Cycling is a sport of physical activity having a misinterpreted image. Cycling is considered to be a kid's sport when in reality, it’s much more than that. Staying fit in today’s fast-paced life has become a challenge. With busier lives, workloads, and the pandemic, finding time to visit the gym becomes a task.
Cycling can be an alternative to staying fit in these busy times. Especially in a time like now, cycling should be done by everyone because of all the positive aspects that come with it. Cycling helps you achieve your fitness goals while also serving as a challenge to push your limits to the farthest possible.
Cycling every day Sounds like a challenge, doesn’t it? Well, not to worry. We will help you with this challenge and ensure you end up as a regular cyclist, but first, let us see why cycling is so beneficial as an activity.
As mentioned before, cycling isn’t just a thing for kids who like to play; instead, cycling possesses many benefits, especially for adults. It might seem like a big task or a challenge for you, but every minute you spend cycling is worth it. Things that would be beneficial by cycling are as follows:
It’s not a big secret that cycling helps you stay fit and have better physical health. Cycling is a vigorous activity involving all your core muscles that leads to an increased heart and better blood flow in the body.
Cycling also helps you maintain a lean body, as being a cardiovascular activity helps a lot with shredding unwanted fats. Since cycling involves using all your core muscles, cycling helps keep your joints healthy in the long run while also strengthening your core muscles. Another positive factor of cycling is that it improves the posture of your body and the coordination of your muscles.
Science has now proven that cycling helps you fight off several medical conditions and have a better immune system. A study found that cycling can reduce the risk of certain types of cancer. Especially the side effects of breast cancer treatment can be reduced with the help of cycling.
Cycling is an excellent way to control or reduce weight; it increases your metabolic rate, burns body fat, and builds muscle. If you’re trying to burn fat, cycling must be combined with a healthy diet. Cycling is a comfortable exercise; it will increase your strength and helps you to get a good body posture.
A 30-minute session of cycling can make your brain releases chemicals like dopamine and other endorphins. These endorphins stimulate your mood and, in turn, help you to be in a better mental state.
Yes! Cycling is very beneficial for your health, but you might be wondering, “Are the efforts worth it?”, “how do I find the time to do so?” and “It’s too much effort and a big task for you.” Well, we will help you make this task exciting and worthwhile.
You should have a proper plan to get yourself activated for physical exercise like cycling. It will help you achieve physical activity. Know how you can deal with it.
Cycling is already a fun-filled activity in itself. Everyone should add cycling as a part of their routine as it brings a link to physical activity and a healthy lifestyle. We have curated a few challenges to make your cycling rides more exciting and entertaining for you. Try them out yourself!
Go on a bicycle ride on the tallest mountain near you. The uphill ride might be a challenge for you, but once you accomplish the feat, it will be unforgettable. The downhill ride is also a very fun-filled one.
If you are a regular at cycling, you can enter yourself in small cycling races. Winning or losing here doesn’t matter, but the feeling of competitiveness you will get will make your ride more exciting.
Try going for a ride of a hundred miles. It Is a tough task to achieve, but it's worth every effort. Milestone challenges like these would help you push your limits and achieve your goals better. If you finish this challenge, try increasing the miles.
Road trips via car and bike have become mainstream now. Try something new this time go on a short trip to a nearby hill station or a getaway place for a trip on your bicycle. The journey will help you make good memories while serving as a good challenge.
If you plan on visiting a different country or state for a vacation, don’t explore the place via a car or bike; instead, pedal your way through the cities. This is a fun and healthy way to explore a new place.
Also, you can always create your own challenges to make your bike rides more exciting.
As we all know, cycling has many benefits, but how can you prepare yourself for a challenge? Here are some tips to prepare for a cycle challenge;
If you haven’t cycled for a while, heading out for a 50km ride first up isn’t a good idea. Start with a 10km ride, and keep the pace steady. Then try 20km, 30km, and so on. You’ll be surprised how quickly your fitness improves.
Investing much in a jersey or super lightweight cycling shoes is not needed. A good pair of cycling shorts are essential. I’d recommend fingerless gloves with gel pads for some extra cushioning.
DHB – Wiggle’s in-house clothing brand makes excellent value clothing. Clipless pedals will make the most significant difference to your performance of any available upgrade. The term clipless is a misnomer; your shoes clip onto the pedals. Road Cycling has an excellent guide to some of the many clipless options.
Not everyone does but put in the training time on climbs, and you’ll be rewarded in every aspect of your riding. Hypertrophy, the enlargement of individual muscle cells, results in an immediate gain in physical power and is stimulated by high-intensity exercises like hill climbing. If you don’t have any big hills close to home, try repeated efforts on the biggest hill you can find.
Once you’re feeling confident about cycling at least 50km, try some intervals. Try cycling for 90 seconds to two minutes at maximum effort. Then return to a steady pace for four to five minutes. Repeat this pattern for 30 to 60 minutes. This will improve your endurance and increase aerobic capacity.
There are tracking apps available that help to measure your progress. You can track the distance covered, your speed, and your power output over time. Using the tracking apps, you can also plan routes and take advantage of local cycling knowledge by highlighting popular roads.
It also gives you statistics about the distance covered, time taken, calories burned, etc. Seeing improved results will make you want to continue it.
Carbohydrate-heavy meals are ideal a couple of hours before or after (to replenish your glycogen stores) a long ride. Otherwise, aim to get more protein into your diet. Beans, pulses, lean meats, fish, and low-fat dairy foods should feature heavily.
Recovery is the most important phase. While riding, continue for 90 minutes. Your body needs recovery and some quality protein. You will also need some carbohydrates to replenish your body’s glycogen stores, but this can often wait until your post-ride meal. Stretch after every training session to increase your flexibility and avoid stiffness.
You need quality rest and sleep after cycling continuously. It relieves the muscle and helps to recover the muscle.
Once you’ve mastered most of the steps above, you can aim to ride over 100km in one session. If you aim for the kind of long-distance challenge Croud is attempting, you don’t need to cover the same distance in training.
But it would be best if you aimed for a ride of 60% to 80% of the distance in training to emulate the physical and mental effort required on the big day. Long rides are about overcoming mental fatigue as much as physical.
Cycling is a vigorous exercise of muscle, strength, and endurance. It may seem like too much effort, but with its positive effects, every effort is worth it. Also, since the world is returning to normal, cycling seems the best activity everyone should take to break their ‘cycle’ of lazy routine.
Many tips for a cycling challenge are mentioned above. Use those tips regularly, and you will start seeing results in your physical health. Understand the advantages and helpful factors of the cycling challenge.
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