When you’re cycling, the main force you use is from your legs to pedal. But when you’re on a long bike ride, you may have to consider your entire body’s needs. You want a strong core for stability on your bike. You need stamina to tackle hills. Even when you have the best bicycle for exercise, if you aren’t strong enough to manage a ride, you won’t get very far. Here are some exercises that you can use throughout the week to strengthen your body for those long weekend rides.
Lunges for Strengthening Your Hamstrings
Lunges strengthen your leg muscles, so they’re great for cyclists. There are a lot of ways to do lunges. If you’re a beginner start by using a chair or wall for balance while you perform the lunges. As you get stronger, you can add weights or go lower to intensify your workout. Get the form down right before you amp up your workout, because you don’t want to cause an injury.
Planks Strengthen Your Core
Planks are a great exercise for core strength. You’ll work your back, arm, leg and shoulder muscles. Start by working your way up to 1-minute planks. Work on technique, again to prevent injury to your body and to get the muscles working together. As you get stronger, you can increase the difficulty level by doing side planks, hip raises or single arm planks.
Burpees for Cardio Fitness
Burpees are a full-body workout, so you’re using your legs, buttocks, abdomen, chest and shoulder muscles. Burpees build muscle strength and endurance, and they burn body fat and increase the heart rate. If you can do 5 to 10 minutes of burpees a day, you’re getting a workout in short form. Burpees are great because you don’t need any equipment. You can do burpees in a small space. Once you get the form right, you can make modifications to increase the intensity of your workout. It won’t take long before you can take on a long bike ride on your SixThreeZero body ease women’s comfort bicycle.
Leg lifts strengthen your leg muscles, which will help you take on longer rides. These exercises also work on your abdominal muscles, helping your core gain strength. Leg lifts can also give you more flexibility in your lower back. You don’t need any equipment. You can do leg lifts anywhere you can stretch out. They look simple, but mastering the correct form is vital to success. Once you get the basic form, you can add some variations to make your workout more challenging.
Kettlebell swings work on your quads, hamstrings and hips. You can start with lighter weights and work up for more intensity. Keep your form strong. Do 15 to 20 reps. Rest 1 to 2 minutes. Do 3 to 5 sets at one sitting. Hold the kettlebell tight. As you gain strength, you can use the kettlebell for different exercises to vary your workout. You can work your entire body with this piece of equipment.
Find a great bike, like a women’s 26 inch hybrid bike, at SIxThreeZero.