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Cycling for Health and Weight Loss

There is nothing like pedal power to lose weight and keeping healthy while having fun. It is suitable for all ages and for any level of fitness.   It is thus small wonder that cycling as a means of weight loss is very popular today and more and more cycle paths are being opened in major cities of the world to facilitate workouts.

One of the primary benefits of cycling is reaching weight loss goals through increased heart rate and burning off fat and calories. Further, no special training is required as most people already know how to cycle before starting off on a fitness regime. Cycling also leads to all round fitness and increased endurance levels since major muscle groups in the legs, the quadriceps, glutei, calves and hamstring get a thorough work over. People who cannot take up high impact sports will find cycling very convenient as it does not put great pressure on the joints as in running.

Weight loss is due to calorie burn and how many calories cycling will break down depends on the extent of the workout. For vigorous cycling, almost at professional levels, 670 calories in half an hour is not uncommon with a burn of 75 calories in the same time is for the more sedentary form of cycling.

How then can cycling improve your health?

When you are cycling to lose weight you have to go on for long periods without letting your leg muscles get excessively tired. During these times, your heart and lungs get a good workout which can go a long way to increasing your cardiovascular fitness levels.

As the heart and lungs get stronger over time, they will be able to move oxygen around the body more efficiently thereby increasing your fitness levels. There will be a fall in your blood pressure and blood fat levels with a corresponding lowering of resting pulse rate. All this will combine to minimise the possibility of a heart attack.

Cycling for just 30 minutes twice or thrice a week will increase fitness levels and help you further increase the duration of other aerobic exercises. You will never be short of breath while working for weight loss. A 10 mile bike ride is a great way to get outdoors and enjoy yourself as against being cooped up in a gym or your home on weight loss chores.

To further spruce things up, get a friend or your partner or your spouse to pedal away with you. Exercising to lose weight cannot possibly be more fun!