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Does Cycling Burn Belly Fat?

    person riding a mountain bike

    Many people think exercise bikes burn stomach fat, and while there is a bit of truth in this, there are other factors at play in whether or not an exercise bike is best for weight loss. Our genes and hormones are also linked to where we carry our bodyweight, meaning it may be difficult for some of us to specifically burn stomach fat. The reason behind this is because you have to burn calories to lose belly fat, not work out the muscles. If you are healthy, chances are that you will burn less calories, since your body is more efficient with using energy.

    The American Council on Exercise suggests interval training burns more calories in less time and increases fat-burning hormones. In fact, moderate-intensity intervals and higher-intensity intervals are just as effective in burning fat. Numerous studies have found high-intensity training to significantly lower overall belly fat, including the dangerous visceral fat (belly) fat, more efficiently than lower-intensity training.

    Exercise, particularly aerobic training, helps you shed visceral fat, which is located deep within your abdomen, while also building lean muscle. Mix things up to optimize belly fat training by including extra fat-burning and muscle-building exercises alongside your cardio. If you are looking to burn fat from your stomach and lose a bit of weight, consider devoting more time to biking in your training regimen.

    Build toward a regular stationary biking routine for weight loss, which includes at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise, five or six times a week. If you cannot commit to 30 minutes straight of stationary cycling, you can break it down to 10-minute intervals and still reap the benefits for your health and for burning calories to help trim your belly fat. Cycling is an extremely effective exercise to help reduce belly fat and achieve weight loss goals more quickly. It is a highly effective way of burning calories and breaking down body fat, all the while strengthening your muscles, heart, and lungs.

    Cycling has been found just as effective as working out in a gym to lose weight, because it increases metabolic rate, builds muscle, and burns body fat. Cycling also helps build muscle, increases metabolism, and helps you burn more calories, even when you are at rest. In addition to helping you burn calories, biking lowers the risk of major diseases including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, obesity, depression, and certain types of cancer. Charlie Seltzer explained that a regular bike ride may help to reduce your blood pressure, insulin levels, and resting heart rate, as long as you are doing it often enough (as can running).

    Cycling is a form of cardiovascular exercise, meaning as long as you are biking at a fast enough pace, or at a steep enough grade, that gets your heart pumping, you are going to start burning fat and losing weight. To lose weight, you want to perform exercises that raise your heart rate, which helps you burn fat more quickly. If you bike more, as a means of being physically active, your body will burn more calories and burn fat, including belly fat, as fuel, thus helping you to achieve weight loss.

    Cycling burns calories, and this caloric deficit may contribute to weight loss, as long as you complement physical activity with a nutritious diet. Cardio, like spinning or sprinting, is an excellent way to lose fat overall, because cardio burns calories and helps to keep your body in a caloric deficit.

    In short, spinning is one of the more full-body exercises, meaning that if done correctly, you will burn fat all across your body. You can burn up to 1,000 calories an hour while biking, though you have to pedal pretty hard to get there. In theory, you can burn between 1,200 and 4,000 calories a week taking a bike class.

    Burning calories through activities like running or biking could torch your total body fat–depending on how hard you work. As with running, calories burned on biking depends on a few factors, like your weight, physical conditioning, speed, and distance. While your abdominal muscles are not working nearly as hard as your quads or glutes when riding, cyclings aerobic nature means that fat is burned. Any exercise that burns calories is beneficial to our well-being — some studies, though, suggest that aerobic exercises are best at burning fat.

    With the right nutrition, biking is an effective tool to accelerate your fat-burning process. Other ways to make the bike workout harder and more likely to burn stomach fat is by working with resistance bands and hand weights as you ride. Including bicycle sprints regularly in your workout routine, in combination with cutting down your caloric intake, will burn fat and firm your stomach.

    It is easy to pack unwanted body fat around the waistline, but getting on the bike will help shift that excess pounds around, while also losing stomach fat, helping you to become more fit and lean. While it will not cause you to lose fat from the belly, it will build muscle in your upper body and will make you appear more proportional (cycling targets your legs only), plus it may also flatten out your belly. As you adopt biking as a new habit, or you are thinking about taking up bike riding to get around, you might be wondering whether biking is beneficial to losing fat on your stomach, or whether it will make you less belly fat. It is important that you learn about how biking helps trim inches from the abdomen, and when you should ride your bike if you want to accelerate weight loss results.

    Including other types of physical activity can really turbo-charge your weight-loss efforts, help protect your bones and joints, and even maximise the benefits of biking. Plus, you can try different techniques like sprinting, HIIT, and running with an incline for more fat-burning. If your goal is to compete in an endurance race for a week or to cover 300km in one day, training your body to put fat to good use may be helpful. In reality, while stomach crunches will help to bulk up muscles and increase core strength, they are not going to shave off fat–aerobic training is still the most effective way to do this.


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