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  1. Jim Lanave

    That’s all wrong, or more properly stated, the answer above leaves a lot of information out of the equation. First, the question wasn’t about “steady” workouts, it was about “long” runs or walks. Speaking from experience, long runs do help – 10 to 13 miles is good, once a week (or more if you like). In addition, at least two shorter runs (3-5 miles) per week should round out the “run only” plan. I lost 30 lbs on that plan. I looked good, but not great – and after eight years of the same routine, I got bored. Then I bought a mountain bike this past June (2011), and then a road bike. Now I run an Olympic Triathlon every Saturday and throw in another 70 miles a week between biking and running just for fun… I look great, feel even better and the cross training on the bike helped relieve some of the aches and pains that come with running. My weight training involves 100-200 pushups a day.

    Next, if you have pain due riding a bike, it’s more than likely because the bike does not fit you, not repetitive motion. Running pains have a number of sources – check with your local running or bike shop to address your issue.

    Running burns approximately 70% of your body weight in calories per mile (I’m a 6′ tall male and weigh 158 so I burn around 110 calories per mile)
    Mountain biking burns 60-65% per mile
    Cycling burns about 50% per mile.

    The kicker is that there is a new study that says if you increase your heart rate for a period of more than 10 minutes, your body will continue to burn calories for up hours after you’ve ended your workout. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/19/health/nutrition/19best.html

    I would ask, even if cardio circuits burn more than a good bike ride, who would rather do cardio circuits in a stuffy gym over rocketing down the road at 25 mph with the breeze in your face…or negotiating a decent mountain bike trail at your local state park? Are you kidding me?

    In the end, it all boils down to finding YOUR thing. What gets me off the couch is a good, long, hard ride. What gets you off the couch could be running, or walking, or hiking, kayaking or swimming…or even cardio circuits. Learn to find one that you love.

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