Belly fat puts you at risk of developing chronic illnesses like liver disease, high blood pressure or diabetes type II. Exercise is a time-tested approach to get rid of stomach fat.
Cycling is one of the forms of exercise that may be used for weight loss intervention. A 3-month study to determine the effect of cycling on visceral abdominal fat found that cycling reduced participants’ belly fat by 8 percent.
Due to an increase in muscle mass, it may be possible to put on some weight in the initial phases of a workout. This is why measuring waist circumference is a more reliable assessment of exercise interventions than weight loss.
The indoor cycling machine can be a great way to give you most of the fat-loss benefits you crave. This study shows that a bicycle machine is useful even for people with special needs.
Below are some techniques you can use when cycling to lose belly fat.
Secrets to Losing Belly Fat When Cycling Indoors
1. Adjust Your Posture
You need to get the basics rights if you want to sculpt your abdomen as you cycle. This starts with siting correctly when you bike.
Make sure that you look up, not down and that your knees are straight. A curved back is a no-no for anyone that wants to engage their abs. Think of your spine like a steel bar rather than an elastic band which curves and bends.
Curving your back can cause back pain and prevent you from getting the most out of this exercise.
2. Do High-intensity Training
Most people think of cycling machines as tools of steady cardio. However, incorporating high-intensity training into cycling can help you lose belly fat faster.
To do this, spin the bike as fast as possible then rest and repeat at least 5 times. At this level, your breathing will be fast and your heartbeat is supposed to be high.
Once this happens, your body will be expending a lot of energy that comes from fat.
Note that the longer you do the fast spinning, the more calories you’ll burn during and after the workout. Therefore, aim to increase the duration of your fast-spinning, workout after workout.
3. Balance High-intensity Training with Endurance
High-intensity training is only one side of the belly fat-burning equation. You ought to temper intense cycling with endurance training.
This would involve reducing your pace and the resistance level of the bike. During the workout, you should be able to have a conversation with someone else and not go out of breath.
When preparing your cycling regimen, one-quarter of your time should be intense while the rest of the regimen should be moderate.
This approach protects you from the pitfalls of inflammation, which come when all you do are fast-paced workouts. Inflammation causes fat to reside in your belly, so it undermines your goals.
4. Change the Incline and Use your Stomach
Indoor bikes have one key disadvantage. They do not allow you to try out new and different terrain. That way, you are unable to train certain muscles.
However, some bikes have the extra option of an adjustable incline. They work in the same way as treadmills.
If you have this option, consider using it. Engage your core as you go up the incline by pulling your stomach in. This ought to get your muscles stronger.
5. Do it On an Empty Stomach
When you want your body to burn its fat reserves, you mustn’t give it any other option.
If you go cycling on a full stomach, your system would rely on food for fuel.
However, if you did it on an empty stomach then the body would have to use available energy sources like belly fat. This would help you lose weight quite easily.
6. Suck it In
How you breathe during cycling workouts affects visceral fat. As you cycle, try and draw in as much air as possible without going out of breath. Suck your belly in then hold for as long as possible.
This maneuver ensures that your internal organs remain in the cavity and that the muscles in that section get stronger. Experts call it hollowing because the stomach has a vacuum shape when you do it.
7. Use Bicycle Crunches
When trying to sculpt that stubborn tummy, you need to use as many tools as possible to achieve results. You can perform some exercises as you ride.
The bicycle crunch is done by removing one hand from the bar, twisting it until the elbow reaches the thigh on the opposite side. Keep moving the hand away from the opposite side as soon as it touches the highest point of the thigh.
8. Increase the Frequency
For you to reap the rewards of indoor cycling, you have to do it regularly. Strive to dedicate at least 30 minutes to this exercise.
You could bike at least 4 times a week if this is the only training method you have. Whatever cycling maneuvers you choose – they can only work if they are done continually.
9. Stand when Cycling
Sometimes sitting puts you at a disadvantage when you bike. You could improve your results by standing from the sit as you support yourself on the handles. Then try and keep peddling.
Not only will this approach increase the exercise dynamic, but it will also make your stomach muscles strong and tight.
10. Up and down
As a modification of the above exercise, you may want to move up and down as you ride.
After you’ve set up the process and continued cycling, you may lift yourself slightly from the saddle, contract your abdominal muscles, sit for a second and then stand again.
As you keep moving down, ensure your core is engaged by contracting it throughout. This maneuver would thus look like a squat.
11. Pick Your Poison
If you tried to perform all the above tricks, you would quickly become overwhelmed. It is better for you to create a regimen in which you do certain things on one day and other things on separate days.
Some adjustment has to happen when you start, so don’t lose heart when you struggle to finish a crunch or a hollowing exercise.
The idea is for you to increase your stamina progressively. If you did 15 squats on the bike last week, you may want to try 18 squats next week then 20 the week after that.
12. Always Warm-Up
Before delving in belly up into a cycling routine, it is essential to prepare your body for the strenuous activity it is about to do.
This should start before getting on the bike with some stretching exercises. Then when you start cycling, always begin at a slow pace.
At this level, you can not only sustain conversation but be able to ride the bike the whole day. This warm-up awakens muscles and ensures that you do not stress your joints or get sore the next day.
The above strategies will allow you to burn fat while cycling. Unfortunately, cycling doesn’t do much for your upper body. And that’s why you should combine it with short workouts like the ones in this sequence.
Combing these two training techniques will not only allow you to lose belly fat but it’ll also tone your entire body.