fatdad wrote:People often have interesting queries they pose on this site, often without much of an explanation why, which is important to know if you really want pointed advice.
Is there a reason why you don't want to run even though you've been doing it five times a week? Are you injured, bored, what? Why do you need to exercise five (or seven) times a week? Are you working toward a goal, neurotic...?
Too often people ask how to get from point A to point B without asking whether they should aim for point C or D or E instead.
hamik wrote:Splattski gets it pretty much right on. What are your goals in training for mountaineering? You want 1) a strong aerobic system, and 2) strong enough bones, ligaments, and tendons. Any aerobic activity will improve the aerobic system. People say that cycling is less effective per unit time than running for that purpose, and I generally agree with that; there is a tall muscular and lactic acid threshold barrier which needs to be overcome before one can train the aerobic system hard on a bike. Whereas it's easy to keep a certain high BPM while running, many people will not be able to sustain the same BPM on a bike because the legs tire prematurely. You need an ideal venue: an uninterrupted circuit such as the Rose Bowl or tall hills. I also impose a personal restriction against riding at night (except at the Rose Bowl) because I have been hit by cars way too many times. Even after these obstacles are figured out, I subjectively feel like 3 hard hours on the bike tire me as much as one hour of running. So basically 50 mi hilly cycling = 8 or 9 mi running.
Running is obviously better for developing stronger orthopedics, and for mountaineers it makes sense to hike a lot or run a little to make sure the bones and connective tissues are strong enough for jolting and abuse. So why not run all the time? As you pointed out, runners get injured a lot! I think the solution is a nice balance between biking, running, and hiking. After a partially torn Achilles Tendon (overuse at the age of 18!), a chronic knee tendonitis, and an acute groin tendonitis, I finally have reached a happy, strong balance of 3 days cycling, 1 day running, 2 days hiking or climbing per week.
splattski wrote:And my un-scientific answer: I think cycling beats running for uphill hiking strength. But it's the downhills that do in my brother's legs, and running might be better preparation for that stress.
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