When we welcome in a new year, we often welcome new goals that we plan to accomplish that will help mould us into a new version of ourselves, hence the saying “New Year, New Me”.
The most common New Years resolution is to get fit and loose weight, we’re all guilty of over indulging over Christmas so loosing weight is often welcomed in open arms and the excuse we often give when picking up an extra mince pie or festival beverage over Christmas – “well the diet starts in January so I may as well indulge now”.
The most common way that people try to get fit and loose weight is to join the gym and then hope for the best. Gyms are always rammed to full capacity in January due to people wanting to turn their bad eating habits and lack of exercise on its head. However, the increase in gym users often dies down after 3 weeks or so when people start falling into old habits.
New Year, New Bike
Cycling is a great form of exercise, in particular Road Cycling and something we plan to make the most of for 2017. Ever since the success of Sir Bradley Wiggins in the 2012 London Olympics, road cycling was something us Brits really started to pursue.
What’s So Great About Road Cycling?
There are some many reasons to get take up Road Cycling as a method to keeping fit for 2017. Here’s just a few:
Here in the UK, we’re blessed to have some of world’s most beautiful countryside, perfect for an afternoon of bike riding. Cycling is a great sport for getting you out of the 4 walls of a gym and out into the open air where there are thousands of views to enjoy on many different cycle paths across the UK. One moment you could find yourself cycling past a field full of livestock from a local farm to a small, quaint, British village.
Stick To It
Each session of road cycling will be completely different to the last, whether it’s down to the route, the weather or the company, no 2 routes will be the same. Because of this you’re likely to stick at it and less likely to give up. Compare this to repeating the same workouts at the gym on the same equipment, within the same 4 walls, you can start to understand why people give up on their fitness goals. Saying that, cycling isn’t just about loosing weight, it also a great way to relax and escape the reality of day-to-day life but letting the mind wander in the company of glorious scenery.
Road Cycling is a really sociable sport. You often find large groups of people cycling together at any one time. This is great for anyone looking to start cycling or meet people in their local area. It means there will always be people around you to encourage you and help you reach your goals. You’ll find that in your local area there will be multiple cycling groups to join at varying levels, whether it’s more of a social club cycling from town to town, or most expert and long distance.
No man or women can deny that they like to look after themselves and try to look their best wherever possible. Cycling is a great way to either loose weight or stay in shape; a vigorous hour like bike ride for a 185 lb cyclist will see you burning over 800 calories. The equivalent to burning this many calories would be a 6mph run for the same size people, and we know which we’d prefer to do!
Due to road cycling being an outside sport, it’s also great for Vitamin D production. When our bodies are exposed to sunlight, we produce Vitamin D which is a vitamin which helps keep teeth, bones and muscles healthy. So not only is cycling great for the waistline but it’s also great for helping keep us healthy on the inside. Not to mention you can also get a tan at the same time which is a nice little bonus. Tip: make sure you’re always wearing sun cream when cycling.
Cycling is probably one of the most practical sports. You can often incorporate cycling into your day-to-day life without having to make any drastic changes to your routine. For example, most people choose to cycle to work where possible. A great way to keep fit, think about the tasks ahead and all without the worry of having to go to the gym after work. Cycling could also be incorporated into going to the local shop or visiting friends/family close.
Once we knew that road cycling was one of our fitness goals for 2017, we went for the Carrera Vanquish Disc Mens Road Bike and here’s our review below:
Before riding the bike for the first time, I was really apprehensive about being able to ride the bike in terms of stability. I’d never ridden a road bike before, so was used to the wider, thicker wheels of a mountain bike. However as soon as I sat on the bike, all those worries vanished.
My first route on the bike saw me sticking to a residential area but choosing to ride it just before sun-set to avoid any embarrassment of falling off – luckily that didn’t happen. Once I was used to the bike I couldn’t wait to really ride the bike at speed on an open clear road, just as it was designed for.
My first cycling session saw me cycling to the next village a good 3-4 miles away but felt round the corner due to the speed the bike goes at. It was great to get the bike on an open road where I could really push it and it certainly delivered on my expectations – the adrenaline rush from the speed was great. The bike was also great at going up hill at speed, something which had always been difficult on a mountain bike. The light weight frame was great too, making it a completely different experience to riding a mountain bike and I could see exactly why so many people were taking up road cycling.
The Claris gears worked really well and smoothly, allowing me to reach a good, high speed and maintain it. The Mechanical disc brakes are really powerful and at times I found the bike reminding me just how powerful the brakes are, just what you need for a decent road bike when travelling at speed.
I now can’t wait to really put the bike through it paces by joining my local cycling group and covering many miles on this good looking bike.
Would also definitely recommend getting the guys in store at Halfords setting the bike up for you, as that way I knew there would be no issues with installation etc…
Overall, a great bike for anyone looking to take up cycling for 2017. If you’re looking for more tips and advice on starting cycling or upgrading your bike then check our Halfords site here.