Using a bicycle for transportation can save you time, money, and gas. It also gives you a great workout. Cycling increases cardiovascular health, strengthens muscles, and improves balance. It can also lower your risk of stroke and heart attack. It is also an excellent way to get fresh air.
In addition to the health benefits, cycling is fun. It allows you to experience new sights and sounds. Cycling is also a great social activity. You can make it a social event with friends or family. You can use cycling to work, or just to get out and enjoy nature. Cycling to work is one of the most popular ways to get your daily exercise.
Cycling can help you lose weight. The calories burned depend on the intensity of your ride. You can burn up to one pound of fat each week. Depending on your weight, your cycling calories can be as high as 650 per hour. You can also burn more calories if you ride faster.
You can also improve your mental health by cycling. Exercise has been linked to brain health and memory. Studies show that people who exercise are less likely to develop cognitive changes that can lead to dementia later in life. It can also decrease depression. Exercise is also good for your digestive system. It releases endorphins that can help you feel better.
You can start cycling at a low intensity and work up to higher intensity levels. The intensity you choose depends on how much you enjoy the activity. If you’re just getting started, start with about 15 minutes of riding each day. Then, slowly increase your time.
When you’re new to cycling, it’s important to practice safety. Wear a helmet and follow traffic rules. Also, be alert for pedestrians. Be sure to stay on designated bike trails and ride at the pace you’re comfortable with. You should also keep your eyes on the road in front of you, and be alert for oncoming traffic. If you find yourself in sudden pain, contact your primary care physician or a physical therapist.
The most important cycling skill is drafting. Drafting is when you get right on the tail of another rider. It eliminates the wind factor and makes cycling easier. This can be especially helpful for those who are inexperienced. The closer you get to the rider in front, the more benefit you will receive from the decreased wind resistance.
A study of cyclists found that their blood flow increased in the brain during their exercise. Specifically, blood flow rose by about 70 percent in certain areas of the brain. However, it remained at about 40 percent after the exercise was over.
If you’re unsure about how much cycling is right for you, a physical therapist can help you decide. You can also get a bike that will allow you to exercise in an indoor setting. Indoor cycling may improve your total cholesterol levels, lower LDL cholesterol, and increase HDL cholesterol levels.