Nowadays we all understand the benefits of being a little fitter and healthier. But many people find that building exercise in to their lives is easier said than done. The cost of equipment or membership fees of a gym can be high. Making time to work out in our busy lives is often difficult. And let’s face it – many people just don’t enjoy the thought of exercising! But there is one form of exercise that can bring immense health benefits for people of all ages, which is easy, affordable and enjoyable too: and that’s cycling! So how can cycling improve your health?
Cycling tones your muscles.
Most obviously, riding a cycle works your legs. From calves to thighs, regular cycling will tone and strengthen every muscle – as well as toning your bottom! But beyond this, keeping balanced on your cycle, steering, even getting and off, works muscles all over your body. Cycle regularly and you’ll start to feel more toned from top to toe. A real all-over work out!
Cycling helps your heart and lungs.
For your muscles to work, your blood needs to bring them oxygen and also take away the waste products that build up. This happens through your “cardiovascular” or heart-lung system. As your muscles work harder peddling your cycle, so your lungs need to take in more air and your heart needs to pump more blood through your system. If you cycle regularly, you will be making your heart and lungs stronger and more efficient . This is a huge benefit to your overall health. In fact studies by the British Medical Association suggest that cycling twenty miles a week could cut your risk of coronary heart disease by an amazing 50%.
Cycling helps you lose weight.
One of the biggest health benefits of cycling is the amount of calories it will help you burn off. This in turn can make losing weight much easier. The exact amount will depend on many factors, such as your weight, the speed you are riding at and the sort of ground you are riding on. However on average, cycling steadily for 30 minutes can easily use anything up to 300 calories
Cycling is a gentle exercise.
Another health benefit of cycling is that it’s termed a “low impact” form of exercise. With “high impact” exercise, for instance running, your feet are impacting the ground forcefully over and over again. This can lead to damage in ankle, knee and hip joints as well as your tendons and ligaments. With cycling on the other hand, the bicycle is taking the weight. Pushing the pedals round is much less stressful on your body. This can make cycling an excellent form of exercise for people who are very overweight, or who suffer from joint problems such as arthritis.
For many people, working out in a gym quickly becomes boring. It gets harder and harder to find the motivation to carry on – and so they quit exercising altogether. Getting out in the open air on a cycle though, perhaps with family and friends along too, is in itself much more enjoyable. This makes cycling one of the only forms of exercise they really enjoy doing and actually look forward to.
Cycling can become part of your daily routine.
Many people really do want to exercise more, but with fitting in work, family and everything else that has to go into the day, find time can be a struggle. Another health benefit of cycling is that it can become part of your everyday routine. For instance, cycling to work and back can often almost as quick as driving there. You can avoid the traffic jams and parking charges – and you’re getting an excellent work out twice a day! If you don’t want to buy an entire new cycle, you can
click here to see Synaptic Cycle’s Santa Monica road bike rental service (no longer available)
Cycling is for a life time.
From the youngest child wobbling along with their training wheels to grandparents and even great grandparents, cycling is for everyone. Once you’ve learned to ride you’ve found something that can keep you fit and healthy for a whole lifetime.
So – come on. With all those health benefits – it’s time to get on your bike!