To be healthy and fit, one needs to be active mentally and physically. Engaging in physical activity regularly helps protect oneself from conditions such as heart disease, cancer, mental disorders, arthritis, and obesity. Cycling is one of the best ways to attain health and fitness and minimize the risk of these health conditions that are associated with inactivity and a sedentary lifestyle.
Technically, cycling is a low-impact exercise that people of all ages can regularly do, young and old alike. It is an enjoyable and cheap hobby that one should try. Plus it’s great for the environment! You can ride your bike if you want to go shopping without the hassle of traffic. You can even bike to work. It’s combining physical activity with your daily routine. In fact, nearly one billion individuals now ride bicycles as their means of recreation, sport, and transportation.
Fitness And Health Through Cycling
According to studies, one only needs about two to fours hours weekly to improve his health. Cycling is low-impact; therefore it doesn’t place huge pressure on the joints and tissues and doesn’t cause severe injuries. It is also a good workout as it utilizes almost all major muscles through the pedaling action. It is quite easy to do, and it doesn’t require much physical skill – only interest and commitment. It improves strength, endurance, and overall aerobic fitness. If you’re a beginner, you can go slow at first and then you can build more intensity as you go further.
Cycling is certainly a fun way of getting healthy and fit. You can choose to bike where you want – at the park, in the streets, or just within the neighborhood. The outdoors is always more exciting and enjoyable to do than indoors. Ultimately, it substitutes inactive time spent using trains or buses and driving cars with healthy exercise.
Cycling Health Benefits
Cycling is primarily aerobic, meaning that your blood vessels from your heart, lungs, and other organs all get worked out. One’s body temperature rises due to perspiration, breathing becomes deeper, and the fitness level is increased and improved. These are some of the most common health benefits of cycling.
- Increased cardiovascular fitness
- Improved muscular strength and flexibility
- Reduced stress and anxiety levels
- Increased bone strength
- Reduced body fat
- Improved mobility of the joints
- Reduced risk of depression and other mental health conditions
Cycling And Health Problems
As mentioned above, cycling has shown significant positive outcomes mentally and physically and has been able to decrease the incidence of individuals experiencing health problems.
Cycling And Cardiovascular Disease
This category includes hypertension, heart attack, high blood pressure, and stroke. Consistent cycling activity fuels energy and stamina to improve the condition of one’s heart, lungs, kidneys, and other major organs – lowering the risk of cardiovascular conditions.
Outward physical strength is the initial outcome of cycling. However, it also effectively increases the strength of the heart, and this results in a decreased resting pulse and blood levels. The enhanced lung function is also attributed to the fact that cyclists are less exposed to air pollution.
Cycling And Obesity
As one regularly cycles, his metabolic rate increases, resulting in weight reduction, although weight loss is more pronounced when combined with a healthy diet. As one builds muscle, he also burns the fat. Experts say that one should burn at least 8,400 kilojoules weekly through regular exercise. Cycling burns a whopping 1,200 kilojoules per hour. If you go biking twice a day, you could only lose that much in three days!
Cycling And Cancer
Research has only proven cycling to be effective for some specific cancers, namely, breast and colon cancer.
Cycling And Arthritis
Since cycling is low-impact, it is very suitable for individuals suffering from osteoarthritis. It helps alleviate other joint conditions as it improves bone strength and enhances balance and coordination. It is not helpful for those with osteoporosis though, as cycling is not a weight-bearing activity.
Cycling And Diabetes
A study performed in Finland suggested that individuals who engaged in regular cycling for 30 minutes daily showed a 40% decrease in their risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Cycling And Mental Illness
Regular physical activities like cycling are great ways to decrease stress, anxiety, and depression. Perhaps it is because of the effects of exercise itself, plus the fact that cycling outdoors is enjoyable and exciting. There is much to be discovered in the outside world and cycling is one of the best ways to do just that.