Cardio, short for cardiovascular, is a term referring to the blood circulation through the heart and blood vessels around the body. Cardio workouts are exercises challenging the endurance of an individual which makes the heart pump more blood that carries nutrients and oxygen. One of the best cardio workout enjoyed by many is cycling.
At the gym, cycling is often a standard item but this activity isn’t limited to indoor. Biking is a great way to hit two birds with one stone, get from point A to point B and stay active while doing it. Biking provide many benefits for your health such as making your legs work, not adding to much pressure on the joint, and allowing you to be out in fresh air. Here are the 6 benefits proving cycling is a great cardio workout.
Build muscle and strength
Cycling improves muscles with low risk of over exercising or muscle strain. It builds strength in your hips thighs quads and calves. It doesn’t only strengthen your legs but it also defines all of your muscle by burning your body fat. More specifically, a single speed bike is also a great option for cardio and strength and if you shop around a bit, you can find the best single speed bikes under $500 that are both high quality and affordable.
Cycling will help lose weight
Cycling is a great way to lose weight. While biking as a means of transportation, you’re burning calories without being overly conscious on the cardio exercise. The reason is that while biking, your mind is distracted by focusing on heading to the destination and paying attention to your surroundings, unlike most cardio exercise which doesn’t provide any distraction from the effort put into it.
Cardio exercise is endurance based and the more you do it, the better you will perform. Let’s say you bike 5 k to get to work every morning and every evening. It might seem impossible, but within a few weeks, you soon come to realize that it’s not as hard as it once was. The reason of this matter is that your body has changed to keep up physical requirements needed to complete this daily task. In this case, these changes are aimed to have more stamina. Studies have shown that cycling to work can enhance cardiovascular fitness up to 7%. Cycling uses the large leg muscles which rises heart rate and increase stamina and fitness.
Biking is even more enjoyable with a loved one. It is a perfect activity for couples to benefit from the outdoors and explore new areas. This brings something new to the relationship and also helps build a stronger bond. Also, couples have cycling dates since exercise release happy hormones and these happy hormones can influence happy moments. So if your partner is not at the same pace, slow down and enjoy each other’s company.
Easy on the joints
Cycling gets your legs working and your blood flowing without pounding on your joints which makes it easier on the ankle, knees, feet and legs. Since running has a pounding effect on your body, maybe biking would be a great alternative, since all motions are fluent. People from all ages and sizes can comfortably do some cardio exercise.
In terms of transportation, cycling is a great alternative to your car. Considering, that you can bike to work on time, you can enjoy your mornings and have a boost of energy once you get to work. Biking cuts corners when it comes to heading to your destinations. You can find the quickest path to go to where you need to go, without worrying about gas, parking ticket and traffic.
Cycling can fix many health related issues and can enhance physical performance but it isn’t limited to these factors. An improvement in overall health means more energy, more focus more confidence which will find its way to improve other aspects of your life. With that said, go on and take advantage of what your bicycle has to offer while the weather is nice!