Cycling is one of the best weight loss sports available, especially as one of the most accessible sports going.
Not only does cycling burn around 300 calories per hour, cycling regularly comes with significant cardio and health benefits such as reduced risk of heart disease and diabetes. Generally speaking, cycling is such a good weight loss sport as it fires up your metabolism even hours after getting off the bike, resulting in faster weight loss.
Combined with the right nutrition, cycling is the perfect sport for improving general health and losing weight. Plus, it’s a low impact sport so it’s easy on the joints.
But remember, eating right is equally as important as actually cycling – you can’t out-cycle a bad diet. Here’s why cycling is the best sport for weight loss.
It’s easy to do fat-burning intervals.
If you want to really fire up your metabolism, try spinning or high-intensity cycling. This method of cycling is a really quick way to boost your fitness and speed up weight loss. Because there is no impact on a bike, it’s really easy to switch up your effort levels to get your heart-rate racing. If you’re outdoors, tackle those nice hills and get the lungs burning. If you are indoors, line up a high-intensity workout including high-resistance cycling (when there is more resistance against your pedals because you are in a higher gear) and sprint training (a faster cadence on a lower gear).
It’s a low impact sport that’s gentle on the joints.
Cycling is often the sport of choice for those recovering from an injury or suffering from something like arthritis. Why? Because compared to other contact sports and high-impact sports such as running, cycling is low impact. If your bike is set up correctly, you can rest assured you are exercising without putting a lot of strain on your joints. Compared to running, in particular, cycling puts far less pressure on your body. If running sometimes causes knee or back pain, cycling is a perfect alternative due to its low impact nature.
You can cycle both indoors and outdoors.
One of the best things about cycling is you can bring it indoors when the weather is bad. Indoor cycling apps have helped gamify the cycling experience and are now the perfect workout partner to keep you entertained and work up a sweat from the comfort of your own house. Alternatively, as mentioned above, indoor spin classes are a great fat-burning indoor workout. That means bad weather is no longer a valid excuse…
You can lose weight commuting to work.
Cycling regularly can be easily added to your daily routine. Many cyclists now opt to cycle to work, which is often deemed as quicker than other methods of transport (particularly in busy cities), a cheaper mode of transport and healthier. Cycling to work not only gets your daily dose of fitness in on your commute, but it helps you stay productive and alert in your workplace.
Still not convinced? Here are five additional health benefits of cycling regularly:
- Improves your general wellbeing: Cycling, as with all sports, triggers the release of endorphins (known as the ‘feel-good’ chemicals) into your brain. These are hormones which get released to counter stress and improve psychological well-being. Cycling helps give you a feel-good boost.
- Makes you feel stronger: If you cycle with higher resistance, you’ll soon notice the gains in strengthening and toning your glutes, calves, quads and abs. Cycling is great for strengthening your core.
- Enhances your cardio ability: Cycling gets your heart rate pounding. That results in an increased amount of blood flow and better oxygen consumption, resulting in your organs becoming stronger and healthier. The fitter you get, the better your sports performance will be.
- Protects you against health-related diseases: Cycling regularly lowers your risk of health-related diseases such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
- Improves your energy levels: As you get fitter and healthier, so will your brain. Your energy levels will improve, as will your ability to be productive for longer. Plus, your brain will function at a more optimal level, meaning better memory, concentration and problem-solving capabilities.
What are you waiting for? Get cycling now to lose weight and enjoy improved health.