If you want to go from using your bike sporadically or just as a means of transportation to turning it into a sport that will become part of your healthier lifestyle, it is important to prepare yourself adequately in order to achieve a better physical performance.
Long rides and the position held by the cyclist while riding turn this exercise into one of the most physically demanding sports there are. Therefore, even though we like to spend hours on our bikes, our body needs to prepare itself adequately in order to avoid unwanted consequences.
Below you will find a few tips that must be taken into account by those who practice cycling as amateurs and are only beginning to ride long distances.
Use a bike your size
Feeling comfortable on your bike is essential. Therefore, depending on your height, you must seek the bicycle that best adapts to you and adjust the seat to achieve a better position of the legs and arms.
Make long rides, but do not exceed yourself
Start off with rides no longer than 1 hour and a half, 2 or 3 times a week, to prepare your body little by little to the demands of this sport. This is the recommendation made by sports physician Juan Camilo Gómez, explaining that longer hours in someone who is not used to this exercise may generate later problems in their knees and back.
Practice other kinds of exercise that allow you to condition yourself for the cycling routines and strengthen the muscles that are used the most in this sport, which are the ones around the abdomen and the pelvis, known as the core muscles. Crunches, squats, and triceps exercises are some of the ones that could be most beneficial to you.
Avoid riding at times when exposure to the sun is more direct. The best times could be before 10am or after 5pm. Also, do not forget to take a bottle of water with you in order to keep yourself hydrated throughout the ride.
Resistance and strength
In order to gain physical resistance at the climbs, have longer training sessions on a static bicycle or do some moderate road cycling, preferably on flat terrains. Likewise, in order to improve your strength, high-intensity interval training is recommended. In this kind of training, intensity is increased little by little in short intervals, repeating different series.