There has been a significant focus on diet and exercise in recent years. This has largely been because a significant part of the country is overweight or obese.
Excess weight can lead to numerous health complications including heart disease, high cholesterol, diabetes, high blood pressure, and added stress on the joints. One of the ways that people can lose weight is through cardiac exercises, such as bike riding.
When people exercise, their heart rate elevates and the body has to burn more calories to meet the demands of the body. The body turns to the fat stores and uses these to power the muscles as they exercise.
With this in mind, how much exercise is enough? Is biking ten miles per day enough to lead to significant weight loss?
What are some of the factors that play a role in how much weight people will lose through bike riding?
The Distance of the Bike Ride Will Matter
When people bike, the easiest way to figure out the number of calories burned is to take a look at the distance. (This true whether the cycling session is done via road biking or via an indoor exercise bike.)
While the elevation of the terrain, the resistance on the wheel, the speed of the ride, and the weather outside are all going to matter, most people are going to burn about 40-50 calories per mile traveled.
If people bike at about 15 miles per hour, they are going to ride 15 miles in the course of an hour-long workout. This equates to between 600 and 750 calories burned in the course of an hour.
If people are able to keep up with this routine, they could burn an extra few thousand calories in the course of a week just on the bike alone! As the weeks roll on, this should lead to a significant amount of weight loss.
Even if people only bike 10 miles per day, this could still be 400-500 calories burned during the workout.
Build Up Your Endurance On The Bike
For those who are looking to really burn fat and lose weight, it is important to go on longer, slower rides as well. When people exercise, the body is going to burn glucose stores first.
This means using up the glucose in the blood and the glycogen stores first.
As this process continues, the body is going to eventually start to burn the fat stores as well. Therefore, for those who are looking to burn fat and build muscle, they need to go on rides that are going to use up the glycogen stores in order to get to the fat.
This is why going on longer rides is important.
Longer rides are going to burn fat and help people lose weight. Furthermore, this will build up the cardiac strength to tackle longer rides at a faster pace.
Don’t be afraid of the longer bike rides, particularly on the weekends when time allows.
Recharge the Body After a Challenging Ride
People aren’t going to lose weight just be biking alone. The body still needs to refuel in the proper way. It isn’t just about losing weight but about improving body composition and overall health.
As people burn fat, they need to try to convert this fat mass to lean muscle. In order to do this, the body needs to rebuild after bike rides, which use up the muscle tissue.
For this process to happen, the body needs to have an adequate source of protein. After a long ride, the body is in a good state to absorb this additional protein.
Immediately after a ride, it is important to rely on a protein shake, a protein bar, or even a meal to provide the body with the building blocks that it needs to add muscle.
For those who are looking to lose weight and get back into shape, it is vital to refuel the right way.
Don’t Shy Away From Feeling Sore on a Ride
Yes, every once in a while it is important for people to give their body a break so that it can recover from a challenging week of riding; however, many people also are worried about riding while sore. They might think that their body cannot handle it, that they won’t be able to finish their ride, or that they just need a day off.
On the other hand, people should not be afraid to get on the bike while they are still feeling sore from the prior day’s workout. When people are moving from the couch to the bike, it is normal to feel a bit sore at first.
As people start to ride, the muscles are actually going to feel better. This is because the heart rate is going to increase, oxygen will flood the muscles, and the lactate is going to be flushed out.
All it takes is for people to keep a little bit of faith that their body will be able to make the necessary adjustments and complete the ride even while sore. Biking while sore will actually help people improve their endurance as well.
Make a Plan to Vary the Terrain and Stick To It
Ultimately, for those who are wondering how far they need to bike in order to lose weight, there are more factors that are going to matter than just distance. People should be sure to make a plan with plenty of variety and stick to it.
Long rides are important but the shorter, faster rides are vital too. When people bike shorter distances quicker, they are going to build strength in their muscles.
If someone makes a decision to tackle hills on a certain day, they are going to burn additional calories by biking uphill.
It can be challenging to try different types of bike rides; however, if people make a plan and check off the rides as they go, the feeling of accomplishment is going to build. Everyone is more likely to achieve their goals if they make check off little steps along the way.
Being in the right frame of mind is important and making a plan helps people get in this mindset.
Ultimately, there are lots of different ways that people can exercise to lose weight. When people bike long distances, their heart rate is elevated for an extended period of time.
This translates into fat burning, calorie use, and pounds lost. There are many factors that will play a role in high many calories people burn while bike riding.
In addition to the distance that people bike, the speed at which they bike and the intensity of the exercise is going to matter. The elevation of the terrain even plays a role.
Therefore, the most important things for people to remember while biking for weight loss are the speed of the ride and the distance of the ride. In addition, do not forget about the role that diet plays in exercise and weight loss.
People need to make sure that they aren’t overeating while still consuming the nutrition that the muscles need to refuel after a long ride. In the end, biking is a great way for people to both lose weight and get into better shape.
Biking Workout Calories Burned Calculator
If you want a good idea of how your weight loss goals are doing with your cycling routine, then you can use the calculator below to determine your calories burned and how much weight loss that is equivalent to for the activity.