Ask a coach: ‘If I can’t go on a bike ride, is it worth going running instead?’

Whether it’s a busy work/life schedule, a trip away from home or the dark winter evenings, there’s a host of reasons why fitting in a ride might be a struggle – but how good an alternative is running, really?

Image shows a cyclist running.
(Image credit: Getty Images - The Good Brigade)

Any cyclist who has had the (dis)pleasure of dabbling in running will be able to tell you that you get home after a 20 min run considerably more tired than you would after a one hour bike ride.

This isn’t about answering whether cycling or running is better, this is about exploring whether adding running to your training is the perfect solution for time-crunched cyclists – and whether it’s better than opting for a short and sharp HIIT session, like these 30-minute cycling workouts.

Meet Our Coach
Image shows James Spragg.
Meet Our Coach
James Spragg

Sports scientist and coach James Spragg is one of the experts who will be answering your questions in Cycling Weekly's ASK A CYCLING COACH series which comes out every Wednesday. Working both in research and applied settings, he currently runs Intercept Performance Consultancy

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James Spragg

James Spragg is a sports scientist and coach, working both in research and applied settings. When not working with athletes James can be found skiing, climbing, cycling or drinking coffee!

Alongside Dan Lorang and Peter Leo, James runs Intercept Performance Consultancy. Over the last 8 years in various roles, as coaches, performance consultants, performance managers, and sports scientists, Dan, James and Peter have played a role in helping athletes achieve more than 10 World Championship titles, several Olympics medals (including a Gold and Silver Medal in Tokyo 2020) and several Top 5 results in some of the biggest sporting events on the planet (Tour de France, Olympics, World and European Championships). Our single focus is on improving performance in all settings.