Does jogging kill brain cells?

Inspired by this thread I am now going to ask a question that has been bugging me for a while.
[tongue in cheek]
Here is the deal. Near my house there is a very long street with both sidewalks and a bike lane. Not a bike path, but a bike lane. Starting from the center of the road you have:
Lane: Lane: bike lane: parked cars: parkway (strip of grass): sidewalk.
The sidewalk is in good condition, no holes, no heaves, clean etc.
So why in the name of the holy Jim Fixx do joggers insist on running in the bike lane?
Here I am trying to do my not so famous Lance Armstrong imitation and when I look up here comes this idiot jogging in my bike lane headed toward me. Of course this idgit will not move out of the bike lane, and will force me to swerve into the traffic lane to avoid his stupid ass. I also have seen some people jogging with the flow of traffic (again in the bike lane)
The only reason for this behavior that I can think of is that jogging kills brain cells. When someone takes up jogging they have a full complement of brain cells, and they use the sidewalk. As they jog more and more, they kill brain cells. At a certain point, enough cells are killed, they forget that pedestrians aren’t supposed to play in the street and they start to run in the street. Against traffic, since they still have that 3rd brain cell working. However when they get completely brain dead, the run with traffic and will never see the car that creams them.
I mean come on now, at what age were you taught not to play in the street?
[/tongue in cheek]

So why are these joggers running in the street when there is a perfectly good sidewalk just on the other side of the parked cars? :confused:

Short answer: Because running on asphalt is not as harsh on the joints as running on concrete.

However, that doesn’t excuse anybody from disrupting traffic or taking their lives in their hands. First rule is to be safe, because bikes/cars/etc are BIGGER THAN YOU OUT ON A JOG. Anyone who forgets that is a nincompoop.

Maybe it DOES kill brain cells. I’d mull it over, but after running 19 miles on Saturday, I’m not sure I’m up to the task. :wink:

In my opinion, your brain cells already have to be dead to take up jogging. Did you ever notice the miserable expression they have plastered to their faces?

Given those choices, I’d be in the thing you call the “parkway,” which is nicer than asphalt, which is much nicer than the concrete.

After that, assuming the concrete is as nice as you claim it is, I’d run on the sidewalk. But often, the sidewalk simply isn’t usable. It’s overgrown with bushes and trees, the ground is broken up, people have parked cars, trucks, boats on the sidewalk, etc. Stuff that you don’t notice in a car or even on a bike becomes very important when you’re on foot. Still, if possible, I face traffic and I move out of the way of things that are bigger than me.

I’ll second this. Aslphalt is a lot easier on the legs than concrete. And in scout’s case (and mine, when I was marathon training m’self), after you’ve been running for 10 miles or more, you tend to feel every little difference in the surface you’re running on. Hill grades that you normally wouldn’t notice suddenly make your calves and hamstrings scream “Ow!”, the tiniest sloping makes your legs hurt, and the change from asphalt over to concrete is very, very noticeable and hurts like hell.

However, I have to agree that if there are bikes there, it’s obnoxious for a runner to just stay there in front of you.

Out of curiosity, though, are you one of the polite bikers who actually takes the time to yell “On your left!” so the runner knows you’re there, or are you the type that irritably (and loudly) mutters to himself “Stupid runner, right in front of me, won’t even get off the damn road,” then angrily whizzes by at the earliest opportunity?

As a runner, I must say that, when forced to share a biking and running path, I deeply appreciate it when a biker lets me know he’s there by yelling “On your left” or some such. I always get out of the way and call back, “Thank you!” because I appreciate it so much.

Actually when they are running toward me I don’t call “On your left” since they can see me. When I overtake from behind I do call “On your left”. The problem here is there is a subspecies of wlaker/jogger/rollerblader/bike rider that thinks that this means that they should move left. :smack: :wally

You rock! I have no problem when a biker doesn’t say something if I can see him in front of me; however, when someone practically knocks me down with a bike without politely asking me to move over, it drives me nuts.

Then, yeah, you have the runners who are listening to headphones or not really paying attention, then swerve left when you yell something. I did that once myself - almost fell into a ditch. :smack:

OOOOOOOH! I’ve thought about starting a thread like this (only mine would’ve been in the pit!)

In Minnesota we have a lot of bike paths. In fact, I’ve heard that we were second in the world to Japan although I’m not sure how to compare a country to a state, but there ya go.

I bike all over town and there are usually bike and ped paths that are side by side and made of the same material. Still, the runners seem to insist on running on the bike path. I’ve got a bell on my bike and always use it when passing others, but what makes it worse is that the majority of bikers I approach from behind are wearing headphones and don’t hear me approaching. I almost took a digger one time when a jogger on the wrong path decide to not hear my bell because of his music and turn right into my bike. I had slowed down before I got up to him but still narrowly missed a tree dodging this asshat. :mad:

So what’s the deal with joggers that run on the bike path with the ped path is the equivalent?

I’m just chiming in here to second scout and the rest. I prefer asphalt as a running surface. In fact, I even prefer it over grass–I always wind up hurting myself by stepping in small holes and whatnot. If I have a choice between the three, I’ll go with asphalt every time.

I also make it a point to watch approaching bikers carefully (coming from behind or in front) and stay the hell out of their way since I’m a lot more maneuverable than they are.

Are the ped paths well-marked? If not, they could’ve just made a mistake. If they are, maybe the runners see someone else running on the bike path and think that they’re more or less interchangeable?

I try to be a good runner and stay out of any biker’s way. It’s a lot like driving - it’s really obnoxious when someone’s in the wrong lane.

Oh, man, Rick, those people are dolts. And I encounter them when I’m running.

I always follow the rules of the road when running on a running path (for example, the paths at Mission Bay that are for bikes/bladers/walkers,etc). That’s just to make it easier. So here I come upon a group of 3 women walking - 3 in a row, taking up the whole path, basically. As I approach from behind, I call out “on your left!” because I intend to pass on the left, as you should do were you driving.

It NEVER FUCKING FAILS that they either stop dead and turn around, or move left right into my path. :wally

So it’s not just a phenomenon that bikers encounter.

quote]Originally posted by Kalhoun
In my opinion, your brain cells already have to be dead to take up jogging. Did you ever notice the miserable expression they have plastered to their faces?

This is a big reason why I’ve never been tempted to take up the hobby. Dogs look ecstatic when jogging; people, however, look agonized.

scout 19 miles? :eek: Wow! :eek:
If we ever windup on the same road, I will move out of your way. Hell, I will even turn around and carry your water bottles if you wish.
Color me impressed.