For those who want to try mountain biking, you should know that there are more than just a few benefits that come with a sport like mountain biking.
There are very few sports out there that are quite as exciting as mountain biking. Imagine soaring through hills and mountainous areas and making jumps that would be hell on your legs if you didn’t have a bicycle between you and the ground. It’s quite the adrenaline rush. What’s even more appealing is that mountain biking is pretty accessible to everyone that wants to try it out. All that adrenaline-packed fun just requires a bike, some safety gear, and a dedication to practice harder and more perilous trails on mountains. Alternatively, it’s a great way to get your cardio groove on in an exciting way.
For those who want to try mountain biking, you should know that there are more than just a few benefits that come with a sport like mountain biking. Between all the fun and the physical benefits, you’d have your hands full of blessings just from this one activity. If you’re still having doubts about whether it’s worth the bike gear and traveling, here are a few of these benefits that might draw you closer to mountain biking.
Enjoy a big slice of nature
One of the most immediately obvious benefits of taking your bike to the nearest mountain range is that you get to enjoy nature like no other. Right off the bat, you're spending time in the clean mountain air and you're surrounded with a thriving ecosystem that's definitely worth exploring.
If that weren't great enough on its own, you also get to ride a bike through it, covering a lot more ground than you would on foot. You can go from one end to the other one within a day or two. Obviously, bigger mountains mean bigger trips, but that only adds to the charm of long trails.
Mountainous areas can feature some pretty interesting flora and fauna. While you might be focused on the adrenaline of rushing through mountain bike trails, you’ll definitely take note of the nature that surrounds you. Pick up a guide for the mountainous area you visit and read about all the unique things that are featured in the local ecosystem. It’ll feel like being an amateur biologist, with the added benefit of the rush that comes with extreme sports. It's a pretty good two-for-one deal.
Get the workout of your life
We all want to reach some level of physical perfection that goes with our bodies. It’s why some people do Yoga and others hit the gym three or five days a week. However, not everyone is well suited for the kind of exercising that involves spending hours in a cramped and dusty space. It can get old after a while. Sometimes, you want to feel the wind blow through your hair as you’re getting your pump on.
Riding a bike is already a solid exercise on its own. However, the slopes and uneven terrain help provide even better cardio than you might anticipate. Just spending an hour and a half will leave you drenched in sweat and your heart beating. Best of all, you’ll hardly notice, since it’s actually pretty fun.
Be prepared for a rush
Who would have imagined that riding a bicycle through tough terrain in a gorgeous setting would be fun and exciting? Well, pretty much everyone. It’s hard to find something about mountain biking that isn’t fun, except perhaps the drive to the actual mountain. Otherwise, it’s all excitement and adrenaline spikes.
All that exercising you do while riding a bike through difficult trails will pretty much pass in an instant. You won’t exactly feel like you’re exercising for a purpose. Instead, it’ll feel like a rollercoaster ride that just happened to burn off a few calories. It’s like going to the gym, except there’s no nagging voice in your head to push you to go further. You’re going on your own volition, and the exercise can just be an added benefit to the fun you have.
Say goodbye to excess calories
Speaking of exercise, there’s another reason why the popularity of mountain biking is on the rise. It helps burn off calories, and it does so without mercy. While you’re having the time of your life getting through dynamic twists and turns on the trail, you’re also using quite a bit of energy.
Getting up to a particular height is difficult enough on a bicycle, but oscillating between heights on a trail is on another level entirely. Imagine choosing the most dynamic setting on a stationary bike, and just going at it for hours. The number of used calories shown would be pretty high.
Lots of people are looking at mountain biking as a way to lose weight. Compared to running, you can already see the extra appeal. It's not boring or dull as simply walking on a horizontal surface, and you get lost in the fun while you exercise. Plus, anyone with a bit of excess weight would probably prefer it if they didn't have to run, as it can be hard on the joints for people of all sizes.
Biking, on the other hand, is pretty easy on the joints. With proper seat height and average knees, you'll find no difficulty getting on the bike and riding through any beginner trail. This makes it very easy to start riding, and you won't exactly see any good reason to stop. It's a recipe for losing any excess weight you might want to be gone.
Say hello to toned legs
There are few sports out there that work the legs quite like cycling. Ask any bodybuilder and they'll tell you that the worst muscles to build are the legs, by far. You'll rarely see gigantic legs outside of extreme gym buffs or cyclists.
Of course, you might not exactly want to have giant, beefy legs, but any amount of cycling will definitely leave them well-toned and muscular. This doesn’t come with too much effort or exercising, either. Just regularly cycling on a mountain path will most likely leave you with the ideal legs you’d want from such a workout. Even if you’re just doing it for fun, your legs will end up toned and gorgeous.
It's not just your legs that are getting a workout, either. With normal cycling, you rarely have to focus on staying balanced. Your body does it automatically on flat ground, so it’s just your legs and behind doing all the work. When you have to make sharp turns and go up steep inclines, your back is getting a solid workout as well.
Let’s not forget your arms, which are steering and maintaining your direction despite uneven surfaces. It’s a workout for your whole body, making it ideal for those who don’t want to spend too much time at the gym doing each and every muscle.
Let the biking cater to you
A long time ago, you might not have been able to get into mountain biking just like that. If you were interested, you had to find a mountain, a trail, a suitable bicycle, and someone to show you the ropes. Before the internet, this was reserved for those who knew a guy. Even if you had someone to show you the basics, who's to say that your bike would actually suit you? Would you know how to find one that's strong enough for mountain biking and fine-tune it so that you're comfortable and safe?
The great thing about today’s mountain biking scene is that it’s very accessible. When you go online, there’s a shop for just about anything you need, no matter what your desired hobby is. You can find an attractive and sturdy mountain bike with ease, even if you don’t know where to look. Gear is widely available and you can read up on all the different trails in every single country.
If you’re scared to go alone, you don’t have to bring someone with you. You can join group mountain biking sessions that others have organized. It's a social activity as well as a personal workout. Anyone can get into it if they really want to. The internet has seen to that.
Get some better shut-eye
Sleep is something we all need, now more than never. Chronic sleeplessness has stopped being considered a horrible deviation and is now pretty much considered the norm. People skip out on a day of sleep to do work and collapse from exhaustion the next day. It's standard for students and those working very demanding jobs. This doesn’t mean it’s any less unhealthy, though.
Part of the reason proper sleep hygiene isn't practiced is because of insomnia. It comes in many forms, but some are a result of a sedentary and screen-oriented lifestyle. When you spend much of your time laying around, your body gets used to it and doesn’t necessarily know when to signal exhaustion. Exercise and spending time outside in the sun are great ways to signal to your body what it really means to be “awake”.
This is why athletes often have an easier time falling asleep. Spending time outdoors and working out can do wonders for our circadian rhythm. As it just so happens, mountain biking is an activity that combines both. Getting out there and riding your bike will energize you for the rest of your day, but it will also make it easier to fall asleep after the sun goes down. It’s a convenient sleep remedy that shouldn’t be disregarded.
There’s really no shortage of benefits that come with a sport that is mountain biking. It combines all the adrenaline of being on a rollercoaster with the control and skill that come with being a racecar driver. Those who like the sport say they love it. Those who don’t at least have to admire the many benefits that come with the activity. At the very least, it’s something everyone should try out once. If not to become a professional, they should get a taste of the rush and cross it off their bucket lists. It’s definitely something worth giving a shot. Should you start enjoying it, prepare for the rides of your life.