If becoming more active is one of your New Year’s resolutions, you’re probably carrying a few extra pounds. Consider cycling as your weapon of choice in the battle against the belly.
There are a few reasons why cycling beats running as a form of overall fitness, including the three reasons listed below:
The No. 1 reason running should be avoided is the high level of impact involved. Experienced runners are accustomed to these forces. Their joints, muscles and ligaments have strengthened over time and can absorb the impact more effectively.
If you’re overweight, and your knees and other joints are not used to running, launching straight into a running regimen is a sure way to injure yourself. Injury is the primary reason many people give up their resolutions. Cycling involves little to no impact, while strengthening your legs and back.
Less muscle damage and soreness
The impact from running may damage muscles and create associated inflammation and soreness. Recovery time is much longer, and the body is placed under far more stress. Scientific tests have shown that cycling causes a lower level of damage and soreness, which means you’ll be ready to exercise again much sooner and will be less likely to become injured.
You must exercise at the correct intensity to effectively burn fat stores. The fat burning intensity is actually a fairly gentle one. Sixty to 70 percent of your maximum heart rate is perfect. It’s much easier to regulate this effort and remain within your target heart rate while cycling because you can cruise when necessary, especially going downhill.