Free Access! Don't miss the latest scoop, new product reviews and other awesome stuff ~ Click to join your running tribe!

Improve Race Times By Hopping On A Bike

Get Speedier Doing This 15 Minutes 3 Times A Week ~

Turns out that a stationary bike can be a runner’s secret weapon for improving race times.

While many runners may dread the idea of riding a stationary bike, a new study from the U.K shows that a specific type of high intensity interval training (HIIT) done on a bike at least 15 minutes three times a week can make you faster.

Runner’s World recently reported on the study of runners who ran at least 25 miles a week and did the two-week HIIT program on a stationary bike:

“Their baseline 3K was measured by treadmill test. Three groups were trained on a spin bike over the next two weeks in addition to their normal running routine, while the control group just maintained their regular running schedule.

Over six sessions, every participant completed six 10-second intervals at an all-out effort, but each group varied the amount of rest in between intervals—ranging from 30 seconds to 80 seconds to two minutes after each sprint.

The results show the HIIT sessions, combined with the shortest periods of rest, increased running speed the most. The groups that rested for two minutes or 80 seconds between intervals did not see significant changes in their running times (there was no change in the control group), but the group that rested for 30 seconds between intervals was able to better its 3K treadmill test by an average of three percent—or about 25 seconds on average.”

The reason why the 30-second rest group improved their running times was due to the elevated heart rate over a shorter rest time. The intervals felt harder so the runners’ bodies had to adapt more quickly to the challenge. This heart rate adaptation to a heavier load allowed them to do better during the final timed 3K treadmill test.

Because the results can be so significant with just a few short sessions, this type of interval training can be a very powerful,  time-efficient way to cross-train, get faster, or maintain fitness when recovering from an injury.

A gym workout sure seems a lot more relevant now.

Thanks to Runner’s World for their report.

Check out other time-saving moves that deliver extra benefits: Power Up Your Core and 10 Quick Ab Exercises.