The Bike

The bike has been handy this year. Every so often, I push a run a little (okay, a lot) too hard and get some pretty severe tightness in my right calf. It’s something I can usually run on if I need to, but I figure some rest is probably best. Not wanting to sacrifice a full workout on these days, I usually hit the stationary bike.

As a general rule, I do 3 miles on the stationary bike for every 1 mile I would have run. I only replace “easy” runs with these bike workouts. I try to keep my heart rate around 150 for the bulk of the workout. As it turns out, this ends up being a pretty intense workout. I always leave big puddles of sweat below the bike. Near the end, I constantly think about getting off the bike and finishing things up on the treadmill, but I have to keep reminding myself that that would defeat the purpose of getting on the bike in the first place.

One day off from running is typically all I need and the calf feels better until I push another workout too hard. Usually the lingering pain in my ass is a good reminder to keep my next run to its intended pace. I certainly don’t feel I’ve lost any fitness and afterward it actually feels pretty good to have worked some different muscles for a change.


  1. i rarely cross-train or do anything other than run, but this actually sounds like a cross-training workout i could actually make myself do! thanks for the tip. you are wise to hold back from the running when your body is telling you to take it easy.

  2. Sometimes it can be really tough to admit you need rest. I admit this is something I should do more of. I like the idea of incorporating some cross-training. Recently, I added a new component to my running — the 100 Push Up Program ( I don’t know if it would be considered cross-training, but so far the added training has worked well.

  3. I think you will like how the bike will help with muscle balance and injury prevention. Also, think of it as training for that Triathalon you always wanted to do. Perhaps an IronMan in your future?

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