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Running vs Bicycle riding....

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Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

Running vs Bicycle riding....

Old 07-17-18, 07:18 PM
  #26  
talphie
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My test on enjoyment is the look on the face of almost every runner I encounter when I ride. Sheer pain. So, I decided to get my exercise on a bike with no regard to how the calorie count compares. I enjoy riding my bike and almost every runner I see doesn’t seem to be enjoying the trip.
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Old 07-17-18, 07:34 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Stormsedge View Post
Another choir member here. I ran almost daily for +30 years (military)...causing most of my physical/skeletal/long term ailments. Nowadays, I am very careful about running, if I run. On the up, riding my bike rarely leaves me feeling beat up or aching. Donut displacement factor, in my case, seems about the same. Keep smiling.
Oh what I would give to go back to those years and years or running and replace many of them with bicycling. I have to wear Birkenstocks in order to not have pain in my feet/ankles. I walk briskly and ride now... and really enjoy both.
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Old 07-17-18, 07:34 PM
  #28  
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I ran competitively from college into my 50s, loved it and did OK at 10K to half marathon distance, better than I did on the bike. I alternated periods or seasons of cycling and running to give my legs a break and to deal with injuries. There is much to be said for just going out the door with no gear but your shoes and the clothes on your back. I had good mechanics and the nice pop in the legs most of the time and it felt great. However, I blame it for the cervical spine problem that almost made me a C6 quad and, although no one told me I had to, I stopped after I had my neck rebuilt. Now, because I’m worried about bone loss, I am building in some walking and taking the stairs at work. I also do plenty of squats and other resistance exercises in the gym, but I wonder if that’s as effective as the shock loading from gait.

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Old 07-17-18, 09:03 PM
  #29  
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Not a chance of hitting 40mph running down a hill!
And no lower gears to shift down into for running up a hill.
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Old 07-17-18, 09:30 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by ButchA View Post
Wow... A little over triple the distance, obviously way faster (almost double the speed), and the amount of calories burned is pretty close to each other. One is scenic and not really that tiring. The other is a harder, tougher, workout, but more harder on the body. What was I thinking? Anyone else go running?
I live in the Great White North and got into running and biking as off season training for cross country skiing. It wasn't until I started spending time with hardcore triathletes that I got serious about them however, Marathons, Ironmans and Century races followed. That was in the 1990's, I was in my 40's. I'll be 70 next month.


I think all endurance sports are addictive (endorphins) but yes running is hardest on the body. It also gives you the fastest access to those endorphins. The only way to get an experienced runner to quit is through injury, even then it usually takes several. Many people get injured when they first take up running, too much too soon. Others carry on until their joints start to fail, too much for too long.


Where do I fit in this, well I'm still doing Olympic distance triathlons. I can only run because of some well known super cushioned running shoes. I'm 40% slower on the bike and run than in my 40's and 20% slower on the swim but hey, I'm still doing it. I'm only doing one long slow run, 20-30k, and one long ride,50-60k, a month. The rest of the time I do High-intensity interval training , specifically the Vollaard regimen. We'll see how it goes in the future but for now I'm still enjoying training and the after race comradarie (parties). I do wish I had started the HIIT type training earlier, like maybe 10 years ago. It might have saved me pain and injury downtime, but who knew?
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Old 07-18-18, 04:34 AM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by JanMM View Post
And no lower gears to shift down into for running up a hill.
Shorter steps. There is a decent hill at about the halfway point on my 5k. A woman who was pacing me passed me on the way up. Once we were back on the flats I passed her and she never caught up.
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Old 07-18-18, 04:37 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by jrbz View Post
I live in the Great White North and got into running and biking as off season training for cross country skiing. It wasn't until I started spending time with hardcore triathletes that I got serious about them however, Marathons, Ironmans and Century races followed. That was in the 1990's, I was in my 40's. I'll be 70 next month.


I think all endurance sports are addictive (endorphins) but yes running is hardest on the body. It also gives you the fastest access to those endorphins. The only way to get an experienced runner to quit is through injury, even then it usually takes several. Many people get injured when they first take up running, too much too soon. Others carry on until their joints start to fail, too much for too long.


Where do I fit in this, well I'm still doing Olympic distance triathlons. I can only run because of some well known super cushioned running shoes. I'm 40% slower on the bike and run than in my 40's and 20% slower on the swim but hey, I'm still doing it. I'm only doing one long slow run, 20-30k, and one long ride,50-60k, a month. The rest of the time I do High-intensity interval training , specifically the Vollaard regimen. We'll see how it goes in the future but for now I'm still enjoying training and the after race comradarie (parties). I do wish I had started the HIIT type training earlier, like maybe 10 years ago. It might have saved me pain and injury downtime, but who knew?
I'm seriously impressed!
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Old 07-18-18, 02:50 PM
  #33  
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I never did like running. I started riding a bike about 9 years ago; I was 63 at the time. My doctor would like me to swim but next to that he said cycling is much easier on your joints. Never had any joint problems and don't intend to have any. I live in the mid-Atlantic area and tend to ride only during the warmer months. I use free weights and a bow flex 3-5 times a week for my core and upper body. In the winter months I try to use an elliptical, but am not as faithful using that as I am at riding my bike. Three years ago I hunted in the mountains of Idaho and I know that had I not been cycling I would have never made it walking up those mountains at 8k-9k feet. Last winter at the age of 71 I thought it was time to take up snow skiing so I could do it with my son and two teenage grand kids. Three weeks before the first time out I spent a lot of time working on lower leg exercises. I really enjoy skiing, bought my own equipment, and was skiing once a week. This new sport showed me I need to focus more on working out my legs, because now even doing something as simple as getting out of an easy chair or getting up from putting wood in the fireplace is much easier. I retired three years ago and by eating healthier, and the cycling, I've dropped 15 pounds and am at a weight I desire to maintain. I enjoy riding mostly paved trials 2-3 times a week during the week days when all the other slugs have to go to work.
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Old 07-18-18, 03:41 PM
  #34  
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Lots of great replies. Thanks everyone!

@jrbz that is incredible! I am seriously impressed!

I have a dedicated pair of running shoes (Adidas Duramo 8) and matched with a pair of Dr. Scholl's "Active Series" insoles. Darn near double the cushioning and they feel great! But again with me still hovering around 210 lbs, I probably resemble a big heavy lumbering locomotive out on the side streets, when I go running... But at least I'm still getting out there no matter what.

If I went on a nice smooth 40 mile bicycle ride (20 out, 20 back), and did it in 2 hours and 45 minutes (estimate) - - - I wonder how I would feel, how many calories that would be, average speed, etc... I have looked at that MapMyRide site and planned a route with only one large up 'n down hill. Everything else is pretty smooth. Hmmm.... At least it would be way more scenic and easier on my body than running a 10K!
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Old 07-18-18, 04:39 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by ButchA View Post
At least it would be way more scenic and easier on my body than running a 10K!
Here's the kind of scenery I have to put up with, Local Mountain Run
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Old 07-18-18, 05:29 PM
  #36  
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That's a half marathon run up and down a mountain! Wow!

I checked out the site and the trail map and photo gallery! I am so jealous! I would love to ride that in my Mtn Bike!
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Old 07-18-18, 05:57 PM
  #37  
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I was mostly a runner in the 80s. did about a 10k a month and longer races every now and then, including 3 marathons. One thing about running is you can race all you want without all the rigamarole of cycling or tri. But over time the running got harder on the body so had more frequent periods of not running due to injury. Never had an injury keep me off the bike. All I do running now is an annual race (Great Aloha Run), an 8.15 mi point-to-point race. It's just a nice atmosphere. I did it this year with zero training, just bike experience. A bit painful but finished in what has become my typical time -- around 1:30. I have the t-shirt from the first time the race was held - 1986 and wear it in the race. I get some nice comments and some "gee that was before I was born". Next year I'll be 65, so a new age group to look forward to.

At our age, running on a treadmill (good one at a gym) is much easier on the knees than on the road.

scott s.
.
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Old 07-18-18, 06:16 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by jrbz View Post
Here's the kind of scenery I have to put up with, Local Mountain Run
Looks about like the only marathon in which I participated, albeit unwittingly. Signed up for a hike by the S. AZ Hiking club which went to the top of Mica mtn. in the Rincons to the east of Tucson - a hike of just over 26 miles. Shortly after we started we were rapidly passed by a group of runners. Found out later they were racing a marathon on the same trails we were using in an event organized and led by the then-current Pikes Pk. record holder. When we were about half way up, the leader of the runners was already heading down and I was very impressed at how he was able to fly down a steep and very rocky trail. By the time we approached the summit we started to pass a few of the runners resting by the side of the trail after becoming exhausted, and we continued to pass more of the runners on the way down. I think at the end we were close to the middle of the pack of runners.
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Old 07-18-18, 06:22 PM
  #39  
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Running > cycling.

Originally Posted by AlmostTrick View Post
Shorter steps. There is a decent hill at about the halfway point on my 5k. A woman who was pacing me passed me on the way up. Once we were back on the flats I passed her and she never caught up.
What did you learn?
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Old 07-18-18, 08:26 PM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by KraneXL View Post
What did you learn?
Nothing. I already knew that if I didn't gear down on the hill, my target pace would suffer for at least a bit after the fact. Her performance was a confirmation of this for me.
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Old 07-20-18, 08:34 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by scott967 View Post
I was mostly a runner in the 80s. did about a 10k a month and longer races every now and then, including 3 marathons. One thing about running is you can race all you want without all the rigamarole of cycling or tri. But over time the running got harder on the body so had more frequent periods of not running due to injury. Never had an injury keep me off the bike. All I do running now is an annual race (Great Aloha Run), an 8.15 mi point-to-point race. It's just a nice atmosphere. I did it this year with zero training, just bike experience. A bit painful but finished in what has become my typical time -- around 1:30. I have the t-shirt from the first time the race was held - 1986 and wear it in the race. I get some nice comments and some "gee that was before I was born". Next year I'll be 65, so a new age group to look forward to.

At our age, running on a treadmill (good one at a gym) is much easier on the knees than on the road.

scott s.
.
Also easier on the heels, shins, hips, tendons ... I've found myself going to the treadmill most of the time, even though it's more boring. Still, better overall workout than a bike ride.

You know what's hard to find? Really good, knowledgeable training advice for 50+ men taking up running later in life.
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Old 07-20-18, 10:32 AM
  #42  
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I do both. As a frequent business traveler I never check bags in - always as carry-on. I can stuff a couple of t-shirts and shorts in my running shoes; I couldn't do this with bike gear even if I rented a bike. Just got back spending the week in Chicago. I did a couple of ~10k's along the waterfront and it was magnificent.
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Old 07-20-18, 01:50 PM
  #43  
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+1 on the treadmill. I have one in the basement and run when I get home from work, when it's 95 F and poor air quality outdoors. I agree it's easier on knee and foot pains (I'm 57 and have both periodically), and I also like that I can set the pace and incline to make sure I get a good workout. For me the key was doing rest days between runs, and also seeing a running coach who videotaped me. I knew about overstriding and was sure I was not doing it, but the video showed that I was. I got back into cycling again to get a workout on my rest days from running, and really love being back on the bike. I'd also suggest mixing in some hiking. I do a long hike on the weekend, usually with 2000 to 3000 feet of elevation gain, and I think hiking up the slope might be good cross training for cycling.
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Old 07-21-18, 08:28 AM
  #44  
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Cycling is of God.

Running is of the Devil.

The choice is yours.
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Old 07-25-18, 07:42 PM
  #45  
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Well, I guess that leaves me to comment running is a better workout and more enjoyable than biking, especially trail runs & hills. But cycling is more social, so I try to get in three rides a week. Also, runners I see are pretty enthusiastic about their runs and PRs, and saying hello
, but too many cyclists U pass seem to have concrete bike face. Oh well, maybe they need a pro fit, lol.

Bikes are diamond framed wheelchairs, though much faster. After all folks, you're sitting down leaning against handlebars... Cars are to cyclists as cyclists are to runners. Drop mike....

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Old 07-26-18, 11:52 PM
  #46  
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I prefer biking to running. Never cared for running that much, did plenty playing sports and while in the military. Running is hard on the knee joints, I have already replaced one. Biking to me gives a comparable cardio workout plus the added advantage of helping with balance. Just my 2 cents.
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Old 07-27-18, 12:42 AM
  #47  
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Running is harder per distance. And with running all you need is a good pair of running shoes. Running = no upkeep, maintenance, repairs or flats.

Cycling was my first love. Then running, then back to cycling again.
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Old 07-27-18, 05:45 AM
  #48  
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Ill chime, I started running a few years ago, in addition to cycling, for me, running is much harder (Im also a Clydesdale) so that may be part of the reason running is more difficult. But I continue to struggle through just it (5k pace is just under 12 minute mile). But my kids all run, so its gives me the chance to participate in events with them.
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Old 07-27-18, 06:35 AM
  #49  
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I get more of an endorphin charge from cycling than I ever got from running.
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Old 07-27-18, 06:49 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
Really good, knowledgeable training advice for 50+ men taking up running later in life.
I couldn't agree more, even thought about creating a website or blog about that very thing. Of course, I am kidding myself to think I am a source of wisdom to others... but I am medicare age and running hilly trails, 10Ks with little effort, and I'm a fairly big guy. Learned a lot over the years, the hard way. Part of the challenge is the challenge of decades of mis-information out there,,,, like running naturally causes injuries. No, bad running plans, bad shoes, bad technique, and bad overall fitness causes running injuries,

This year I've discovered running poles. OMG, for hills it's like gaining two extra feet. Not so useful on a treadmill though,

Treadmills are problematic. Find some dirt,
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