Here on Earth, we’re blessed with some truly stunning countryside and scenic views.
When you’re feeling stressed, craving some fresh air, and just want to get out of the house, there’s nothing better than heading to your local beauty spot and enjoying a nice walk through the country.
Well, actually, according to a lot of people, there is something better.
That something is a bike ride and it is cycling which we’re looking at in more detail today.
Specifically, we’re going to be looking at several benefits of cycling.
Some will likely be surprising, and some are fairly obvious.
Nevertheless, because cycling is such a beneficial pastime, we’re listing numerous benefits in great detail for you right now.
Table Of Contents
So, dust off your cycling helmet, make sure your chain is greased and oiled, and get ready to learn about the many, many benefits.
If you ever see cyclists ordering food out and about, you’ll see that they don’t order salads or bland foods.
Normally they’ll order cakes and high-calorie snacks.
This is deliberate, and it is because they need the energy.
Cycling burns off that many calories that they need the energy to fuel their workouts.
If you want to have your cake and eat it too, why not take upcycling?
Now, if you have a stationary bike, you can, of course, mimic the action of cycling indoors.
Most cyclists, though, would all agree that one of the biggest benefits, is the fact that it is a great way to get some fresh air.
You can load your bike into the car and drive to a nice woodland trail or mountain trail, or if you have somewhere nice and rural local, you could cycle there instead.
Even though the views aren’t as nice, many people also cycle around the block and go with urban routes.
No matter where you cycle, it’s a great way of getting some fresh air, which means that it’s a great way to get outdoors and blow the metaphorical cobwebs away, as it were.
If you want one of the most effective ways of burning calories and losing fat, then cycling is perfect.
Cycling is an extremely physically demanding activity that leaves people feeling tired and exhausted once they’ve finished.
This is obviously a good sign for people looking to lose weight because it enables them to shed those stubborn pounds.
Depending on how intense your cycling is, where you go, and how far you travel, you could easily burn off upwards of 800 calories in one session.
If you look at the physiques of people that cycle on a regular basis, you’ll notice that, generally, they’re lean and shredded.
For fat loss, the benefits really become apparent.
Cardio is ideal for burning fat, and yes, we know we’ve already mentioned how cycling burns fat, so why are we going over it again?
Well, because cardio is not only just for people looking to lose weight.
In fact, cardio should be for anybody looking to burn fat and strengthen their hearts and improve cardiovascular fitness and health in general.
Your heart is one of your most vital organs, and looking after it is crucial for us all.
Cycling strengthens the heart and helps to reduce many other cardiovascular risks in the process, which we’ll be looking at shortly.
In terms of heart health, though, cycling is very effective.
If your blood pressure is high, you suffer from a condition known as hypertension.
Hypertension is responsible for countless deaths every single year, and it can lead to many nasty health risks and side effects in the process.
One of the best things about cycling, though, is the fact that it helps to reduce your blood pressure.
High blood pressure can put your heart under a lot of strain, it can damage your kidneys and liver, it can weaken your arteries, it can increase your risk of stroke, heart disease, and heart attack, it can slow down your circulation, and much more besides.
Cycling helps to reduce blood pressure in many different ways, including the fact that it helps to beat stress, which in itself, is a risk for hypertension.
Rather than having to rely on prescription blood pressure medications, which cause more health risks, why not jump on your bike and go cycling through the woods instead?
Because cycling is so great for building and toning the muscles in your legs, one thing you’ll notice is that it enables you to run faster.
Being able to run faster is beneficial for a whole host of different reasons.
Any form of exercise is very beneficial for mental health, yet cycling is certainly considered to be one of the absolute bests.
This is due to the fact that cycling helps to promote the production and release of happy chemicals in the body which is known as endorphins.
Endorphins help raise your mood and make you feel good.
When talking about the benefits, mental health are especially noteworthy.
Not only does cycling help to promote the production and secretion of endorphins, but it’s also a great stress-buster.
If you imagine yourself stressed and anxious, imagine how relaxed you’d feel taking a gentle bike ride through the countryside, amongst nature, listening to the birds sing and taking in the views in the great outdoors.
In terms of the mental health benefits, you can probably agree that cycling is the ultimate pastime for anybody trying to lift their spirits and beat stress once and for all.
Another benefit which can’t be overlooked is the fact that cycling is a very adaptable sport.
Some sports and activities are very difficult and can therefore not be done by everyone.
Others are quite simple and can be done by anybody.
Cycling is great because it can be either-or.
If you’re a seasoned cycling veteran and have been cycling for years, decades even, you can go on a brutal and grueling bike ride for dozens upon dozens of miles.
If, however, you’re new to the world of cycling and don’t have much experience, you can still take part in it and get stuck in.
Basically, what we’re trying to say is that anybody can go cycling, and anybody can alter the activity based upon their fitness levels and personal limitations.
You can go as hard as you like, or take it as steady as you like, it’s really up to you.
If you’re feeling tired and sluggish and you want to wake yourself up, put down the coffee and energy drinks, and instead jump on your bike.
Cycling is a great way to start the day, as it will wake you up and leave you feeling invigorated and alert, especially once the endorphins and adrenalin start to flow.
One of the more surprising benefits is the fact that it is an activity that is considered to be great for the brain.
Cycling is a form of cardiovascular exercise which has numerous cognitive health benefits associated with it.
Cycling not only helps you to think clearer, but it also increases blood flow and oxygen transportation to the brain.
Oxygenated blood flowing to the brain crosses the blood-brain barrier and the oxygen itself can then be absorbed by the brain and used to enhance cognitive health and function.
This means that you will think clearer, your reaction times will increase, your mental health will improve, and your cognitive health will improve.
Your memory will improve and you’ll simply find yourself feeling mentally sharper.
Regular cycling may also help to reduce your risk of degenerative brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and age-related dementia, so cycling in your younger years may also benefit you as you grow older.
They say that an ‘apple a day keeps the doctor away’ and whilst apples are very good for you, so too is cycling.
In fact, when it comes to strengthening the immune system, cycling is much more effective than eating one apple.
Your immune system is made up of a series of cells, including white blood cells, which help to protect your body from within.
The immune system helps to prevent disease and illness, and so the stronger your immune system is, the healthier you will become as a result.
Experts have found that many forms of exercise, including cycling, can help to exponentially increase your immune system.
The stronger your immune system is, the healthier you will be.
This means that cycling will not only help to prevent and fight off common colds, but it can also help to prevent life-threatening illnesses and diseases.
If you ever get a chance to look at the legs of a cyclist, just look at how ripped, defined, and muscular their legs are.
It is astonishing just how ripped some cyclist’s legs actually are.
Cycling obviously requires you to pedal and to use your legs when cycling, and so the more you do the harder your leg muscles have to work.
Cycling downhill isn’t much of a problem, but if you imagine cycling uphill, that is a different story completely.
Cycling uphill will cause your leg muscles to work very hard, and by the time you’ve finished, they’ll feel as if they’re on fire.
One of the best things about cycling is the fact that it will build you a set of muscular and powerful legs that most bodybuilders would be envious of.
Forget your squats and leg presses, just do some more cycling if you want to build up your legs.
Another very prominent benefit is the fact that it could literally be the secret to a long and productive life.
Cycling is a fantastic form of exercise that promotes all manner of health benefits.
Cycling helps to boost immunity, it strengthens the heart, it reduces blood pressure, reduces your risk of cancer, and much more besides.
As you can imagine, when it comes to longevity, this is extremely beneficial.
Obviously, we can’t guarantee that cycling is the secret to a long and happy life because we never know what’s around the corner, but it will certainly increase your chances of living longer.
Let’s face it, when it comes to cardio, cardio in general, well, it’s pretty damn boring.
Cycling is most definitely the exception in this case, due to the fact that it is so much fun.
Walking on a treadmill for an hour isn’t most people’s idea of fun.
Cycling through the countryside with the wind in your face, enjoying the views, however, is.
Cycling is a great activity, that can be enhanced further if you go cycling with others.
Why not go cycling with friends or family members and get others involved.
Cycling with other people means that you have some company, somebody to share the activity with, and you could even get competitive and add a competitive element to the proceedings.
If you’re looking for a way to meet new people, make new friends, and maybe even strike up a new relationship, many areas have local cycling clubs that you can join.
If you join a cycling club, you will meet all manner of like-minded individuals who share the same personal interests as yourself.
Instantly you have common ground and something to talk about.
Cycling clubs can in themselves, feel like a family so if you’re looking for a way to meet new people and expand your social circle, a cycling club would prove very useful.
So far when talking about cycling, we’ve focused on the great outdoors and on more rural and scenic routes.
In truth, if you want to reap the benefits, it doesn’t matter where you go, as long as you are actually cycling and taking part in the activity.
One of the best things about cycling is the fact that it can help you to save money.
If you live close enough to cycle safely to work, why not do that and leave the car at home?
Instead of taking the car to the store to pick up bread and milk, why not cycle there instead?
Cycling instead of driving will save you money on fuel, and as an added bonus, you’re helping to save the planet.
As you can see, there are countless benefits of cycling to be enjoyed, and we haven’t even scratched the surface.
If you’re looking for a new way to get your cardio in, why not take up cycling and see what it can do for you?
Reda is an ACE Certified Nutritionist, Brazilian jiu-jitsu purple belt and bodybuilder with 11 years of experience. He's been published on many influential websites such as lifehack.org, Wealthy Gorilla, Good Men Project and more.