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Keeping fit with a kick of adrenaline

Cyclist Naman Agarwal discusses cycling as a non-weight-bearing workout and its stress-relieving qualities.

Cycling is a fantastic way to boost your fitness and overall well-being. Whether you cycle occasionally or regularly, it offers benefits beyond just getting from one place to another. Cycling serves as a great means of commuting, lets you enjoy the outdoors, and contributes to improved health. The benefits vary depending on how a person chooses to incorporate cycling into their routine.

Apart from human health, cycling also has positive effects on the environment. Naman Agarwal, a professional cyclist, shares his fitness routine using his bike. His cycling journey began early, riding around the house before discovering the thrill of mountain biking in 2017. “As a kid, any bike would catch my eye, and I’d just admire how beautiful they were,” he recalls. While cycling undeniably contributes to physical health, Agarwal emphasizes the additional joy and adventure it brings. “Even though the health factor is there, I lean more towards the adventurous and thrill side of it,” he expresses.

Non-weight-bearing workout

Cycling offers distinct advantages over other fitness activities. Unlike jogging or high-intensity training, cycling is a low-impact exercise that minimizes stress on your joints. This quality makes cycling an effective option for individuals dealing with joint issues. In contrast to weightlifting, which exerts significant pressure on joints and bones, cycling is a non-weight-bearing workout. The bicycle supports your body weight, reducing strain on joints while delivering a beneficial workout.

Connection with nature

You can enjoy cycling outdoors while taking in beautiful scenery. Whether on highways, trails, or mountains, Agarwal thrives on the experience. “Many people see cycling as a strict fitness routine, but for me, it’s about having fun and being adventurous,” he says.

 

Cyclist Naman Agarwal  Photo: Courtesy of Naman Agarwal
Cycling differs from other exercises not only in how you perform it but also in where and when. Riding your bike down to the river or up the steepest hills in your city offers more than just a full-body workout. “It’s a unique form of exercise because your body reacts to the surrounding environment,” he adds.

Connecting with the natural world and the outdoors happens as you navigate grand scenes, explore new paths or commute to work. This interaction with the regular elements and changing atmospheric conditions is believed to enhance mental health and overall enjoyment of the activity. Agarwal adds, “Not many fitness activities offer that.”

Healthy coping mechanism

For Agarwal, cycling is a significant stress reliever. “You forget about all the problems and challenges you’re facing; time passes more smoothly, and you feel like you’re the main character,” he shares. Unlike movies that romanticize various ways of overcoming difficult emotions, cycling is a more realistic alternative. He says it’s the best option for unwinding and having a good time.

Pre-cycling routine

Agarwal believes there shouldn’t be any complicated routine before cycling. He adds to it saying, “I only follow a routine if there’s a cycling event approaching. Usually, I cycle fifteen to twenty-five kilometers around the trails near the city to ensure I get the best practice. Honestly, what counts is how much you enjoy the process. If you love it, the body will take care of itself.”

Other things to consider

Cycling has its advantages, but it’s important to remember that no single activity or exercise is better than all others. It’s often best to include different practices in your routine to have a well-rounded fitness program. Each fitness activity has its benefits.

 

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