Healthy FUN for Everyone
No matter how long ago you learned to ride a bike, it's easy to pick up the skill again. Cycling is a terrific way to burn calories and build cardiovascular strength without putting a great deal of pressure on your joints. Additionally, cycling is an activity that people of different fitness levels can enjoy together.
Get Your Gear Together
Bicycle construction has changed radically in recent years, and you can get bicycles in a variety of materials and for many different purposes. Whether you're looking to hit the trails on a hearty mountain bike or just cycle to your local shopping center, you can easily find a bike to suit your needs.
When planning your bicycle purchase, make certain to allow some budget for repairs and maintenance. If your budget is small, considering purchasing a used bike from a repair shop so you have wheels in good working order.
Whether you're planning a long ride or a quick jaunt, be sure to invest in quality safety equipment and to use it on every bike ride.
- You'll need a helmet
- reflective clothing
- a strong focus on your surroundings
If you're in a wreck with a vehicle, even if it's their fault, it's you on the pavement. When starting out (or when traffic is busy) plan to walk your bike through the busy areas so you have more flexibility. Keep your eyes open for drivers in a hurry or distracted drivers. You may be entitled to a lane, but many drivers are unaware of laws for cyclists, so be ready to get out of the way if you have to.
Celebrate the Benefits
Both walking and running can get you where you need to go, but cycling is much kinder to your joints. Not only will you get to enjoy plenty of fresh air, but the circular motion of cycling provides even, consistent pressure and increases blood flow to your feet, ankles and knees.
Of course, these benefits move up the body. In addition to providing gentle exercise for your legs, cycling strengthens your core by requiring you to balance your bike. Your heart will get a great workout as you watch the miles go by, and a bike ride is a great way to shed the stress of the day. You'll get home with a clear head, a limber body and refreshed heart.
For those who struggle with weight control, cycling is an ideal way to get off the couch, move your body through space, burn calories and reduce your weight (or at least avoid additional weight gain.) Aging can mean having less to do and struggling to feel good enough to do it. By incorporating a regular bike ride into your life, you can increase your energy and feel stronger in all your activities.
If your grandchild needs training wheels, you can get back into cycling beside them with an electric bike that helps you on long inclines or when you get tired. One of the best things about cycling is that you can do it in a group no matter your fitness level and everyone can participate and enjoy.
If you've been encouraged to get more exercise and can't really get excited about going to the gym, try cycling! Find a bike shop that offers access to biking clubs in your area. You'll learn how to use and care for your bike, where the best trails are for beginners and what areas of your city to avoid. No matter your fitness level, biking can help you build strength, stamina and social connections!