Can Cycling Help With Weight Loss
This is a question that we are asked all the time, can cycling really help with losing weight? The simple answer is of course an obvious one. YES. Any type of exercise can help someone lose weight, along with a good diet.
For example walking, running or anything that is termed an exercise will burn off calories and help burn fat. Cycling done outdoors or indoors will certainly do that. The key though is to do so on a consistent basis, and slowly build up the duration and intensity of your cycling.
That is tough to do though so never under estimate the commitment something of this nature takes to do. When starting out most people are motivated enough. Keeping it going is the hardest part. It is easy enough to buy a bicycle, and easy enough to go for a cycle. Doing that every day is just not so easy.
Weight Loss & Lifestyle
At some stage in our life we make take the decision to change our lifestyle. There are many people who enjoy keeping fit and leading a healthy lifestyle. There are also many people who simply do not care a single jot. The majority of people though sit in between these two extremes.
Those are people who want to try getting fit and losing some weight. There are also people who may have been fit at one stage and have let things slip. There are also people who may have been injured, or in an accident who now want to recover, and get fit again.
Other people may simply want to lose weight for a holiday or another event. Whatever the reason, then cycling can genuinely help you do that. We have done an article here on how many calories you can use by cycling.
Using Cycling to Lose Weight
I don't want to rattle on about a good diet. I will mention for the last time (I promise) that it takes both a good diet AND exercise to help you lose weight. Now let's focus on how cycling can help. You essentially have three choices:
- Buy a bike and get out on the road
- Go to a gym and use the indoor cycles there
- Buy your own indoor cycle and cycle at home
There are pros and cons with all of the above, so let's take a closer look.
Cycling Outdoors for Weight Loss
If you are going to go for this option, then it it in my opinion the best choice. You get fresh air, it is more interesting and it is also great for getting rid of stress. The disadvantages are that you will have to buy a bike, maintain it and try to stay safe on the roads (not always easy) You will also need some riding gear and a helmet. Of course that assumes that you also know how to ride a bike safely.
You can also easily be put off by bad weather (UK weather) and the pollution depending on where you live. Some cities and towns are great for cycling outdoors but sadly many are not. If you plan on doing this in the evenings, then think off things like lights and reflective gear.
Some people are also too shy to take the plunge and hit the road. They simply do not want the neighbours peering out the curtains as they take off down the street.
Using a Gym Indoor Bicycle for Losing Weight
This is another option that many people try. It works for some but not for others. If you decide to try that, it will involve paying a gym membership, or some type of pay as you go fee. The advantages are that you can get help, and they do have state of the art equipment.
The disadvantages, apart from fees, are that some people are too shy for this experience. It is also hard to make the time required, especially if you have kids and/or work as well. There is also the gym culture to deal with, and for many that can be a turn off.
Seeing some super fit person can be motivational, but it can also be a turn off as well.
Using A Home Indoor Cycle for Weight Loss
The third option is for many people the best option. It can also be the worst option. If you are someone who struggles to be self motivated, then forget this option. Unless you have some sort of family support, you could end up buying an indoor bike, using it a few times, and then abandoning it.
Thankfully the prices of good quality indoor bikes has reduced a lot. You can get a very good basic indoor bike for around £75. For more advanced features you can of course pay more. Spinning classes are very popular in the UK, and many people opt for that type of indoor bike these days.
There are also recumbent exercise bikes which are ideal for older people or anyone recovering from an injury.
Spin Style Bikes
Any of the above indoor bikes will help you lose weight. That is of course if you can get into the routine of using these on a regular basis. Many of the better ones come with built in programs, designed specifically for weight loss.