An exercise bike can help you get miles ahead in your fitness goals without ever leaving home! Yes, endorphin-producing stationary bikes are honestly the cream of the crop when it comes to getting your heart rate up, burning calories and enjoying an elegantly effective cardio workout.
In fact, using a stationary bike can help you to get major results in less time than you'd need to spend on many other cardio workouts. Without question, smart connected exercise bikes like the Peloton have re-shaped how we look at interactive fitness.
Are you looking for reasons to be convinced that it's time to bring home a stationary exercise bike?
Take a look at eight biking benefits that will make you want to really push the pedal on this decision!
Bike Hype: 8 indoor cycling benefits that will live up to expectations
Before we dive into the top benefits of exercise bikes, it's worthy to note that there's been a powerful shift in home gym equipment, and exercise bikes are becoming more of an all-in-one gym option. For example, I recently researched and did a complete analysis of the MYX fitness exercise bike - a game-changer in smart cycles. It has a digital display screen that swivels so you can cycle and do workouts off the bike (it comes with free weights, a mat and a roller) with world class fitness instructors to get your heart rate going and get your sweat on.
Let's take a look at what a bike like that can bring to the table. Here's the eight benefits of exercise bikes.
1. Stationary Bikes Are Great for Burning Calories
If you want to make every second you spend working out count toward calorie burns, nothing beats a bike. In fact, health researchers at Harvard estimate that you'll burn at least twice as many calories during a workout on a stationary bike than you would during a brisk walk. That certainly justifies staying in to bike in front of the television instead of popping on your coat for a walk out in the cold! Just how many calories will you be burning on your bike? Based on estimates from health researchers at Harvard, a person weighing 155 pounds can expect to burn 391 calories per every 30 minutes spent vigorously using a stationary bike.
2. The Resistance Factor
"Weight-bearing and resistance exercises are the best for your bones," according to the National Institutes of Health. The great thing about using a stationary bike is that you can actually combine cardio with your strength training if you have good settings on your bike. Adjusting the resistance of your bike's wheel will require you to pedal harder for each adjustment you make. As a result, you're promoting muscle strength in your legs.
3. Your Joints Love Cycling
It's easy to focus on the short-term benefits of burning calories and building muscles when consistently using a stationary bike. However, biking has some serious long-term benefits for your joints. The Arthritis Foundations counts cycling as one of the most effective workouts for people with arthritis! However, you don't have to have arthritis to enjoy the joint-friendly benefits of cycling indoors. By rotating your joints, you're improving range of motion in your hips, ankles and knees.
4. It's a No-Excuses Workout Option
We all have the best of intentions when taking up running or walking. However, factors like weather, temperature and our hectic schedules can make it difficult to squeeze in our preferred workouts consistently every single day. That's when excuses begin to creep in! When you opt for indoor cycling as your go-to workout, the excuses evaporate. With a stationary bike, you can get in a calorie-burning, muscle-crunching workout at any time of the day or night regardless of what the weather outside is doing! Many people find that removing the barrier of "excuses" helps them to reach their goals.
5. It's Fun for the Mind
Cycling is one of the most entertaining, "addictive" workouts out there simply because it becomes a fully immersive experience when done correctly! First, you have an endless list of options for taking virtual "cycling tours" around the world when you purchase a stationary bike with its own screen. Many people love the way the interactive scenery allows them to unwind and let go of stress. In addition, there's also the option to tap into streaming, guided spin sessions that will challenge you to push harder in real time.
6. Cycling Offers a Low-Impact Workout
If the goal is to burn calories and tone up without putting a strain on your body, cycling is a winner! Cycling on a stationary bike offers a refreshing low-impact option when compared to things like running outdoors on pavement, running on a treadmill or participating in Zumba. The motions required in most popular cardio workouts today are pretty rough on the joints and heart for some people. With cycling, you're able to avoid that "pounding on the pavement" aspect of cardio by floating your way to better health!
7. Cycling Boosts Balance and Coordination
There's a bit of irony in the fact that one of the best exercises for getting steady footing doesn't require you to put your feet on the ground! However, the truth stands that cycling is one of the best workouts for balance and coordination. In one study, cycling at least one hour per week was associated with significant improvements in balance among older adults. This is important because maintaining balance as we age is essential for reducing risk factors associated with falls.
8. There's a Big Mood Boost
Admittedly, any cardio workout can get you to a point where those "feel good" endorphins are rushing through your brain to make you feel like you're walking on air! However, cycling is an especially effective way to get a mood boost because of the fact that you're burning twice as many calories when compared to something like a brisk walk. As a result, you may get bigger, longer-lasting stress-relief benefits! You'll need to participate in a relatively intense cycling workout for between 20 and 30 minutes to get that rush. However, your good mood and energy boost will linger for up to three hours after your workout. What's more, the lingering impact of that post-cycling endorphin rush will be there for up to 24 hours!
Final Thoughts on Cycling as the "Perfect" Workout
Cycling is the natural choice if you're looking for a workout that will help you to feel better, look better and move better. Giving your mind and body major, lasting benefits is as easy as making the decision to get up on that bike each day. It's easy to see why so many people say that they just can't live without an exercise bike! It may be time to ask yourself how an exercise bike could change the way you look at working out!