Cycling Benefits for Both Physical and Mental Health

3 minute read.

Cycling is a great form of exercise for people of all ages and fitness levels. Not only is it a low-impact activity that is easy on the joints, but it also has a number of health benefits both physical and mental that can help you achieve your overall health goals.

1. CARDIOVASCULAR HEALTH

Cycling is an excellent source of cardio. Riding a bike regularly can help improve your heart health, lower your blood pressure, and reduce your risk of heart disease. It can also help you lose weight, as cycling burns calories and can help you maintain a healthy body weight. Working for a stronger cardiovascular system is associated with lower mortality rates and lower risks for developing other physiological factors such as diabetes, high blood pressure and physical limitations. 

2. STRENGTHENS LOWER BODY AND CORE

Cycling is also great for building and maintaining muscle strength and flexibility. Riding a bike requires the use of many different muscle groups, including the legs, core, and arms. Regular cycling can build muscle and overall strength.  This can help improve your overall fitness and make everyday tasks easier.

3. WEIGHT LOSS

Love cycling, bonus as it’s a pretty great way to help you lose weight. Not only does cycling burn calories and build muscle, but also, the more you enjoy an activity, the more likely you are to stick with it. This is called “hedonic motivation", which basically means if you like it, you’ll do it. And research shows that long-term weight loss requires a commitment to exercise, so it’s important to find that activity you just love doing.

4. IMPROVES MENTAL HEALTH

Another benefit of cycling is that it is a great way to improve your mental health. Riding a bike can help reduce stress, improve your mood, and boost your self-confidence. It can also help improve your sleep, as regular exercise has been shown to improve the quality and duration of sleep.

  • Reduces Stress - Regular rides reduce the day to day life stresses. Cardio is proven way to reduce stress and ease anxiety. 
  • Reduces risk of depression - Getting outside and riding focuses the mind and body together and reduces the risk of depression
  • Improves your memory - Riding a bike helps to build new brain cells in the hippocampus, this region of the brain is responsible for a person's memory.  
  • Improves your sleep - Riders are able to get their circadian rhythm in sync by riding regularly. In addition, cycling can help to reduce levels of cortisol in the body which is a stress hormone that may block regenerative, deep sleep. It also can positively affect brain serotonin which can improve your sleep cycles.
  • Helps you feel GOOD - People who choose to cycle instead of drive gain a sense of pride by helping save the environment. Reducing your carbon footprint and avoiding adding to the world’s pollution does a wonder for making you feel good about yourself. Cyclists enjoy the benefits of a “cycling high”. Similar to a “runner’s high”, cyclists often note that the endorphins that come from the physical exercise of riding a bike make them feel HAPPY! 
  • Improves creative thinking -The ability to exercise while getting fresh air helps to sharpen problem solving skills as well as creativity. 
  • Helps boost productivity

If you're looking to set some health goals for yourself, consider incorporating cycling into your routine. Whether you're looking to lose weight, improve your cardiovascular health, or boost your mental well-being, cycling can help you achieve those goals.

One way to set a cycling goal is to start by setting a distance or time goal and gradually increasing it over time. Another is to track your progress and monitor your fitness level by tracking your heart rate or speed. You can also set a goal to participate in a cycling event or challenge, such as a charity ride or a timed race. Check out group rides and clinics to find cycling friends and events. 

Cycling is a great sport for many reasons - primarily a fun and easy way to improve your health and achieve your fitness goals. It's a great way to get outside and enjoy the fresh air and it's a great way to spend time with friends and family. With all of the health benefits that cycling has to offer, it is easy to commit to a fitness plan and bike riding FUN!

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