Okay well, you obviously want to get in shape or improve your fitness. Who doesn’t right? Well here is some good news: you don’t really need an expensive program to do it. I have used bicycles as a primary form of transportation and have found that I am in better shape than I have been when working out at a gym. You can do it for a lot longer than hitting the gym for an hour or two.
The problem with fitness programs is that most of us are not being able to keep the results that we see within the first few weeks. You might also think that you need to see results within minutes or a few days 🙂 This is often not the case as it takes awhile for your body to get in the right place physically to start to burn off the extra stuff that you are trying to get rid of.
Now, bicycling is a fairly easy thing. If you work your way into it. So sorry this isn’t a quick method, but if you keep it up you will increase your overall fitness.
The first thing you will need is a bike. There are many brands/manufacturers of bike makers. You probably won’t go too much wrong if you choose some big name brand like Trek, Giant or Specialized. I personally own the Cube Stereo mountain bike with 29″ wheel size (Cube is a German manufacturer, and I bought my bike couple of years ago when I was living in Munich), and it suits me well. It has a carbon frame which makes it light and stiff.
There are also different types of bikes for exercising: Mountain, Hybrid, and Road for example.
Hybrid is a mix between a Road Bike (Thin Tires) and Mountain Bikes (Heavy Duty/Big tires). The Hybrids allow you to have things on them like carry-on bags.
What will you need to do in order to get in good shape and improve your health?
Some basics – As you get older (like me), the stretch is an important part of your warm up and exercise over all. And enough water and energy bars for long rides of course.
First 2-3 weeks
Don’t push yourself to climb that big hill – just go for nice rides on fairly flat ground. Also maybe go trail riding on a paved Bike Trail. Don’t ride your bike every day. Keep some resting days during the week. This period is just to get you use to riding a bike again. Slowly increase your frequency of riding your bike.
Next 4-5 weeks
This is where you can be riding your bike every day. Push yourself a little bit harder every time you are on a ride. Little pain is a good thing, it means that you are working those muscles that you haven’t been before. This is where you need to be drinking water and lots of it, as well as the energy bars, but limit yourself to one so that your body can focus on burning off that extra stuff that you want to be gone.
This is where hopefully you have reached the point to where you love your bike and can ride it almost everywhere. This is where you should be used to trying to go up every hill and not quitting until you absolutely need to.
That is one of the big points of any fitness program – you should not quit! You just have to keep going. Get a friend to be there with you to motivate you. Your body will tell you when you can’t do anymore because it won’t let you. The pain that you feel afterword is a good thing.
This is how I got started. I hope this helps you to get started too. Remember quitting is not an option, you have to push through it. It will make you stronger in the end.