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  1. #1
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    considering duathlon, how to get back to running without overdoing it?

    I'm toying with the idea of doing a local duathlon in the fall (5ish miles running 12 cycling. I haven't run regularly in a couple of years, and have been cycling since august, currently riding nearly 90mins 4 times a week (only long steady efforts so far on the trainer during the winter). I guess I won't really find out until I try and head out for a run, but given my current cycling activities, what would folks say is a good time/distance to start with running?

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    Try a mile effort after a warm-up and see how you feel the next day. Sooo many people try to revisit their youth by going out a doing a run that their older body is not prepared for and wind up with an injury. Be smart and start small.

    Good luck and have fun.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldTryGuy View Post
    Try a mile effort after a warm-up and see how you feel the next day. Sooo many people try to revisit their youth by going out a doing a run that their older body is not prepared for and wind up with an injury. Be smart and start small.

    Good luck and have fun.
    This is almost exactly what I was going to post, so I'll just second this. Also, you can try doing some sprinting one or twice a week. Can you elaborate on what "regularly" means in this context? Overall, I think your goal is reasonable.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Trekathlete's Avatar
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    I think the best thing to do is go by feel. I am not a big advocate on distance until you are fit enough to go certain distances and even then you might over due it. Then wind up with an injury. My best advice would be to visit a local track and run 400m walk 400m etc.. until you feel up to running a full mile. Then start by running a mile and walking 400m. Nothing wrong with walking in my book to keep you pushing for your goal. I'd also pick up a running book and look thru it for some sort of training plan. You get faster, like 1748357 said, by doing sprints or fartleks. Listen to your body and you should be good.

    You should easily be able to get your body in shape for the duathlon well before the fall but maintain the fitness so you are prepared for the duathlon. If I knew more about your age, weight, height etc.. I might be able to have a better prediction for you. I can typically do that distance without training now. I'd suffer through it but I mentally know I can do it so I just do it. When I first got into multi-sport events I wasn't too sure I could do something like that and prepared a lot for the events. Now I just wing it. My way is not a good way it's just what has happened to me due to time restraints. Everyones different and the most important thing is to have fun while living a healthier more fit life!
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  5. #5
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    Thanks for the feedback all. Trekathlete, just for your reference I'm in my early 30's 5'10" 161ish lbs. In the past I've had IT band issues, plantar fasciitis, and I think maybe runner's knee (in addition to a stupid muscle pull while playing soccer a few years back), so I'd like to avoid those stupid things that were largely my own doing. First thing is I have to do is get new running shoes, because I do pronate on my left foot and having the wrong shoes definitely contributed to some of those early nagging injuries. But I'll definitely have to do what you all suggest, or something like the couch to 5k program, since I do tend to out-do and overdo myself trying to run longer too soon. Especially since I've been putting in long trainer sessions throughout the winter, I don't want to have a false sense of fitness if my cardiovascular system is capable of handling far more than my muscular system can as far as running goes.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Trekathlete's Avatar
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    hubcyclist, I am in my early 30's too and I am 5'8 155 lbs so we are of similar build. I would again just suggest taking it easy but your still young enough that your body can handle some stress. Couch to 5k sounds perfect. Visit a local running store for some shoes. They are typically a little more expensive but they specially look at your feet and how you pronate and such to point you in the right directions for shoes. I pronate and need stability shoes and I have been a fan of K-Swiss shoes lately except for the fact that they seem to wear fast.

    Find a group in your area to train with and you will gain a wealth of knowledge just from showing up regularly. A local guy in our area in his 20's was like 400 lbs and started working out with our local group and loves it. He's lost a lot of weight since he started and everyone enjoys him too. It's usually a very friendly community and tight knit group of people. So get started and have fun and enjoy the outside!
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    Also agree that there's nothing wrong with mixing walking with running. And wait awhile before doing a brick.

  8. #8
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    Agree with what the others said. One thing I'll add, as you get closer to the event, do some bricks; do a bike ride, then immediately get off the bike and run. Running is very different straight off the bike, but you can train for it.

    Cheers

  9. #9
    Senior Member Trekathlete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zero7 View Post
    Agree with what the others said. One thing I'll add, as you get closer to the event, do some bricks; do a bike ride, then immediately get off the bike and run. Running is very different straight off the bike, but you can train for it.

    Cheers
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  10. #10
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    My opinion: Start slow with low miles doing walk/runs if need be 3xs a week. Like others said, do this on feel in terms of perceived exertion as well as your muscles, tendons, and bones. A general rule is to increase your total weekly distance by no more than 10%. Same with increasing the longest run in the week. Don't worry about speed and intervals until you have a consistent base. As much as you have been cycling, you should still start your running at the bottom. There may be some cardio overlap, but the mechanics are completely different, meaning your muscles, tendons, and bones are at a high risk of injury.

    From my experience, it is worth taking the first month after a hiatus slow while steadily increasing distances. You are way better off doing this and staying healthy as opposed getting overuse injuries that will set you back way longer. Especially because your goal race is in the fall, there is no need to rush things now.

  11. #11
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    Really just repeating what's been said above about starting out slow....

    I've never been much of a runner. Way back in college I did some running, but at 18-19-20 years old you can do just about anything so running 5 miles was not a big deal. Around about 2008 I did some running but not a whole lot. Today I'm 48 y.o. 5'9". And 185 lbs on my way down to about 170 (198 on January 1).

    For 2014, I made a resolution to be able to run a 5K because I found it a bit silly that I could ride a bike 100 miles but not run 3.1 miles. Last week I did a 7.3 mile run at 10:25 overall pace. About 2 weeks ago I did 5 miles at 9:46 pace. I've done several 10k runs now. In all cases, I felt no worse for wear the next day.

    To get there in just over 2 months, I started out taking it easy. Partly due to the weather, I used a treadmill at the gym a couple days a week. Then I started running outside real easily. I followed the concept of couch-to-5k, but after two weeks I was already able to do more distance than what that prescribes. I think that's where all of the cycling came into play. But I still forced myself to do some walking in between running and would also do some light stretching after the walk-period before running again. And always stretch after a run.

    I've also kept using the treadmill at least once a week. As someone without much of a running background, I think the treadmill allows me to move my legs faster and also run a higher heart-rate for longer periods. I'll probably phase that out now that there is enough daylight to run outside a couple days a week, but I think the treadmill was a big help.

    I'm giving myself one more week of "just running". I'll start speed work, intervals, etc. the first week of April.
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  12. #12
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    hubcyclist, did you ever do a duathlon?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaptorDuner View Post
    hubcyclist, did you ever do a duathlon?
    No I haven't yet, I've focused on just the bike racing, I completed one race this past season and am planning on doing a full season in 2015 and am training over the winter to increase my ftp.

    But i haven't completely dismissed duathlons. Over Xmas vacation we traveled to see my in-laws, who have our old treadmill we left behind when we moved east. I hadn't even tried running in several years but I got on and gradually ramped up my speed without trying to overdo it. I was surprised that I was able to sustain an 8min mile pace with effort to spare, so much better than I expected to be. if I keep up my training I could be pretty competitive, depending on the duathlon, so I may keep the option open.

  14. #14
    Member tg16's Avatar
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    My question would be the opposite of the original question. I run regularly; however, I've just started biking. I rode maybe once every couple of months. I decided it was time, at my age, to do more on the bike, especially in the south Louisiana summers and am planning to do a series of duathlons beginning in April.

    Any advice?

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    As a long time runner and cyclist, I basically came to cycling much more in the past 6 years. I missed two months of running in august and sept of 2013 with injury but could ride fine. I started riding about 180-275 miles a week and after two months went right back to my usual 30-40 miles of running a week. I would not suggest this but if you have the fitness you just need to get body ready to run. Start all by feel and time. Run for a specific time and quick at first while you feel good. Maybe run for 10 minutes then walk 10 minutes. Go every other day and add running time and decrease walking. Once you can run 40 minutes without stopping or feeling pain you then can start making use of one longer run a week of maybe an hour. The speed really depends on age, when I was 32 1 hour run would have been an easy 8 miles or even a 8.5. Now at almost 54 I find that one hour is over 9 minute pace to be easy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tg16 View Post
    My question would be the opposite of the original question. I run regularly; however, I've just started biking. I rode maybe once every couple of months. I decided it was time, at my age, to do more on the bike, especially in the south Louisiana summers and am planning to do a series of duathlons beginning in April.

    Any advice?
    If you run and have a good base then cycling will be easy as far as the aerobic part. The hard part is getting the butt use to sitting for long miles. I have always felt that 1 mile of running as about 5 miles cycling. I can get the ratio down to about 1 to 4 miles if I really push the bike. When I starting riding more once starting riding 2 days a week I could easily ride a 50 mile ride but did not have the cycling skills and handling. If you keep up your fitness on the bike doing long rides and running even just 2 days a week you can maintain your running. In the end they are different animals in the world of competition. If you really want to excel at one then pick your poison. I find the bike allows me to avoid the pounding of running and finally after 37 years of running a lot miles I am happy to decrease and ride. The good thing is I am still hanging in and actually getting better on the bike because I did not do that 20-25 years ago.
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  17. #17
    Member tg16's Avatar
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    I'm discovering all of that, especially my butt.

  18. #18
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    At 68, I'm entering my 4th year back on the bike. I tried riding all winter last year but found it just too demanding. Since I basically refuse to work out indoors, I thought now that I'm down down 85 pounds, I'll try running again this winter, which I did.

    I eased into it very carefully and do a lot of walking. When I ran previously, walking was failure, now it's a reward. My technique is to set a pace for the run then every half mile I check my time, the balance I come in under the pace, I get to walk until I hit the time. I'm walking anywhere from 30 to 120 seconds every half mile for 6 to 10 miles. Beating me up a lot less then steady running and I'm enjoying it more.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by curlyque View Post
    At 68, I'm entering my 4th year back on the bike. I tried riding all winter last year but found it just too demanding. Since I basically refuse to work out indoors, I thought now that I'm down down 85 pounds, I'll try running again this winter, which I did.

    I eased into it very carefully and do a lot of walking. When I ran previously, walking was failure, now it's a reward. My technique is to set a pace for the run then every half mile I check my time, the balance I come in under the pace, I get to walk until I hit the time. I'm walking anywhere from 30 to 120 seconds every half mile for 6 to 10 miles. Beating me up a lot less then steady running and I'm enjoying it more.
    A bit more regimental and very successful method would be Jeff Galloway's Run Walk Run | Jeff Galloway Official Website

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldTryGuy View Post
    A bit more regimental and very successful method would be Jeff Galloway's Run Walk Run | Jeff Galloway Official Website
    I used his ideas as a jumping off point for my own program. Good stuff.

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