Get off the sofa and start riding a bike.
Get off the sofa and start riding a bike.© Images AGN

Want to start riding a bike? Find out how to get off the couch and start pedalling and why you should.

Okay, it’s true. There are times when it’s nice to sit on the couch. But I can tell you that it’s even nicer when you’re still feeling good after a bike ride. Plus, you’d feel good knowing that you’d done yourself some good. So, if the Tour de France made you want to get on a bike but you can’t bring yourself to do it, or if you have an old bike collecting dust in the shed, here’s why you should get out there and ride!

Cycling is good for you

Cycling regularly can also make you less likely to have a stroke, diabetes, or heart disease.

Cycling is good for your health in many ways. It’s great for burning extra calories, so it’s a good way to lose weight or keep from gaining weight. It’s a non-weight bearing activity, which means it’s good for people with joint problems. Unlike running, for example, the bike supports most of your body weight. Cycling is also a great way to work on your heart and lungs to improve your cardiovascular system. Cycling regularly can also make you less likely to have a stroke, diabetes, or heart disease. It’s also a great way to relieve stress and get motivated. If you do it regularly as part of a routine, it can even help with mild depression.

It’s easy to bike.

To start out, you don’t need a super-expensive, super-light carbon fibre bike like the ones the pros ride. As long as it works and is safe to ride, any bike will do. Give your old bike, which you haven’t used in years, some TLC by going into the garage or shed. Wipe it down, fill the tyres with air, squirt some oil on the chain, and you’re ready to go. If you’re not sure if your bike is safe to ride on the road, take it to your local bike shop for a checkup.

There are more bike shops than ever before, and you can choose from Road, MTB, Hybrid, Commuter, and Fixed bikes, just to name a few. Prices are also very low, so you can get a bike that works just fine for a reasonable price. There is a lot of information about cycling online, but if you want to buy a bike, I think it’s best to talk to the experts at a small, local shop. They will be able to give you advice and tips about the right frame size, the type of bike you need based on how you’ll be riding, and how to choose the right bike for your budget.

Beginning with cycling

If you haven’t been riding for a while, just start out slowly and build up. Try riding a bike to get that pint of milk you need instead of taking the car, or ride to work once or twice a week. You’ll save money, be less stressed on the way to work, do your part for the environment, and get fitter with every pedal stroke. The “Cycle to Work Scheme” is something that many employers offer, which is another good reason to think about that commute. If you don’t feel very comfortable riding on the roads, you might want to find out where the nearest bike paths are.

From a safety point of view, you should give your route to school a lot of thought.

Why not ride a bike to school? This is a great and fun way to get kids to move around more. Your route to school is important from a safety point of view, but in many towns and cities, there are other ways to get there besides the main roads. When younger children go to school, parents can also ride their bikes with them, making it a family event.

Time to go riding

Cycling is good for your health, your wallet, and the environment. It will also introduce you to a whole new, lively, and fresh world and give you a new challenge in life. What could be more exciting and energising than riding a bike along the country roads near your home, either by yourself or with family or friends, and taking in the sights and places that used to go by in a blur? You can stop whenever you want to think, go at your own pace, ride on the flat, or take on the steep hill nearby. Everything is up to you.

No matter how far you ride or how fast you go, it doesn’t matter. You might be happy just riding to the store or to work every now and then, or you might have bigger plans, like a 50-mile ride, your first sportive, or even racing. The road ahead is as open as your imagination, and rolling hills and mountains at home and abroad are calling.

You can ride your bike on the roads of the Tour de France and other places if you want to. What other sport or activity gives you the chance to ride in the same place as the world’s best, even on the same wheel tracks? Cycling makes you feel free and happy at the same time. It’s fun, challenging, and always changing, and you’ll get fitter and healthier while learning new skills and maybe even making new friends.

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