I’m 31 years old and I haven’t exercised or worked out since high school. When I was into my training, I was pretty hardcore about it. I worked out everyday and got pretty big so I still have a little of my muscular build, minus my torso and spare tire.
Is the exercise bike as effective for burning fat, as running? I have broken both my ankles, on two separate occasions and they kill me even to walk in the morning. The pain in my ankles actually brings me to my knees when I do try to run for any length of time. Unfortunately, I really can’t afford a gym membership anywhere. If I was to ride the bike for my cardio exercise, how many miles a day would I have to ride in order to burn a significant amount of calories to help me lose excess body fat? My current schedule allows me to ride the bike 5 days per week.
Determining whether or not running burns more calories than biking really depends on the intensity level each exercise is being performed at. Biking and running can both be performed at a very casual pace or a very intense pace. Biking intensity can also be adjusted through gearing changes. Another variable is whether or not there are any hills involved. With so many variables it takes more time than it’s worth trying to determine which burns more calories. And since running brings you very intense pain, discussing it as an option seems pointless. If you experience pain while exercising, the fact is that you simply will not stick with that specific exercise for the long run due to the negative feedback you receive from it. It’s much better to choose exercises that you enjoy doing and that are 100% pain free so you can find motivation to continue doing them.
Biking is a very good form of cardio exercise and by adjusting certain variables it can be extremely intense. How many miles you should ride depends on your current fitness level. The most important thing is to just get out there and find your way. In the beginning, your purpose should be to simply go out and get your body moving and see how you feel. Don’t be too concerned with distance or time at this point. The important thing is to get on the bike and ride every day. By doing this you are making exercise a daily part of your life until it becomes a habit. You will also naturally find how many miles you need to ride in order to get a good workout. As you get stronger you will also naturally increase the amount of time, distance and intensity that you ride at. It’s really all about just getting out there and exploring it for yourself.
Other options given your situation may include swimming or rollerblading. Swimming is very low-cost and there is no impact on the joints of the body. Swimming is one of the best cardio exercises you can do because it involves using all of the muscles of the body. For this reason it also burns a tremendous amount of calories. Rollerblading will also hold your ankles in place and provide support while performing the exercise. Both are options worth exploring and it will provide you with some variety in your workout routine.
A great week for you might consist of biking 3 days a week, swimming 1 day a week and rollerblading the other day to meet your 5 day a week fitness goal. But again, the important thing is just to get out there each day and make exercise a part of your daily lifestyle.