Indoor exercise bike

Is it good to ride an indoor exercise bike everyday?

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In the midst of the global pandemic of the Covid-19 crisis, sales of indoor exercise bike have skyrocketed in the countries where most outdoor sports were practiced.

Whether for users of running, trail, enduro, MTB or motocross, we are all clear that exercise bikes are good for losing weight and very handy during quarantines.

But, is it good to use the stationary bike to train every day?

Beyond helping you avoid putting on a few extra kilos, we need to know what exercise bikes do for our bodies, to find out if we’re keeping in good physical condition or if it’s really not worth buying an exercise bike.

Especially when we consider the indoor exercise bike benefits to complement our specific sports training for motocross, enduro or MTB.

We’re going to answer these questions now that we’re going to be spending more time at home due to social distancing and intermittent quarantines: exercise bike training is here to stay.

What does a stationary bike do for your body?

Indoor exercise bikes are a great cardio ally. It prevents you from a heart attack by regulating blood pressure and blood sugar.

Aside from these benefits, stationary bikes also help in reducing bad cholesterol levels. 

As we leave the house less frequently than before, using an exercise bike daily to burn some calories in a short amount of time and shedding those extra kilos would seem like a great idea.

However, experts recommend to use an exercise bike 4-6 days a week and take at least one day off to let your muscles relax.

As an off-road rider, you will also find an attraction in the practice of stationaty biking.

It is clear that it will never serve to simulate the work of strength and technique on the ground. But with quarantines coming and going, they are a very good option for working your endurance.

Indoor Exercise bike

Does the indoor exercise bike benefit your upper body?

And opposing popular belief, research has shown that when done right, an indoor exercise bike routine provides benefits to both lower and upper parts of the body.

In fact, it is one of the very few workouts that not only strengthens the back muscles but also exerts the least amount of strain reducing the chance of any long-term injuries.

Exercise bike training has much less impact than walking or running. All you need to start your workout is the right bike and good posture to match your technique.

Do you want to know how much is an exercise bike?

Here we recommend some of the most interesting options available in the market:

Is the static bike good for losing weight?

This is one of the most frequently asked questions. An argument against it is that it only makes you sweat, which means you are not losing fat and just water.

While that sounds logical, it is a flawed argument as sweating is an indication of your body’s endurance and you continue to push it when you move to a goalpost farther ahead.

So the answer is yes. Depending on the type of workout you use, the indoor exercise bike will help you lose weight.

Indoor exercise bike training to achieve endurance benefits

Do indoor exercise bikes work for endurance training?

There are many routines depending on your level, but let’s focus on your goals when looking for an indoor exercise bike resistance training.

If you are a dirt bike lover, we will show you three workouts that in combination will mark a before and after in the endurance of any rider.

Pyramid training with indoor exercise bike

It is a method by which the intensity of the exercise is gradually increased until the maximum is reached. Then, the intensity is reduced while maintaining a comfortable pedaling pace.

The pyramids simulate what in practice would be like climbing hills.

Threshold Training with Stationary Bike 

It runs at a threshold close to the user’s maximum aerobic capacity, for the maximum time it can be held.

This brings the rider outs of their comfort zone during the training. But this discomfort is precisely the stimulus that allows the improvement of the heart capacity.

These type of cardio sequences last 20-30 minutes maximum.

The reason? At these intensities, a high accumulation of waste substances such as lactic acid is generated, which causes great muscle fatigue. 

Sandra Gómez Stationary Bike

Recommended Sequence:

Warm-up: 

5-10 minutes at an easy pace by activating pulses.

Training: 
  1. 0-5 min: increase intensity up to FC Zone 50-60% 
  2. 5-10 min: increase intensity up to FC Zone 60-70% 
  3. 10-15 min: increases intensity up to FC Zone 70-80% 
  4. 15-17 min: increases intensity up to FC Zone 80-90% 
  5. 17-25 min: let your CF be reduced to 60-70%
  6. 25-30 min: closes the cycle by going back up to FC Zone 80-90%.
Cool-down: 

5-10 minutes at an easy pace, letting the FC go down to normal rates.

HIIT Interval Training

It could be considered a type of threshold training because in theory, this technique consists of bringing the body to its maximum CF capacity.

However, in these express sessions, it is rarely possible to reach these maximum thresholds, because the form of execution is interspersed with short times of maximum intensity (20 – 40 seconds) and short times of rest (from 40 seconds to several minutes, depending on the previous adaptation of the user to this type of technique).

Interleaving maximum effort and rest, in such short periods, will make that in the first and last laps few users manage to reach their maximum thresholds.

But this does not detract from the effectiveness of exercise bike training in improving cardiovascular endurance.

It is also especially effective for fat loss due to the metabolic and hormonal activation that this type of resistance training provides.

Indoor exercise bike

Sequence:

Warm-up:

or 30 minutes at easy pace by activating pulses.

Training:
  1. 20-40 sec at maximum intensity (>60%)
  2. 20-40 sec rest: increase intensity up to FC Zone 60-70%
  3. 10-15 min: increase intensity up to FC Zone 70-80%
  4. 15-17 min: increase intensity up to FC Zone 80-90%
  5. 17-25 min: let your CF be reduced to 60-70%
  6. 25-30 min: closes the cycle by going back up to FC Zone 80-90%.
Cool-down:

30 minutes at an easy pace, letting the FC go down to normal rates.

In short, the best exercise to achieve cardio benefits is to train according to each rider’s maximum heart rate.

This way you will force your body to spend more time in the higher heart rate zones and in the long run this will dramatically improve your aerobic system.

There is no doubt that it will help you make a difference on the off-road dirt bike, improving your performance or helping you get in one piece at the end of the race.

We recommend training on the indoor exercise bike using a heart rate meter, to better control the stress and heart rate thresholds.

If you don’t have this option, use the self-perceived effort scale. This measurement is imprecise, but it will help you understand your sensations in relation to the effort you are making.

The scale goes from 1 to 10, where 1 is an extremely easy effort, 5 is a moderate effort and 10 is a maximum effort.

Exercise bike training at home

The exercise bike is a perfect choice for an endurance routine to maintain aerobic capacity during covid-19 quarantines.

But pay attention, rider, it is also important to maintain a strength exercise routine at home so you don’t lose the physical gains you have made on the bike. 

With the Powering App you can configure your workouts by choosing to train at the gym or from home. And to know what equipment you need to train from home, you have this post about how to set up your essential gym at home.

The stationary bike is ideal to help recovery one or two days after a leg-strengthening session. The longer, slower sessions pump blood and nutrients to the leg muscles while removing all the waste substances accumulated by intense exercise.

So now you know, get back on the bike, with Netflix on your iPad ready to go, and start pedaling with little effort – about 40-50% of your maximum heart rate or 5/6 on the perceived stress scale.

Do about 45 minutes of constant, controlled pedaling to keep your leg muscles moving and reduce muscle aches and pains.

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