9 Reasons to Try Cycling in 2016
If you’re looking for a new hobby or healthy habit to keep to this year, you’d do well to make it cycling. Easy, cheap and reportedly addictive, cycling has a multitude of benefits for both the body and mind, giving it increasing recognition as a mode of transport, form of exercise, and all round fun thing to do.
Here are 9 reasons why you should try cycling in 2016.
1. It’s becoming a more established mode of transport.
Cycling is no longer just seen as a sport of recreational activity. It’s now a popular way to get around for people of all ages – office commuters; parents; teachers; kids; teenagers. As a result of this growing trend, there’s a whole new industry of cycle commuting clothing and gear to make your ride to work all the more comfortable. If there was ever a good time to jump on the bike wagon, it’s now.
2. Excellent cardiovascular workout.
As a mode of transport getting you from A to B, cycling is an all-too-easy way of making up your recommended 2.5 hours of moderate exercise per week. As the rider gets to decide how fast or slow they go, you can adjust it to your own capability while still giving your heart and lungs a workout.
And as we all know, regular cardiovascular activity helps to boost immunity and improve organ function, energy levels and mood.
3. Its low impact.
Unlike running or even walking, cycling puts very little stress on the knee, hip and ankle joints, making it an ideal choice of exercise for those needing to be careful with their joints (or even recovering from injury).
4. Saves on fuel costs.
The average car commuter is said to spend around £3,500 per year on fuel costs alone, making the UK one of the most expensive places to run a car. Traveling by bike, on the other hand, is almost free –aside from the initial payout for the bike and accessories and then the odd repair here and there. You’ll also save on daily parking.
Signing up to a cycle scheme like Bike 2 Work can help you split the initial costs of a bike across a period of a few weeks, months or a year. As well as getting your bike tax-free, you’ll be able to pay it out of your salary in regular payments that are convenient and affordable for you.
5. It saves time.
You may be thinking, “But I’m already a pretty active person. I walk most places. I take public transport etc.” But it’s been proven you can save so much time when you travel by bike. Think of cutting your usual on-foot journeys in half, and imagine not having to wait around for that delayed train or late bus.
In addition, cycling definitely beats sitting around in daily morning traffic jams.
6. E bikes help ease us into the habit.
E-bikes, or electric bikes, have hit upon a new trend lately and are now no longer confined to use by the elderly or mobility challenged. They can be an appealing alternative to car trips, providing all the convenience and speed by using less energy and being much kinder to the environment.
The use of e bikes has also been shown to turn more people into daily riders. Of all the people who began using an e bike in the US in 2013, the proportion of those using their standard bike daily or weekly rose from 55% to 93%. Even 6% of those who had never ridden a bike as an adult started to use their standard bike daily or weekly.
If you’re curious about cycling but are worried about the physical demands, why not try out an e bike for the perfect marriage of speed, convenience and health.
7. Cyclists get their own bling!
If you’re already a bike enthusiast, you’ve probably already heard about the SK – the new bike for 2016 that everybody is talking about. Made by Italian designers De Rosa who teamed up with Pininfarina (has worked with McLaren and Ferrari), it’s been described as ‘the most beautiful bike we will see this year’. If you want your hands on this booty, you’re going to have to be prepared to get pedaling.
8. Enjoy increased mental alertness.
A lot of people often feel sleepy after their morning sat in car traffic or on a cramped train. Cycle to work, however, and you’ll be certain to experience increased energy, focus and mental alertness. Not only is cycling a non-intense way to get the blood circulating, it also provides you with plenty of fresh air to shake off those morning cobwebs.
9. It’s accessible to all.
Cycling is literally available to anyone with a bike, no matter what their age, lifestyle or level of fitness. You don’t have to be a British Cycling road racer to be able to commute to work (or anywhere!) by bike.
By taking things slow and steady at a pace comfortable for you, you can easily make a dramatic difference to your health and well-being and reap the benefits of this incredibly forgiving activity.
So jump on that saddle and get your 2016 off to the best start!