Cycling is a great way of getting fit and active. You can do it indoors and well as outdoors, and there are lots of levels of difficulty and speeds so everyone can join in. But before you rush out and buy yourself a new pair of wheels, you need to know all about all of the different options there are out there that you could get involved in. Read on to find out more.
An easy way to get fit, save money, and save the planet is to swap you car journey commute for a cycle ride instead. Just imagine whizzing through all of that traffic while everyone else remains gridlocked for hours!
But you do need to consider a few things before you decide this is the way to incorporate cycling into your life. One, if it’s a long or difficult ride then you are going to need to be able to clean up and change when you get to work. As no one wants to sit behind their desk sweating and stinking of B.O.
That means you need to work somewhere with showers, or that has a gym close by that you can use to clean up. Without these facilities, it may make riding to work too much of a hassle to be practical.
You also need to think about the safety aspect of riding to work. Road riding can be dangerous, even for the most experienced rider, and you will need to the proper safety equipment like a helmet, knee and elbow pads. But even being kitted out like that doesn’t mean that you won’t get hurt if you are in an accident. So it’s best to know where to get cycling accident advice, just in case the worst does happen.
Something that may sound a lot more appealing is going for slower country rides out with the family at the weekend. Hopefully, the traffic will be less dense, and without the time pressure of everyone trying to get to work, it should make driving less manic. So making it a lot safer.
Of course, you don’t have to ride on the road as there are many places that have no car access that you can choose to take your family for a bike fitness session. Look for local lakes or parks to ride around, or cycle only routes as these will be the safest.
If all of this outside cycling is making you dizzy, don’t worry because you can get your excise fix in another way and it’s called Spinning. Which is something that has become super popular over the last few years.
It’s a class run in gyms where you sit on an adapted, indoor static bike. The idea is that it’s high- intensity interval training, so that mean lots of all-out pedalling, with only short breaks to recover.
It may sound hard, and if can be a bit of a challenge but both men and women swear by its ability to make you super fit, as well as melt off those calories super fast.
Look for classes at your local gym, and remember that there is no shame in starting on the basic beginning levels and moving you way up from there!
If spending your afternoon on a static bike, in a hot sweaty box full of strangers is your idea of hell, then maybe you will want to embrace the call of the wild and head outdoors for some adrenaline-filled mountain biking.
This Is one of the more extreme activities you can do in cycling and is certainly not for the faint-hearted. It involved using light but sturdy mountains bike, the ones with all other gears and the thicker wheels, to negotiate your way down hills, and mountains and through gullies and back out the other side.
It’s a down and dirty way of biking, and a great way to keep fit while having a lot of fun. If you really fall in love with the activity, you can even start to enter competitions. But be warned these cyclists are not playing around and many end up with a limb in a cast instead of with a trophy at the end of the session.
If you like the idea of going fast but not the heights then why not have a go at speed biking. This is done on the very lightweight bike frames, with thin wheels, and curved handlebars. It can be done outside on the road or inside in the velodrome. That is the circular wooden stadium you see at the Olympics.
The idea is to go as fast as you can to either beat your own personal best, a set time, or the people that you are competing against.
Not only does it require a lot of fitness but you also need a cool head to do this activity properly as riding as such speed means you have to make snap decisions that affect your safety.
It’s also advised that both men and women shave your legs! Why? Well, a lot of folks think it’s to be aerodynamic, but in fact, it’s more about preserving your skin if you do happen to take a tumble. As the hair can get caught in the road surface and make your injuries worse.
Now, another way that you can factor in cycling into your fitness regime is to train and race in an Iron Man. Of course, the cycling is only one part of the triad that makes up this type of activity. As there are also running stages, as well as swimming stage in open water.
Taking up Iron Man racing and being committed to it is pretty much guaranteed to improve your fitness as you have to be a good all-rounder to compete.
In particular, the working of all of these different groups of muscles is great for toning and burning calories, as you body never ready gets a rest. Especially in training season where you could be practicing in two categories each day to get ready for the race.