I've been cycling long-term in hills and over the last few years without clipless pedals. Over time I have found the hills to be easier to climb, but have noticed a dramatic decrease in my running ability, and recently on holiday found it difficult to walk long distances as well without pain and stiffness. Is this because of increased leg muscle (weight)? Should I get clipless pedals again? Any thoughts? Thanks in advance!

  • 2
    Could you elaborate a bit more on why you assume a connection between your running/walking issues and clipless padals? For me there's no obvious correlation between the two. Also, a bit more information about how and where this "pain and stiffness" manifest could be helpful. Jul 14, 2015 at 10:08
  • 1
    I'm guessing that it's simply that your walking muscles are poorly developed compared to your cycling muscles. Especially if you're letting your cadence drop climbing hills your muscle flexibility and ability to take long strides may be suffering. However, there are a few medical conditions that could cause this, so if it seems to get worse you should probably be checked by a neurologist. Jul 14, 2015 at 11:33
  • 1
    Isn't this medical advice? You should see a doctor rather than ask online bicycle enthusiasts.
    – Carl
    Jul 14, 2015 at 13:05
  • I agree with Carl it sounds like you may need medical advice, & this isn't the place for that. (Although I am curious what you mean by "long distances" - a mile? 20 miles? Also, where you are feeling the pain & stiffness is important. Is it in a muscle, joint or something else?)
    – renesis
    Jul 14, 2015 at 14:52
  • What do you mean groin weakness? Like your adductors are weak?
    – ebrohman
    Jul 15, 2015 at 0:23

2 Answers 2


Is this because of increased leg muscle (weight)?

I am confident that no, bicycling has not packed so much muscle onto your legs that they are now too heavy to walk normally and comfortably.


I don't think they are related and I don't think clip-less pedal will change anything. It's probably age or lack of running training that make it harder to run.

Anecdotal evidence : my friend is running and cycling pretty fast, but I can only cycle fast, I'm an abysmal runner. He runs multiple times a week while I rarely run more than once a month.

Think of triathletes who run and cycle pretty fast, if cycling would be bad for running, they wouldn't be able to do both of them at that level.

  • 2
    Cycling and running use different muscles and parts as well. Training in one will not make you proficient or trained in the other. Jul 14, 2015 at 15:41
  • 1
    Perhaps I should ask a triathlete about this, it might be a more common problem. I asked an experienced runner and he said that sometimes cyclists need "core training" in the gym to be able to run. Jul 15, 2015 at 1:04
  • @TonyMurphy The only thing cyclists need "to be able to run" is to run.
    – jqning
    Aug 13, 2015 at 20:29

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.