Tips To Avoid Over Exertion When Cycling

Tempted to cycle to work? Yes, but worried about arriving at work tired or not being able to cycle home in the evening? If that’s the case, here are a few tips to help you reduce your effort and tiredness when cycling.

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Managing Weight and Effort

Weight is probably the main factor that limits most cyclists. The combined weight of cyclist and bike can make it difficult to pedal if the weight is too great.

There are however two main ways to reduce the difficulty of pedalling: your own weight and the weight of your bike.

To manage your weight sustainably, cycle regularly and eat a balanced, healthy diet. You’ll find this starts a virtuous circle: the more you cycle, the more weight you lose and improve your physical health. Pedalling thus becomes even easier due to the combined results of weight loss and training.

With regard to the weight of your bike, you should first take into account your budget and your requirements. A light bike often comes with a higher price tag. But some mechanical adjustments can also help you lighten your bike without breaking the bank…take a look at our 5 top tips to make your bike lighter.

Bike Maintenance

A well-maintained bike functions better, offers less resistance and makes it easier for you to pedal. To reduce the effort needed and tiredness related to a lack of maintenance, try making sure you carry out the following checks and maintenance:

– Regularly inflating your tyres

The contact surface of well-inflated tyres is lower, thus lowering the resistance as you move.

– Regular cleaning and lubrication

Cleaning and checking your bike and lubricating it correctly protects your bike and makes pedalling easier.

Cleaning prevents parts from rusting, becoming less efficient or becoming faulty. A properly functioning drive chain, wheels in good condition, etc. all significantly reduce the effort needed for pedalling.

Another advantage: regular cleaning prolongs the life of your equipment, and avoids the large additional expense of buying a new bike or having an old one repaired.

When you carry out your checks, take a careful look at the frame and at the other parts of your bike to check for any problems. If necessary, fix them yourself using our article on necessary maintenance for your bike as a reference.

After drying your bike, oil the chain and turn the pedals a few times on each gear wheel to make sure the oil is distributed evenly. Wipe off any excess oil with a dry cloth, as too much oil may lead to a build-up of dirt which can result in the chain getting caught and even breaking.

By carrying out regular maintenance, your bike will offer less resistance, and help you feel less tired after cycling.

Avoid Becoming Tired Whilst Cycling

– Pedalling frequency

You need to maintain a regular pedalling frequency to increase your speed. To measure it, count the number of revolutions of one of your legs over a period of 10 seconds, and multiply this by 6 to calculate the number of turns per minute.

Try to maintain a pedalling frequency of around 60 turns per minute, changing gears to maintain this turn speed. This pace only requires a moderate effort whilst ensuring that you maintain a good cruise speed.

 – Weather conditions

Depending on the weather conditions, the shortest route may not always be the best in terms of the effort required to do it. Particularly in areas exposed to strong wind, it may sometimes be better to cycle through the trees rather than pedalling desperately directly into the wind.

– Controlling your speed

Cycling in town can often be a bit stop-start: traffic lights, obstacles and sudden stops are common, which can be tiring, as it means you have to set off several times. Try to anticipate any stops to reduce the effort required for setting off repeatedly.

Change into a lower gear before your stop, making it easier for you to push off when you set off again.

– Streamlining

Better streamlining makes you more efficient and makes cycling easier.

You don’t need a wind tunnel for this, you simply need to find a comfortable position that offers the least wind resistance. You need to find a position that is a good compromise between streamlining and comfort, because after all, the aim is not to suffer from an uncomfortable sitting position.

You can also adapt your clothing to help you become better streamlined, by ensuring that it is both suitable for cycling and tucked in to reduce wind resistance and avoid excess effort.

Use these tips to help you enjoy the daily physical activity of cycling without becoming overtired. What are your tips for avoiding tiredness when cycling? Let us know what you would recommend! #DecathlonSG #DecathlonKakis

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