Everything You Need to Know About Riding a Road Bike (And Living to Tell the Tale)
As a kid, the only things that mattered about having a bike were:
- If you had one. That was pretty important. And…
- The level of pizzaz on display. I’m talking handlebar streamers, cards in your spokes, maybe even some colorful lights around your wheels.
But walk into a bike store as an adult and well… there’s a lot to consider!
Before you are ready to write a check, you’ll need to decide whether you want a road bike, mountain bike, track bike, tri bike, or downhill bike (yes, there’s a difference!).
Is your bike going to be for cruising or commuting?
Every bike has a purpose, and there are a lot of purposes. So you have to find your go-to.
For me, that’s a road bike.
It’s comfortable to ride for an extended time (once you master changing gears, you can spin away for hours and hours), goes fast, and takes turns and handles elevation changes with ease. I’ve found that it suits my lifestyle because I can clip into my road bike and cycle to the beach or a coffee shop to work, and most Every bike has a purpose, and there are a lot of purposes. So you have to find your go-to. in between.
However, road cycling is not for the faint of heart.
The road is a scary place. Cars drive fast, people are texting and not paying attention, and if you can find a bike lane, they often have missing sections or have cars parked on them.
So, why should you learn on a road bike? Well for starters, it’s fun! I love nothing more than cruising down a smooth road.
And I’m positive that the more you know about road cycling, the better cyclist you will be — and the more fun you’ll have.
To help you with navigating the intimidating world of cycling, I’ve put together 10 tips that I have learned from trial and error, dating a bike mechanic, and becoming a regular on many group rides.
Once you master these tips, your bike can take you anywhere you want to go, whether that’s to the bike shop, a group ride, or any other time the rubber hits the road.
Tip #1: Wear a Helmet
This should go without saying, but I’m saying it anyway — WEAR A HELMET
I don’t care if you are riding near or far — WEAR A HELMET.
Get the right helmet. All helmets are not created equal. Like so many other things in life — you get what you pay for, and your brain is not something to skimp on. A new, proper fitting, a well-made helmet is essential. Knock off helmets are available all over the internet, so if the helmet you are looking at is priced “too good to be true” . . . it probably is.
I only wear helmets that feature MIPS technology. MIPS: Multi-Directional Impact Protection System. This means it is designed to reduce rotational forces on impact (you know, if your head hits the road, your MIPS helmet is prepared to protect your noggin) at any angle.
Wear it right.
Always try on a helmet before you buy it.
- It should fit snugly and securely, while sitting flat, on top of your head. Helmets come with sizing pads to help you adjust how snug it fits. It should be comfortable, but not wiggle (and you should not be able to fit a finger in between your helmet and your head).
- If you are unsure if your helmet is sitting correctly on your head, you should be able to place only two fingers in between your eyebrows and the top of your helmet.
- Place the helmet on your head, and make sure the two side straps create a Y shape over your ears and clasp under your chin. Pull the strap tight enough to ensure you can only fit one finger in between your chin and the strap.
Keep it fresh. Helmets have a limited life span. Never wear a helmet that has been in a crash or does not properly fit your head. Once a helmet is damaged, it is no longer useful. If you crash, drop your helmet on the concrete, or change your hairstyle so significantly that your helmet no longer fits — buy a new one.
I said keep it fresh. Helmets can be fashionable. If you feel so inclined, choose a color that matches your bike and has vents for air circulation. Some helmets have attachable ear muffs to keep your ears warm while you cruise around in the winter.
When it all comes down to it, it doesn’t matter much which helmet you choose, as long as it is new, properly fitted to your head, worn every time you ride and replaced as needed.
Tip #2: Be Road Ready
As important as your helmet is (did I mention that is the most important thing?), it’s also important to ensure that your bicycle is ready for you to ride.
If you got your bike from a bike shop, your seat and handlebars should already be adjusted properly, which is an important first step. (If you purchase a flat-packed bike and it needs to be assembled, I suggest paying a bike shop to put it together for you. One mistake building your bike, and your whole body may pay the price.)
After that, there are a few things you should check to make sure you are road-ready before every ride.
- Check your tire pressure. Your tires lose air pressure just by sitting in your house, so you should always check your air pressure before hitting the road. Properly inflated tires will help prevent flats, create less resistance, and make your overall ride more enjoyable. You’ll find the appropriate pressure range listed on the sidewall of the tire.
- Make sure your wheels, seat, and handlebars are secure. Lift the bike off the ground and give it a little shake. If you hear anything rattling — investigate! Bottle cages loosen and quick-release wheels can be bumped loose, causing problems when you ride.
- Check your brakes. Give the brakes a squeeze and try to move your bike back and forth. Does the brake lever touch the handlebar? Time for an adjustment! When you release the brake lever, does the brake stick or release? A sticking brake can make pedaling difficult.
- Always travel prepared. A proper roadside repair kit should include: tire levers, spare tube, CO2 inflator or small pump, and a bicycle-specific multi-tool (in case you need to tighten something while on the road). These can be purchased online or at any bike shop.
Tip #3: Bike Shorts and Jerseys
Let’s talk spandex. Does it make you nervous?
Bike shorts aren’t always the most flattering look; however, if you plan on riding your bike for more than 10 miles, your butt won’t care what you look like. Even the most comfortable of saddles, can create discomfort when riding for short (or long) distances. Bike shorts come with built-in padding over the rear-end. This will help your body feel more comfortable as you grow your T.I.T.S (Time In The Saddle).
Jerseys are bright, colorful, and convenient. They are created using wicking material to help keep you cool. The bright colors are not only fashionable and fun, but they also aid with visibility. And they have super-convenient back pockets for easy access to things like nutrition, phone, and ID.
Tip #4: Clip In! Or Not
Bicycle cleats are hardware that will attach specialized bicycle shoes directly to matching pedals, keeping your feet securely attached to your bicycle.
This concept can seem intimidating at first, but the benefits are incredible. Pedaling without cleats (in sneakers) you only have the ability to push down on your pedals.
But, once you clip-in to your pedals, the cleats allow you to not only push down, but pull back up, gaining power and momentum without as much output of energy. This gain in efficiency will allow you to go faster for a longer period of time.
There are different styles of cleats and shoes, so after doing a little research on your own, your local bike shop can help you find the cleats and shoes that will be the best fit for you.
Tip #5: Be Extra Prepared (beyond your roadside repair kit)
Before you head out on your next bicycle adventure, make sure you bring a few things with you for safety, to make your life easier, and to ensure you are prepared for all situations.
- Never leave home without ID and money. You never know where your bicycle will take you, and you never know if you’ll need to purchase a snack (or a ride home).
- Bring lights! If you have battery-operated lights, check them before heading out the door. If you have rechargeable lights, charge them before you leave. Often short day trips turn into evening cruises, and lights are very necessary (and in some places, a legal requirement). I always have my lights on — day or night — and set to strobe to be more visible and appear different than other road traffic.
- Pack hydration and nutrition. Short trips become long trips, and long trips become all-day adventures on road bikes. They are so much fun to ride and explore — the day may get away from you!
Tip #6: Riding Long? Fuel Throughout the Entire Ride
When you’re going on a long ride, fueling properly can be the single most important thing you do. So how much do you need?
A good rule of thumb is to estimate that you will burn 50 calories per mile. If you plan on riding 30 miles, that means you could burn up to (or more) than 1,500 calories.
That sounds like a lot of food to carry, so you can start with consuming 50% of the calories you burn, and adjust as needed. It may take several rides to figure it all out, but over time you’ll learn what your body wants and needs.
As for what to consume, I like to carry a banana, homemade gel or bar, or peanut butter wrap. These Calorie Bomb Cookies are also, well, the bomb.
I know my body enough to know that I like a mix of salty and sweet, so I try to have a little of everything.
Also, make sure you are drinking plenty of water! Although you can get by with replenishing only 50% of your calorie burn, you will need to stay hydrated.
All road bikes will come with at least one bottle cage. If your bike is set up to hold two bottles, I suggest carrying one with water and the other with an electrolyte beverage like Tailwind. And remember those handy back jersey pockets? They are perfect to carry your nutrition. Toss a gel or gummy, or whole-food workout fuel in your back pocket before hitting the road.
Tip #7: Make Friends with Your Front Brake
Your front brake, when used properly, will slow your bike to a stop much quicker than the back brake alone. The front brake is more powerful to help stop the higher speeds of a road bike. Skidding your back tire is the least effective way to stop and will wear down your tires.
Gently compress your front brake lever to slow your bike to a stop. Don’t jerk your front brake lever too quickly, or your wheel will lock. Practice using your front brake when on a clear road and not riding with others. Learn how it feels and how quickly your front brake responds. When in an emergency situation, you want to be prepared as to how your front brake is going to respond.
Tip #8: Learn to Use Your Gears
Most road bikes have between 18 and 22 gears (that is a lot of options!). The lower the gear, the easier it will be to spin the pedals, especially uphill or into a fierce headwind. A higher gear will propel you forward faster; however, this is a harder gear to push and requires more effort.
As you ride, adjust your gears to ensure they match your elevation and wind changes. Learning to use the correct gear at the correct time takes practice, so get to know what feels right.
Pro-Tip: Don’t work harder than you have to! Work smarter by letting the bike do the work for you. An indication of whether you’re in an appropriate gear is your cadence (how many times per minute your foot goes in a full circle).
Generally, for long distances, you want to keep your cadence a little higher, so you’re not applying a great amount of pressure on the pedals.
Tip #9: Learn the Rules of the Road
By this point, you have done an extensive amount of work to be prepared to hit the road. Are you ready to go? I am!
But first, you need to know the road rules. You should check your local laws regarding bikes, but here are some fairly common laws regarding road cycling.
- Bicycles belong on the road, not on the sidewalk. Sidewalks are for pedestrians, not bicycles (drivers are not in the habit of checking the sidewalk for oncoming traffic, which means riding on the sidewalk increases your chances of being hit by a car). Bicycles, even slow-moving bicycles, can go 10 to 25 miles per hour. This is too fast to be hurling down the sidewalk next to walkers and runners.
- Bicycles ride WITH traffic. Unlike running, where you run facing oncoming cars, bicycles ride on the same side of the road as a motor vehicle. In general, all cars should give any bicycle (fast or slow) 3 feet of clearance when they pass. Although this is a law in many places (and is becoming more common), it is not always readily enforced or followed. Do not be surprised if people don’t give you ample room that you deserve. This is why you are wearing highly visible colors and flashing your strobe light. Also, be ready to react quickly should you need to (this is where being familiar with your front brake comes in handy).
- Bike lanes are wonderful! They give you a protected 3 feet of space for you to comfortably ride your bicycle — at any speed. However, bike lanes are often placed to the left of parked cars, meaning that anyone getting in and out of a parallel parked car, may open a door — right into you! Pay attention when riding by parked cars to not get “doored.” Keep an eye out for pedestrians crossing the street. They often do not look and might walk straight out into traffic/bike lanes.
- Plan your route. Although bike lanes make excellent paths to get to where you want to go, what if your route does not include a bike lane? Embrace the adventure and seek out less-traveled back routes to your destination. Who knows what you might find along the way! A new favorite coffee house, a local vegan ice cream parlor, or even a fun arcade. Bikes give you the opportunity to soak in your surroundings!
- Communicate. Communication is a big component of staying safe on the road. Use common hand signals to communicate when you’re slowing or turning. Call out to other riders and pedestrians when you’re approaching or passing (on your right, on your left) and to inform fellow riders of traffic conditions (car back, car right, car left).
Tip #10: Learn to Ride in a Group
Group riding is so much fun! Meeting fellow cyclists, having a bunch of friends who want to go exploring with you, and chasing each other through Strava segments. What could be better? If you do not know of any group rides in your town, check your local bike shop or Facebook events page. Bike shops often lead longer group rides on the weekends and shorter training rides during the week.
Riding in a group requires a bit of practice. Before you head out with a group of people, make sure you feel comfortable and confident on your bicycle. Are you comfortable riding in a straight line? When riding in a group, there may be people on your right, left, in front, and behind you. Maintaining your speed while staying in a straight line becomes even more important.
Also, be sure you’re familiar with giving and reading the signals mentioned above.
Keep about one wheel’s distance between you, and the bike in front of you. This gives you time to react in case they break quickly, hit a bump and go off course, or collide with something.
Take some time to ride alone or with a few friends to build your confidence, and then join a group ride. Rides with friends are always more fun.
Most of All, Road Biking is About Having Fun
Just like when you were a kid, whizzing down the road with your friends, biking as an adult is all about having fun. Bikes take you to places you never thought you would go, and they help you meet people you never thought you would meet.
And for the plant-based athlete, they’ll help you create a healthy, fit, and environmentally friendly lifestyle. Win. Win. Win.
Don’t let those skinny tires intimidate you. A little practice with the gears, brakes, and peddles, and you’ll be cruising down the road in no time.
Now all you need is that perfect bike, a fun jersey and helmet, and to start spinning.
See you out there.
About the Author: You may know Esther Jaffa as the Community Support Coordinator for No Meat Athlete, but did you know she’s also an avid runner and cyclist and owns more bikes than she could ride in a week? Look out for her on the streets of Fort Lauderdale, zipping between the beach, a brewery, and a group ride.
Great post Susan. You mean ‘bricks’ aren’t called that because of the cement block like feeling your legs have when you exit the bike and start running? You just turned my whole world upside down. Also, you, and some other crazy friends, convinced me triathlon’s something worth trying. Just signed up yesterday for Trinona (http://www.trinona.com/ and @trinona), rated as Minnesota’s ‘Race of the Year.’ What are you doing June 10?
AWESOME! Welcome! June 10, I’ll be racing Escape from Alcatraz…AND checking the results for Trinona to see how your first triathlon went! 🙂
COngratz Scott, welcome to the world of Triathlon. How did your race go? hopefully you caught the bug. I will be completing both my first Half and Full Ironman triathlons this year. Can’t wait for them.
I completely agree that cycling is great for running (I’m also a multisport athlete – tri & du, so I’m biased myself). Although the bike uses slightly different muscles than the run, the overall strength of your legs will improve, which translates to better run performance.
Totally agree iv been riding for four months about 10-20 miles 4 times s week fantastic makes you feel verry healthy and energetic. I also do it to fight anxiety works a treat,
Love this post! I picked up cycling when I hurt myself running and it definitely made me realize what an asset it can be to my overall strength and training.
Loved this! I have found a noticeable improvement in speed since I joined the chruch of swimbikerun. I give all credit to the biking.
Don’t discount the swimming – it has many of the same benefits (active recovery, a low-impact workout, etc) that cycling offers! Spread the love around, Karen! 🙂
This post makes me happy! Cycling is where I go when running tries to break me in half, and it always heals me up and sends me back out.
Great post!! I recently started incorporating spin class into my training and have noticed it has improved my running preformance and decreased injuries. I would love to start riding outside more, but am still sheepish from a bike incident. At least I am starting somewhere!!
what do you guys think about a Spin class?
similar enough or helpful at all?
wondering if i should sprinkle one in w/ my marathon training this month…
I highly recoomend it. I started doing spin 1x/week while traning for my most recent marathon and founf it very helpful. I took a little more weight off and the sprint portions of the class seem to help translate into improved foot turnover while running. Enjoy!
I dont really like spin classes, I have given them the good ole college try but they are not for me. My reasoning is rather simple and I will list them for you guys (and gals). 1) Most are in a room with no circulation and about 20 people who are working out really really hard, imagine the smell gross!! 2) The goal of the class is not necessarly inline with your personal goal; example the class is about an hour long hard intense workout which is good if your a Crit racer or training for a Sprint or Olympic triathlon but rather pointless if your training for a Half or a Full Ironman triathlon. 3) As a result of the class being one hour long and high intensity one heart rate is usually through the roof (I did 4 or 5 Classes and my average heartrate was roughtly 209 WAY TOO HIGH, outdoors or on a trainer pushing really really hard on the bike my heartrate is about 185 MAX).
These are just my opinons and only opinions. Take them for what they are worth and I hope they help.
Hey Susan, great post! It’s nice to be reminded of all the benefits of cross training.
I have a question for you – biking seems to cause issues with my IT band, which makes running hurt, which makes both biking AND running difficult, and this is an issue for a triathlete, clearly! 🙂
Any thoughts on what I’m doing wrong on the bike? It’s only my left leg that is having issues – I imagine I don’t quite have the right positioning or something?
I should’ve mentioned… it’s worse on a spin bike than on my regular bike….
If I’m understanding you right, the cycling is causing the ITBS. If you aren’t cycling but just running, you don’t get the pain?
If this is the case, I would take a look at your bike fit. If your seat is too high or too far back, that might be part of the problem. If you take your bike in to a shop to get a bike fit, they’ll be able to make adjustments to your seat, handlebars, etc, to minimize issues.
Another thing I notice with runners who start cycling is there is an instinct to “mash” the pedals – I did this when I first started riding, too! When a cyclist pushes down on the pedal when the foot is at the top of the crank, instead of applying force all the way around the pedal (to keep a smooth pedal stroke), it’s incredibly inefficient and can set a person up for injury.
Since this is an issue you’ve had before, I’d check with a doctor or physical therapist, to see if there are exercises you can do to strengthen the IT Band to complement your cycling.
Thanks! I forgot to check back for a response until now … oops. 🙂 People on another forum had also thought it was a bike fit issue, so I will definitely be looking into that soon. Thank you for your thoughts!
You might want to invest in a foam rolloer or a magic stick. These guys are great for rolling out muscles and tendons after a hard workout. I have had eally bad IT band issues when I started running, I was a road bike racer/cyclist for 6 years before I moved into triathlons. The two items mentioned above worked wonders for me as did morning yoga sessions and stretching 2x daily.
Hope things get better for you.
As Susan noted pedal mashing a great way to improve bike form is through single leg training. Unclip one leg and spin for 30sec-2min at a time then switch. Repeat several times and almost instantly you’ll see improvement in your dual leg power distribution.
On the other note if your seat is too high it could cause hyper extension of your legs at the bottom of the pedal stroke.
Yoga can help with that! : )
All excellent suggestions. You could also consider finding a Retul bike fitter in your state where the 3-D measurements are taken while pedaling on the bike, instead of in a static position. If you are riding long hours on the bike, the adjustments to your contact points (saddle setback, handlebar, pedal, stem, seat post, etc.) even if it’s millimeters…can mean a big difference in comfort, injury, or efficiency.
Thank you! Have gotten some advice from a yoga friend as well. 🙂 It doesn’t seem to help once the pain is there, but is somewhat preventative…
That is an excellent article. It’s really good to know that biking is such a good alternate exercise. I like to make sure that my bike has no-more-flats in them, then I never have to worry about getting a flat tire. I think beginners could benefit by knowing that a bike can become a cheaper form of transportation. http://www.nutribuff.com/weight-loss/biking-for-transportation-and-weight-loss/ Instead of driving your car to a friends house who lives less than a mile away. Why not just start riding a bike to get there? There are also a lot of errands that you can get done with a bike.
Interesting. I usually bike a lot whenever I can. During the winter when it gets too cold for me to bike outside I go to the gym and use the bike machine. The machine gets boring after a little while so I run for a bit on the treadmill. a few days ago I ran for an hour an half and was surprised at the fact that I wasn’t getting tired compared to how I used to feel. I usually hate running and I never get tired of biking.
I wholeheartedly agree! I trained for a marathon and half-marathon last year using the FIRST program (3 days running, 2 cross-training) and started cycling 2 days a week. I PR’d in both races and avoided injury and burnout. I’m currently using a bike trainer inside for the winter in addition to training for my next marathon, and shooting for a Boston Qualifier. Cycling has made that goal reasonable 🙂
I LOVED THIS!!! Thanks for writing the great article Susan. I’m definitely going to start biking…swimming? Well, I don’t know how to swim, but you almost had me wanting to try….almost. 🙂
I SO agree here. I have tried being a runner in the past and it always caused me shin splints or knee problems, always something. This time at 51 years old I started for 3 months on a good stationary recumbent bike for before I ever tried running at all. Now in the last month I am gradually starting a combination of running/walking, and it is working really well – the muscles I got from cycling are helping me run and NO pain at all anywhere.
Susan,I totally agree with you about the cross training. I became a Triathlete last summer and really noticed how much better a runner I became. Plus, I felt in the greatest shape of my life at the age of 54! As my husband remarked, I think we found your new sport. I am a Tri junkie now.
I love this post *like everyone else!*
I picked up cycling a few months after my first marathon. I wanted to try something else and learned that it’s true: Riding a bike really IS just like riding a bike. I hadn’t ridden in over 20 years and it wasn’t so bad. Then I picked up Tri and really got to understand how cycling and running play well together.
p.s.: I love your bike names!
This is so true! I was just a runner for several years, then I got injured and had to go to physical therapy. Since I couldn’t run, I had to do something else so I took an adult swimming class and learned how to swim freestyle for exercise. Then my sister (who does Ironmans) talked me into doing a triathlon. I got a road bike and completed my first two sprint triathlons last summer. I was in better shape and injury free due to all the cross training!
Great post, Susan. A few years ago I had my best running year ever–completing my first two ultras. I give a good part of the credit to the fact that I was also cycling and swimming several days a week! It made me so fit (the hills in Cape Town where I was living also helped).
Wow, what a great article. Now I HAVE to cycle. I can’t wait to make my training for races even better!
I’ve been cycling for about a year and a half and I love it! The tips for getting started with cycling are all great suggestions and I would also recommend riding on bike paths when starting out without the interference of cars before hitting the road. Learn how to shift, start, stop and turn comfortably before riding on the streets — especially if using clipless pedals.
I started running in December and am debating on competing in a duathlon later this year. It’s good to know that the sport I love can help me become a better runner.
What a great post! I totally concur… I spent all of last spring/summer on my bike prepping for an epic ride from Seattle to Vancouver, BC. Once that was done, I switched gears (ha!) back to running and was AMAZED at how much faster I had gotten! Without doing any significant running in months! I’m currently training for my first marathon and looking forward to biking the Seattle to Vancouver and the Seattle to Portland this summer 🙂
Yep! It totally works! When I was running a lot training for the Hood to Coast Relay, I was also training for a 55 mile charity ride at the same time. I noticed that the month of long bike rides every weekend improved my running so much. I was faster, I was stronger, I recovered faster and I could run longer distances. It was awesome!
If it wasn’t for cycling, I don’t think I would have gotten anywhere with running! (I’d still rate my running as terrible, but it’s better than my swimming.)
I am a bit concerned. I am a sprinter but love cycling, however I am constantly told cycling is bad for running, I have heard it shortens the calfs? and that you just build muscles that you do not need? help? confused, mixed advice !
Will cycling tone only the leg or the arms as well?? Are there chances of me developing a bad back due to over cycling?
I am greatful for this. You are so encouraging! I broke my tibia and fibula in a race six months ago and am just beginning to cycle because I am not yet strong enough to run again. I have been severely depressed, missing my road time and feeling like a total lump for not being active. If I can learn how to love cycling, it will help me heal so that I can run again some day.
I find that cycling massively helps my running. Last year I was commutting 30 mile round trips and running around 20-25 miles a week. I was consistently finishing in the first 3rd of any races I ran, this year I’ve rarely cycled and similar running is seeing me struggle to finish in the first half. Non of the cycling was at an overly high intensity, but the morning commutes were done in a fasted state and I lost a significant amount of weight.
I’ve recently made the deision to get back on the bike and see if it closes the gap on last years performances. Obviously the 8-10 hours a week spent on the bike would probably be better served running as my main focus is running, but ultimately I can’t run my commute and it’s about maximising the time available too me rather than focussing on specialised training if that makes sense.
Your best exercise routine should include weight lifting 2 or 3 times a week and some form of good cardio exercise. It’s best to do a combo of lower intensity cardio such as biking or fast walking mixed with high intensity cardio such as jump roping and running for example. Reason being you can’t due high intensity cardio everyday you need some rest days from that. You can do lower intensity cardio more frequently which allows you to maintain your cardio fitness with way less stress on the body. Personally I do a combo of running, biking, jump roping, and weight lifting. I weight lift 2 to 3 times a week. I alternate between lower intensity cardio with high intensity cardio based on how I feel and sorenes.
I know that this is an old article but I had to comment. A couple years ago I had hit a running plateau, I’m was in my mid-40’s, I was slooooow, and getting frustrated. A friend suggested biking, I tried it and I was hooked. I backed off of running, maybe going out a couple miles a few times a week. Then I gave up running completely for about a month or so. One day I just decided to go out and run with no time or distance in mind. I figured that I’d start with my 3 mile loop and then add on a shorter loop if I felt up to it or walk part of it if I was hurting. I ran 4 that day, it was my best run ever. I felt awesome, I had shaved about a full minute off my mile. I still had positive splits. I probably could have run 2 more miles but I felt so good, I wanted to end on a good note. I posted about it on an active running board and was met with crickets. I swear runners don’t want to hear about biking. It’s crazy. When a couple people finally commented, it wasn’t very positive about biking. I love doing both, but it’s annoying being in both worlds.
Number 5 is so simple yet we try to dig so deep when looking for happiness that we forget to just look into ourselves and ask what brings us joy. Thanks for reminding us
I really love your post! Cycling really made my run performance increases. Besides I am not too worried about the risk of injury.
Lots of good education and advice here. I still prefer running but i have recently acquired a bicycle and am starting to use it to mix things up for transportation such as trips to the post office and it does save time.
This is the biggest load of rubbish I have read. If your a runner stay off the bike If you want to know more email me I’m working on a Doctorate and have done so much research on this
What is your email address?
I’d be interested in knowing what your research has shown about biking and running. What’s your email address?
The tips are useful for me, I like doing exercise, but I always ride exercise bike at home, I think I should go out to do exercise sometimes, thanks
I don’t like running, I like bike cycle, but the tips are very useful for me, thanks
I’m a runner who occasionally cycles at the weekends. I’ve found that the cycling increases the leg strength which really helps to keep you keep going in the latter stages of longer races, e.g. Half Marathons/Marathons. There’s also a lot of talk of different muscles in cycling, when in face the spring off part of the running stride is the same action as the pedal push part on a bike.
also, learn other aspects of bike maintenance besides just fixing a flat such as fixing a broken chain, etc.
For any skill level of cyclist: Try mountain biking over rougher terrain than is easy for you, so you get handling skills you think you don’t need on the road…. if you are faced with a road riding situation, like something bumps you or an obstacle, it will become an accident/injury, unless you are over-prepared and are able to handle it, and can “pedal through it (a good strategy is to be thinking to pedal if something happens, not avoid/fear),” rather than spazzing out and crashing yourself in what you think is accident avoidance (YOU cause the crash, by your fear and improper reaction), but is actually accident causation (at least 90% of cycling crashes are because of mental errors/fear, rather than something that was doomed to get you). As far as running and cycling, yeah, cycling will make you a hell of a runner… I had never ran over 4 miles (15 years ago), went from walk to run program in the fall to winning overall in a boston qualifier in the spring, my first and last marathon (I prefer my hilly 6 mile training loop which had the same elevation gain in each run as the “hilly” marathon I did), in 6 months with no requisite year of running before starting marathon training (Oh, and I weight 180# and regularly get called “Hercules,” and references to my size when at bike/running races, so no more excuses people, it’s all about consistency, and no my VO2 is not world class, something like 65). If you really want leg turnover, do 10 seconds of high cadence, form concious work a few times each run, up to 5-10 x per run, don’t run hard on that run, focus on teaching muscle memory. Just go do your thing 🙂 (fake name because I don’t want to brag, just facts to help someone)
I am a Maraton runner, my preparation is more on cycling using my XC MTB. The best benefits I get from cycling is that i don’t feel knee pain after the a long Run.
So how can cycling make you a faster runner?…
Exactly!!! NOTHING in the article about what they titled it. Hahaha!! I already know all of this for cycling. This article wasted my time as I’m not a runner but just started walking 5k’s. #Useless
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