Does indoor cycling help with running?

Indoor cycling is one of the best forms of exercise for both people who are trying to lose weight and even athletes such as runners. This is because it enables you to exercise while healing from injuries which allows you to keep fit even when you aren’t able to run at 100%. In addition to this, indoor cycling helps you to build essential muscles such as core and quads which are essential for you as a runner. For sure, indoor cycling is of major benefit to you and will definitely help you with running.

Running is an intense process that works your body throughout. Therefore, you need to maintain high levels of fitness especially if you want to run competitively. One of the best ways to maintain high levels of fitness is by indoor cycling. This is because all well- equipped gyms normally have stationary bike trainers that you can easily have access to. Additionally, you don’t even need to pay extra money for a personal trainer which enables you to save on cost. All you have to do is go the stationary bike trainer and cycle! Let’s have a look at the benefits of indoor cycling to a runner.

How does indoor cycling help with running?

Well, indoor cycling comes with various benefits that will make you a better runner. There are various runners that are still in doubt whether indoor cycling helps runners as they presume that it may actually make you slower. However, the reality of the matter is that indoor cycling actually plays a major role in making you a faster and stronger runner. The benefits of indoor cycling include the following.

It improves your performance as a runner

Various athletes normally use cross- training to improve their overall performance in their respective fields. This involves participating in another form of sport other than the one you actively participate in. Here, indoor cycling is a very good mode of cross- training for you as a runner as it helps you build stamina and endurance, which are essential requirements for a long distance runner.

In addition to this, indoor cycling also helps to improve your overall fitness and works out your cardiovascular. For sure, this helps to improve your performance as a runner therefore you should definitely consider it in your training schedule.

It helps to build essential muscles required for running

Indoor cycling is pretty intense as it engages various muscles of your body, which is good for your training sessions as a runner. This is because this exercise helps you to build muscles such as your quads, calf and core muscles which are essential for running. Therefore, if you cycle frequently, you’ll be able to consistently build these essential muscles which will make you a strong runner even in harsh conditions.

Additionally, you’ll also be able to run faster for a longer period of time as this exercise increases your body’s efficiency when you run.

It helps with recovery

We are aware that running is quite tiresome, regardless of whether you just did a 100-meter sprint or ran for a few kilometers for your normal morning jog. In addition to this, you are also highly likely to experience sore feet especially if you are just from running for a long period of time. Indoor cycling really comes in handy during this time as it is a good method of recovery. This is because cycling increases the blood flow throughout your body muscles and flushes out the lactic acid. For sure, this is very key during recovery as it immediately helps to repair the muscle tissues that got damaged during running.

Indoor cycling also helps to reduce stiffness of your muscles and joints. This quickens your recovery process and allows you to be ready for running sooner rather than later.

It is a good form of aerobic training

Aerobic training is a very important exercise for runners as it helps to improve your overall fitness. The good news is that you can actually use your stationary bike trainer as an aerobic training tool. All you are supposed to do is adjust your cycling speeds in intervals of about 3 minutes and then slow down for about 3 minutes and repeat. This will force your body to adjust to the different speeds which will help to build your cardiovascular fitness.

In addition to this, aerobic training using your stationary bike trainer will also enable you to build on endurance especially if you cycle for a long period of time.

It allows you to exercise even when you have an injury

Unfortunately, there are situations that may occur which may lead to an injury when you are running. Some of the injuries you may incur when running include ankle and knee injuries which will hinder you from running. However, this doesn’t mean that you should stay home and lose your body fitness. This is because you can maintain your fitness through indoor cycling as it doesn’t need you to apply pressure on your injured leg. This also helps to reduce the time taken to fully recover from your injury.

The table below is a summary of an indoor cycling workout routine for runners.

Warm up
Main set
5 minutes- easy spin

4 minutes- high intensity (80 % effort)

1 minute- easy spin

9 minutes- high intensity (75% effort) then recovery for 2 minutes and repeat two more times

8 minutes- high intensity (75% effort) then 4 minutes- easy cool down spin


You should definitely consider indoor cycling if you want to improve your overall performance as a runner. In addition to this, indoor cycling also comes with various other benefits such as building your muscles which makes you a stronger and faster runner.


Can I cycle when I am recovering from an ankle injury?

Yes, you can. This is because indoor cycling doesn’t put too much pressure on your foot like running, which helps you to keep fit even when you haven’t fully recovered from the injury.

Does indoor cycling help with recovery after running?

Yes, it does. This is because cycling increases the blood flow throughout your body muscles and flushes out the lactic acid which helps to rebuild your muscle tissues.