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Usually on Mondays I run 3 miles on the tread and I try to keep it to close to 6 mph. Today all the treadmills at the gym were taken and so were all the ellipticals, so I rode a stationary bike. I rode it for 30 minutes and the distance at the end was 10.8 miles. I remember someone once telling me you'd have to do about 4 times the amount on a bike that you would on a run for the same workout. Is that true? If it is, I would have needed to do 12 to compare with my normal 3. I wasn't sure so after I got done the bike a treadmill was open so I ran a mile.

Can you please tell me whether the 4:1 ratio is true and how to put 10.8 biked miles in a half hour into perspective for me? Is that fast or slow or middlin? Thanks.

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If you were aiming for a cardio/tempo workout, I'd have to go with an HRM to make that equivalency. Beyond that, I think the ratio will depend on your sport-specific fitness w.r.t. running and cycling.

Probably not the most helpful -- sorry!
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Lifecycles are way off on 'milage'. Go by time. So you were fine replacing 30 minutes of running with 30 minutes of cycling.
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OK, I get that. Thanks.

How come it feels like so much less? I know machines are off but the calories burned via bike are a lot less than running on the mill, like 1/6 of what I would have run (according to the machines, which I know are off) and although there were some moments where my butt and thighs burned, it didn't seem really hard.

I guess I mean running just feels a lot harder. What should I do next time to make it seem as intense a workout as a run?
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I used to do ladder intervals on the ex bike when I was trying to cross train, to make it harder....I don't know how yours adjust or if there are already preprogrammed workouts on them but at my gym you can manually bump up the level. What I did was start at the level I normally rode (for the sake of argument, let's say 5 since I can't remember exactly what it was--I only ride if I have to). I'd ride for maybe 10 minutes at that level, then kick it up to 6 for 2-3 minutes, then 7, repeat, 8, 9...and so on til I couldn't hold the pace at my top level for 3 minutes, then start back down, 9-8-7-6-etc....back to my starting level for the remaining 5-10 minutes (times would depend on your total riding time). That seemed to make it challenging enough to tolerate, since I HATE cycling. (Sorry tri geeks ;) )

Did I totally confuse you or does that make sense?
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This is good to hear as I've had problems with the 4-1 thing too. I feel I've had just as good a workout on the trainer for an hour as if I did the mill at 6mph for an hour as well. The 4-1 ratio is helpful during competitions here though although on the trainer it should be 3-1. That thing kicks my ass!
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I never really thought of the ratio. To me, any time on the bike iss cardio. Heck anything moving faster than a walking pace is cardio IMHO
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