Get In The Saddle!!

So ladies, I hope you have all found the articles on running helpful, informative and motivating. Whatever your experience level I hope you are all heading in the right direction, in the right shoes!

We now move on to the fast growing fitness and leisure activity of cycling.

bikeOnce you have invested in a bike, cycling becomes one of the cheapest, fastest and easiest ways to travel/commute to work. Traffic jams don’t slow you down and everything is much more accessible. On a bike you are faster, friendlier and freer than any other vehicle in city traffic.

For those of you who don’t enjoy running or have injuries that prevent you from taking part, cycling is a great low impact alternative. With plenty of benefits to taking up this activity (as below) why not give it a try and get in the saddle this summer!

As a beginner you don’t need a fancy bike, just dig out whatever you have rusting away in the garage (as long as its road worthy) and get out there. Hire bikes/boris bikes are also available if you don’t own a bike and want to try before you buy. You can get a second hand bike for under £100 but if you are keen to start cycling regularly it may be worth spending a little more to get the perfect bike for you. You can always upgrade to a better model in the future if you get lots of use out of it.

Hybrid bikes are great for those who want to ride on and off road. For the more frequent cyclist a road bike is a great investment and much more efficient on the road than a normal mountain bike or hybrid. For the more serious cyclist looking to compete regularly, a racing bike is worth looking into.

General cycling facts:

  • Keeping fit by riding a bike can help protect you against heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity and stress.
  • You can burn up to 600 calories an hour cycling and even more dependent on the intensity of the session.
  • On a bicycle you can travel 4 times faster than you can walk using the same amount of energy.
  • The longest tandem bike was over 20 meters long and seated 35 people.
  • You can park around 15 bicycles in the same space you can park one car.
  • About 100 million bikes are manufactured worldwide every year.
  • The Tour de France is one of the most famous bicycle races in the world. Established in 1903, it is considered to be the biggest test of endurance out of all sports. Lance Armstrong, an American cyclist, is the only rider to have won seven titles (1999–2005) after surviving cancer.

Olympic cycling facts:

  • Cycling is one of only 5 sports that have been in every modern Olympics.
  • Mountain biking is one of the newest Olympic sports.
  • All of the cycling events taking place at the Olympics are as follows; Indoor Track, Road Racing, Mountain Biking (MTB), and BMX.
  • The indoor track cyclist’s use is called a velodrome.
  • The bikes used for the indoor track events don’t have any brakes and just one gear so the cyclists have to peddle continuously to keep going.
  • Aerodynamic drag is a significant factor in both road and track racing.

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