Indoor vs. Outdoor Cycling: Which One is Better?
Indoor cycling is getting more and more popular these days. Sure enough, doing physical activity in the comforts of your home is irresistible–but does indoor cycling give you the health benefits your body needs?
Or are you sweating yourself out the wrong way?
This blog will discuss why it’s still best to do outdoor cycling rather than sticking with your stationary bike. That way, you can hit your fitness goals and enjoy the health benefits of cycling.
The first factor that sets outdoor cycling apart from indoor cycling is the temperature when doing the activity.
If you’ve done indoor cycling before, you might have noticed that your sweat begins to run only a couple of minutes into your routine. This is because there is a high chance that the temperature is higher indoors than outdoors because of the lack of ventilation.
As we know, sweating is your body’s way of regulating heat. However, even though you’ve already shed buckets of sweat when there is no proper airstream inside your house, there is minimal to no cooling effect.
The worst thing is that your body can only do so much when regulating heat. Your body will reach a certain point when it can no longer keep up in its process of regulating heat–this will result in a decrease in endurance and loss of performance.
In short, it’s faster to feel tired and exhausted when cycling indoors. If you’re used to indoor cycling, you might be surprised that you can cycle outdoors for more hours because your body can regulate heat better. Just don’t forget to bring your trusty water bottle!
The next thing you have to understand is the difference in kinetic energy between the two activities.
When cycling outdoors, you can use the kinetic energy of your bike for added acceleration and speed–especially when riding downhill or on a straight path. Kinetic energy gives you a better ride now and then.
Obviously, stationary bikes don’t produce that much kinetic energy. You’re required to make the same amount of force when pedaling and use the same energy from your body throughout your cycling routine.
In short, indoor cycling is a lot more strenuous than outdoor cycling because of the lack of kinetic energy.
As long as you have the proper routine, indoor and outdoor cycling can help you lose weight. But in terms of how much weight you can lose in one ride–outdoor cycling burns more calories than indoor biking.
According to research from Harvard University, a 155-pound (70.3 kg) person doing a 30-minute routine on a stationary bike burns 260 calories. On the other hand, an outdoor biker riding for 30 minutes can lose 391 calories.
Other Health Benefits
Lastly, outdoor cycling has more health benefits than indoor cycling.
While most indoor cycling routines only focus on weight loss and improving cardiovascular strength, outdoor cycling can improve your mental health, give you leaner muscle and even boost your immune system.
Furthermore, outdoor cycling gives you loads of other perks, such as exploring new places, bonding with friends, and even saving a few bucks from your commuting fare!
Your outdoor cycling routines will always be fun as long as you have safety biking accessories such as helmets and bike lights.
Despite the comfort and convenience of indoor cycling, outdoor cycling is still much better. So, if you’re going to shed buckets of sweat for physical activity, make sure it can help you achieve your health and fitness goals!