Running V's Cycling

'Is there not a pill I can take to speed up the process?'

Firstly no there is not.

All there is is hard work. When we say hard work it doesn't mean that you put everything on hold and focus on one thing. It does not mean training 7 days a week and eating a diet that has zero enjoyment or pleasure. 

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What is needed to get results:

  • Smart small frequent changes
  • Frequent exercise in bite-size pieces (30 mins a day 6 days a week minimum). 
  • Food that can be enjoyed
  • Accountability from coaches that care. 

But when it comes to exercise we all know we use it for our body to improve and function better. Also, exercise is required in order to burn calories i.e burn fat. 

But what do you do when walking stops working?

Sometimes walking just isn't enough. Your body adapts to it very quickly. Then the exercise input needs to change when that adaptation does occur. 

So the typical options for most of us are running and cycling.

But whats the right fit for you?

Running

Benefits:

  • The cheapest form of exercise money can buy
  • Great for time management and biggest bang for your buck. 
  • Warm up is absolutely essential in order to avoid injury. 

Drawbacks:

  • Stressful on the joints and body. 
  • Movement requirement in joints needed is high. 
  • Need good lower limb strength. 
  • If your body isn't strong enough then your movement mechanics may be poor. 
  • injuries are more likely to occur. 
  • If you are carrying a good bit of fat that you would like to lose +10 kilos then it's going to be very tough to run efficiently and to do it well. 

Advice:

If you are going to run start off slow. 2 Minute walk with 2 minutes jog x 8-10 reps. Doing this 3 times a week with your strength training. Add volume slowly while keeping the frequency the same.

Then to progress, try uphill intervals. Sprint uphill for roughly 20-30s then walk back down and perform 8-10 sets. 

Cycling

Benefits:

  • Less stress on the joints
  • Movement requirement needed is low
  • Very easy to do it well and have a sense of achievement as movement mechanics needed are low. 

Drawbacks:

  • Expensive to get started
  • Protective gear required
  • Weather dependent it can be viewed as risky
  • Usually to get the benefits of long distance running you have to cycle a minimum of 1.5 times the amount to allow for coasting and the metabolic demand being lower than that of running. 

Advice:

It's the one sport that has a lower incidence of active injuries. Meaning injuries from cycling usually are derived from crashing and or carelessness.  Therefore I would advise starting off with cycling until your strength coach gives the go ahead to start running more consistenly. 

Insist on a half decent bike and helmet / weather gear. It will pay off. 

 

 

Closing Notes:

Movement wise if you struggle with any kind of lower limb injury history then I strongly suggest cycling over running. If you are strong and move well then get running. However, make sure it is uphill as it is less stress on the body. 

Try an uphill run of 20 seconds followed with a walk back for 8-10 sets. Obviously warm up beforehand. 

If you can't run then try cycling. However, if you want to get the same bang for your buck on the bike you should go by time. For the value of a 30-minute run you would definitely want to do at least 60 minutes on the bike. (Considering coasting / downhill sections atc). 

If you want to be really accurate get hold of a Polar Heart Rate Monitor that you can link up to your phone and track your HR and calorie output. 

If you want more information on programming exerise then enquire here for a free quick 5 minute call with Larry:

 

 

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Larry Brady