Nowadays, a lot of people struggle with getting into shape or simply adopting a healthier lifestyle. While going to the gym and toning those muscles is surely an effective way to achieve both, it is not the best option for everyone. Still, it doesn’t mean they have to give up achieving their health goals or shedding those excess pounds. Cycling is a great alternative that can be easily implemented in your daily routine – it is basically a complete workout, and once you take up regular cycling, you will start to notice various improvements in no time! It is also low-impact, meaning that it puts little stress on your joints and the risks of injury are low, so it’s a perfect choice for almost anyone. If, however, you’re still not convinced, read on to learn about all the positive ways cycling affects your body.

It gets you in shape

As mentioned earlier, excess weight is a problem a lot of people struggle with. However, cycling might prove to be the perfect way to combat this if you’re ready to give it a try. In fact, cycling burns a lot of calories: a 20-minute bike ride will burn anywhere from 90 to 317 calories depending on your weight and on how vigorous you make the activity. Thus, it can be quite an effective way to burn some fat in the healthiest way possible!

And not only that; besides helping you shed the unnecessary pounds, cycling will also make you fit. It is an endurance sport after all. It will help increase your stamina and you will generally feel better and more energized in your body.

It gives you stronger legs

It probably does not come as a surprise that cycling increases the strength of your legs. Your thighs, calves, feet and even your backside will be in great shape if you go cycling on a regular basis. You can control how intense you want your workout to be by changing the cadence (how fast the pedals are rotating). Visit a reliable Australia bike shop and choose a model that offers various gear settings, so that you can change the pace to suit your needs. When you want to focus on strengthening your legs, you’ll be able to choose a setting where the cadence is low, raising the resistance and the amount of strength you’ll have to put into pedaling.

While your legs will probably get sore in the beginning, if you pay attention to proper post-workout recovery, you can be sure it will pay off in the long run. And no, you don’t have to worry about your thighs growing massive; although, it is possible that you’ll go up or down a size when it comes to your jeans.

It works your upper body too

Your leg muscles are not the only ones that will benefit from cycling. This activity also strengthens a number of other muscle groups in your upper body as a result of providing support in the cycling position.

First of all, while it might not be so straightforward, it strengthens your core and even works your abs! While cycling, you engage your abdominal muscles to provide you stability. This will contribute to developing better balance and coordination. Secondly, your arms and shoulders will get their share of workout too, as you’re holding the handles of your bike. Last but not least, your back muscles, your lower back ones, in particular, will also get stronger, especially if you ride on uneven terrain, as they will have to work hard to help you keep your balance.

Reduced risk of certain diseases

Another great reason to take up cycling is its long-term effects when it comes to lowering the risks of cardiovascular disease, among others. Cycling gives the heart a good workout by increasing its rate, resulting in improved cardiovascular functions including better circulation and prevention of high blood pressure. Moreover, it is also proven to reduce the risk of cancer, and helps in the treatment of diseases such as diabetes and arthritis.

Healthy body equals healthy mind

Last but not least, after you take up cycling, you will notice changes not only concerning your body but your mind too. It is no news that both exercise and being outside improve your mood and reduce stress and anxiety, thus with cycling, you get to double the benefits. If you ever have problems getting quality sleep, you might find the solution at the same place. Finally, exercise is also proven to boost brainpower by increasing the oxygen supply to the brain! Cycling to work can give you just the right kind of boost to help you start the day with peak concentration. Taking on new routes every now and then when you go cycling will also improve your sense of navigation.

From getting you fit through strengthening your muscles to reducing the risks of the diseases mentioned, cycling certainly offers numerous health benefits. And that’s not all! Cycling is also a good way to socialize, explore new places and even protect the environment. So, don’t hesitate to surprise yourself with a shiny new ride and adopt this habit; your body will be endlessly thankful for it.

Published by Victoria Lim