Get Fit with a Cycling Workout Tailored to Your Fitness Level
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Cycling is one of the few workouts that is easy to adjust to all fitness levels. From scenic bike rides to hardcore cycling adventures, recumbent bike to mountain bike, you truly can make a cycling workout your own.
Cooper Fitness Center Dallas Sports Dietitian and Cycling Instructor Meridan Zerner explains why cycling may be a great workout option for you.
Benefits of Cycling
In addition to its adaptability to any fitness level, cycling is a low-impact exercise, meaning it puts little strain on the joints. The same is true of walking, but cycling allows you to cover more distance and workout longer than some other forms of low-impact exercise.
Cycling also provides an excellent cross-training workout for athletes. By incorporating cycling into their fitness training routine, athletes are able to increase fitness and performance with low risk of injury.
Cycling is also a great form of stress relief. Getting outside can relieve stress and improve mood. If you’re stressed or simply feeling down, hop on your bike and go for a ride.
There can also be a social aspect of cycling. By joining a cycling group, whether competitive or for fun, you are able to interact with other athletes, building relationships while doing something that is good for your body.
Whether taking your mountain bike out for a ride through the hills, or participating in an indoor cycling class (also known as Spin), you’ll get a great workout. There are, however, some advantages to indoor cycling.
The primary advantage of indoor cycling is efficiency. A spin class provides an efficient, low-impact workout. Most indoor cycling or spin class workouts are designed around intervals, allowing participants to burn as many as 500 calories in a 45-60 minute workout.
Another advantage of participating in a group cycle or Spin class is that you have a coach supporting you through your entire ride, helping you get fitter, faster. Your coach will help you find the right seat and handlebar height to best fit your body. Proper posture and alignment while riding will help prevent and alleviate strains, aches and pains. (If you prefer to ride outdoors, take your bike to a bicycle shop to have it sized to the appropriate seat and handlebar height.)
If you’re intimidated by the thought of participating in a spin class, don’t be. You control the gear settings on your bike (resistance) and the intensity of your workout.
Example Cycle Workout
This can be completed on an outdoor ride, a stationary bike or a recumbent bike.
8-10 minute warm-up: light intensity ride
1-2 minutes of moderate to high intensity effort (increased resistance and/or tempo)
3 minute recovery ride: light intensity
5 minutes of 1 minute on, 1 minute off (high intensity/low intensity intervals)
5 minute cool down ride: gradually decreasing intensity
Even if you are slightly intimidated, give a cycling workout a try. Keep in mind that the cycle saddle (seat) can be uncomfortable at first, but improves over time. It may take several workouts for your glutes to adapt. If you are still uncomfortable cycling after a few workouts, consider a padded gel seat cover or padded cycling pants.
For more information about Cooper Fitness Center, click here or call 972.233.4832.
Article provided by Cooper Aerobics Marketing and Communications.