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Exercise Bikes – No Excuses, 30 Minutes A Day On A Bike Will Change Your Life
By: Declan Tobin

Exercise bikes are the ideal home exercise equipment. We are all advised to exercise for 30 minutes per day to stay healthy combined with a good balanced food intake. Most people complain of not having the time to go to the gym or prepare to out jogging etc but if it was for 30 minutes of TV I’d bet that time would be no problem. Why not combine the two, TV and exercise. Watching TV while exercising cuts out the boredom of being locked in a room looking at the four walls exercising. If you have a program you watch on a regular basis the time will only fly in.

What exercise bike will I buy?

Exercise bikes come in all wonderful styles from the basic stationary bike to built in programs for spinning and mountain courses. The best is what you can afford to pay, the main thing is that you are exercising regularly or intend to do so. The more basic exercise bike can cost anywhere from $80 upwards and generally has a few different gears available to make the exercise more intense as you proceed with fitness. I have to say if you can afford to spend $200 you will find exercise bikes that have pre tuned exercise programs that are easy to follow and are a great way to burn fat.

How to Start:

Starting can be daunting but after a week or so you will find your fitness level improving and overall health. You need to introduce the body into the exercise for the first couple of days, for many people buying exercise bikes it’s the first time they have done such an exercise in years. The first few days should be a slow introductory pace, if you go all out in the first day or so you will only end up with aching muscles and may even put you off exercising again. Remember that this is a marathon not a sprint.

Who are the main manufacturers of exercise bikes?

Weslo, Reebok,Tuntui, Stamina, Proform, Nordic Track and Fitnees Track have for many years manufactured some of the greatest exercise bikes we have ever seen and all are still doing so. There are foldable bikes available for those living in apartments or people who are simply tied for space. Many people are now trying to build a home gym with the essentials in exercise equipment; the exercise bike should be first on the shopping list. The exercise itself is an excellent aerobic exercise, easy to start with and works ideally as a cross trainer with most other fitness equipment.

Some exercise bikes have a dual function, exercise for the upper and lower body. Apart from the obvious leg exercise you will also find upper body levers on some, this is an ideal exercise for a total body workout and will burn fat more quickly than the standard exercise bike (the more muscle groups you exercise the more fat your burn and more quickly).

Why buy an exercise bike when I can get a treadmill?

The exercise bike has very low impact on the joints. If you have previous injuries or weak joints in general the exercise bike is an ideal gentle exercise. The treadmill is a much higher impacting exercise on the joints and people with weak knees or ankles should be aware. If you decide to get an exercise bike with dual exercise (upper and lower body) you will burn more fat than that of the treadmill as you have no upper body resistance with the treadmill. There are arguments on both sides of the fence as to what is better the bike or the treadmill but you should look at your goals and see what suits both your budget and your target weight loss or general fitness. At the moment the cardio benefits to you as the user lies greater with the exercise dual function bike to that of the treadmill.

In Brief:

The exercise bike is ideal for beginners to the more advanced groups; it offers a low impact, high calorie burning exercise that have an excellent cardio workout. Combined with a balanced diet the exercise bike used regularly will help you achieve your fitness goals.

About The Author

Declan Tobin is a successful freelance writer providing tips and advice for consumers purchasing Fitness Equipment, Treadmills and Weight Benches . His numerous articles offer tips and valuable insight on fitness.

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The Power of Stretching    - Dave Snape


Your muscles ache from a good stretch. This is quite
normal and is part of the process. Stretching has
seemingly been with us and particularly with athletes
since the beginning of time.

A very key point to good stretching is to hold the
stretch for at least seventeen seconds. This is a
pearl of wisdom gleaned from a ballet teacher a few
years back. She said that any stretch under 17
seconds was just not effective.

The 17 second rule is exceeded in the high intensity
Bikram's yoga where stretches are held for about 30
seconds. Don't forget the high level of heat that is
used in Bikram's to extract that last little bit of
stretch out of your muscles. An interesting twist that
is not necessary to gain benefits from stretching. But,
it can't hurt, right?

So what kind of benefits can you expect from
stretching? That's an easy one. Have you ever seen the
movie, Blood Sport? Did you know that Frank Dux could
truly stretch his body to the extreme. The actor that
played him was quite elastic as well.

Great elasticity is also something you might see in
well trained Spetsnaz (Russian) agents. They often work
out with Russian kettlebells too. They are for superior
strength gains and the ability to withstand ballistic

Why are stretching and flexibility considered important
to these people? Stretching gives one the ability to
have explosive power available at one's fingertips
without the need to warm up. Of course most of us are
not martial artists or agents. But, you'll be happy to
know there are plenty of other benefits.

Let me give you an example. After learning to sit in
the full lotus position for long periods of time, my
ankles became very flexible. One day I was walking
along and my left foot fell into a pothole. This mishap
pushed my ankle sideways to about 90 degrees from it's
normal position.

Amazingly, this didn't even hurt, not one bit. If my
ankle hadn't been so flexible, I may have suffered a
sprained ankle. At the very least, it would have hurt
for days.

Key point: stretching helps you to avoid injuries.
Not only that but if you do have a muscle, tendon or
ligament injury it should heal faster, theoretically

Stretching actually grows the ligaments, tendons and
muscles being stretched. They really grow longer over

Check with your physician before undertaking any type
of exercise, including stretching.

Here is some good instructional material on stretching:

Dave Snape

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