Cycle your way to health and wellness with ProHealth

April 16, 2024


ProHealth was this year's hydration sponsor at the American Heart Association's CycleNation event. It was held on Saturday, April 13 at the Mandell Jewish Community Center in West Hartford.

CycleNation's goal is to “empower people to be healthy while funding research to end stroke and heart disease. We ride for those who can't, those who have lost their lives and for those who are still writing their comeback stories. With each push of the pedal, we are saving lives."

ProHealth’s team of 7 riders totaled 100+ miles during the event.

Why cycling?

Cycling is a low-impact exercise. It can help to: 

  • Lower your risk of chronic diseases.
  • Strengthen your muscles and bones.
  • Improve your heart health.
  • Benefit your emotional health.

You can reap these benefits as a seasoned cyclist or if you're just starting out.

Hydration: The key to a great ride

It's essential to stay hydrated, especially while cycling. Before you even start your ride, be sure to drink plenty of water. It's a good idea to drink at least 16 ounces of water 2 hours beforehand. Drink another 8 ounces 5 to 10 minutes before start time.

Remember to stay hydrated during your ride. It's especially important to drink water if it's hot outside or if you're doing a hard workout. Have a water bottle with you. Take regular sips to avoid dehydration. You need at least 8 to 10 ounces every 20 minutes.

The type of drink you drink during your ride matters. Water is usually the best choice. It hydrates without adding sugar or calories. Sports drinks are good if you exercise intensely for more than an hour because they replace the salts you lose in sweat. For normal physical activity, water is the way to go.

If you don't drink enough water, you might get dehydrated. Listen to your body. Be aware of the signs of dehydration. They include:

  • Feeling tired
  • Muscle cramps
  • Dizziness
  • Lightheadedness

If you have any of these symptoms, stop riding your bike and drink fluids right away. Ignoring these symptoms can lead to more severe health issues. Always take care of yourself during your ride.

Staying hydrated helps your body perform at its best. This offers you a safe and enjoyable cycling experience.

The many benefits of cycling

Cycling is an exciting physical activity. It provides many health and wellness benefits.

  • Improve flexibility and strength. Pedaling uses different muscle groups in your legs, core and upper body. This helps increase muscle tone and endurance.
  • Increase coordination and balance. Riding in a certain way can help train your body to have better posture. This is because it makes you use your core muscles.
  • Train all areas of your body. It engages most of your major muscle groups.
  • Boost your mental health. It can help lower stress and anxiety. When you ride, your body makes endorphins. Endorphins are chemicals that make you feel good. They promote a sense of relaxation and well-being. Regular rides can help improve your mental health, too.
  • Limit pressure on your joints. It's a low-impact sport, so it's good for conditions like arthritis. It's a good way to get your heart rate up without putting stress on your knees, ankles, and other joints.*

ProHealth's tips for a safe and healthy ride

Cycling is a great way to get in shape and improve your overall health. When you go for a ride, it's important to take steps to stay safe and have fun. Here are a few tips from the experts at ProHealth.

If you are riding outdoors:

  • Wear a helmet. This is a key step to take to protect yourself in the event of a crash. Make sure your helmet is properly fitted and meets safety standards.
  • Be aware of your surroundings. Pay attention to traffic, pedestrians, and other cyclists. Stay away from crowded areas or construction zones.
  • Follow the rules of the road. Obey traffic signals and signs. Use hand signals to let others know where you're going.
  • Ride defensively. Assume that other road users are not paying attention to you. Be ready to act, if needed.
  • Be visible. Wear bright clothing and use a headlight and taillight when riding at night.

All types of cycling, indoors and outdoors:

  • Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water before, during and after your ride.
  • Take breaks. If you start to feel tired, stop and take a break.
  • Listen to your body. If you have any pain or discomfort, stop riding. See a doctor.

Following these tips can help you have a safe and healthy cycling experience.