For me, the next best thing to hiking is biking. It’s yet another way to enjoy nature at its best and is an invigorating alternative way to incorporate fun with physical exercise. It also allows you can cover more ground at a faster pace!
It was a beautiful fall day in 2016 when I first swung a leg over the frame of a fat bike. Only a short time before, I had been introduced to a local biking organization (VORC) and the concept of single track and multi-use trails. At the time I was riding my 20+ year old Specialized mountain bike on the city streets and found I enjoyed the dirt trails better. One of my new biking friends who had just gotten himself a fat bike, told me I had to give it a try. I didn’t know what I was getting into until I took the bike for a ride on the trails. Oh boy…I’m in LOVE!!!!
VROOM!! Here’s what single track trail riding (on a mountain bike) looks like:
At first glance, your eyes will be drawn to the large tires that makes it looks like a motorized dirt bike but without the motor. A fat bike has wide rims, extra-large tires and appropriately-dimensioned frames to make it all fit together. Like most people, I thought the large tires would make the bike hard to steer and pedal but on the dirt trails it wasn’t. I have found riding my fat tire bike on cement or other similar surfaces can make pedaling more challenging. But maybe that is what you’re looking for…
Why a fat tire bike?
It’s the improved traction on the dirt to flotation when riding through the snow, the oversized tires lets the bike roll on the dirt trails with ease. The wide rubber tire adds notable grip on the ground, stability and the extra-large surface area won’t allow the wheel to sink-in as much into soft terrane like snow or sand like a skinner tired bike. Adjustments to the tire pressure will also give the tires some squish where more rubber is conforming onto the trail for some serious grip.
Fat biking is a cycling subcategory that has increasingly gained a serious following over the last decade. But in doing a little “Googling” isn’t really a new concept.
I found a fat bike fits my preferred type of riding (on dirt trails) and allows me to ride all year round, with a few acceptations to the rule. Fat biking may not be for everyone, but the good news is there are all different types of bikes for all different styles of riding. Make a choice on the bike that fits the style of riding you like to do – whether it’s fat biking, mountain biking, road biking, or fitness biking. Yes, there is a bicycle made with you in mind! Don’t forget to get a bike helmet – protect that precious melon of yours!
Riding a fat bike on the snow is the bomb!
What’s the appeal?
Bike riding lets you add a fitness activity into your day even when you don’t think you have time for a workout. Studies have shown you will get the same cardiovascular benefits from cycling than you get from any other form of aerobic exercise – such as walking, jogging or dancing. Your muscles will get a boost. Biking promotes strengthening of your thighs, hips and yes, your rear end. If you choose a route with hill climbing, your arms and upper body will benefit when you stand to pedal. Even more, cycling is gentle on your joints to help preserve cartilage. This is especially advantageous for those who suffer from muscle strain, foot or knee troubles, or back pain inflicted by high impact activities. Integrating a daily routine of biking can also help fight the incremental weight gain and waistline expansion many of us tend to experience at the midlife. Yet another plus!
Biking promotes a positive mind and spirit. The correlation between exercise and the health of our mind and spirit is not a new concept. There are many scientific studies that have been done over the years linking the connection between the two. As the body of research grows, it becomes evident that regular exercise – especially physical activity outdoors – can be a key component to influencing a positive mood and coping with the general stress of daily life.
Whether it’s to boost your fitness, health, or to just get out of the house, taking up bicycle riding could be one of the best decisions you will ever make. Not convinced yet? Here’s a list of a few cycling benefits from improving your health, happiness and relationships:
- Enjoy Nature
- Good Whole Body Workout
- Great for Strength and Stamina
- Makes for A Healthy Heart
- Promotes Overall Wellness
- Low impact: Less Stress on the Joints
- Make It as Intense As You Want
- Fun Way to Get Fit Without Necessarily Trying Too Hard
- Cycling Is a Good companion to control or reduce weight
- You’ll Look and Feel Younger
- Opportunity to Spend Some Time With Your Significant Other
- Make It a Family Activity
- Works Out Your Stress and Improves Your Mood
- Encourages You To Live In The Moment
- Increases your Brain Power – Make Those Creative Breakthroughs
- Improves Balance and Coordination
- Helps You Sleep Better
- Provides Social Connections and Make Some New Friends
- Developing a Positive Addiction
What else should you know?
For starters, make sure to drink plenty of water before, during, and after your bike ride. Stay hydrated! Put a water bottle on your bike or in a pack for the ride. Dehydration can make you feel physically and/or mentally drained and affect your ride experience – so avoid it at all cost!
I like to boost up with Young Living’s NingXia Red (overall wellness), NingXia Nitro (enhances cognitive and athletic performance), and/or NingXia Zyng (bubbly guilt-free lift) for all of its naturally derived ingredients and health benefits. In a travel pouch, I will bring along some essential oils, such as Peppermint, Lavender, Purification, Copaiba, RC, and Frankincense, for many different purposes. You never know what you are going to get into or what may happen, so I like to be prepared.
To learn more about how I use Young Living essential oils and products on bicycle rides or with other fitness activities, please contact me by e-mail or just send me a quick FB Message. I’d love to share what I know with you!