klitscho. Bikes. July 16th , 2017.
Make friends and stay healthy. The social side of riding could be doing you as much good as the actual exercise and health benefits. University of California researchers found socialising releases the hormone oxytocin, which buffers the ‘ﬁght or ﬂight` response. Another nine-year study from Harvard Medical School found those with the most friends cut the risk of an early death by more than 60 percent, reducing blood pressure and strengthening their immune system. The results were so signiﬁcant that the researchers concluded not having close friends or conﬁdants is as detrimental to your health as smoking or carrying extra weight. Add in the ﬁtness element of cycling too and you`re onto a winner.
You`ll look younger. Scientists at Stanford University have found that cycling regularly can protect your skin against the harmful effects of UV radiation and reduce the signs of ageing. Harley Street dermatologist Dr Christopher Rowland Payne explains: “Increased circulation through exercise delivers oxygen and nutrients to skin cells more effectively, while ﬂushing harmful toxins out. Exercise also creates an ideal environment within the body to optimise collagen production, helping reduce the appearance of wrinkles and speed up the healing process.” Don`t forget to slap on the factor 30 before you head out, though.
You`ll sleep more deeply. An early morning ride might tire you out in the short term, but it`ll help you catch some quality shut-eye when you get back to your pillow. Stanford University School of Medicine researchers asked sedentary insomnia sufferers to cycle for 20-30 minutes every other day. The result? The time required for the insomniacs to fall asleep was reduced by half, and sleep time increased by almost an hour. “Exercising outside exposes you to daylight,” explains Professor Jim Horne from Loughborough University`s Sleep Research Centre. “This helps get your circadian rhythm back in sync, and also rids your body of cortisol, the stress hormone that can prevent deep, regenerative sleep.”
Spend quality time with your partner. It doesn`t matter if your paces aren`t perfectly matched, just slow down and enjoy each other`s company. Many couples make one or two riding ‘dates` every week. And it makes sense: exercise helps release feel-good hormones, so after a ride you`ll have a warm feeling towards each other even if he leaves the toilet seat up and her hair is blocking the plughole again.
great benefits of cycling. You`ll get there faster. Commute by bike in the UK`s major cities and you`ll get there in half the time of cars, research by Citroen shows. In fact, if you drive for an hour in Cardiff`s rush hour, you`ll spend over 30 minutes going absolutely nowhere and average just 7mph, compared to averaging around 12-15mph while cycling. And even in bike-friendly or less congested cities outside of the UK, you`ll still generally get around the city centres faster on a bike.
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