Runners: Ride a Bike!
Didn’t we just mention that runners and walkers are more comfortable with both feet on the ground and now we’re recommending riding a bike?! Believe it or not, cycling is one of the most beneficial cross training activities that runners and walkers can do to improve strength and endurance while running! Cycling is non impact, as a result it is easier on the body and helps to prevent overuse injuries related to the impact of running. It is also an aerobic activity, so it still helps to maintain heart and lung strength. Finally, it strengthens the power muscles often neglected by many runners such as the quads, hamstrings, glutes and hip flexors, which all play a part in avoiding overuse injuries particularly for those training for long distance events – all you marathoners out there!
As for common sense cycling info, the air won’t be any cleaner (so time of day in scheduling workouts is equally applicable), but the cooling effect on the bike is much greater than when walking or running. WEAR A HELMET!!!! No, I shouldn’t have to remind you of that, but I’m amazed and appalled when I’m out riding to see a mom or dad out with the kids, and while the kids are wearing helmets (Virginia law), the parents aren’t. What kind of example is that? Above all, be safe and have fun!