As a sport, cycling is already one of the most popular in the world and is known for having a variety of benefits for men and women alike.
Today we are going to be taking a closer look at just some of the benefits of cycling for men in particular. With views into how it can benefit your health, social life, and much more.
1. Improves Your Mental Health
We’re all aware of the importance of protecting your mental health these days, and cycling is one of the best ways to do just that. By getting out on the bike regularly, it can become a brilliant outlet for when you feel a certain way or just need to clear your head.
Think about it the same way you would go for a long walk after an argument. You can’t fix all of life’s problems by going for a bike ride, but you can protect yourself from negative environments by doing something that you enjoy.
Next time you feel a bit down in the dumps, why not try going for a bike ride?
2. It’s Good For Your Joints
Of course, physical health benefits are the main thing that cycling is great for and there are so many that we can mention here today. Firstly, cycling is a good activity for those who struggle with stiff or painful joints.
Cycling is considered a low-impact sport, essentially meaning that the stress on your muscles isn’t as sudden as playing soccer for example.
This is not to say that your muscles won’t hurt after a long bike ride, but they will have been stretched in a different way to what they are used to (especially if you work in an office or from home).
3. Can Prevent Serious Illness
Perhaps the most important benefit on this list, cycling can prevent you from suffering from serious illnesses later in your life.
The main ailments that cycling can help stop are Strokes, Heart Disease, and Type 2 diabetes all of which are caused by problems with your bloodstream.
Cycling helps to get your blood pumping and heart beating fast, which is great for making sure both your heart and brain receive the levels of oxygen they need to function properly.
As you get older, your resting heart rate decreases so it is important that you get it beating faster to keep those oxygen levels at a healthy level and cycling can help with this.
4. Helps Improve Your Aerobic Capacity
This is linked to the previous two points but is more of a technical statement regarding the health benefits of cycling. If you are familiar with some of the more technical aspects of cycling, you may know about V02 max.
This is a measure of the rate at which your heart, lungs, and muscles can effectively use the oxygen in your blood during physical activity. It is something that is crucial to the riders of the Tour de France, especially those that thrive in the high mountains.
V02 max is the way of measuring your aerobic capacity and is worked out by measuring the number of millimeters of oxygen that your body uses per kilogram of body weight in a single minute (ml/kg/min in short).
5. Helps You Maintain a Healthy Weight
This one is pretty obvious and rings true for any form of physical activity. Cycling is a great way of maintaining a healthy weight and can be beneficial for those attempting to lose weight too, so long as you pair it with a healthy and balanced diet.
Cycling burns energy and can be very helpful for those carrying excess fat reserves. Many people try to cycle without eating anything and this is called a ‘fasting ride’, this is not something we would recommend for those trying to lose weight as your body could go into shock without sufficient sustenance in the morning.
Always make sure to eat breakfast before heading out in the morning.
6. Connects You To Nature
Okay, so health benefits are pretty clear at this point and there are some more that we’ll discuss later. There are plenty of other ways that cycling can be beneficial though, such as the fact that it can help bring you closer to nature, whether this be near or far.
Getting out of the city (for those who live there) is something that we really recommend every few days as you can fill your lungs with clean air and experience some peace and quiet that urban areas cannot give you.
Nature is there to be enjoyed and by seeing some if it for yourself, you’re going to want to protect it for future generations to experience in the same way you can.
7. Allows You To Experience True Speed
As men there are few things that we crave more than speed, whether this is in a car or on a bike, we always want to go faster. Cycling is something that can allow you to experience true speed like few other activities can, mainly when you are descending.
After the hard slog up to the top of your favorite climb, you have earnt the descent that comes afterward and there are ways to help you go faster.
The best way is to keep yourself aerodynamic by making your body as small as possible when going downhill, this protects you from the wind and makes you descend like a bullet.
Be careful out there though!
8. Can Be a Sociable Activity
Whilst going for a bike ride is primarily a solo activity, there are ways that is can be a sociable sport. Once you get to a certain level of proficiency on the bike, you could consider joining a cycling club or team and this is a great way to meet people with similar interests to yourself.
After the past few years, we all need new ways of connecting with people and cycling is one of the best ways to do it.
You can also meet people in the virtual universe on your bike too, platforms such as Zwift allow you to ride from the comfort of your own home and speak to people around the world as you compete for pb’s and virtual achievements.
9. You Can See The World
Cycling truly is a global sport and is especially popular in Europe, so why not book a trip across the Atlantic to go and see it all for yourself?
By essentially being a vehicle, bikes have the benefit of keeping you moving and letting you see so much more than those on foot ever could, and this is something we love!
There are plenty of great places to visit on your bike, but if you want our recommendations then Lombardy, Flanders, and the Basque Country are all amazing locations for cyclists. All three regions have huge passions for cycling and are very welcoming to tourists from across the water.
10. Recovery After Other Activities
As we mentioned earlier, cycling is a low-impact sport than can be great for your joints. This also works in the sense that cycling can be beneficial for recovery after other sporting activities (or pretty much any physical activity you may be undertaking).
If you engage in any high-impact sports such as soccer, American football, or basketball then you would benefit from getting out on your bike shortly after these activities. The reason for this is that it can act as a ‘warm down’ in the same way that going for a gentle run can.
11. Can Shorten Your Daily Commute
In the modern day, this is quickly becoming one of the major benefits of cycling. Traffic levels have never been worse in cities and towns, with congestion becoming a major problem for those needing to get to work on time.
By ditching your car or public transport, you can remove the stress of whether you’re going to make it to work on time and simply enjoy the commute as you glide past those sat on the road.
It may take slightly longer for you to get there in terms of distance traveled under your own steam, but it really is better than being sat in traffic every morning.
12. Helps Protect The Environment
Another benefit of leaving your car in the garage in favor of your trusty bike is that it can be really helpful for the environment. Bikes are not powered by any form of fossil fuel, and this means that they do not produce any pollutants that cars do.
Bikes are also much quieter than cars and therefore are better for reducing noise pollution in urban areas, much in the same vein that they reduce light pollution.
There really is no reason to own a car in a city anymore, you could even buy an E-bike that will help you go even faster than a regular bike can (and give you a little extra help on the hills).
13. Can Allow You To Compete Against Others
As men, we all love to compete against other people and test whether we can actually backup our claims of being good at something. Cycling can give you this chance, which for us is a massive benefit of the sport.
In terms of how you would go about this, there are near-endless possibilities. You could take on a ‘Sportive’ which involves racing other amateurs on the same courses as the professionals (l’Etape du Tour is our personal choice).
If road racing isn’t your thing, you could take on BMX, and MTB trail races, or even jump onto the velodrome and test your mettle against other track enthusiasts. Whatever you choose to compete in, make sure you enjoy it over anything else.
14. Improves Your Sleep
Yet another health benefit that cycling has is that it can help improve your sleep. This is another pretty obvious benefit of the sport as it works in the same way that any other physical exertion does, by working hard you get tired.
If you’re struggling to get to sleep, hop on your bike. We can’t promise it’ll do the trick, but it will certainly tire you out enough that you’ll need sufficient recovery time, especially if you’re new to the sport.
15. Can Save You Money
Another pretty important benefit in this day and age, cycling can save you a whole lot of money. Petrol costs have never been higher, and they are showing no signs of dropping to the levels of the past few decades, so it just isn’t affordable to run a car for many people.
Cycling is free outside of actually buying a bike and depending on what you want to use yours for they can range from less than $150 all the way up to high-specification racing bikes that will set you back thousands of dollars.
Why spend more than you need to for short journeys?
16. Boosts Your Immune System
Cycling gets you out and into the great unknown and this can be really beneficial for your immune system.
By exposing it to rainy days, muddy bogs, and flies in your mouth (we make it sound so glamorous, right?) your immune system will become more familiar with these conditions and help you stay away from illnesses like the common cold and flu.
17. Let’s You Follow In The Footsteps of Legends
Finally, cycling can give you the chance to channel your inner hero and follow in the footsteps of some of the biggest sporting legends in history. The great mountains of the Tour de France are not locked away from the public like stadiums or arenas are and this is something we should all cherish.
Whether it’s Greg Le Mond, Bernard Hinault, or perhaps Mark Cavendish that you want to replicate, you truly can as they have all built their legends on regular roads that the public can ride on.
There we have it! 17 benefits of cycling for men, hopefully, this piece has shone some light on these things and given you the inspiration to get out on your bike.