World Bicycle Day, this is why cycling is the best exercise you need to lose weight
If the monotony of a gym routine bores you, or you hate being cooped up indoors, cycling is the best exercise for you. You can connect to nature and let go of some stress, while getting fitter in the process. And oh, cycling to places instead of driving does wonders for the environment. So it’s pretty much a win-win. But don’t just take our word for it.
Here’s what experts say.
“When you cycle, you build muscle and burn calories at the same time. You burn calories on the spot while cycling, and there’s also an enhanced metabolic rate that you develop over a period of time because of muscle mass increase. That muscle mass increase in turn engages more calorie utilisation after a period of time even at a restive stage. So cycling helps you even after the activity,” says Ryan Cannell, Mr World physique medallist, pro athlete and General Nutriton Center expert.
It’s also a relatively safe activity for your joints, unlike running or weight training. In fact, it actually promotes joint mobility. Moreover, says Dr Abhishek Subhash, consultant physician, Bhatia Hospital, Mumbai, “Cycling is one of the best forms of exercise. It’s a high intensity exercise that burns a lot of calories in a short duration.”
Cycling isn’t just for people looking to cut the flab. It also increases your endurance, making you a stronger person. “If you able to cycle for 15 minutes on day one, after a while, you will be easily able to cycle for 45 minutes or an hour,” says Dr Subhash.
It’s also great for your cardiovascular health. “It reduces cholesterol and protects you from diabetes,” adds Dr Subhash. In fact, research has showed that just 20 minutes of cycling in a day can half your risk of dying from a heart related disease.
Cycling is recommended for all age groups. But if you have recently had a heart attack or are facing any kind of heart trouble, it’s best to get an okay from your physician before taking up cycling.
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