Updated: Jul 21, 2021
If you've learned the meaning of "wheels down" the hard way, as I did many years ago, you might have found yourself pulling into the parking lot just in time to see your new group ride buddies pedaling away. Used to determine a ride's start time, "wheels down" is a popular phrase among cyclists. It means "we are riding." In other words, "Wheels down at 6am!" translates to "We are riding at precisely 6am!" -- no earlier, and certainly no later!
There are so many great benefits of cycling. Here are my top 10 and why you should go wheels down right now!
Cycling is low-impact. If you have arthritic knees or want to avoid high-impact exercises, cycling is the way to go. It can be difficult to find ways to strengthen the quads when you have arthritis in the knees, but cycling for most people causes little or no knee pain.
Cycling burns major calories. Cycling uses primarily the quads and the glutes. These are huge muscle groups -- and because they are huge, they are going to need a lot energy and are going to expend a lot of energy. (translation=burns more calories!)
Cycling is a full-body workout! While the quads and the glutes are the prime movers, cycling also works the hamstrings, calves, back, shoulders, triceps, forearms, pecs, and core.
Cycling is a great way to meet new people. New to a city? Want some new friends? Join a bike group!
Commuting on a bike will save you money. Commuting can be difficult to plan, especially if you live in a big city or in a climate of extremes, but even a quick hop on the bike to the grocery store will save you gas money.
Cycling is cheaper than golf...or even the gym. Yes, bikes can be expensive. Most entry-level road bikes of good quality value at $1500. But bikes will last a long time, 10+ years. If you ride every other day for 10 years, that comes out to $.82/day! Plus, you can also find really good quality used bikes for sale, too - give your local bike shop a call. They often have used bikes for sale.
Cycling is good for your heart. All cardiovascular exercise is good for the heart, and cycling is no exception. And if you notice your HR is getting lower on the bike (ie, you're getting in shape), go climb a mountain! You're ready for it!
Cycling helps improve air quality. Commute more, drive less. A win for the environment and clean air.
Cycling is great for exploring. Exploring a breathtakingly beautiful countryside in a car is simply pitiful compared to the sensation of exploring on a bike. Walking is fun, but it can only take you so far.
10. Cycling brings a renewed sense of freedom. I cannot do justice to this feeling in words. Truly. All I can say is, you'll discover this unbelievable sensation the minute your feet hit the pedals. You'll feel like a kid again.
In short, life is just so much better on 2 wheels.