Cycling is a great leisure activity. It can help you burn calories while having fun. Seeing changing sceneries while cycling makes you less focused on calories and perspiration. In short, cycling will not only burn calories fast but help your mental well-being too.
Cycling one hour a day might seem like a big commitment, but it’s hardly anything in front of the advantages and fun that you will have. This one hour will be like time devoted to your weight loss journey and toward calming your mind, simultaneously. That’s all words, let’s talk about the benefits in numbers:
- A 180-pound individual cycling at a moderate intensity for one hour can burn about 650 calories!
- This adds upto 202800 calories in a week, when followed daily
- And this translates to 58 pounds of body fat!
Here’s the cycle that I have been using for the past year.
Why Cycling Over Other Weight Loss Methods?
If you’re still wondering whether cycling 1 hour a day is the right weight-loss method to invest your time and resources into, then here are well-researched reasons why its better than walking, running and even swimming.
What burns more calories: walking or cycling?
Usually, people compare walking 10,000 steps a day to cycling one hour a day to understand which is a better, safer, and quicker weight-loss method. The answer is cycling!
Walking 10,000 steps would roughly mean 8 kilometers or 5 miles, which would take about 1.5 hours at a speed of 5 km/h or 3mph. This would mean burning 232 kilocalories per hour and a total of 371 kilocalories. And even if you walk at a fast speed of about 6.5km/h or 4mph, you’d just burn 352 kilocalories in one hour.
On the other hand, cycling at a moderate speed of 20 km/h or 12mph. This would easily burn 563 kilocalories in one hour! And if you follow a fast cycling speed of about 30 km/h or 19 mph you could burn a whopping 844 kilocalories in one hour.
Summarizing these numbers:
What burns more calories: running or biking?
Firstly, it is more painful to run than to cycle. Even trained cyclists who cycle 2.5 hours a day for 3 days, face about 133%-404% more muscle damage, 256% higher inflammation, and 87% more muscle soreness than cycling. So, cycling definitely beats running in terms of how much unhealthy stress your muscles may face.
Additionally, cycling is much better because you can just bike up to adventurous places around your neighborhood as well as feel much happier and clam than running.
Cycling 1 Hour A Day Weight Loss Plan
Now doesn’t the cycling one hour a day weight loss plan seem pretty worth it?
Well, it certainly is, ONLY if you follow a viable and practical weight loss plan. Get started with the cycling one hour a day weight loss plan with these 5-point steps:
1. Set a Practical Goal
The first step to creating your cycling for weight plan is to know what you want to achieve toward the end of it? To begin with, setting the right goal for your weight loss plan you can calculate your body mass index (BMI).
The BMI is a medical weight indicator used to assess whether your weight is at a healthy level or not. The BMI looks at more than your body shape and figure. It considers your weight and height ratio for assessment.
You can easily calculate your BMI with a calculator, using this BMI formula:
BMI = weight / height²
While calculating if you are using kilograms for weight, then be sure to use meters for height and if you use pounds for weight, then use inches to measure your height.
After calculating your BMI, check which of the following basic categories do you fall under:
- Underweight = less than 18.5
- Normal weight = 18.5 – 24.9
- Overweight = 25 – 29.9
- Obesity = 30 – 35
- Severe obesity = 35 and more
Using your BMI you can better understand what category you fall under. To help create your goals based on your category results:
- ‘Overweight BMI’ – One hour a day, for 3 days in a week
- ‘Obesity BMI’ – One hour a day, for 5-7 days
- ‘Severe obesity BMI’ – One hour a day, 7 days a week
2. Gear Up
After setting your goals you must make sure you have all the necessary safety equipment:
- Helmet – Helmet is one of the most important safety equipment that you absolutely need to have while you are cycling. Research has proven that over half of the deaths due to bicycling accidents could have been avoided with a helmet. Helmets reduce the impact of crashes, prevent head injuries, and prevent scars. Additionally, if you’re scared of cycling, then a helmet will definitely make you feel more in control and safe.
- Inflate tires – Another important thing before you start your cycling weight loss journey is your tires. Under-inflated tires may easily slip off and over-inflated tires may burst and cause a skid. So make sure you have perfectly inflated tires. You can inflate your bike tires easily at home with a pump, or a at the mechanic’s workshop too. It’s also a good idea to always keep a spare tire in your garage, just in case you need it.
Here’s a quick video to help you inflate a bicycle tire at home:
- Ringing bell – The best safety equipment is a good-condition ringing bell. People very often enjoy bike riding so much, that they tend to move onto the car lane. So make sure that you have a ringing bell that works loud and clear. I recommend this easy-to-install bell that looks good and gets the job done.
- Wear bright clothes – It is important to either wear a bright reflective jacket or add reflective tape to your clothing so that your bike can be easily spotted in traffic by other vehicle drivers. This will help in other vehicles maintaining safe distances and not colliding with your bike.
It may be tempting to just grab your bike and start cycling to lose weight. But it is rarely possible to practically and safely lose weight without planning your weight loss journey. An unplanned journey puts you higher at risk of the yo-yo syndrome too.
Under the yo-yo syndrome, one enters the vicious cycle of weight loss, weight gain, weight loss, weight gain, and so on. So make sure to follow all the aforementioned safety tips and with the right equipment.
Curate Your Weight Loss Plan
The last and most exciting part of the plan is actually planning the cycling process and other activities.
So now after you have geared up and are ready in your bright clothes, with your helmet, inflated tires, and the ringing bell you can start pedaling off all unwanted weight.
Here are the steps to your successful weight loss plan:
- Begin riding at a moderate pace
To burn fat, you must ride at a moderate pace, not too fast, not too slow. While starting cycling many people start at a super high speed with the intention of burning more calories, faster, and quicker. But riding at a moderate pace sets your heart rate between 68-79% of your maximum heart rate. Here are the speeds you must follow based on the time you devote:
- 15 minutes – Ride super fast, but make sure you warm-up intensively and cool down your body before and after the cycling
- 30 minutes – Ride at a fast speed, with basic flexibility exercises before and after
- 60 minutes – Ride at a moderate speed, with basic flexibility exercises before and after
- 90 minutes – Ride at a moderate speed, with a basic warm-up before you begin
- Add a high-intensity session
High-intensity sessions help progress cardiovascular fitness, to make your body more efficient at burning calories. You can either as high-intensity sessions after you daily 1-hour cycling sessions or swap 2 or 3 of your regular cycling sessions with the high-intensity ones.
High-intensity workouts are short and intense bursts of exercise which are intended to be better for heart health, weight loss, and gaining strength. These type of workouts are considered better than a cardio workout to burn calories and lose unwanted weight. High-intensity workouts also burn more calories than cardio even after your exercise routine has been completed.
- Add flexibility and cross-fit exercise
Cross-fit and flexibility exercises help balance out the heavy lower body exercise that your body gets through cycling. As bizarre as this sounds, you exhale lost fat through the lungs. Losing fat involves metabolizing triglycerides stored in fat cells. Ultimately, fat is burnt through oxidation as waste product is exhaled(carbon dioxide) as you breathe.
So with this cycling 1 hour a day weight loss plan, all you need is faith and confidence in yourself. Once you get used to this idea bike riding plan, it will become easier to follow it regularly. Of course, having a cycle that’s fun to ride does make it easier for you to stick to this bike riding plan.
Cycling is a reward in itself and we’d love to hear how this weight loss plan worked out for you in your weight loss journey.