Healthy Hobbies: Cycling Versus Running

Everyone should adopt a healthy hobby.

running vs cycling

I don’t care who you are, it is important to make time for hobbies. I always say you should have one hobby that inspires you, and one that keeps you healthy and fit.

A friend of mine recently starting taking up cycling, and was amazed by how he was able to just start cycling 12 miles a day, without any huge life changes or upsets. I also have friends who adhere to their running schedule as it if were written alongside the 10 commandments.

It only takes 33 days to create a habit, so if you don’t currently have a healthy hobby, it’s never too late to start.

Running and cycling are two great options in terms of healthy hobbies, but which one is right for you? I outlined the benefits of running versus cycling to help you make a more educated decision.

You should try running if:

Your main goal is to burn calories. If you consume a lot and live a relatively sedentary lifestyle, running with initially help you lose weight faster, although any cardio exercise works, too.

You want to tone your muscles. Running won’t help you bulk up, but it will help your tone overall, and lean you out a little.

Your knees are in good shape and impact doesn’t cause you any joint or muscle pain.

You want to take care of your heart. Although all cardio is good for your heart, and running and cycling are about equal in this regard.

You want a totally free healthy hobby. Running doesn’t cost anything. Bikes do.

READ MORE: How to Choose the Right Bicycle

You should try cycling if:

You want to build muscle. Cycling helps you develop stronger leg and glute muscles, and will also help tone your body all around.

You have a previous injury or issues with your knees or joints that make high-impact exercises uncomfortable or painful.

You don’t necessarily want to burn fat upfront, but are interested in a long term fitness regimen.

Don’t mind spending a little money on equipment, as you will need a bike, helmet, water bottle, and bike light.

At the end of the day, the important part is to get a healthy hobby, regardless of whether you run or cycle. It’s important to make sure you find one you actually enjoy. For my cyclist friend, running seemed like torture to him but cycling seems like a fun way to get exercise and explore the city.

So just make sure you choose something you can have fun with, because even though I personally enjoy it, exercise is never easy.

It isn’t supposed to be.

Published by karenmsutton

HSS Orthopaedic surgeon in sports medicine | Mother of 4 amazing children | Team physician for USA Women's Lacrosse | ACL injury expert

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