Running V Cycling equivalents

General bike chat that does not fit elsewhere
plymouthsteve
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Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby plymouthsteve » Sat Jan 19, 2013 20:06 pm

Hi.
OK, so I ride quite alot, but because of a old knee injury that won't take kindly to impact, I can run for about a mile, and that's it. Everything seizes.
My mate can run forever .. Indeed, he's run over 50 marathons in the last 5 years, but can't ride a bike because, quite honestly, he would fall off.
The one question we keep asking, which neither of us can agree on, but many of you can answer is.. How far do I have to ride in one go to have achieved the equivalent of a marathon?
I say 3x (so 78 miles) because only a dedicated rider can reasonably do this, and would train at about 1/3rd this distance. He says 4x (so 100+ miles) or I suppose a sportive?
I know there will be alot of people on this forum who both run and ride, so will have a valid opinion, and I thought the debate would be fun, so off you go.......

Froomes Edgar
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby Froomes Edgar » Sat Jan 19, 2013 20:14 pm

Somewhere between 26 and 500 miles.

Hope this helps

plymouthsteve
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby plymouthsteve » Sat Jan 19, 2013 20:17 pm

Um. Not really.
Obviously I can google the scientific reply (4x) but I wanted opinions from people who actually do both and know about the feeling, walls etc.
Thanks

Herb71
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby Herb71 » Sat Jan 19, 2013 20:23 pm

I have done the London marathon twice, and used to be a reasonable runner at shorter distances. (best half in under 89 minutes).

Lots of variables, but the 78 mile Etape Pennines was harder than the London Marathon in my opinion. I reckon on a flat course on a good day you would need to be cycling 4 to 5 times as far to be comparable.

itchieritchie
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby itchieritchie » Sat Jan 19, 2013 20:38 pm

Interesting.

One way of putting the two on a more equal footing would be to ask "On average, how many calories are burnt over the duration of a marathon - and at the average speed that most people do a marathon?"

Take that number of calories (say 3000 for the sake of argument) and work out how long an average cyclist would travel to burn off 3000 calories also.

Lots of variables of course. WHAT exactly IS the average speed of the average cyclist, for example? But statistics is your friend here. You could collate lots of data from different events and at least come up with a round figure. And you could do a similar exercise for the marathon runners, to eliminate as many outliers as possible. It's all about the natural distribution of numbers.

By definition, you could never nail this 100%, but you could get more precise than a single digit (e.g. 3.3 times).

That way, you could tell who was closer to the real answer between your mate and you.

Hope you're right...let us know...!!

rich164h
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby rich164h » Sat Jan 19, 2013 21:12 pm

x4 feels about right to me on average, but as said above it does depend on terrain/wind etc.

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smidsy
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby smidsy » Sat Jan 19, 2013 21:14 pm

Well on the basis that I could cycle 100 miles tomorrow if I had to and I could never run 25 miles in 1 go I would say its a lot more than 100 miles equivalent.

For me running is just so much harder, I guess it is all relative. I never have enjoyed running and have only ever been a sprinter at that sport.
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Triquin
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby Triquin » Sat Jan 19, 2013 21:25 pm

Surely the easiest measure would be to see how many calories you or your friend burn for a marathon and then ride a distance to burn the same amount of calories? :)

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Mikey23
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby Mikey23 » Sat Jan 19, 2013 22:07 pm

Ran for years in the Cornish Grand Prix before taking up cycling because I got bored. I have absolutely no scientific basis or evidence to back this up but feels like about 3 to 1. Did 42 today and my body reaction is similar to having run a half marathon. Completely different dynamic but that's my gut feeling... Hope it helps

rich164h
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby rich164h » Sat Jan 19, 2013 22:10 pm

smidsy wrote:Well on the basis that I could cycle 100 miles tomorrow if I had to and I could never run 25 miles in 1 go I would say its a lot more than 100 miles equivalent.

For me running is just so much harder, I guess it is all relative. I never have enjoyed running and have only ever been a sprinter at that sport.

It probalby depends on what you're used to. There's a girl that I run with some lunchtimes, she does a handful of marathons each and every year and yet when I've been out on the bike with her she's really struggling past the 20 mile mark. She cannot understand how someone could do 100 miles, whereas for me, a half marathon is the furthest I've ran so far and the prospect of doing double that in one go doesn't bear thinking about, but I can do back-to-back 100 mile days on the bike without any real problem.

cougie
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby cougie » Sat Jan 19, 2013 23:13 pm

I'd go for something like 5 x the distance bike to run.
Ironman tri has 112 miles on the bike and then a full marathon. The marathon is always the hardest part.

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Lightning
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby Lightning » Sat Jan 19, 2013 23:44 pm

This is really relative. For whatever is worth, I find runners have a much harder time picking up cycling than the other way around, but I don't think completing a marathon or riding 200k is particularly hard if you run/ride regularly.

A friend of mine (runner) who's used to running marathons went on two short bike rides with me and was absolutely knackered every time. As in, he would have been in a better shape if he ran the course instead of riding it. He got cramps, saddle pain, back pain, etc, and had to stop both times to rest. I find this to be expected as while most people have run at some point in time (or at least walk a lot), the same doesn't apply to cycling.

This same friend of mine challenged me to run a marathon once. I didn't even run before the actual marathon (I don't like running and was always riding anyways) and I completed it with no problems whatsoever (slower than him obviously). As you can imagine my legs were dead for one week after that because I wasn't used to it at all, but during the actual running they were fine.

Basically, don't worry about comparisons like this. Cycling and running are two different sports and they're both very hard if you take them serious. Also, if you run/ride regularly, I'm pretty sure the distance won't really scare you: the pace will.

Bozman
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby Bozman » Sun Jan 20, 2013 08:04 am

I think that it's more than 5 to 1 but I suppose a lot is down to the Individual.
I can comfortably cycle 100 miles at a fair pace but I struggled to do 10k a couple of years ago. I have a friend who does marathons in under 2.30, he borrowed a bike and joined some mates on a ride in the lakes and completed all but one climb......Hardknott pass.

nawty
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby nawty » Sun Jan 20, 2013 08:49 am

I'm a runner, I use the term loosely, best half mara time is 1:44 and I've done 3 full maras too and I've recently taken up cycling.

I honestly don't really think the two are comparable. Unless you're one of those naturally freaky runners who can run forever a mara gives your body such a pounding that it isn't just about calories but a whole host of other things.

When I first started running it took me months to build up to 10 miles yet my third time out on the bike and I was at nearly 40 and didn't feel a thing (except really hungry when I got home), granted I'm much fitter now than when I started running.

A friend of mine who ran a 3:44 mara with NO training whatsoever recently took up cycling and did a 100 mile sportive (again, minimal training), he hit the wall at around 80 miles but reckons a mara is much tougher.

So, for me I reckon somewhere over 4 times the distance would be about right but I do feel it's a bit apples and oranges.
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jibberjim
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby jibberjim » Sun Jan 20, 2013 09:05 am

They're not at all equivalent.

Running has a minimum intensity - below that the activity is called walking, Cycling has no minimum intensity other than that required not to fall over sideways - almost nil downhill or of course.

So you can keep going cycling at not much more intensity than your day to day life. So you can "do" your 100miles by resting a lot within it. Running you can't do the same and still have people recognise that you're running.

Distances are not comparable, but neither is energy expenditure, as the impact of speed is very different, there's only a small increase in energy required to run faster over the same distance, but there's a large energy required to cycle faster over the same distance due to wind resistance.
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southdownswolf
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby southdownswolf » Sun Jan 20, 2013 09:06 am

The furthest that I have ridden is 76 miles - that was without any specific training, just going out for a couple of shortish rides each week. I have run quite a few marathons and whilst I could get round quite easily without training in about 5 hours on a flat course, to run sub 4hours requires quite significant training. Sub 3 1/2 hours I have to stick to a specific training schedule. I would say that for me it would be quite a bit more than 100 miles to be the equivalent of a marathon.
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pride4ever
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby pride4ever » Sun Jan 20, 2013 09:41 am

plymouthsteve wrote:Hi.
OK, so I ride quite alot, but because of a old knee injury that won't take kindly to impact, I can run for about a mile, and that's it. Everything seizes.
My mate can run forever .. Indeed, he's run over 50 marathons in the last 5 years, but can't ride a bike because, quite honestly, he would fall off.
The one question we keep asking, which neither of us can agree on, but many of you can answer is.. How far do I have to ride in one go to have achieved the equivalent of a marathon?
I say 3x (so 78 miles) because only a dedicated rider can reasonably do this, and would train at about 1/3rd this distance. He says 4x (so 100+ miles) or I suppose a sportive?
I know there will be alot of people on this forum who both run and ride, so will have a valid opinion, and I thought the debate would be fun, so off you go.......


Dunno but when your both retired and your still riding and hes most likely laid up with destroyed joints he'l be wishing he'd bought a bike.
the deeper the section the deeper the pleasure.

ooermissus
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby ooermissus » Sun Jan 20, 2013 10:09 am

I entered a marathon on a whim and trained for it over a couple of months, mostly on the bike, but with a dozen or so runs of varying lengths to check on what pace I could manage on the day (just under the 4hr mark for me). I am not sure a 42k run needs to be that difficult, as long as you don't go out too fast and take on as many calories as you can tolerate from the very beginning.

I am planning a hilly 200k audax in the Spring (the longest distance I have ridden) and that seems like a similar level of challenge, although it would maybe seem more daunting if was completed non-stop in the way a marathon is.

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smidsy
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby smidsy » Sun Jan 20, 2013 11:23 am

To the OP - looks like the consensous is that you will lose the bet.
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letap73
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Re: Running V Cycling equivalents

Postby letap73 » Sun Jan 20, 2013 12:02 pm

I have cycled 112 miles and run a marathon. The marathon was harder and felt more of an achievement. I find running far more physically jarring -the effects of the marathon were felt for far longer than the cycle, even though I am fairly certain I expended a greater amount of energy on the ride.


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