How to Get the Most Out of Owning a Bicycle
With the pandemic still dominating the news cycles here in America, most individuals can’t exercise the way that they once did. Many gyms are still closed, and people are trying to figure out how to work out at home. Fitness aids like the Mirror and Peloton are selling extremely well at the moment.
Others are leaving the house to exercise and heading to city parks. They’re jogging or running, both exercises that burn calories and work multiple muscle groups.
Still, others are going bike riding more. Adults who haven’t ridden in many years are buying bikes and relearning how to ride while in an entirely new phase of their lives.
If you belong to this last category, it’s important that you understand how to get the most out of your bike riding experience.
One thing you want to try and do is avoid bike accidents. If you get hit by a car, then you’re probably going to get the worst end of that since you’re on a bike and a car is like an armored vehicle by comparison. You can avoid accidents by:
- Wearing reflective gear that’s easy for drivers to see
- Not riding at night
- Sticking to back streets and avoiding major thoroughfares
You can also avoid riding in the rain or fog. If cars can’t see you, they might hit you before they realize you’re there. You can be severely injured in a car accident when you’re on your bike, and that’s certainly something you want to take pains to keep from happening.
Go Riding in Groups
You have to social distance these days and wear masks when you’re close to other people, but you can still go biking with friend groups if you know some other riders. Going riding together:
- Allows you to motivate each other
- Makes it safer when you’re riding through unsafe neighborhoods
- Means you can call for help if one of you injures yourself
It’s nice to arrange a time and place to meet up so you can ride together in public parks or on bike trails if your city has any. You can get a nice workout, and then, when you finish, you can grab an iced coffee or a fruit smoothie to celebrate.
Stretch Before Riding
Another thing that you might do to avoid having a negative biking experience is to take some time before a rigorous ride to stretch your muscles, especially those in your legs and back.
Biking works several muscle groups, but especially those in your lower body. You can easily pull something if you’re not used to biking, and you hop right on without warming up a little bit first.
You can head online to learn some stretching routines if you don’t know any yet. There are some simple yoga stretches that are easy to learn and will get you limbered up before you tackle any big hills on your bike.
Set a Schedule and Stick to It
Like going to the local gym, you could make up a bike riding schedule and stick to it, going two or three times per week. You can map out trails in your city or town, starting with shorter routes and working your way up to longer ones. You’ll be proud of yourself when you can go longer distances and explore some new territory.
As you go, you’ll probably see some parts of the city that you’ve never been to before. You may notice shops that look interesting that you might want to return to and peruse their merchandise when you have a free moment. You’re not just exercising: you’re exploring at the same time.
It’s still the summer, and in many parts of the country, we’re getting into some of the hottest days. If you live on the west coast or in the southwest, the temperatures can soar into the triple digits some days.
If you’re going biking, make sure that you bring a water bottle or a sports drink. You must stay hydrated, or you could suffer heatstroke. If you feel lightheaded or nauseous, get in the shade and drink before you continue your ride.
Biking is fun, great exercise, and a way to get out of the house and explore during the pandemic. You’ll feel exhilarated as you take up this activity again that you enjoyed as a kid. In uncertain times, biking is a silver lining that can make you happy and keep you fit at the same time.