Is Biking Better than Running? (Explained)

When you think of outdoor physical activities that get you in shape, often you get to think about whether you should go running or biking and whether biking is better than running?

While running is a great sport with immense physical and mental benefits, it is not for everyone. If you are looking for a physical activity that is less strenuous on your joints and gives you a more enjoyable experience, bike riding makes it a better choice with a lot more to offer than running.

Let’s go over these factors in detail to understand better.


Biking is easier on your joints than running

Biking is easier on your joints because your body weight is distributed evenly, while when you run, your body weight is concentrated on one foot. As your foot lands on the ground, it causes a sudden impact on your joints. The more your body weight is, the greater this impact becomes.

When it comes to biking, your body weight is carried by bike itself so that does not become a concern anymore.

As you bike through, the continuous smooth motion of wheels helps eliminate the sudden impact of your body coming in repeated contact with the ground, which makes it easy on your joints. Due to this reason, you can bike for a longer period of time without much stressing your body and joints than when running.

Cycling Can Beat Your Knee Pain

Runners often complain about knee pain, which is likely a cause of the impact your knees get with each step taken. The knee is a key joint of your body used in both running and biking, however, while biking, it does not get the jerky impact from the ground in addition to the normal cyclic motion.

Cycling can help to beat knee pain by strengthening the muscles around the knee joint as you get an increased range of motion on it. It also strengthens your quads and hamstrings, which can help take some pressure off your knees.

With time, as your muscles become strong around the knee joint, helps protect it against injuries that cause pain.

You Can Ride Even When You Don’t Feel Like it

 This is because biking is easier on your body and it’s a great way to get around town. As you think of the effort applied in running against the distance covered, is considerably less than when you are on your bike, given the same amount of time.

If you have got only half an hour during your lunch break, with running, you may be able to cover a few blocks while with biking you can get farther and get to see and explore more, stop by a gas station, and grab your favorite energy drink along the way which makes it a lot more fun activity than running.

Better Overall Body Workout

Biking provides a more balanced workout because it engages more muscle groups than running because it is a total body workout.

When you cycle, you use muscles in your legs, arms, and core to balance and propel the bike forward. This combination of muscles working together results in a more effective workout than using just one muscle group than when running, which only uses your legs.

Just the nature of biking with a lower impact on joints helps to carry this activity in a consistent manner, which leads to having a more toned and stronger body.

Biking Burns More Calories than Running

Studies have shown that cycling gives you a better calorie burn than running for the same duration of time. This is due to a larger muscle group engagement through biking, which results in more calorie burn than running.

Cycling can be done at a higher intensity for longer periods of time without burning out the body. This is specifically because of the momentum you attain and is considerably easy to maintain with paddling on and off as needed to keep that momentum. While in running you come to a complete stop to catch up, which breaks momentum and you start from scratch.

Biking Is Better for Heavy Person than Running

If you are a heavy person, it is easy to start biking and get going, while running would require weight loss achieved before you can run at full potential.

Getting off the couch and trying to start an active routine is one of the most difficult things to achieve. If the hurdles outweigh more than the benefits, it often leads to quitting before even starting off.

If you are a heavy person trying to get in shape, biking may be a better choice to go for due to its ease and getting more calorie-burn leading to weight loss and getting in shape.

When you bike, you let the bike take care of your weight and you can focus on muscle engagement and get started easily. Not counting the fun part as you get to explore more, bike riding is way more enjoyable than just running in my opinion. This would keep you motivated and get to try it often, hence getting more exercise than running is very likely.

Load Up Your Bike Than Your Body

When you are up for running, just the water bottle alone becomes an excess piece you simply do not want to carry, let alone anything else. However, in the case of biking, you can just simply load up your bike with whatever you feel necessary through the ride.

You can carry multiple water bottles, have your phone or GPS unit and bike computer mounted on the handlebar right in front of you all the time rather than reaching out to your pockets every time you want to check on time or distance, time, calories burnt statistics.

No Special Gear Required

You don’t need any special gear to start biking, just a bike and a helmet and you are good to go. While Running may require specialized shoes with a proper fit for the type of running. That means multiple pairs of shoes are required for various types of running, and good-quality shoes are not inexpensive.

Regular Biking Can Reduce the Chance of Heart Disease

Studies have shown that biking regularly can reduce your risk of heart disease. This is because biking helps to improve your cardiovascular health by increasing your heart rate and breathing, while also helping to reduce stress levels.

Additionally, biking can help to improve your cholesterol levels and blood sugar control, both of which are major risk factors for heart disease.

Final Thoughts

While both running and biking are great workout activities, my personal favorite is Biking simply because of the benefits discussed in this article and I find it more fun than running. All you need is your bike and helmet to go for a nice ride to enjoy, yet it gives you a better calorie burn to reduce excess weight and stay fit.