Cycling is considered one of the most enjoyable and fulfilling forms of exercise for many people. Although a preferred mode of transport for many, cycling can be used for both low-impact, casual, and even intense exercise depending on one’s goals. You, too, can enjoy the sport if looking to keep fit and in the best shape both physically and mentally. Here are some of the ways cycling can be/is beneficial for your health and overall well-being.
- Weight Loss/Management
Cycling, especially high-intensity cycling, provides an excellent way to tone down and keep fit without ever having to use fad diet plans or even sign up for the gym. While considered a habitual exercise, cycling for at least 30 minutes triggers increased metabolism, burning many calories in the process. This exercise is also recommended for those looking to lose weight and gradually gain muscle mass.
- Improved Leg Strength
Unlike most exercise forms that might be overly taxing on a specific muscle, cycling is known to strengthen all leg muscles, especially the glutes, quads, calves, and hamstring. The best thing about cycling is you can adjust its intensity depending on how energetic you are. Thus, you can start off slow and gradually increase the intensity for optimal muscle development and leg strength. You might also want to try squats, lunges, and leg presses for even better performance.
- Improved Mental Health
Do you always find yourself feeling drained, lethargic, and stressed? Taking on even the simplest of exercises, such as walking or cycling, can, however, help boost your mental state and health. One of the reasons for this is that cycling allows you to commune with nature, or even get outdoors to see new things. Breathing fresh air promotes increased blood flow to the brain, which supplies brain cells with nutrients and oxygen required for healthy growth and development.
- It Kickstarts Your Day
There are days when your body will feel stiff, making you want to stay in bed all day long. Starting your day cycling, however, helps combat feelings of sluggishness and improving your alert levels. Five minutes into cycling and blood will be flowing to all vital parts of the body, giving you the extra energy required to push through the day. The low-intensity exercise also helps enhance your endurance performance, metabolism levels, and burn any extra calories. There is no better way to start your day than with blood already ‘hot’ and pumping through all arteries and veins. Studies also show that cycling every day for at least six weeks helps improve a person’s insulin response, thus reducing diabetes risk.
- It’s Good For Your Heart
Cycling through the streets and parks every morning not only helps boost your energy levels but is good for your cardiovascular health as well. Exercise triggers increased metabolism, heart rate, and blood flow, one of the key factors doctors and health experts are always campaigning for. With the increased heart rate, respiration, and blood flow, your risk of contracting heart-related conditions, including high blood pressure, is lowered.
- Improved Posture, Coordination, and Balance
The simple act of riding a bicycle requires concentration and the ability to stabilize your body and bike. While this may be easy for a child or teenager, most adults will find it harder to maintain balance on their bikes and sway off from time to time. Making a habit of riding your bike every day, however, restores your natural coordination, posture, and balance, enabling you to better control your bike. The improved coordination from enjoying bike rides will thus prove fruitful in your golden years.
These are but a few of the many benefits of cycling. Check out Bike Binge for some great reviews and buying guides. Remember to have your protective gear on while riding down the street, or even the park, to avoid getting hurt in case of a fall. You can find