Seven healthy reasons why cycling is good for you
It doesn’t matter what kind of bike you have sitting in your shed or your garage, dig it out! It doesn’t matter how long it is since you last rode it, dust it off! Give it a wipe down, check the brakes, the saddle, check the tyres for air and squirt a bit of oil on the chain. Don some padded shorts (you can put them under a pair of your favourite joggers if you’d prefer to keep them hidden) and you’re good to go. Here’s my top seven healthy reasons to get on your bike and pedal this year! Wait until you check out reason number seven…
1. It’s FUN!
This has to be top of my list for healthy reasons to cycle. There’s no better feeling than being outside in the fresh air, closer to nature, cycling downhill. Even the uphills can be fun after a bit of practise! Cycling makes you smile. Which makes you feel happy. Which releases endorphins! Which make you feel great!
2. It improves your sleep
Apparently, the type of physical activity you engage in can make a difference to how well you sleep. Cycling is up there with the best of the ones that you can do to help you to sleep soundly. So next time you’re thinking, ‘I’m too tired to ride‘, it might actually be just what your body needs to improve the quality of your sleep.
3. Non load bearing on your joints
Now, this is the whole reason I got into cycling in the first place. I have a really dodgy back so certain sports are out for me. But cycling is most definitely in! Cycling is a low impact form of exercise which places little stress and pressure on your joints, so it’s easier on your ankles, knees and back than activities like running and aerobics classes.
4. Stress busting
Making time to ride a bike when you’re in the middle of a stressful period of your life may be last on your list of priorities, but trust me, you won’t regret taking twenty minutes out and spending it on two wheels. Riding a bike can be good for your mind and your body – trust me, I know!
5. You’re saving the environment
The only fumes coming from your bike are ones whizzing off the endorphins you’re creating! Fumes of happiness and enjoyment (and maybe a little bit of smugness).
6. Good cardio and fat burning exercise
It’s not exactly news when I tell you cycling is actually blummin’ good exercise. There’s no getting away from it. The amount of calories you burn per hour cycling far tops those burned doing lots of other aerobic exercise. It tones your legs; take it off road and it will tone your arms too. You’ll even notice your stomach tightening up. And perhaps most importantly, it’s good for your heart.
7. Cycling improves your sex life
Yep! Now, that’s got your attention right! Cycling improves your sex life. Apparently! Riding a bike makes you fit, it tones you up, you feel better about your body image. You’re less stressed, less tired and you feel happier. Boom! There you have it! You’re sexy and you know it!
So, there you go! Seven top healthy reasons to cycle. So, what are you waiting for? Go on! Off you go! Get yourself into the garage and dust off that bike. And get those cycling shorts out of the drawer and put them on. Just remember to leave the underwear off. All that seam rubbing and chafing is definitely not good for you! And won’t help with number seven.
Actually, in all honesty, you don’t really need padded shorts to enjoy cycling, although they’ll certainly make it a more comfortable experience. Whatever you choose to wear, just get out there and do it! Be happy!