People have asked me why I’m using Cycling to loose weight. There is not real reason behind it other than it’s something I used to enjoy as a kid. Long before I passed my driving test at the young age of 17 I used to go everywhere on a bike. I used to race up to my weekend job on a bike, I used to go out with friends on my bike. Then along came a car and convenience.
If you properly look into cycling while overweight, there are warnings of back problems, neck problems and actually having a bike that will cope with a larger person. I currently do not own a bike, I am using my dads mountain bike. He isn’t using it and it was stood collecting dust, so I have it for now.
Mountain bikes and Hybrid bikes are likely the better bikes for us who are on the larger side. They tend to have sturdier wheels and thicker tubes that make up the frames. Usually so they can take the impact of off road mountain biking, but in my case it’s on a road and supporting my overweight body.
I really want a road bike and I love the idea of getting out on the bike and churning out 20+ miles. But virtually all road bikes come with a weight limit for the rider, of which I am a few stone over. But it’s my goal, it’s what is keeping me going at the moment with trying to loose weight.
I am getting out on the mountain bike when I can, permitting around the kids, work and life. The nights are coming in earlier and earlier at this time of year, but that hasn’t bothered me of late. I’ve managed to get some cheap ‘winter’ gear in the form of a windproof/shower proof high-vis jacket, some cycling bib tights and some winter cycling socks. Armed with these I be looking to continue going out as the temperature drops.
Cycling can be seen as a better exercise for people who suffer with their weight. It’s not impacting the knees and ankles like running does as the bike takes your weight. You can also very easily complete interval training on a bike too, your heart rate will increase as you pedal up the slightest incline, but then you can rest as you come back down again (when you go up you have to come back down again). I’ve found this has helped as it gives me chance to recover a little before attempting the next incline – much better than running or swimming which I feel are constant (though swimming also has it’s advantages for larger people).
Using an app on my phone called Strava is also helping me. It tracks where you’re cycling so you can see how far you’ve gone and how quick. But the mist impressive thing is it’s segment information. It breaks you ride into segments and you can see if this time you set a quicker time than last time. It keeps me motivate towards the end of my rides as I keep trying to lower the time on the last stretch home. It’s also free which helps those of us on a budget.