Cycling is known for its amazing health benefits, and doctors all over the world recommend cycling. It’s also more environmentally friendly, so society as a whole would benefit if more people decided to use bikes over cars. However, when we talk about exercise there are two types of bikes, ones that you can use as means of transport, and those that are specifically designed for workouts, also known as stationary indoor bikes.
Given how you are basically performing the same activity these two should provide the same benefits, right? Well, not exactly, both of these have their own pros and cons and we will explore them throughout this article.
Both Provide a Great Workout
The beauty of this debate is that there are no wrong answers as both bikes provide you with a great workout. Of course, if you are aiming to be a professional cyclist then you are obviously going to use both of these but lean towards an outdoor bike.
You Can Always Train Indoors
Obviously, the indoor bike gives you better accessibility, sort of speaking. You might find it difficult to go cycling if it snows or rains, whereas that won’t be an issue with stationary bikes. You also don’t have to carry the bike around and you can call it quits whenever you feel like it. If you are training outdoors and overextend you might find it difficult to cycle back home. In the event you overdo it, you will likely be more exhausted and get cramps, which can interfere with a regular training routine.
It’s Boring to Train Indoors
It’s definitely more enjoyable and entertaining when you are cycling in the great outdoors. The scenery changes, you can interact with people, and there’s more fresh air. If you are always in one spot the training gets boring and you keep looking at your watch. Sure it’s possible for you to watch something while training, but that can also be distracting at times, or you simply can’t hear what’s going on because of the peddling noise.
It’s Safer Indoors
You need to be focused when cycling outside, as there might be road bumps, other drivers, or animals. Meaning, you are more likely to get injured. Of course, you are wearing safety gear and not going at an absurd speed, so unless something terribly goes wrong, you’ll just end up with a bruise or two. Still, it can be good if you don’t have to worry about those things and just enjoy your workout.
You Can Challenge Yourself with a Different Terrain
If you are an experienced cyclist you might prefer to go off the beaten track and tackle more challenging terrain. You can go uphill and downhill in order to get a better view or more fresh air. Apart from setting the difficulty on the indoor bike, you don’t have many options to change things around.
So, these were some of the main differences, and as you can see each one of these has its pros and cons. It boils down to personal preference and goals, given how the benefits of this workout are pretty much the same for either of these two choices.