Kings Of The Road – Running Vs Cycling, Who Wins?

We've crunched the numbers to help you decide between running or cycling.



For fitness at its most pure, which cardio discipline puts in the most legwork? MH asks whether you should pound pavements or push pedals to see the best results.

Running

Trainer Talk

“As well as being accessible, running leads to increased bone density, protecting you from osteoporosis further down the track”

– Leo Savage, Third Space gyms

Hall Of Fame – Mo Farah 

  • 4 Olympic Gold Medals
  • Marathon Personal Best – 2:08:21
  • Weighs 58kg

Training Buddy

As well as enhancing endurance, combining running with garlic extract boosts ‘good’ HDL cholesterol and lowers blood pressure – Azad University, Iran

Drawbacks

  • Shin Splints
  • Heavy On Joints
  • Treadmill Boredom

Science Says

When done at the same level of perceived effort, you’ll shift slightly more belly fat running than you will do in the saddle – University of Birmingham.

Related: One Of These Running Shoes Could Be Your New Sole Mate

Cycling

via GIPHY

Trainer Talk

“The saddle wins for muscle, as power comes through the quads, glutes and hamstrings. Plus, DOMS will be less intense the next day” – Melissa Power, N4 Workout

Hall Of Fame

A post shared by Chris Hoy (@chrishoy1) on

  • 6 Olympic Golds
  • Squat Personal Best – 240kg
  • Thigh size – 69cm

Training Buddy – Beetroot Juice

Down a shot of beetroot juice a few hours before cycling, and the nitrates will help you shave 2% off your time and last 16% longer – University of Exeter.

Drawbacks

via GIPHY

  • Costly Equipment
  • Fertility Issues
  • Puncture Problems

Science Says

Just finished on the squat rack? You’ll lose fewer hard-won gains to cardio by combining weights training with cycling, rather than running – Stephen F Austin State University.

Related: How To Supercharge Your Cycling Endurance With Weights

THE MH VERDICT

Cycling Wins! Pavement purists may point to running’s superior fat-burning credentials but cycling’s muscle and endurance building benefits bag it the yellow jersey. Plus, you can get your cardio kick during your morning commute.

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