Being physically active is the best way to avoid a variety of diseases and health conditions. If you’re looking to improve your mental, emotional, and physical health all at once, we’ve got one word for you: cycling.
Cycling does more than just benefit your body. Along with a healthy diet, consistent exercise like cycling can be a huge stress reducer, which is especially important when you’re trying to lower blood pressure or improve mental health. Also, neuroscientists say that cycling improves our brain function and may even make us smarter. In fact, studies published in Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment show it reduces stress, elevates mood, and prevents long-term depression.
Regardless of the type of biking expedition you’re planning, Style Review explains how to prepare in advance to ensure everything goes smoothly.
Preparing for a Mountain Bike Marathon Race
Any marathon or triathlon is as much of a mental and emotional challenge as it is a physical one. It’s important to train regularly to prepare for the race. To prevent injury, avoid overtraining. In addition, try to keep a positive mindset and visualize yourself overcoming all obstacles to complete the race. Mentally and physically rehearse a successful race day, and you’ll be better prepared and more focused for the big event.
Interval training is a great way to prepare. UK Fitness Institute notes that this approach to training reduces the risk of injury and usually produces better results in less time. In addition to getting you in top shape prior to race day, some neuroscientists have conducted studies that indicate interval training improves brain function, boosts mood, and reduces depression.
You’ll want to choose the clothing and gear you’ll use during the race and begin using it during training so you know that it is the right fit (literally and figuratively) before the big day. Style Review has a variety of jerseys, shorts, and sunglasses to keep you looking good and feeling great. Try them out during your next practice to feel how they affect your performance.
Preparing to go Mountain Biking or Trail Riding
If you plan to hit the trails the next time you go camping, be sure to practice mountain bike safety. Become familiar with the area prior to your visit. Investigate the trails and campsites in daylight. Use a trail finding app to scope out trails prior to riding, so that you know what you’re in for. Have some idea of what physical obstacles you may encounter while biking. Find a safe spot to lock up your bike at night, to help prevent it from being stolen.
It’s important that you take leisure time doing the things you love. If you are a freelancer or small business owner, taking time off may feel impossible. But your mental and physical health are more important than the risk of stepping away for a few hours or days.
Preparing with a Training Camp
Cycling training camps can be a great way to achieve peak performance. Choose the right camp for your experience level as a rider. Schedule your training camp earlier in the season and give yourself a few weeks to boost your base performance level prior to a race. Try not to attend a training camp too close to a major event, or you might not give yourself enough time to see results.
Surprisingly, studies have shown that protein and carbohydrate intake during recovery doesn’t have as much impact as previously thought. For best results, use the training camp to increase your training volume, and be sure to choose a training camp that can accommodate your experience level and fitness level.
Preparing Your Home and Business
Ahead of the big event, you should take proactive steps to prepare your home and business prior to leaving. If you’ll be gone for an extended period of time, you might consider asking a friend or relative to come check on your home (and periodically start your car) while you are gone. If you have pets, make sure they are properly taken care of while you’re gone. If no friends or family members are available to help, there are house sitters and pet walkers who will gladly assist you (for a small price, of course).
If you have an employee you’ve been grooming for bigger responsibilities, now may be a great time for a trial run. If you aren’t confident in your current staff, hire a registered agent to help mediate with clients while you are out. Many businesses can benefit from hiring an agent to reduce their own workload and to provide a consistent, professional face for the company.
Put Your Plans into Action
Preparing for a major biking expedition is a fine art that is mastered after a bit of trial and error, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you overlook something during your first event. As cyclists, we are constantly learning, evolving, and improving. As long as you keep a positive mindset, plan ahead, and do your best, you’ll be on track for making each upcoming event better than your last.
Photo by Pixabay from Pexels: https://www.pexels.com/photo/bicyclist-passing-the-road-near-the-river-163407/