Bicycling improves running kinesthetics

Today was my first run in a while after having bicycled a lot recently. During my run this afternoon I was very aware of how the bicycling has improved my running kinesthetics. In particular, it seems that bicycling up inclines is very helpful. When bicycling up a grade it causes you to exert more power into your legs. If you are going up a long incline then you find a balance between exertion and sustaining your power. Bicycling is really good for finding this perfect balance probably because the pedals are fixed and other variables related to exertion are removed. When you’re bicycling up a grade it’s kind of like you’re applying pure power through your legs, you acquire a kind of kinesthetic awareness of the power you are exerting and thus can more easily find a good balance.

However when running up hills it’s a different story. It seems as though it’s not as easy to find the happy balance between exertion and sustained power. But today when I was running I remembered the feeling of bicycling uphill and it seems to have dramatically helped me run better. I then also tried to apply that feeling to running on level- and down-grades and it also helped.

Training my body to bicycle has helped me improve the kinesthetics of running by leveling out my exertion to a smoother, more sustainable model. This was not something I was expecting but just happened to connect with when running.

I’ve been running for 33 years. Nothing has been more revolutionary, more profound, more of an intense positive force in my life than being a runner. That I can not only continue to run but am even running as strong as when I was 16 is truly a blessing.

Running reminds me of the jhanas of Buddhism. While it is blissful to run I eventually want to transcend even the bliss. I want to run all the way to nibbana.