General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Cyclist starting to run Rss Feed  
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2013-07-31 2:46 PM


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Subject: Cyclist starting to run
I've been a road cyclist for quite awhile now and due to time constraints, wanted to take up running as well. I don't really live in an area I can ride out of my front door for any extended period of time, but I can go run laps in my neighborhood or at the gym at lunch.

However, after just a few minutes walking and trying to warm up the outsides of my calves are killing me. My legs are in pretty good shape, I'm slightly overweight, but it's almost immediate, and I have just started so it can't be an overuse issue yet. It definitely feels like a muscle issue, and they almost just feel super super tight. After about 5-10 minutes of actual hard walking or light jogging it's really really painful.


I can "walk" at a normal pace all day and no pain, but any incline and anything that's going to actually generate a HR increase and bam, pain.

Any thoughts?

also, I really am brand spanking new to running. I played soccer in high school but that's been so long ago I don't really remember any stretching or anything else we did.


Also, I'm 31 if that helps at all?


2013-07-31 2:54 PM
in reply to: Sylint

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
The impact of running can be a bit difficult for a body to get used to. I was warned a million times, thought I was listening, and ended up injuring myself. I had been running 2-3 days a week, then I took two months off because I was bike racing and needed to train for that. Of course, I didn't lose any cardio fitness, so I jumped back in to running with my mid-distance runs (5-7 miles). I had missed running and it felt good to get back out there. It took less than two weeks to tear an Achilles tendon. I felt the pain, but the cyclist in me was saying to HTFU. I should have listened to the runner in me which was advising that I listen to my body. That was in September, and I am still not 100%.

It boils down to this. Take it easy. No, easier than that. Do a lot of stretches like runners stretches and heel drops when you are not running. That will help keep everything loose so you are less likely to do damage from the impact of running.
2013-07-31 2:57 PM
in reply to: Sylint

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
Sounds like your legs, joints, and tendons need a little time to acclimate.  Carrying a little additional weight doesn't help because running is high impact and weight bearing.  Take it slow and give your body some time to adapt.  It won't happen overnight, but likely take weeks or months.  Of course you could try to push through faster, but that's why so many new runners end up injured.  I was there myself 5 years ago...tried to push through and ended up not being able to run at all for 2 months due to patellar tendonitis.
2013-07-31 3:03 PM
in reply to: Jason N


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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
Yeah, I'm not massively overweight, but I assume it will be a factor, but right now I'm not even getting to actually run/jog. I'm just barely up to speed on a treadmill just walking and it starts hurting.


Guess I'll be that guy just slowly meandering on the treadmill and around the neighborhood. Thanks!

Once I get this sorted, time to start swimming.
2013-07-31 3:32 PM
in reply to: #4818014

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
Here's what I did.

Start with very short distances.

I started with 5 minutes. Twice/week.

Every week add a couple minutes.

Make sure you have shoes that are fitted properly for your feet and run style.

This will reduce chances of injury. It may take a few months before you are running 5 miles, but what's the rush?
2013-07-31 3:36 PM
in reply to: Sylint

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
I would go see a sports doc in your area that focuses on runners. "Really painful" isn't good.

Also, this plan has launched many adult onset running careers.

http://www.coolrunning.com/engine/2/2_3/181.shtml


2013-07-31 3:38 PM
in reply to: Sylint

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
This may take a little time, as others have said, but don't worry - it's quite normal. I have a big running background, going back 30 years, but I had just the same experience as you 3 years ago when I restarted running after years of doing very little, and then losing weight via cycling. I was in great cycling shape, but running two days in a row left me totally beat up. Take it gradually, but you will get through this.

Good luck.
2013-07-31 7:50 PM
in reply to: Goosedog

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
Originally posted by Goosedog


Also, this plan has launched many adult onset running careers.

http://www.coolrunning.com/engine/2/2_3/181.shtml


I think that might be your best bet. If you're sitting down all day at work, you might take a little longer. Maybe even start a little more relaxed and just walk for the first week. I've helped several adults get into running using similar plans to that.

Take it nice and easy...you'll get there. It takes awhile.
2013-07-31 11:06 PM
in reply to: Sylint

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
It sounds like your shoes don't fit your stride. I had a similar issue when I bought my first nice pair of running shoes at a local shop. The salesperson had me run across the store a few times and sold me motion control shoes. They were terrible for me. I exchanged them for neutral shoes and the pain went away.

Try this. Go to a park and do your warm up and short run barefoot on the grass. If you don't feel pain, it's the shoes. If you do feel the same pain, some serious stretching with a foam roller could help. It's painful but can work wonders.

If you've never heard of a foam roller check out YouTube. There are lots of videos. This is the one I use:
http://www.amazon.com/Black-High-Density-Foam-Rollers/dp/B0040NJOA0
2013-08-01 7:33 AM
in reply to: Sylint


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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
Thanks everyone, I really appreciate your time and answers.

Brian
2013-08-01 7:44 AM
in reply to: Sylint

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run

along with all the good responses above - a few others from me:

Running = Injuries.  Even more likely for cyclists such as yourself, as you've got an aerobic engine that's bigger than your joints, ligaments and tendons can yet handle.  

Don't worry about the initial muscle soreness.  muscles adapt pretty quickly to the new forces you're placing on them.  It's the other parts and pieces of your body that don't get the blood flow that take longer.

Be tenacious.  you'll have some troubles along the way to becoming a runner.  Times when you'll think that you're just not meant to be a runner and then ditch it and go back to cycling.  Decide now if you want to face those obstacles and overcome them.  Buy a foam roller and a 'stick'.

it may take a couple years- but if you keep at it- you'll be a runner.  Maybe a good one.  It's not like cycling.  Running is a more visceral experience.  it's also easier to do it almost anywhere with minimal equipment.  just you and the road. (or trail).

as Nike says;  Just Do It.



2013-08-01 7:52 AM
in reply to: Sylint

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
Cant offer advice but thought Id mention that we're in the same boat. Cant do an incline without calves cramping up. Cant run more than 100 yards. Cant push the trash cans up the driveway. Cant hang on to a large dogs leash for very long, etc etc. Its not a a weight issue as Im 6' 137.
I have plantar F both feet for 4 years now, and had a procedure called deep needling that caused the calf issues. The calf muscles were fine walking into the Dr office, and never worked correctly since. Like you I can cycle for a good amount of time. Run walk has not seemed to help. Pretty much stuck to the bike. Strange thing is I have good dorsi flexibly I think. The calves just start to ball up with any exertion every time. Ive read about supplements, but haven't gone down that road yet. May look into it. You've never been needled have you?
2013-08-01 8:17 AM
in reply to: #4818086

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
The most important advise coming from a cycling background is to set up a very easy training program and stick to it. As a cyclist, your cardiovascular system will allow you to go much further and faster than what your joints can absorb in the beginning, it's very easy to overwork your body and get injured.
2013-08-01 12:10 PM
in reply to: pnwdan

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Subject: RE: Cyclist starting to run
Originally posted by pnwdan

It sounds like your shoes don't fit your stride. I had a similar issue when I bought my first nice pair of running shoes at a local shop. The salesperson had me run across the store a few times and sold me motion control shoes. They were terrible for me. I exchanged them for neutral shoes and the pain went away.

Try this. Go to a park and do your warm up and short run barefoot on the grass. If you don't feel pain, it's the shoes. If you do feel the same pain, some serious stretching with a foam roller could help. It's painful but can work wonders.

If you've never heard of a foam roller check out YouTube. There are lots of videos. This is the one I use:
http://www.amazon.com/Black-High-Density-Foam-Rollers/dp/B0040NJOA0



Another vote on making sure the shoes are right. When I started running, I had terrible shoes when I started out and would have issues in my achilles....the right shoes made all the difference...other great advice on here, but wanted to add my two cents on the shoe part
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