Many Americans choose bike riding for weight loss as it is fun, convenient, and does not require a major financial commitment. In addition, it doesn’t place a significant demand on the muscles and joints of the body. Whether you choose a leisurely ride around town or a power road race, cycling can burn some serious calories. Read on to learn more about biking to lose weight.
Bicycling produces an effective calorie burn, resulting in steady weight loss. Cycling for 30 minutes at between 12 and 14 miles per hour burns 346 calories for a 175 pound person. (Heavier people will burn more calories, lighter people will burn fewer.) In order to lose one pound of fat from exercise, you must burn 3500 calories. In other words, If you bike for 30 minutes a day for 10 days you have burned a pound of fat. If you bike 20 days a month, that would result in a 24 pound weight loss over the period of a year! Bike riding for weight loss, when combined with a healthy diet, can result in even greater weight loss.
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If you have not exercised regularly in a while, you need to remember to take it slow at first. Set small goals for yourself. Star by cycling just five or ten minutes at a time, or to the point of mild to moderate exertion. Remember not to overstress your body as too rapid a transition from a sedentary to an active lifestyle can be taxing on the muscles and joints.
Begin by cycling two days on, one day off. This gives your body time to recover between sessions. Gradually increase your cadence, distance, and time on the bike over a period of a few weeks to a few months. Be careful to listen to your body. If you begin to feel excessive fatigue, walk for a few days instead of cycling.
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Some popular fitness apps allow you to track your weight loss as well as your cycling regime. This can serve to inspire you to continue on your fitness journey. Remember that a reasonable weight loss is no more than two pounds a week, even if you combine dieting with your exercise. Studies have shown that weight that is shed over an extended period of time is more likely to remain off.
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If you are used to getting regular exercise and are a more experienced cyclist, there are things you can do to boost your calorie burn when cycling. A rough terrain with regular hills and valleys gives you a much more challenging workout than a flat ride. In addition, you can increase you speed, tracking the time it takes you to complete a route with efforts to lower that time.
Riding in a group is an especially effective tool. When riding with others, you tend to push yourself harder to keep up with the group and perform well. The harder you work, the more calories you burn.
Remember that it’s important to stay hydrated as you ride. Hydration is actually important for weight loss. Staying hydrated gives your body a feeling a satiety that makes you tend to eat less. Also, your body requires water to work at peak conditions- and that means weight loss, too! Water helps your metabolism by helping your body store carbs in your liver and muscle tissue (carbs you need for your workout), remove waste products from the body, and absorb vitamins and minerals.
Finally, do not forget the need for a healthy snack before and after a ride. This is especially important as your fitness level increases and you challenge yourself to more difficult rides. Healthy snacks like nuts, raisins, bananas, nutrition bars, and oatmeal provide your body with the calories it needs to give you energy.
Although you may try to cut as many calories as possible, you must remember to replenish some of the calories you burn through exercise to keep your body functioning. Failing to do so can result in low blood sugar, weakness, and headaches. It’s great to keep a snack with you when you ride, so you can take a break and have a bite while you relax.
Celebrate your weight loss victories with rewards that won’t sabotage your losses. For example, don’t go out for dessert because you lost ten pounds! Instead, find goals that will support your cycling hobby. Perhaps you want a new fitness tracker, a bike fitting, a new saddle, or even just a new water bottle. By rewarding yourself regularly you reinforce your positive exercise habit. Overall, biking to lose weight is a way to keep you active, healthy, and fit.
As you ride for fitness and weight loss, exercise caution when riding on the roads. Distracted drivers can overlook cyclists, resulting in crashes. In addition, cyclists who aren’t paying attention to the roads can be victims of potholes, bumps, and road debris. If you have been involved in a bicycle crash, contact an experienced bicycle injury attorney at Kass & Moses.
In addition to being attorneys, we are all experienced cyclists, so we know your desire to get back on your bike after a crash. We will work with you and the insurance company to help you get the settlement that you deserve for your injuries. Reach out to us today for more information!