Push the Pedal for a Happier, Smarter and Healthier You

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Push the Pedal for a Happier, Smarter and Healthier You

Push the Pedal for a Happier, Smarter and Healthier You

Biking is a healthy habit that Dr. Brian Christie practice every single day. It is his number one go to, to spike up his mental alertness.  He starts his day by riding to the gym, spends another 45 minutes of workout, then bike again to work. He can attest that by doing so, his brain is still on a high note when he gets to work. This continues for a few more hours after his exercise. As he gets busier in the day, with work, errands and other stuff his secret is to go back for a bike spin to jump start his nerves all over again. Instead of grabbing a cup of joe, why not hit the pedals again. Needless to say, he has a bike always within reach in his office.

We always think of exercise is the first benefit of biking. Yes of course it is a good way to keep that joints running, and to maintain a healthy physique, but as we hit those pedals this also pumps up more blood vessels into the brain and muscles, which means more oxygen and nutrients are being delivered as well. This intensifies  the neurons in your brain to form new brain cells. So when you ride you are not just building your muscles for your body, but you’re are also building your brain. Not only that, you also release neurotransmitters so your cells can communicate which each other. Imagine, creating a information highway that links each cell, thus making your brain function faster and better.  The more high way built, the faster the communication.

In a recent research conducted by Dr. Arthur Kramer, PhD, a neuroscientist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, they found out that those people who regularly exercise tripled their brain volume in 3 months compared to people that are 3 years younger that didn't exercise.

We have established that riding can stimulate the brain to make you smarter, but more isn't always better. As per Dr. Christie, exercising profusely will not do the trick. More intense effort may temporarily affect memory and information processing. So just go easy on those pedals, doing too much may also cause you harm.

Lifts up your Mood

There are plenty of studies that can back up the idea that cycling can also elevate your mood.  Riding your bike also have emotional benefits for you. So if you include cycling as a habit you will also reap the following effects for your emotional well being.  It has been proven that cycling can relieve anxiety, increase stress resistance and keeps you on a lighter mood, therefore battling depression and anxiety.

A good spin of 20 - 30 minutes ride will release mood-lifting chemicals like endorphins and cannabinoids. By regularly riding, hormones in your body like adrenaline and cortisol are also being kept at bay, so if you know that you are about to hit that time of the month riding is one way to keep your hormones balanced and will lessen the effects of PMS.

So if you are feeling low, or just had a not so good experience with a co-worker, best thing to do is to hit the pedals. Ride it out. You are not only shedding those pounds, but also making your brains grow and your spirits soar.