It can be very difficult nowadays to take time out for proper training with life stuck around family, work, social life, etc.
Cycling to commute is a great idea. If you want to stay fit, burn fat while travelling and tone your muscles, cycling is a great alternative. Keep in mind that you need to be aware of the road rules related to bicycles to keep you safe and moving.
BEFORE YOU GET STARTED
Before starting proper training with cycle, you must warm your body up with simple pedaling for about 10-15 minutes. This prevents injuries and muscle strains.
This is necessary even after the ride to cool the body temperature down.
A few stretches before and after your ride can really help you in becoming more flexible and enhance your cycling sessions. This can be very beneficial for your back as people often ride with a stiff back or bent back.
You must eat right for your ride. It’s like fuelling your ride. Either eat good breakfast such as boiled eggs, porridge, etc. before you leave or take this food to office to eat after the ride. Make sure you don’t eat something very heavy before you commute.
HOW TO BURN FAT
Low intensity workouts are ideal for burning fat. These do not expect you to sweat a lot and work out-of-breath. All you need to do is maintain a stable speed and intensity while riding.
Also, change gears smoothly according to the traffic and ride at a speed good enough to make you sweat a bit but not too much that you start racing on the roads.
TRAINING IN INTERVALS
Interval training helps in increasing your fat burning ability and increases your stamina. Remember, the more you are able to sweat with time, the fitter you are. This is just like jogging for a while, then running for 2 minutes, then jogging again.
You need to put more effort and ride hard for around 2 minutes with your maximum heart rate and then lower down to normal speed and simply ride for around 3 minutes. Your purpose is to repeat this procedure for about 4-5 times over your commute.
CYCLING WITH A HIGHER CADENCE
Training your legs to cycle with a higher cadence is a very useful activity to tone them. It’s more effective than pushing hard gears on a low cadence. This activity requires similar interval training as mentioned earlier.
All you have to do is pedal on easy gear as fast as you can for around 2-3 minutes and return to relaxed pedaling that you’re used to for around 8-10 minutes. You’ll find it astoundingly hard when you try it for the first few times during your commute.
Sprints help you accelerate faster with time. It gives you a better turbo boost when you require it around breakaways or while overtaking. Pedal faster on low gears so that you can accelerate as fast as you can. Continue this for a minute and eventually return to your relaxed speed.
This can be tried on hindrance-free road sections or while moving away from traffic lights.
PREPARE FOR THE DISTANCE
If you want to develop a habit of riding bicycle over long distances, participate in bicycle races, etc. you need to get used to long rides.
All you need to do is take out an hour or more from your schedule to practice bike riding and getting used to it. You can do this early in the morning or even while returning from your commute back home.
PREPARE FOR THE HILLS
In order to prepare for the hard up hills, you require strength training. This involves toning your leg muscles and shaping your thighs and calves. So, after your body is warmed up with relaxed pedaling for around 15 minutes, switch to higher gears and push harder to move the pedals for 2 minutes at least.
Then switch back to relaxed gears for 3 minutes or less and repeat the same process. Repeating this for 3-4 times during your commute will help you get your muscles in shape in no time.
REST YOUR MUSCLES OFF THE HARD WORK
This day should be a bit different from what you usually do. Go for a relaxed ride. You don’t need to stress your muscles as usual or cycle with a higher cadence.
Just a stroll on the bike is enough. Just keep a relaxed pace on your commute, rest your muscles for the day and go smooth.