?
    Yes. Running bears the weight of your body upon your legs. What's not to see? It's excellent cross-training if done properly.

    I wish I was better at it and/or liked it as much as cycling.
    Can you pass the test?
    Yield to Life.

  6. #6
    Lost in the Black Hills mx_599's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hodadmike
    I've got a friend who says running is a great weight-bearing exercise, but I'm not seeing it. Any opinions?
    very much so. there is a tremendous amount of force. esp in the hip joint. i believe about 600 lbs of force in a single side hip joint for a 150 lbs person. this is for standing on one foot...does not even include the added jolt of force transmitted through the lower limb and to the hip in a moving state

    ...but maybe GoogleXYZ can jump in with a lengthy article to confirm that
    Last edited by mx_599; 03-25-06 at 08:52 PM.

  7. #7
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    That's a big yes, though the best weight bearing exercise is strength training with weights.

    Another thing to consider from studies with regards to running and osteoperosis- though runners do protect themselves from osteoperosis by using running as an impact bearing activity, they still tend to get osteoperosis in the upper body, since the impact doesn't affect the upper body- only the legs. So you'll still have to do some weightlifting for the upper body to prevent osteoperosis in the upper limbs.

    Koffee

  8. #8
    Senior Member hodadmike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by koffee brown
    That's a big yes, though the best weight bearing exercise is strength training with weights.

    Another thing to consider from studies with regards to running and osteoperosis- though runners do protect themselves from osteoperosis by using running as an impact bearing activity, they still tend to get osteoperosis in the upper body, since the impact doesn't affect the upper body- only the legs. So you'll still have to do some weightlifting for the upper body to prevent osteoperosis in the upper limbs.

    Koffee
    What about big hill workouts, or an intense fixed gear ride? A rider must come pretty close to the weight bearing effect of running but without the jarring on the joints. I agree that the upper body is in need of some kind of workout whether you are riding or running.

  9. #9
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    No. Perhaps a mountainbiking ride or a bmx ride, which involves a lot of jarring, but not road riding.

    Koffee

  10. #10
    Twincities MN kuan's Avatar
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    Wouldn't cycling prevent osteoporosis of the uh, pelvic bone then?

  11. #11
    Senior Member jennings780's Avatar
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    In the excellent book "Bike For Life" by Roy Wallach and somebody else, they have a huge chapter on osteoporosis and cycling. Cyclists are definitely at risk for osteoporosis. While it would make some sense that cyclists would be more likely to get osteoporosis than runners or weightlifters, studies have shown that cyclists get osteoporosis more often than couch potatoes. The Bike for Life authors found this shocking. There is no doubt that when doing a lot of biking you are really working your leg muscles. You'd think that would stimulate bone growth the way weight lifting does.

    The authors interviewed a number of experts on osteoporosis and came to the conclusion (not backed up by any studies though), that cyclists are at risk for calcium and other vitamin deficiencies due to the amount of sweating. On a typical 3 hour ride you can sweat 100 oz or more of water. THe high amount of fluid consumption and sweating dilutes calcium and vitamin D, two of the main factors in bone density. Their recommendation (as I recall) is to take at least 1500mg of calcium supplements a day and vitamin D - even if you are getting a decent amount of calcium from other sources.

    While their conclusions are not backed up by research, they do make sense.

    BTW- the book "Bike for Life" is fantastic. I wouldn't have bought it based on the description but received it for Christmas from my brother. It covers a lot of things that other books don't hit on much or at all - stretching and yoga, effect of biking on relationships and how to harmonize the two, osteoporosis, common cycling overuse injuires and how to prevent them, cycling and impotence, etc.

  12. #12
    Senior Member trailwarrior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jennings780
    The authors interviewed a number of experts on osteoporosis and came to the conclusion (not backed up by any studies though), that cyclists are at risk for calcium and other vitamin deficiencies due to the amount of sweating. On a typical 3 hour ride you can sweat 100 oz or more of water. THe high amount of fluid consumption and sweating dilutes calcium and vitamin D, two of the main factors in bone density. Their recommendation (as I recall) is to take at least 1500mg of calcium supplements a day and vitamin D - even if you are getting a decent amount of calcium from other sources.
    BINGO

    I don't believe the problem is so much the type of activity whether it be cycling, running or weightlifting, the problem is loss of calcium. I have never been an avid cyclist, but I have been an avid runner all my life and I have been lifting weights a good portion of that time as well. Yet I have nearly 20% bone loss. I believe cyclists could be prone to bone loss not so much because of their activity. but the intesity at which they pursue their activity. It appears to me that most people who fall into the category of cyclist put a considerable amount of time and/or intensity into their sport than those of other sports. If I was able to experience a 20% loss in bone density from running, do you think I would have lost even more had I been cycling instead? I don't believe so. But had I been taking adequent calcium and vitamin D to replace what I was losing from the intensity of my running, I believe that I would not have lost the bone density that I did.

    This is what I have gathered so far anyway in my persuit of answers.

    Of course it doesn't hurt to cross-train. That's why I am cutting back on running and starting to do more cycling.

  13. #13
    Lost in the Black Hills mx_599's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trailwarrior
    I don't believe the problem is so much the type of activity whether it be cycling, running or weightlifting, the problem is loss of calcium.
    type of activity plays a L A R G E role. bone remodels to stress regardless of exogenous Ca

  14. #14
    Don't Believe the Hype RiPHRaPH's Avatar
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    your knees do.
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