Are recumbent exercise bikes effective for weight loss? It's no secret that getting rid of excess body fat is one of the main reasons many of us decide to get fit.
If you're looking to lose unwanted weight and are thinking about getting a stationary bike, whether or not you can actually burn calories and thus lose weight is likely an important question you are trying to answer. Don't sweat it. You're in the right place!
Recumbent bikes top all exercise bikes for comfort and minimizing the impact on your body and your joints.
This obvious level of comfort can sow seeds of doubt in the minds of users in terms of how effective these bikes can be as a weight loss tool.
In fact, wrapping your head around claims that you could burn fat by remaining seated on a reclining seat can be somewhat difficult.
So let’s break down what quality of workout you can get with recumbent bikes and compare to other exercises to decide for ourselves if recumbent bikes are good for weight loss or not.
How Many Calories Can be Burned on a Recumbent Bike?
Any form of physical activity can help the human body burn calories and pedaling a recumbent bike is no exception.
However, the number of calories burned depends on a variation of factors.
Current weight and fitness level of the individual as well as the level of resistance, duration, and intensity levels can determine how many calories are burned.
This is why having a recumbent with a sophisticated fitness monitor that calculates heart rate, speed, time, and calories burned can aid in the ability to achieve your fitness goals.
Knowing the maximum heart rate alone is a vital metric that can help anyone plan their recumbent bike exercises to achieve maximum weight loss.
Research has proven that we all burn the highest number of calories when working out at around 75 percent of our individual maximum heart rate. However, exercising at such a high level is only recommended for intermediate and advanced gym-goers.
That being said, the average person burns approximately 200-250 calories during 30 minutes of exercises conducted within 50-70% of his or her maximum heart rate.
You might be wondering if there are other workouts that can burn more calories.
Well, treadmills can burn approximately 50 more calories for the same person within the same target heart rate during a 30-minute session.
The downside is running generally places greater impacts on the joints, such as the ankles and knees, which could lead to pain beyond just aching muscles.
It therefore limits how long each session can last while the severity of the soreness could require days of inactivity before the body can recover for another workout session.
Interval Training on a Recumbent Bike for Weight Loss
Research has shown that high intensity interval training routines are the quickest method for healthy fat loss, especially useful for those with crazy-busy lives.
Whether you opt for an upright or recumbent-style model, fat burn should never be beyond you.
Interval training simply involves pedaling your recumbent at maximum effort for anywhere from 30 seconds to 3 minutes and slowing down for 15 seconds to 2 minutes to recover.
A good rule of thumb is to apply a ratio of training and rest between 1:1 and 5:1.
Repeating cycles of this interval routine for 20-30 minutes daily can take calorie burning to insane levels.
Fortunately, most mid-priced to elite recumbent bike models usually come with high-end features such as pre-defined programs that aid in the achievement of getting this improved workout and thus helping weight loss.
These programs make automatic adjustments in resistance levels over sustained periods of time. They also make use of built-in heart rate monitor programs to keep users within the 75% heart rate zone regarded as the optimum region for effective calorie burning.
Recumbent exercise bikes with pedals on the front can take weight loss to impressive levels.
These models are designed to guarantee increased calorie burning while generating minimal impact on the joints.
Do You Need to Diet?
Healthy eating is the foundation of any weight loss program. Without the right diet, exercising non-stop at high intensity levels for even an hour a day could result in minimal weight loss.
Remember the 3,500 rule, that says the typical person needs to either consume 3,500 less or burn 3,500 more calories than their body is accustom to in order to lose one pound. Working out regularly will definitely help in the margins, but more often than not someone's diet is so far out of hand that a thorough review of what they eat and drink can easily cut 500 or more calories a day from their diet. That's roughly one venti Starbucks Frappuccino or one large side of fries from McDonald's.
Getting a smart diet plan alongside frequent recumbent bike sessions is recommended for maximum weight loss.
Working out on a recumbent bike can be an effective way to get rid of excess body fat. However, like every other fitness machine, it is important to have a plan and build the discipline to stick with it.
For quicker and better results, it is important to make sure your sessions are targeting 75 percent of your maximum heart rate.
You’d be amazed at how much fat you can shed within 3 months of working out consistently on a recumbent.
If you have at-risk health issues such as arthritis, hypertension, and spinal injuries, you should consult a doctor before you begin your bike workouts.