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How to Use an Electric Bike to Get Fit

How to Use an Electric Bike to Get Fit

Muscles engaged during cycling include quadriceps, hamstrings, gluteals, abdominals, and calf muscles.Ebikes have become increasingly popular over the last decade, not only known for just convenience but it can also be used to get fit. Ebikes allow you to get that extra burn without putting any excessive strain on your joints and muscles. If you want to get started on your fitness journey, e-bikes are definitely a good start.

This post will delve into different ways in which you can use e-bikes to kick start your journey into getting fit.

The beauty in using an electric bike to get fit is that you can get as little or as much exercise as you like on an e-bike. It has been proven that it is possible to get effective exercise on an e-bike if you use it in pedal-assist mode – and of course, also if you use it without assistance. According to an article on The Verge, No e-bikes aren’t cheating, “The average heart rate of a test subject riding an e-bike was 93.6 percent of those riding conventional bikes. Moreover, electric bikes appear to be an “excellent form of aerobic or cardiovascular exercise, even for experienced mountain bikers who regularly engage in this fitness activity.”  

Ebikes are heavy therefore your entire body—in particular your core—will have to put in the effort to ride it. This will cause your muscles to engage in the movements as you maneuver the bike. 

Riding an electric bike will improve your cardiovascular fitness, improving the efficiency of your heart, your lungs, and your blood vessels, while improving your blood pressure. Like all exercise, it will also improve many other aspects of your health, including your blood sugar processing, and resistance to cancer. 

In fact, researchers were often surprised at how much exercise people got on e-bikes, as compared to regular bikes. Some started off skeptical and admitted to being surprised by their research findings. In short, riding an electric bike brings with it all the many benefits of exercise, which has been described by researchers as a miracle cure for most of the ailments that eventually kill us (and can make our lives not worth living before that).

The Best Way to Get Fit with an Electric Bike – Use it for Transportation

Almost all researchers agree that if you get an adequate amount of moderate exercise, it will have an extremely good effect on your health. Specifically, the US Government recommends that we all get at least 2.5 hours of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise – or 1 hour and 15 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise – per week. Of course, it can be hard to fit this into a busy schedule. That’s why so many people are turning to active transportation, such as walking, cycling, or riding an electric bike.

When you ride a bike to work, for example, you get exercise twice a day, five days a week. That adds up to a whole lot of exercise very quickly. This happened to me when I started commuting to work every day on an e-bike – 30 minutes twice a day added up to 5 hours of moderate exercise per week. This was double the recommended minimum, and it made me fitter than I had ever been before.

Use Your Electric Assistance Wisely to Get Fit

With great power comes great responsibility! In the case of the e-bike, that means do not get a bike with a throttle controller and just sit on it, without pedaling. Obviously, that is not going to make you fit. Of course, if you just wanted transport, that would be fine. But if you also want to get fit, you are going to have to pedal. The beauty of an e-bike is that if you get a Pedelec, the assistance only kicks in when you pedal. You can choose varying levels of assistance to kick in once you start pedaling. This means that you can choose how hard you want to pedal. And let’s face it – we don’t need researchers to tell us whether we are getting a workout. We can feel it for ourselves as we ride, and – often more so – after we ride. If you feel tired after a ride, you have had a workout! So all you need to do is to choose a level of assistance that is low enough that you can feel your body is getting a moderate workout.

Yes, You Will Get Fit Commuting on an Electric Bike

In case you are doubtful that the comparatively moderate level of exercise you get on an e-bike will make a meaningful difference, please refer to my post on the health and fitness benefits of biking. This post reports on research into the effects of e-biking regularly. Most of this research was done in conditions similar to what you would experience with commuting on an e-bike, and the participants all experienced surprising benefits. Even when using high levels of assistance, they still used their cardiovascular systems at levels close to those of people on regular bikes, and also experienced significant improvements in fitness and health.

 

Use Your Electric Assistance Wisely to Get Fit

With great power comes great responsibility! In the case of the e-bike, that means do not get a bike with a throttle controller and just sit on it, without pedaling. Obviously, that is not going to make you fit. Of course, if you just wanted transport, that would be fine. But if you also want to get fit, you are going to have to pedal. The beauty of an e-bike is that if you get a Pedelec, the assistance only kicks in when you pedal. You can choose varying levels of assistance to kick in once you start pedaling. This means that you can choose how hard you want to pedal. And let’s face it – we don’t need researchers to tell us whether we are getting a workout. We can feel it for ourselves as we ride, and – often more so – after we ride. If you feel tired after a ride, you have had a workout! So all you need to do is to choose a level of assistance that is low enough that you can feel your body is getting a moderate workout.

Use Electric Power Plus Your Own Power for Thrilling Speed

To be honest, there were also times when I used maximum assistance on flats. However, this was when I was in places where it was safe to go really fast. On those occasions, I would use maximum assist, plus pedal like a mad man, just for the thrill of getting up to as fast as 25 to 30 miles per hour on my bike.

In those circumstances, I was still getting a workout, despite using maximum assist, because I was using the big gear rings on my bike and pedaling really hard. This was using a 350 W BionX electric bike setup. I would not recommend this on a bike in traffic…

Yes, you will get fit commuting on an electric bike.



 

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categories : Power Blog