They say you can never forget to ride a cycle, so maybe now is the time to hop on and see the benefits that regular cycling has on your overall health says Deepthi Velkur
We often hear people making excuses for not finding time to indulge in some form of physical activity or they find themselves too tired to move a muscle after a hard day’s work, but, we often forget the benefits of performing a regular physical activity. Doing something physical keeps us active and reduces the risk of developing a serious health condition associated with our sedentary lifestyles. There are many ways to improve our lifestyle, but nothing can beat cycling.
Cycling is a low-impact exercise which is healthy, fun and enjoyable for people of all age groups. It makes for a fun group activity to do with friends and family and really helps spend quality time with them.
Taking your bicycle to work (big dependency on traffic and weather here!) or even to the store close by is an excellent way of building a regular exercise routine into your daily routine and it helps the environment too!
Riding a bicycle every day can turn the wheel of our lives for the better. How you ask? Read on to know more:
Improves your cardiovascular function: Cycling being an aerobic activity makes your heart, lungs and blood vessels to work out as well. Regular cycling helps bring down your blood pressure, lowers your calorie count limiting your chance of being overweight and increases the heart rate thereby pumping blood to the rest of the body.
Promotes weight-loss and tones the muscle:Cycling is an effective routine to do if you want to lose weight. It helps burn calories and works on multiple muscle groups such as quads, hamstrings, calves, biceps, glutes, shoulders, and back muscles. The number of calories you burn during a cycling activity ranges from 400 – 1000/per hour depending on the intensity with which you ride. So, in addition to losing fat, you will also tone your muscles.
Improved Posture:When we cycle, we end up doing a lot of balancing without even being aware of it. This balancing act helps improve our posture, develop better full -body coordination and strengthens our upper body muscles.
Reduced Stress: Any form of physical exercise brings down your stress and so does cycling. It keeps your mind healthy, helps to introspect your problems with a calm mind and you feel less helpless in dealing with your problems.
Improved mental well-being: Any aerobic activity releases endorphins and the adrenaline rush uplifts your mood making you have a happier outlook on life, boosts confidence that comes from accomplishing new goals you set for yourself.
You sleep better: Cycling boosts your sleep quality and is especially effective for those suffering from insomnia. Try riding a bike in the evenings as this is known to help you sleep better. However, you can also ride in the morning as it will keep you active through the day and help you fall asleep quicker at night.
Kind to the environment: Riding a cycle doesn’t require you to burn fuel – you protect the environment by decreasing pollution and lowering the demand for fuel. World over, several countries are encouraging their citizens to ride to and from work or school. It is definitely a healthy and sustainable option.
As a child, most of us would get out on our cycles and feel the road flying beneath our wheels; it reminds us of a feeling of freedom and release. That doesn’t get old. It’s still there. Riding around corners and whizzing past with the wind in your face makes you feel like a kid again.
So, there you have it – researchers have me convinced that cycling will add days to my life, and the child inside me has learned that it adds life to my days. Both are valuable lessons.
So, let’s all keep moving and keep discovering.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Deepthi Velkur is a former sprinter who is trying her hand at various sports today. A tennis fanatic, who believes that sleep should never be compromised.