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Cycling: Health and Fitness Guide

Cycling: Health and Fitness Guide
By Joan Bishop Denizot

When it comes to convincing people to try cycling, some would usually ask, "Why go cycling when you can burn your calories in the gym?" While it is true that working out in the gym can help in losing weight and toning our muscles, outdoor cycling has its own merits.

Cycling is a low impact exercise meaning it does not put too much pressure that strains our joints unlike in running or high impact aerobic exercises and weight training in the gym. Our muscles can get a real good workout since cycling uses all the major muscle groups as we pedal our way through bike paths, roads and hills. Furthermore, as an aerobic exercise, cycling is an ideal cardiovascular workout since this activity makes us breathe deeper, experience increase in body temperature making us perspire, an indication of burning calories and a way of eliminating some toxins in the body like body fat. Cycling is an exercise that does not pressure us since we can do it at our own pace. It is also fun to do because we can do it with our friends or family and unlike in the gym where we are just confined training with various equipment within the walls, outdoor cycling gives us a sense of fun and adventure as we travel pedaling our bike.

According to research, steady cycling can burn as much as 1,200 kilojoules or about 300 calories per hour. Studies also show evidence that a half hour bike ride everyday will burn nearly five kilograms of fat over a year. Do the math and see how much fat can be burned when we ride our bikes for an hour or more every day. We use our bicycles not just as a form of leisure exercise, but we can also use them as our mode of transportation especially when we have gained that confidence on the road.

Of course, like any other exercise, we can get the most benefit from cycling when we pair this activity with proper diet and proper eating habits. It would be beneficial for us to come up with a meal plan so that the exercise would be complemented with the proper diet.

Experts suggest that we increase the protein in our diet, eat a nutritious breakfast at least an hour before the ride and have a protein-packed food for lunch or dinner. A healthy light snack can be taken in during long rides.

Whether you are an average sized rider or a heavier one who wanted to try biking for recreational purposes, commuting, or losing weight, check out Zize Bikes for a line-up of custom made, extra sturdy bicycles for everybody that can support ALL riders of ALL sizes (up to 550 pounds).

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Joan_Bishop_Denizot/2223664
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Why Cycling Is a Fun Workout

Why Cycling Is a Fun Workout
By Joan Bishop Denizot

If you find going to the gym a dreary exercise, you might want to try cycling outdoors instead. Cycling, compared to gym exercise, is more fun. When cycling, you won't get bored with the changing surroundings as you travel down your chosen bike path; while, in the gym, you are stuck with the same walls and equipment. No wonder some people find gym exercise difficult to sustain. There's more variety in the cycling experience.

More people are actually into cycling as part of their weight loss program because it is a low impact exercise and more fun to do. As a low impact exercise, it's easy on the joints and therefore makes it a comfortable exercise. It doesn't mean that you won't sweat it out. In fact, cycling burns as much calories as in running. When riding the bike at a moderate speed, you can burn an approximate 650 calories in an hour.

As you pedal your way to weight loss, you build your endurance and strength working out major muscles in the legs, arms and abdomen giving you that well toned physique.

As an aerobic exercise, cycling strengthens heart and lung muscles enabling the transport of oxygen in the body improving your cardiovascular fitness. This also helps in lowering blood pressure and reduces the risk of heart diseases.

Cycling is a good exercise that doesn't require a special skill. As a beginner however, you might want to practice riding your bike on your backyard until you are confident to take it on the road. You might just need a little practice though because chances are, you have already ridden a bike as a kid and once you learned the skill, you will not forget it.

There are things that you might want to consider and remember should you decide to take cycling as an alternative exercise over gym routines.

� You might want to check if the bike you're using fits you well for riding comfort.

� It is advisable to plan your route and be familiar with bike regulations in your area.

� Safety first. You might want to check your tires and breaks before going out for your ride.

� Be visible to other motorists by wearing something bright to prevent getting into accidents along the road.

� Don't forget your helmet.

When accompanied with a healthy meal plan, cycling can help you lose those extra pounds while you enjoy a good and fun workout.

Whether you are an average sized rider or a heavier one who wanted to try biking for recreational purposes, commuting, or losing weight, check out Zize Bikes for a line-up of custom made, extra sturdy bicycles for everybody that can support ALL riders of ALL sizes (up to 550 pounds).

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Joan_Bishop_Denizot/2223664
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Lose Weight by Learning How the Pro-Cyclists Eat

Lose Weight by Learning How the Pro-Cyclists Eat
By Joan Bishop Denizot

If you feel like you have been pedalling so much and still have not seen the improvement on your weight loss, then maybe it's time to examine what you have been feeding your body. Losing that extra weight will not only make you look and feel better, it will motivate you and also give you a larger room for progress with your cycling. Know how the pro-cyclists manage their diets for them to be in top shape. Maybe you can learn a few tricks from them.

� Breakfast. Racers burn A LOT of calories. They lose up to 4000 calories everyday. That is why breakfast is important to them and it should be important to you, too. A hearty breakfast makes their tanks full as they start off their day. Most of them eat oatmeal with fruit. Skipping breakfast will not give you enough fuel to go through with your work-out.

� Hydration. It may depend on a variety of circumstances but, on the average, racers consume half a liter of fluid every hour. They drink plain water and add the fancy sports drinks and different mixes in there. But for those who are not pro-racers, drinking enough water will still be beneficial. This will help you burn more calories as your body works on warming up the water to your body temperature.

� Eat throughout the day. Racers eat a lot since they burn more than 300 calories every hour. Some munch on sports bars and gels while others eat potatoes, sandwiches, rice delicacies and fruits. While you might not need to eat as much, try eating small portions in between breakfast, lunch and dinner. This will keep your metabolism running. But take note not only of the quantity but also the quality of food that you consume. Think lean proteins, fruits, greens and complex carbs.

� Dinner. Most of the racers are served large quantities of meat for dinner - chicken, beef and fish. To balance this, they also consume their greens such as kale and spinach. From this, you can see how important lean protein is. This will help make you feel full longer and will help you feel satiated. In addition, it also contributes to building and maintaining muscles which burns your fat. It is also advised that dinner be eaten before 8PM. Eating meals late at night signals the body to store fat which is not expended because of inactivity during the evening.

Whether you are an average sized rider or a heavier one who wanted to try biking for recreational purposes, commuting, or losing weight, check out Zize Bikes for a line-up of custom made, extra sturdy bicycles for everybody that can support ALL riders of ALL sizes (up to 550 pounds).

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Joan_Bishop_Denizot/2223664
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Cycling 101: How to Conquer That Fear

Cycling 101: How to Conquer That Fear
By Joan Bishop Denizot

It seems that the advances in science and technology have made life easy for people: transportation that takes us wherever we want to go, machines, appliances, and gadgets that make work easy. Particularly, with the coming of the internet, almost everything can be done online: read, study, online banking, and even shopping. The easiness of life however, has made more people live a sedentary lifestyle.

Living a sedentary lifestyle create health problems for people such as obesity, cardio respiratory diseases, stress, and diabetes among others. Realizing the need for a more active lifestyle, more people are now getting into health and fitness programs to improve their health conditions and to keep themselves fit.

People who exercise regularly attest that they function much better at work. They are often found to have a better disposition in life. Perhaps it is because of the fact that when people exercise, they do not only sweat off all the toxins and burn all those calories in their body, but they also release all the stresses they experience at home, school, or at work. Through a good cardiovascular workout, the force of oxygen in the brain somehow clears the head, improves blood circulation and thus releasing a lot of those tension in the muscles. One good cardiovascular exercise that you might want to try is outdoor cycling or bike riding.

Cycling is a low impact exercise that does not strain or puts too much pressure on the joints unlike in running, walking, and weight training. This means that with cycling, you can have a longer exercise time which translates to more calories burned than with running or jogging.

However, some people are afraid to try out cycling as exercise. Among their fears include:

� There might not be a bike that can hold me.

� I might look awkward since I am not good in riding a bike.

� I am scared getting on the road.

These issues are not real problems, really. There are bicycles for big riders and bike shops can help you with the bicycle that fits you. When afraid of looking awkward or falling, you can practice riding your bike right within your yard till you get the confidence to ride farther from your house. You may practice at your nearby park where there is less traffic. As you keep on practicing you will find yourself being more confident to ride your bicycle. What's fun is, you can ride along with your friends and family

Whether you are an average sized rider or a heavier one who wanted to try biking for recreational purposes, commuting, or losing weight, check out Zize Bikes for a line-up of custom made, extra sturdy bicycles for everybody that can support ALL riders of ALL sizes (up to 550 pounds).

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Joan_Bishop_Denizot/2223664
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How to Find the Right Bicycle Saddle for Obese Riders

How to Find the Right Bicycle Saddle for Obese Riders
By Joan Bishop Denizot

Finding the right bicycle saddle is crucial since this greatly affects the rider's comfort and performance in their ride. Picking the right saddle is actually challenging for all riders regardless of their weight and size. For heavy riders however, the additional weight and pressure put on the seat may cause discomfort and strain. Here are a few things heavy riders may want to consider in choosing a saddle for cycling comfort.

Consider the width of the saddle. The idea of the saddle is to support the two "sit bones" to keep the rider balanced on the bike. Heavy riders may want to consider choosing a slightly wider saddle for better support and comfort on their backside but not too wide as this may cause chaffing or rubbing.

Consider the saddle pad. It is a misconception that the best saddle pads are those that are soft and thick. While these types of pads can be comfortable in the beginning, these can cause excessive heat as these absorb much pressure from the rider's weight and movement and thus create discomfort during the ride. Experts suggest that heavy riders get a saddle seat with firmer foam since this doesn't quickly compact compared to a foam or gel cushion. Also, experienced heavy riders agree that it is wise to choose a saddle with the least cushioning but still is comfortable for the rider to sit on. It may take some time to get used to riding a firm saddle but over time, the ride would be more pleasant.

Consider durability. Because foam saddles easily wear out for heavy riders, these have to be replaced more often than a lighter cyclist would. Experts suggest that leather saddles can be a great option for heavy riders since these are more durable. Also, the longer the rider stays on the saddle; the seat becomes molded to the rider's anatomy.

Shop wisely. It is advisable that a rider give the bike a test ride before buying it. During the test ride, the rider may vary positions on the saddle, ride on different speeds, hit some bumps and try some uphill terrain. This way, the rider can test the comfort of the saddle seat and the sturdiness of the saddle seat. Also, it is suggested that the rider also inspect the rails of the saddle. Although chromoly is the most affordable and suitable for most riders, titanium rails are more durable and long-lasting.

Considering all the factors, the key to finding the right saddle is optimum support and comfort for the rider.

Whether you are an average sized rider or a heavier one who wanted to try biking for recreational purposes, commuting, or losing weight, check out Zize Bikes for a line-up of custom made, extra sturdy bicycles for everybody that can support ALL riders of ALL sizes (up to 550 pounds).

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Joan_Bishop_Denizot/2223664
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Polarized Training for Cycling and Mountain Biking

Polarized Training for Cycling and Mountain Biking
By Tom Bell

What is polarized training in relation to cycling?

A polarized model for cycling training concerns spending most of the time spent training at low intensities and less, but still significant time spent training at higher intensities. Low intensity here is defined as anything below the cyclist's lactate threshold, and high intensity is any endurance training performed above the lactate threshold.

It's distinct from what's been called a "Threshold model" where considerable time is spent training at or around the lactate threshold, middle intensity range. The polarized training model has come to light in recent years after the work of Stephen Seiler and colleagues.

Why train using a polarized model?

It's still unclear exactly why the polarised model seems to be the chosen intensity distribution for top performers in many endurance sports, but there have been several theories put forward as well as anecdotal evidence.

Many coaches who have had success using this model agree that training at the lactate threshold excessively induces too much stress on the athlete for the amount of fitness benefit they can reasonably expect to gain. It has been referred to as the "blackhole" of training, where the training is too hard to promote recovery and not hard enough to induce large favourable adaptions.

This intensity distribution may play into the psychology of the athlete. When only having to "dig deep" and train very intensively about 1 in ever 5 training sessions, the athlete is likely to feel that the training is more manageable and that they can mentally refresh before having to suffer through a painful session again. By being mentally and physically recovered by the time of their next high intensity workout, athletes arguably get the most from these sessions and may be less likely to suffer from overtraining syndrome or burnout.

Practical considerations

As an endurance athlete, it may be wise to adopt some or all of the characteristics of the polarized model into your own endurance training. Here are some practical ways that a cyclist could action some of the recommendations:

  • Increase overall training time by vastly increasing time spent training at low intensities (far below lactate threshold, <2Mml lactate, Zone 1, 2 and 3 heart rate and power)
  • Train conservatively at the lactate threshold intensities at appropriate times in the season
  • Spend more training time towards the VO2Max level of intensity, using interval repetitions of ~5-8 minutes.
  • Include very easy days for rest and recuperation.
  • Learn how to train with a power meter in order to closely monitor training intensities using a time-in-zone method.

Learn more about polarized training in cycling and get in touch about coaching or bespoke training plans at: http://www.tombell.co.

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Be Aware and Be Seen While Cycling at Night

Be Aware and Be Seen While Cycling at Night
By Meagan J Deacon

Even if you ride your bike to work, chances are you've never had to ride at night. Even when you had to stay late at work you probably hitched a ride home instead of riding your bike. Your reasons for this were good ones! Without the right gear, night riding is as terrifying as it is dangerous. Until you get used to it, riding at night can be scary. But there are steps you can take to ease into it, safely.

Tips for Cycling at Night:

  • Tip #1: Choose a Lighted Path

Many bike paths keep their lights on well into the night, making them suitable for bicycle commuting well past when the sun goes down. Finding a lighted path means a cyclist doesn't need much more gear to be able to ride at night. Be sure to read the signs before entering to find out if the lights run all night or if they have an automatic cut-off time.

  • Tip #2: Wear Clear Glasses

Plenty of cyclists own snazzy and functional eyewear. But if you're used to riding during the day, they probably have dark lenses. When searching for those perfect glasses, you probably wondered why anyone would want anything but sunglass lenses. The reason is clear. Clear is the best choice for night riding. If you don't have a pair of clear, cycling-specific glasses, a pair of basic safety glasses will work just fine.

  • Tip #3: Be Aware

If you thought riding in traffic in broad daylight was scary, night riding is a whole new adventure. If you're used to riding around on auto-pilot during the day, you will need to switch over to a more alert mode when riding after sunset. If this is your first trip out on a bike at night, go slow and keep your eyes open for unexpected obstacles, bumps in the road, potholes, and other obstructions. Be mindful of your position to take the weight off of your seat and put it on your feet, on the pedals. Use your legs as suspension to soak up anything you might not see with your eyes first.

  • Tip #4: Overuse Reflective Tape

Make yourself as visible as possible! Add reflective strips to your bag, bike frame and the clothing you plan to be riding in.

  • Tip #5: Make a Plan

The above tips are perfect for when you find yourself staring down an unplanned bike trip in the dark. Stopping at a nearby hardware store on your lunch break, using Google to find a bike path, and making sure you are covered in reflective tape will help you for an unexpected ride. To become a night riding expert, you will need to take a few more steps. One of them being, actually making a plan.

  • Tip #6: Pick the Right Bike

The right bike for night riding is one that can take a beating. A road bike with old parts and fatter tires is the perfect night-time bike. Fatter tires are able to soak up unexpected bumps better than the normal tires found on racing bikes.

  • Tip #7: KEEP IT SLOW!

Sayre is the leading manufacturer of reflective gear for use by athletes, military personnel and industrial safety. All of their products are manufactured in their Virginia factory and they are made using military grade materials. For more information on their reflective safety gear call 800.552.6064 or visit http://www.sayreinc.com to browse through their Reflex Reflective Safety product line.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Meagan_J_Deacon/2211122
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Getting Started With Biking: Tips for Heavy Cyclists

Getting Started With Biking: Tips for Heavy Cyclists
By Joan Bishop Denizot

Riding a bicycle outdoors is a great exercise if you are a bit overweight. Because cycling is a low impact exercise, it does not strain your joints as is experienced among joggers and runners. Cycling is a good option to exercise particularly if you want to do it at your own pace. Should you want to shed off those excess pounds, you might want to remember and do the following tips.

Determination to Pursue Cycling. It is normal to be hesitant to get on that bike and worry about what people might say or how you would look. Don't fret. Most experienced heavy riders attest that such feeling won't last. All you have to do is to have that determination to get on that bike and pedal your way to good health. You can conquer that fear however, you might want to take that first step.

Choose a bike that fits. The first thing you might want to consider is getting a bike that fits. You may consult your local bike shop for bike fitting. Giving the bicycle a test ride to see how comfortable you are riding it would be a good idea.

Start with flat terrain. You may want to start out riding through flat terrains in your yard, neighborhood street or the park area. Carefully plan your route so you would be biking along paths you are confident you can tackle. Then as you gain your confidence you can start biking with uphill terrain but a level higher at a time.

Practice getting on and off the bike. Among the fears of a beginner cyclist is the awkwardness of getting on and getting off the bike. You may want to practice this in your yard till you gain the confidence to do so outside.

Practice using gears. It may be an advantage if you become familiar with the gears on your bicycle and know when and how to use them. You may consult an experienced rider or your local bike shop for advice. You can practice using the gears on your bike at a nearby park. When you are confident with your riding, you can ride farther and enjoy the benefits of cycling outdoors.

There is no easy road to success. However, do not be easily discouraged; instead, have that determination to go on cycling and look forward for the results. Coupled with proper diet, cycling will help you get fit in no time.

Whether you are an average sized rider or a heavier one who wanted to try biking for recreational purposes, commuting, or losing weight, check out Zize Bikes for a line-up of custom made, extra sturdy bicycles for everybody that can support ALL riders of ALL sizes (up to 550 pounds).

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Joan_Bishop_Denizot/2223664
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How to Cycle Safely on a Busy Road

How to Cycle Safely on a Busy Road
By Joan Bishop Denizot

The road to fitness is from the road itself.

Bicycling or bike-riding is steadily increasing in popularity as a mode of transportation when going to school, office or work and as a means of recreation. It also opened for many opportunities for sports enthusiasts to showcase their strength and stamina in cycling competitions or bike races.

Many of the conducted studies on the benefits of cycling show that a regular routine of riding the bicycle helps reduce various health risks and problems due to our unhealthy lifestyle. First, it reduces our risk from cardiovascular diseases that include hypertension and heart attack among others. Second, it decreases the feeling of anxiety and depression that could be fatal if unattended. Lastly, it is also one of the important alternatives to lose weight. It burns our excess fats accumulated in our bodies then turns these heavy baggage to become muscles. In losing weight, it would be beneficial if the exercise is accompanied with a healthy diet like eating organic and nutritious food. It would help plenty! But how to cycle safely on a busy road? Here are some friendly suggestions for your own safety.

Keep on track. There is nothing to worry about if we follow traffic rules and regulations. Staying on a particular bicycle lane secures safety from accidents or among other incidents that might happen. Focus and spread your eyes at some of the debris, humps, parked cars and among others.

Give a hint. The importance of signals while cycling reduces incidents including crashes, bumping, and other accidents. With the proper and right hand signals, it is also advisable to wear vibrant colors to maintain visibility.

Make the best out of it. Of course, it will never be complete if you don't combine your journey with fun and enjoyment. Feel the wind and be mesmerized with the beauty of nature. There is no room for pains and aches unless we think that fitness with joy ride are best partners to be successful.

Cycling has run through many miles and it has already helped many people from various race, culture, size and shape. It has changed the way we perceive on managing our life to make it better every day. Therefore, it is not too late to include cycling as one of your daily routines. One pedal at a time and the finish line of the road to fitness is just right ahead.

Whether you are an average sized rider or a heavier one who wanted to try biking for recreational purposes, commuting, or losing weight, check out Zize Bikes company for a line-up of custom made, extra sturdy bicycles for everybody that can support ALL riders of ALL sizes (up to 550 pounds).

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Joan_Bishop_Denizot/2223664
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How to Balance on a Bicycle

How to Balance on a Bicycle
By Joan Bishop Denizot

Riding a bicycle is fun, thrilling, and exciting. It has become a common form of exercise for most people due to the numerous benefits that biking offers. This has also become a form exercise for most, in spite of their sex, age, and weight. With the increasing number of people enjoying this activity, more bicycle models have been developed and introduced in order to satisfy the growing demand of the riders.

Heavy riders can now enjoy a safer and worry-free riding experience due to the wide array of bicycles fit for them. These bicycles are built to ensure that falling and out balancing will not occur or will not be encountered. Custom made bicycles are also being offered to heavy riders for better fitting and right specifications. But despite the availability of these safe bicycles, one should still know the basics of bicycle riding, most specifically balancing. Some of the most helpful tips and techniques to enhance the biker's ability to balance oneself were listed below.

  • Choose bicycle models with lower and wider pedals to allow for a quick and easy stopping anytime.
  • Lower bicycle's seat for easy touching of the ground when accidental falls occur.
  • Equip bicycle with a wide and well-padded seat to add comfort to the rider.
  • Learn the techniques on proper stopping and correct braking of the bicycle.
  • Ride the bicycle at a controllable speed and with enough self-esteem and confidence.
  • Enjoy the ride and avoid pressuring oneself to immediately cycle at a fast pace.
  • Know the several roles of the bicycle parts including the steering details and functions.
  • Practice in a safe place with flat and concrete areas for an easier and smoother pacing.
  • Ask for assistance or help while practicing by holding the back of the bicycle while trying to stay put on the pedal.
  • Practice up hills and down hills with so much gentleness and care.
  • Wear the appropriate clothes which allow moving freely, easily, and comfortably during the entire bicycle ride.
  • Equip with safety gears such as helmets, knee pads, and hand gloves.
  • Practice more and continue learning. Never give up!

This guide will help heavy riders achieve better balance while riding a bicycle. Moreover, the latest innovations in the bicycle models either customized or not, will ensure only the best performance during the entire biking experience. With these, heavy riders are guaranteed to have the best, most enjoyable and most satisfying ride of their life in order to achieve a fit and healthy body.

Whether you are an average sized rider or a heavier one who wanted to try biking for recreational purposes, commuting, or losing weight, check out Zize Bikes company for a line-up of custom made, extra sturdy bicycles for everybody that can support ALL riders of ALL sizes (up to 550 pounds).

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Joan_Bishop_Denizot/2223664
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