8 Advantages of Using an Indoor Bike Trainer to Lose Weight

Bike Riding to Lose Weight

 

Updated: July 8, 2015

Have you ever taken a close look at the people in the stands of an American football game? I mean really looking. As in looking to see who’s filling their seat with a healthy body mass index, and who would be making better use of their time doing some exercise…rather than watching someone else exercise.

What I see when the cameras scan the crowd are round-faced citizens of a country leading the world in obesity.

Bike Riding to Lose Weight

 

While ‘going on a diet’ is all the rage these days (just take a look at all of the diet websites), interest in regular exercise lags somewhat behind. But without the exercise part of the weight loss equation, you’ll merely transform yourself from a big, spongy person to a smaller, spongy person.

I make good use of a bike trainer to get in healthy exercise year-round, regardless of the seasons.

 

What’s A Bike Trainer?

One of my friends read a headline I’d written for my blog…’Get Cheap Thrills By Maintaining Your Bike Trainer’, and wondered what kind of crazy stuff I was into now. After-all, the gal who is her Personal Trainer didn’t need ‘maintenance’.

But my indoor bike trainer does need a bit of maintenance (a couple of drops of oil now and then) because it’s a handy machine that I attach my road bike to, not a guy who alternates yelling at me and affirming me at the local gym.

My bike trainer is a machine, not a guy named Jeremy.

 

Some Bike Trainer Perks

Let’s get going with some of the advantages associated with using a bike trainer as a tool to lose weight.

1. If you live anywhere in the world that doesn’t experience perfect year-round weather, you’ll find that most forms of outdoor exercise take a hit during certain parts of the year. For some of us it’s due to rain, snow, and ice during the winter months. For others its sweltering heat during the summer. By having the option of doing a focused indoor workout on a bike trainer, weather is eliminated from the ‘I can’t exercise today’ excuse list.

2. Not having to go to a gym for exercise makes better use of your time. When you have to factor in the time it takes to load up and get to and from the gym, there will be days when there’s no time to exercise. Jumping on your bike trainer can consume as little as 20 minutes.

3. Sometimes going to the gym can include making sure you’re obeying an agreed upon set of fashion standards. At home on your bike trainer, just about anything goes in the ‘what should I wear’ department.

4. A bike trainer has a very small footprint. Unlike a stationary bike, a rowing machine, an elliptical, or a treadmill, a bike trainer doesn’t take up a lot of floorspace. In fact, when not in use, it is folded up and stuffed into a small closet.

5. Bringing your workout indoors is the only sane place to be for those who live in highly congested areas. From a cyclist’s perspective, fighting traffic can be both frustrating and dangerous on busy streets. Riding indoors during the bulk of the week, and then transporting your bike outside of the crowded city for week-end rides is a pleasant way to get in your exercise.

6. Riding a bike is easy on the joints, provided you’re pedaling at a high enough cadence and not putting too much strain on your knees. A smooth pedaling stroke spares you the shock inherent in a lot of other forms of exercise.

7. A bike trainer is perfect for the type of exercise that strips the weight off fastest…interval training. Although it has long been the domain of endurance athletes, interval training (alternating hard efforts with easy efforts throughout the workout) has now hit the ‘fitness consciousness’. By doing interval training you can count on your metabolic rate to be elevated as long as several hours after your workout. You get all of that fat burning time for free, which is a great deal for your efforts.

8. A bike trainer makes interval training possible for those who wouldn’t normally be able to put in short bursts of hard efforts. One of the more interesting videos I watched recently demonstrated a short, but sweet workout which entailed a 10 minute warm-up…followed by 10 minutes of alternating 10 second bursts of intense effort with 10 seconds of easy pedaling…followed by 10 minutes warm-down. It occurred to me that people who have a lot of weight to lose would find it impossible to go to the local high school track and do wind sprints for ten minutes.

Because there’s no shock involved with pedaling a bike trainer, this type of effort is possible to anyone who’s been cleared by their doctor for more than mild workouts.

 

Use A Bike Trainer To Get The Body You’re Seeking

We’re a country benefiting from too much of a good thing. Not only is our food packed with too many calories, but having to burn off what we do eat isn’t a part of our ‘natural day’. We have so many labor saving devices around that we have to invent ways to keep ourselves slim and trim.

One of the exercise devices that’s been an important part of my fitness arsenal is my trusty bike trainer. I keep it maintained with a bit of lubrication now and then, and it keeps me physically fit.

It’s a good trade.

About the author: Ron Fritzke is reviews cyling gear for his website, Cycling-Review.com. His latest focus has been on indoor bike trainers. A former 2:17 marathoner, he now directs his competitive efforts toward racing his bike…and looking for good cycling products.

 

Gera

Gera is a techie & foodie passionate about how to succeed in social media.
He focuses also on successful blogging tips and food connections.

You can connect with him on Google +.

Subscribe to his Free WPulsar Newsletter about WordPress Plugin & Theme Reviews, Blogging and Social Media.

Mitch Ribak

Just purchased one about a week ago and I’m really enjoying it. I use this twice a day – when I wake up and when I get home from work. This is truly a stress reliever for me.

Ron Fritzke

Hi Mitch,

I’m glad it’s working out so well for you. You’re quite ambitious going at it twice a day.

Is that Merritt Island, Florida? If so, getting out of the summer heat with an indoor ride must be a welcome relief.

Which trainer did you choose?

Ron

DLXD

The indoor bike sounds nice..it might be perfect for rainy days..don’t forget to use outside too 🙂

Sofa Glendale

I couldn’t live without my bike trainer! My sister got me one for my birthday last year when I moved to an area without very many accessible bike paths, and I love working out with it. Of course I still take my bike out once in a while, but it’s a pain, so usually I ride from inside.

~Kayla

    Ron Fritzke

    Hi Kayla,

    Your comment reminded me of my trip visiting my son in Ohio. I was struck by how difficult it is to ride on the streets…no room for cyclists.

    In the western USA there are usually wide shoulders on the road. That’s where us cyclists ride…so we don’t have to rely on bike paths.

    I’m happy to hear that the bike trainer is working out so well for you.

    Where do you live, and which bike trainer are you riding on?

    Ron

Michael Said

An indoor bike trainer is ideal for so many reasons, it is quick, it should never break down and you can exercise whenever you want to. Very good exercise.

amy a.

I hope you get to do more guest posts here Ron! 🙂

Cheers

Ron Fritzke

Hi Darren,

I understand your point.

While full body exercise may be optimum, if you want to get the most ‘bang for your weight-loss buck’, it serves you well to work the largest muscles in the body…the muscles in the legs and gluts. Cycling does just that.

Ron

Ron Fritzke

You’ve got that right! Even when I’m doing a very structured workout on the trainer, I have the TV or a DVD going.

Ron

Ron Fritzke

Although I’m a ‘cycling guy’, I think that the rowing machine supplies more of a ‘whole body’ workout.

One thing they do have in common…pedal or row your heart out, and you can count on not going anywhere!:-) Except toward physical fitness, of course.

Ron

Rosemary Arias

It’s really great not having to go out of the house to do an exercise and to maintain a healthy living is one of my primary goal. Maybe I’ll try to have this cycling in my house too.

Eva C.

I’m on a program for about three months now, but the problems is I find it difficult going to the gym because of my schedule. I guess you got a very nice point here. I think I’ll consider buying my own home equipments.

Ron Fritzke

Whether inside or out, cycling is a tremendous way to stay fit!

Louis D.

I think Ron is right. It doesn’t really matter where you work it out to sweat. The thing is, you’re doing something to stay fit and that’s the juice to all of these.

Christie

I love bike trainers! I also take spinning classes a few days a week and find those helpful for staying fit too. Would you say a bike trainer is better than intervals on an elliptical? Thanks for the informative post, very helpful for those not familiar with these!

Ron Fritzke

Hi Christie,

It’s great to hear that you’re staying so fit. You’re right…most people aren’t aware of bike trainers, I know I didn’t know about them ten years ago.

One advantage that an elliptical has is that there can be more ‘full body’ involvement because you are using your arms too. Either way, getting your heart and lungs working is tremendous.

Ron

adz

Bike Riding is also great for interval training….. Fantastic way to burn a few extra calories when doing exercise I always find it easier than running. “A bike trainer makes interval training possible for those who wouldn’t normally be able to put in short bursts of hard effort” 🙂

Cheers

Adz @ Super Quick Weight Loss

Lizzy

I’ve always enjoyed biking, but I’ve never done it indoors it’s always been outside. I wouldn’t mind doing it at the gym, but I’m curious what the different between indoor biking and spinning is? I know spin classes are really popular right now and are supposed to be a great workout.

    Ron Fritzke

    The way I understand it, spin classes are done ‘all together now’ with an instructor telling the riders when to go harder and when to ride easier.

    With a little music and an enthusiastic instructor, spin classes are popular.

    The kind of indoor riding I do is by myself in front of a TV screen, trying to watch something to take my mind off the workout. It usually works out OK as long as too much sweat doesn’t get in my eyes.

    Ron

James

I haven’t tried biking as a part of my exercise routine, but heard lots of good comments about using bike (either stationary or not). So I’m trying to consider it too.

michelle

Great perks you’ve shared in here with us! But I was wondering if you have any tips on what to do to avoid turning your indoor bike into a clothes hanger? 😀 Cause that’s what happened to mine… Sometimes just because you have it sitting near your bed it’s even harder to convince yourself get up on it – the eternal I’ll do it later…

Ron

Nikki,
Sounds like you got a good deal on your trainer. Considering that you don’t spend any time ‘coasting’ on a bike trainer, like you may do when riding out on the street, it could certainly be true that you get more bang for your buck on a trainer.
Ron

Ron Fritzke

The number of calories you burn on any exercise can be estimated by considering your resting heart rate, your body weight and your heart rate when you are doing the exercise. Go to the following page to use their formula…http://www.shapesense.com/fitness-exercise/calculators/heart-rate-based-calorie-burn-calculator.aspx

Sharyn

Great article! I’m on my trainer right now. I swear by it. I surf the net and read on my trainer and have been using one since 1993. I don’t know what I’d do without it. You can stick your bike right in front of the tv and watch movies or even play video games too. There’s totally no excuse to not exercise if you have a trainer, it’s a great tool.

Richard Thompson

Any kind of bike training is so beneficial because of it’s low impact nature. For anyone with joint pain, biking may be the way to go. Like the Sharyn said above me, bikes don’t have to be boring either! Putting them in an entertaining place in the house is awesome. Watching tv while biking is a great tip. Also, try shaping your workout around what’s going on. Commercial? Try sprinting every other commercial. There’s plenty you can do on a bike to keep things interesting, and keep you healthy.

Comments are closed