If you are looking to start getting fitter but aren’t sure what the best exercise is for you, then there are plenty which you can choose. Depending on your fitness level now and what you are looking to achieve, you can try anything from running to swimming. However, there is one exercise that can have many benefits both for the body and mind, and that’s cycling. Here are some of the ways cycling can improve your health.
Improving Your Heart
Cycling is one of the best activities for improving the heart; even moderate cycling is enough to get the cardiovascular system working. For the best results, you should cycle a long distance at a steady pace. If there are no places nearby where you can cycle then finding a local car, such as SMART Edinburgh is perfect because you can attach a cycle rack and drive to your nearest cycle path or park. A recent study showed that if you are active every day, then you have a 31-percent less chance of getting a high blood pressure.
If your goal is to lose weight or get more fit, increasing the level of intensity of your rides, along with a well-balanced diet, will do the job. Interval training and power training guided by a cycling power meter and a heart-rate monitor helps burn calories faster. Cycling can burn 400 to 1,000 calories an hour, depending on your weight and the intensity of your pace.
Helps Boost Your Mood
There was a recent study that showed regular exercising boosts your brain power. It can also help to ward off certain conditions such as Alzheimer’s in the elderly. For young children, exercise such as cycling can help with conditions like ADD and ADHD. If you are suffering from a mental illness like anxiety or depression, exercise can also help to alleviate the symptoms and boost your mood. It is important however that the exercise be regular, at least once or twice a week to get the full benefit.
Quick Recovery from Injury
If you are suffering from knee pain or osteoarthritis, then keeping active can be hugely beneficial. Other forms of exercise such as running, or walking might be too much of a strain on the joints, but cycling can help. The motion of cycling is not as heavy on the joints but does allow them to strengthen. Even spending just a few minutes each day can be helpful, and you don’t even need a real bike. Exercise bikes can be just as beneficial, and they can be used in all weathers and by those that are not steady enough for a real bike at the moment.
Help Prevent Cancer
Exercise, in general, has been found to help prevent many types of cancer, in particular, for those people approaching middle age. A study of 14,000 men showed that if they increased their exercise levels, they were at a lower risk of lung and colorectal cancers. It also includes keeping to a healthy diet, but these things together will also help to lower your weight which is another potential risk factor.
There is no doubt that exercise in any form can be good for your body and mind, but for some people, they are limited to what they can do. Cycling can be not only good for your health, but also a great way to get around without having to rely on other transport.