The Benefits of Indoor Cycling
As April came to a close, and May waited just over the horizon, I itched for a new beginning. The last week of every month has been deemed as my Mental Health Week, and it is during his week that I pay very close attention to how I’m feeling –– and I mean really feeling. Too often, we walk around the world acting as if we are fine, when in fact, there is a mountain of shit piled upon our shoulders, and all we want to do is break down.
But, we can’t.
There are people depending on us, and we’re depending on us. We can’t lose our shit in the middle of a workday, or tell everyone who asks, “How are you?” that we feel like shit, sometimes. We can’t trust everyone with our truths, and we can’t appear to come undone outside our homes. So, what do we do?
Try Indoor Cycling
We’ve al heard of Spin, Soul Cycle, and now, Peleton, right? Right. Personally, I stalked one of my local cycling studios for about 2 months before finally joining during April’s Mental Health Week. Even though I knew they offered a beginner’s special of 10 classes for just $69, including their separate strength training classes, I waited. I stalked and I waited until I knew for sure that I was ready to commit to the shift.
And that’s the thing about exercise…
It takes commitment, and usually, that commitment (atleast for me) is less about the physicality of it all, and more about the feeling. I tried a spin class once, man years ago, and never went back again. But, I always remembered how it made me feel –– accomplished and happy. I left dripping in sweat; my breathing was deepened, and I felt like I was walking on air, but even back then, I knew I couldn’t commit.
But now, I have.
They say nothing happens before its time, and I’m happy about that. At 40 years old, I am in the perfect frame of mind to recommit myself to this physical form of self care, as well as a place of acceptance and letting go. When I am on that bike, and the music gets going, I don’t know where I go, but my legs take me there. Before long, I’m dripping in sweat and breathing deeper than I will for the rest of the day.
And I feel good.
The Benefits of Cycling
Calorie Burn and Weight Loss: The average 45 minute cycling class burns about 400 to 600 calories
Low Impact: It causes less strain and injuries than most other forms of exercise.
A Good Muscle Workout: Cycling uses all of the major muscle groups as you pedal.
Easy: Unlike some other sports, cycling does not require high levels of physical skill.
Strength and Stamina: Cycling increases stamina, strength and aerobic fitness.
As Intense as You Want: Cycling can be done at very low intensity to begin with, if recovering from injury or illness, but can be built up to a demanding physical workout.
Fun: The music, energetic instructor, dim lighting, and the energy from the other people in the class make each class different and fun.
Time Efficient: Cycling replaces sedentary (sitting) time spent driving motor vehicles or using trams, trains or buses with healthy exercise, and you will be in-and-out of class within an hour.
Increased cardiovascular fitness
Increased muscle strength and flexibility
Improved joint mobility
Decreased stress levels
Improved posture and coordination
Decreased body fat levels
Prevention or management of disease
Reduced anxiety and depression.