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Is Your Swim Or Bike Strength Hurting Your Run?

  • By Jené Shaw
  • Published Aug 16, 2013
  • Updated Aug 19, 2013 at 7:35 PM UTC
Photo: Chad McDermott / Shutterstock.com

If you came from swimming …

Swimmers tend to develop a bigger, more muscular upper body, which lowers VO2max and raises their center of mass, McGee says. They are taught to move ipsilaterally (the left hip and left shoulder work together), the opposite movement pattern of running. Leading up to the 2004 Athens Olympics, McGee worked with Barb Lindquist, a former swimmer-turned-triathlete. They spent countless hours using videos and drills to make her a contralateral runner, and ultimately she went on to become the No. 1 ranked triathlete in the world for two years.

Swimming also has a “hard work” mentality, McGee says. Although the body can sustain back-to-back challenging workouts in the water, that mind-set doesn’t translate well to running, where too many hard efforts can lead to injury.

RELATED: 4 Tips For A Running Breakthrough

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FILED UNDER: Run / Training

Jené Shaw

Jené Shaw

Jené Shaw is a senior editor at Triathlete magazine, a three-time Ironman finisher and a USAT Level 1 certified coach

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