Last updated on April 26th, 2022
In the old times, the purpose of cycles was mostly restricted to transportation. However, in modern times, you must have heard people talking about cycling for weight loss. Because the utility of cycles is a lifestyle product majorly utilized for purposes of fitness exercises and leisure.
Cycling provides a low impact exercise which is considered a healthy lifestyle choice leading ultimately to a better immune system and body.
Cycling continued to evolve over time from mere transportation to a recreational activity to a healthy lifestyle to a major sporting event in the world’s best events.
There are currently over 1 billion people in the world who use bicycles every day as their primary mode of transportation.
Not all of them choose bicycles because they are cheap, some use them for their zero carbon footprint, some use them for time efficiency, some people use them as a healthier lifestyle and many more reasons.
Why Should You Start Cycling?
In today’s world, if you want to be fit and healthy then you need to be physically active and sure there are lots of ways to do it but one of the best ways to get in shape and remain healthy is an active cycling routine in your daily lifestyle.
With the growing urbanisation, pollution and unhygienic spaces also grew in numbers, so did the associated diseases with them.
Extensive research was conducted on the health benefits of cycling and how it helps us to ward off many diseases in an effective manner.
Results were encouraging and gave a huge boost to the popularity of cycling.
Also, as opposed to running, cycling is a much safer way of losing weight. The runners tend to face higher injuries as compared to cyclists.
Is Cycling Good for Weight Loss on the Stomach?
When you start cycling, your whole body gets involved, working out on multiple muscles at a time. The major muscle work is done by your calves, glutes, hamstrings and quads.
By cycling regularly, you will start to feel that these muscles are getting firmer and your whole lower body starts to lean and muscle up. The next big effect comes in the abdominal area where many people suffer from unwanted abdominal fat.
During cycling sessions, your core area also gets involved as it is majorly responsible for maintaining balance on the bike.
In all, regular cycling helps in boosting immunity, food and water intake capacity, tears down fat, improve your metabolism, makes you more active and fit.
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How to Start with Cycling (for beginners)
To understand how much cycling is good for weight loss, find out your goal. Depending upon your end goal, you can start cycling ranging from normal intensity cycling to rigorous exercise sessions.
If you are a beginner, we recommend starting gradually and then making a smooth progression for better and safer results.
Initially cycling for 20 minutes at a normal pace is the best recommendation for someone who is just starting their fitness journey.
But to get the desired results, a properly planned nutrition diet, a workout regime and ample rest are required. To get you to have a realistic effect on your body, we have curated some workout programs for you.
Keep reading; we will be covering every bit of detail in our article!
These exercises help you to maintain a steady balance and vanes off your body fat in a controlled and effective manner. Stressing your body out for long periods of time is not a healthy option and you should keep it between your limits of physical strength and the actual need.
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How to Lose Weight by Cycling? (weight loss program)
Biking is an effective option if weight loss is on your mind. It provides an excellent cardio workout, no matter if you do it indoors or outdoors, you can enjoy losing those extra pounds with ease.
So, how to start?
Well just cycling consistently for a regular period of time will also help you burn your fat and get in shape but for some, it is a long process.
To cut this time short, there have been many studies and research to determine the best way to lose weight by cycling and below you can find some great strategies to cut down on your weight in a healthy manner(1) (2).
1) Hit it with 80/20 Intensity
It is also known as polarised training as it helps you in maintaining the intensity of training. It is a tried and tested method to reduce your weight faster.
Imagine if you are cycling for a total of 100 minutes every day, the goal is to do 80 minutes in low intensity and the remaining 20 minutes in moderate to hard intensity.
Balancing out both intensities actually benefits you more!
As when you hit the high intensity, your body releases a load of hormones, burns up calories and releases a lot of lactate energy.
And when you are in the low-intensity mode, your body does recycle this lactate energy which in turn burns fat even when you are cruising comfortably.
Studies have shown that regularly switching between low and high intensities not only helps in faster weight reduction but also helps in building your lactate threshold, endurance and overall fitness of the body.
2) The HIIT Way
This is the most preferred method of cyclists when it comes to increasing the fitness of the body as well as reducing weight.
There are 3 steps in it:
- Pedal as fast as you can for about 45 to 60 seconds, it helps if there are any good levels of resistance like inclined slope.
- For the next 2 to 3 minutes, do the cycling in an easy and relaxed manner. let your body regain its strength.
- Continue this exercise for about 25 to 30 minutes for best results.
The benefits of this exercise are manifolds. First, you burn a load of calories, it improves your cardio fitness, your muscles get stretched to their limit and of course, all of this helps in burning fat quickly too.
You can lose weight by other methods too but its USP is it takes much less time and your body continues to burn fat effectively even when you are resting as it also makes your metabolism high too.
3) Endurance training
If you are in no hurry and want to shed weight in a timely and safe manner then this endurance training is for you. It requires you to move at your own comfortable pace but also stretches your limits at the same time.
Every 2 or 3 days, add some more km to your cycling schedule, that way you are building your endurance as well as not being stuck on a fixed regime.
It is a moderate level exercise with great weight loss benefits. People over 40 who just started cycling can opt for this because it builds your stamina, endurance, and your whole body for the more rigorous training sessions.
Note: We have more cardio workout programs for you:
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How Cycling Promotes Weight Loss? (& Benefits)
The biggest benefit of cycling is that it doesn’t cause any harmful side effects on your body but improves it in ways you never would have thought of.
1. Cycling lets you burn calories
Whether you are doing low resistance training, moderate or high intensity, you are going to burn calories because cycling is indeed an exercise whether you do it for leisure or for rigorous training sessions.
When you start cycling, your metabolism increases which cause your body to consume more energy and do not allow fat to get stored.
Also, cycling promotes after calorie burn for some time which lets your body burn calories even when you are not cycling anymore.
Your body becomes much more efficient in utilising your calorie energy, becomes more immune and fit all thanks to cycling.
2. Cycling promotes muscle mass
If you have thought of building your muscle mass, then you should also consider incorporating cycling in your plan. The whole body is involved in the process of cycling whether you are doing it indoor or outdoor.
You start to shed extra fat around your muscles, your muscles start to tone up and your whole metabolism shoots up high in numbers because of extra physical strain on your whole body.
Muscles remain healthy and fit when they are optimally used. Cycling provides tension on your whole body and immediately loosens them with each cycle of pedals. Muscle is much leaner than fat and has a high rate of burning calories even when you are not cycling.
3. Cycling benefits for the whole body
It is a common misunderstanding that cycling majorly involves the strength of your legs and the maximum effect is on the lower body. This is true but not entirely!
Cycling also requires a lot of upper body strength too and has a considerable effect on your upper body too, especially the abdominal region aka belly fat region.
When you are cycling, not only do your legs move but it also exerts pressure over your shoulders and abdominal area too to keep you steady and balanced.
These body parts are not in constant motion but remain under tension which in turn provides their exercise. Your whole body is balanced on just a small seat.
And it is an intentional design because the whole pressure of keeping your body steady during exercising comes down to your core.
It helps build your core strength and get rid of any excess fat present there.
4. Improvement in immunity and overall health
Cycling is a great way to maintain overall health and immunity. As we all know, there are various kinds of diseases that can prove fatal.
Biking helps in preventing them to an extent by boosting your body resilience, increasing your stamina and physical endurance, keeping you happy and content and overall putting your whole body in a fit category which automatically means a higher level of immunity.
Helps in sleep
A night of good sleep is also essential for your good health. cycling also helps in preventing insomnia by providing the necessary physical exhaustion so you can sleep without any problem.
Cycling has also other medical benefits like increased cardiovascular fitness which means less risk of heart-related problems, increased agility, sharpness of the mind and body, improved posture of sitting, standing and considerably less risk of anxiety and depression.
Other benefits include stronger bones density and muscles, feeling energetic etc.
Adds versatility to routine
It’s the thumb rule that excess fat is harmful and healthy muscles are the way to a fit life. When we gain weight, our whole body starts to become slow and lethargic.
Soon, we tend to lose interest and head towards being lazy. Your weight loss is much more than just your physical appearance, cycling helps you to shed that extra weight and live a better life.
Cycling for Weight Loss: Pedal With Safety
Above mentioned workouts and techniques help you to maintain a steady balance and vanes off your body fat in a controlled and effective manner.
But stressing your body out for long periods of time is not a healthy option and you should keep it between your limits of physical strength and the actual need.
That’s why with a proper workout session you also need to have balanced meals and proper rest too.
- Don’t drink too much water or eat in excess prior to your workout session.
- Your meal should contain lots of protein and carbohydrates and should be negligible on the fat side.
- Try to eat less in a single serving and spread it all across the day to maintain the balanced distribution of calories and energy.
- Diet should include healthy food, fresh fruits etc.
1. Can you lose weight by cycling and how?
The big answer is Yes!
And it is one of the safest and natural ways to do it as it does not incur any harmful effects on your body. When you cycle, your whole body gets involved in it and you start to burn calories more and more with the increasing intensity of your exercise routine.
If you do it consistently for some time, your body starts to shed weight and starts to build your muscles. the more you do it, the better you become.
You also want to regulate the timings of your meals and incorporate some salad or fresh fruits for better results.
2. How much cycling is good for weight loss?
In order to reduce your body weight, a proper session of 30 minutes is enough if done correctly. These exercises help you to maintain a steady balance and vanes off your body fat in a controlled and effective manner.
Stressing your body out for long periods of time is not a healthy option and you should keep it between your limits of physical strength and the actual need.
3. Can you lose belly fat by cycling?
Cycling also involves the core strength of the body and puts a lot of pressure on your abdominal region. This is the centre point from where your legs and hands move so it also gets its own share of exercise.
Cycling is one of the fastest and simplest ways of reducing your stomach weight.
4. Cycling benefits for ladies to lose weight?
Since cycling is a whole-body workout session, it helps in containing the risks of breast cancer to a great extent.
Moreover, it is also good for your heart and women who cycle also have a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases too.
It also boosts up the supply of Vitamin D in a female’s body which helps in elevating one’s mood so cycling also helps to put you in a good mood.
5. Is 30 minutes cycling a day enough?
If you are following a good workout plan which makes you push your limits in a controlled manner with good eating habits then a period of 30 minutes of exercise is sufficient for a good weight-reduction plan.
6. Walking/Running or cycling for weight loss?
Cycling will burn more calories than walking and is a preferred method of most because of its recreational and transportation aspect too.
Running is slightly more effective than cycling when it comes to the absolute answer to weight loss but overall cycling triumphs over walking or running if you talk about natural ways to lose weight.
Cycling is a very good option if you want to lose weight naturally and in an orderly manner. It assists you in reducing your body weight but only if it is done consistently and not with breaks in between.
Set your own goals and modulate your training level according to them. You must not rush into this and follow a plan which keeps you healthy and refreshed and not exhausted and tired.
Also, follow a well-balanced macronutrient intake along with your workouts to achieve your goal.
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DISCLAIMER: All suggested tips and suggestions are based on expert advice, research and my personal experience. The content in this article is meant for spreading awareness and not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment. It’s always better to seek the advice of your physician, fitness trainer or another qualified health care provider with any question you may have regarding health and fitness advice.