If you’re looking for a new and exciting way to exercise and work out, have you perhaps considered taking upcycling?
There are many health benefits of cycling, both mental and physical and in this article today, we’re going to be highlighting several.
At this present moment in time, there are more obese individuals living in the world than ever before, life expectancies are declining, governments and healthcare professionals are spending billions on weight-related healthcare, and our health, in general, is deteriorating rapidly.
What’s even more frustrating is that many of the issues listed previously could be rectified by leading a healthier lifestyle.
Exercise is very healthy, yet not all of us can honestly say that we get enough exercise on a regular basis.
Cycling, for example, is very good for you which is why we’re highlighting the benefits below, yet people would rather drive than cycle, and we can’t figure out why that is.
If you want to get fitter and healthier, here’s a look at several crucial benefits to help convince you why it is the perfect exercise for you to take up.
- 1 A Brief History Of Cycling:
- 2 What Are The Many Health Benefits Of Cycling?
- 2.1 Benefit #1: Cycling Gets You Out Of The House
- 2.2 Benefit #2: Cycling Is A Great Way To Enjoy Nature
- 2.3 Benefit #3: Great For The Environment
- 2.4 Benefit #4: Great For Losing Weight
- 2.5 Benefit #5: Great For Building Muscle
- 2.6 Benefit #6: It Increases Strength
- 2.7 Benefit #7: It Will Makes You Fitter
- 2.8 Benefit #8: Great For The Heart
- 2.9 Benefit #9: Great Way To Spend Time With Friends And Family
- 2.10 Benefit #10: Adaptable
- 2.11 Benefit #11: Cycling Is A Low Impact Activity
- 2.12 Benefit #12: It Can Save You Time
- 2.13 Benefit #13: It Can Improve Your Mobility
- 2.14 Benefit #14: It Can Be Done In And Out Of The Gym
- 2.15 Benefit #15: It Can Save You Money
- 2.16 Benefit #16: Great For Mental Health
- 2.17 Benefit #17: Cycling Is Good For The Brain
- 3 Final Thoughts:
A Brief History Of Cycling:
Before we can take a look at the many health benefits of cycling let us first take a quick bike ride back in time to learn more about the fascinating history behind cycling.
Origins Of Cycling:
The activity that we know as cycling was first introduced way back in the early 1800s.
The world’s first bicycle design, however, goes back way beyond that, to the year 1493.
This was just a design.
The first primitive bicycle was created in 1791.
Many people believe that the world’s first bicycle, however, was built by a German civil servant the name of Karl Von Drais, in 1817.
Von Drais built a design that looked very much like the bikes we have today, except that it didn’t utilize a seat, pedals, or chain design.
People propelled themselves with their legs.
This design went by many names, including Velocipede, and Dandy Horse.
The Penny Farthing:
People often assume that the Penny Farthing bike was the world’s first bicycle, but this is not the case.
The Penny Farthing design came after the Dandy Horse/Velocipede design, in 1871.
The Penny Farthing was an unusual bike, in that it featured two wheels, a seat, pedals, and a chain mechanism.
The only unique thing was that the bike had an enormously oversized front wheel and a much, much smaller rear wheel.
This bike was the most efficient to date, and other than the awkward design of the front wheel, it was a very useful invention.
Bicycles Going Mainstream:
In the USA and Europe, bicycles became very popular and racing clubs were formed in the 1900s.
Now, bikes had been adapted to feature much smaller wheels and they were basically how we know and love them today.
Cycling was a great form of transport and leisure in the late 1800s, and thanks to a bike known as the Rover Safety Bicycle, both men and women would be seen on public cycling.
People not only used them for leisure, but they also began using them as transport for work, for exercise, for racing, and even for touring around the world.
Fast forward to the present day, and while the designs and features may have changed, cycling at its heart remains the same.
What Are The Many Health Benefits Of Cycling?
Benefit #1: Cycling Gets You Out Of The House
In 2021, staying in officially became the new going out, and while there’s nothing wrong with staying in now and then, it’s important that we get out as much as possible and get some fresh air and in amongst nature.
One of the main benefits is the fact that it is the perfect excuse to get out of the house.
Cycling is great because it gives you a purpose and something to look forward to, while also helping to break up the monotony of everyday life.
Benefit #2: Cycling Is A Great Way To Enjoy Nature
Another fantastic benefit of cycling is the fact that it is the perfect way to get outdoors and enjoy nature.
Cycling is great because there are so many cycle routes located all over the globe so you can enjoy all that Mother Nature has to offer.
Whether you want to cycle through Alpine forests, coastal paths, desert terrains, country villages, or anywhere else, there is almost certainly a cycle route that will let you do exactly that.
Benefit #3: Great For The Environment
Lately, you’ve probably noticed how health officials and other experts have asked people to cycle to work or the shops, rather than drive.
This is not just so that you can get some much-needed exercise, but it is also so that you can do your part to help the environment.
Cycling cuts way back on your carbon footprint so you can help to be greener and to look after your home planet.
Benefit #4: Great For Losing Weight
If you’re looking to get rid of some unsightly flab this holiday season, cycling is the perfect form of exercise for you to take up.
One of the key benefits is the fact that it is so fantastic for people that are looking to lose weight.
Cycling is very physically demanding and so it requires a great deal of strength and a great deal of energy.
Cycling can burn off hundreds, if not thousands of calories, depending on where you go and how intensely you cycle of course.
The bottom line is that, if you are intent on burning fat and getting leaner, you should hop on your bike and take upcycling.
Benefit #5: Great For Building Muscle
Did you think that the only way to build muscle was to lift weights in a gym for several hours each week?
If so, then prepare to have your mind blown.
As it turns out, cycling is one of the best ways to build muscle naturally, especially in the legs and the lower body because of the fact that you use the legs so much when pedaling.
Cycling, especially uphill, works the glutes, quads, hamstrings, and calves, which basically can improve your sprinting levels.
Not only that, though, but you will also find that cycling and spinning are great for strengthening the back muscles too, as well as your core.
Benefit #6: It Increases Strength
Not only does cycling help to build muscle, but it is also great for increasing overall levels of strength and power as well.
The more you cycle, the stronger your core and your legs will become.
This means that cycling can potentially help you to lift more weight with your legs, and generate more power from your legs as well.
This is particularly beneficial for overhead lifts which require some power to be generated from the legs.
If you are training with strength in mind or for example you’re looking to improve your kickboxing level, cycling is surprisingly beneficial.
Benefit #7: It Will Makes You Fitter
Cycling is one of the best types of aerobic fitness in existence, and consequently, it is therefore perfect for anybody that is trying to get themselves fitter and healthier.
Cycling increases lung capacity, boosts VO2 Max levels, builds endurance and stamina, and it is one of the best types of exercise that somebody looking to increase their stamina, could ever wish to engage in.
Benefit #8: Great For The Heart
We only have one heart, and it is one of our body’s most important major internal organs.
Because of this, it is vital that we do everything in our power to take care of our hearts as best we can.
With heart disease being the biggest killer in the modern world today, cardiovascular health is essential, which is why cycling is proving to be so beneficial.
Cycling is a wonderful form of cardio exercise, making it great for the heart.
Cycling helps to improve circulation, it strengthens the walls of your heart and arteries, increases blood flow, lowers cholesterol and blood pressure, and plenty more on top of that.
If you want to look after your ticker, make sure you take upcycling.
Benefit #9: Great Way To Spend Time With Friends And Family
If you’re guilty of not spending enough time with your friends or family members, cycling is perfect.
Cycling is the perfect activity to get everybody involved and to do some quality bonding together in peaceful and relaxing surroundings.
Groups of friends, for example, could head off on a mountain biking getaway or perhaps simply spend the day cycling around a famous cycle route nearby?
If you want to spend time with your family, you can head somewhere nice, hop on your bikes, and enjoy a leisurely cycle ride in pleasant surroundings.
Benefit #10: Adaptable
Another great thing about cycling is the fact that it is so adaptable.
By that, we mean that you can make cycling as difficult, or as easy as you would like.
If for example, you have been cycling for many years and you’re very fit, you’ll want to embark on bike rides that test you and push you physically.
If, however, you find that you are new to cycling and you aren’t yet very physically fit, you’ll want a nice and easy bike ride.
Cycling is great because you can choose difficult routes and terrains if you want to be challenged, or vice versa if you just want to take it nice and easy, to begin with.
Benefit #11: Cycling Is A Low Impact Activity
Another fantastic benefit that we need to highlight today, is the fact that cycling is such a low-impact activity.
High impact activities such as running, maybe good for your heart, but as they put so much pressure upon your joints with each step you take, they’re far from ideal for the joints.
Cycling, though, is much, much better for the joints because it is a low-impact activity that will not hurt your ankles, shins, knees, or anywhere else for that matter.
Benefit #12: It Can Save You Time
If you’ve made a commitment to get fit and you previously used to walk to work or to the shops, if you use a bike you’ll get the cardiovascular benefits, while also saving time in the process.
Cycling is a great way to get around, and if you don’t believe us, why not ask Arnold Schwarzenegger, who is a huge fan of cycling and often advocates it as a sport and method of transport.
If you want to get the cardiovascular benefits of walking, without spending an eternity doing so, cycling is perfect.
Benefit #13: It Can Improve Your Mobility
If you find that you are lacking mobility and flexibility, cycling could be the perfect activity for you to engage in.
Cycling is great because it helps to improve circulation which gets the blood flowing.
It loosens up stiff joints and muscles, and it is great for engaging the hip flexors and core stabilizer muscles as you pedal and get stuck in.
As time goes by, this helps to enhance your overall levels of mobility and flexibility, which in turn can potentially help you in everyday life as well.
Benefit #14: It Can Be Done In And Out Of The Gym
Okay, suppose you really want to get a bike ride in but it’s cold, dark, wet, and muddy, and doing so outdoors just wouldn’t be an option.
What could you do?
You could wait until the spring and the weather begins to get better, or you could simply head over to the gym and use a stationary bike or even a spin cycle instead.
Because of the fact that you can use exercise bikes, this means that you can get a cycling workout in, regardless of what the weather is like outdoors.
Benefit #15: It Can Save You Money
Another of the brilliant benefits that we’re covering today is that cycling is very economical and it is therefore perfect for anybody looking to save money.
If you drive your car to work or take public transport, you’ll be spending money on fuel and travel every single day.
These prices all add up, and before long, if you aren’t careful you could find yourself spending more on travel than you bargained for.
Cycling is perfect because once you’ve purchased your bike and gear, it is completely free.
You don’t need to pay for fuel or transport, and you are also doing your bit for the environment as well.
Benefit #16: Great For Mental Health
If you find that your mental health is suffering, or if you just want to feel a little bit happier and more content in life, cycling is the perfect activity to take up.
It is believed that 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health issue at some point in their lives, and rather than treat it with prescription drugs that pose their own threats and bring their own problems, it is much better to treat it with exercise.
Exercise such as cycling is ideal for mental health because it increases the production and secretion of happy chemicals in the body known as endorphins.
On top of that, if you get outdoors and cycle in amongst nature somewhere peaceful and scenic, this too will have a calming effect on your mind and body.
Benefit #17: Cycling Is Good For The Brain
Okay, it isn’t just cycling that’s good for the brain, but exercise in general.
Even so, cycling can still improve brain health and function no end.
Cycling helps boost blood flow and oxygen transportation to the brain, it helps keep you alert, it boosts sleep patterns, and a whole lot more besides.
If you want to keep your brain sharp, especially as you grow older, cycling is ideal.
So, that brings this look at the many health benefits of cycling to a close today.
After reading just how awesome cycling can be, are you now thinking twice about ditching the car and instead of hopping on two wheels rather than four?
If so, we wouldn’t blame you in the slightest.