Whose better? Triathlete Runners or Runner Runners?

I’m sure this post is going to get some hits. I came across a paper in the ACSM Medicine & Science in Sports and Exercise Journal today that looked to see if there was a notable difference in muscle recruitment while running between trained triathletes and elite runners. Breathe easy my friends, this research from 2007 showed no difference in muscle performance between the two groups. If you are the article reading type, you can check out the full PDF.

Good stuff to know. Of course, whats also interesting is that the study quotes other articles that showed when it comes to cycling, elite cyclist do rule the road.

I say, to each his own. I’m not one of those tri-snobs that says our sport is superior to others. All exercise is good in my opinion. However, get in my face and say our sport sucks compared to yours, and I’ll just go put your bike on the other side of a lake and say go ride it when you get there.

About Ironvan

From couch potato to Ironman triathlete in 2 years.

Posted on April 7, 2010, in Research. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. I’d be interested to read the article you mention. I’ll offer my 2 cents – it is way harder to train for an Olympic distance tri than a marathon. It’s not only the variety of muscles used in triathlon; it’s also the mental energy put forth to excel in THREE sports, not just one. There’s something superhero-ish about doing even a sprint tri. I do think tri is superior to running, and I’d do more of them if I didn’t hate swimming so much!

    • Yeah, I think they’re both hard. Unfortunately, there a lot of runners, cyclists, and swimmers out there who say “why suck at three sports when you can just focus on one and be good.” It is a shame, because overall, tri is a pretty friendly thing.

      • The ones I wear aren’t really tight per say. I can wear them all day without losing my legs. I think you can get different pressures though…give it a shot some time!

  2. Thanks for the input! No doubt its all hard when going hard. The article was equating the effects of training potential between purists and tris. I think marathoning is harder than tris also.

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