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Skiing and Biking

Off-Season Biking for Skiers


Skiing and Biking

Skiing and Biking

© Walik
Why is biking good for keeping in shape for skiing? First, biking makes you use the quads and core muscles you use skiing, while being easy on the knees.

Second, biking is a great aerobic exercise and, like skiing, bike riding requires short bursts of intensity to raise the heart rate. Running or jogging means maintaining a constant push on the heart rate (not to mention the knees), while biking has some downhill and flat coasting making for a great interval workout. With biking, you can raise the intensity and keep it raised to meet (or push) your heart rate zones.

The Bike

You don't need a $5000+ bicycle to use for conditioning, but the old one speed bike in the basement may tire you out pretty fast. A good 18 or 21 speed bike that fits your body properly will keep you comfortably pedaling for many enjoyable and rewarding rides. It is a also good idea to tune-up your bike before and during the season. Learn how to fix a flat tire and maintain your bike - many bike shops give seminars at little or no cost.
Read more about bike buying tips from Bicycling.About.com.

Making Mountains Out of Molehills

You don't need mountains to benefit from biking, but hills will add to the leg workout. You can vary the intensity of your ride through the mechanics of your bike. A bike with three basic range of gears can be used to ease you up the hills and to pace you through the flats.

Vary Your Scenery

The best workouts are the ones that won't make you bored. With a summer goal of keeping skiing muscles tuned and lungs in shape for a day on the slopes, biking offers the opportunity to both explore your world and stay fit. If you think about it, there are probably dozens of different routes around your home that will give you a good workout on a bike.

Biking Trails

If you really start to get bored riding around the house, put the bike on the car and head to a state park or a municipal bike trail. Bike riding has become such a popular family activity that most states have designated bike trails with no motorized vehicles allowed. These trails are almost always maintained and are a safe place to ride. You may not always get the exertion of road riding but you won't need to keep one eye on the traffic.

Be Safe and Stay Cool

Remember that you'll most likely be biking in the spring or summer. Even though the breeze you create riding feels cool, you still need to keep yourself hydrated. So, make sure you bring water with you.

Road riding can be a little nerve racking at first, but by following traffic laws and wearing a helmet and reflective or eye catching clothing you will get used to going with the flow of traffic.

Next Page: Bicyling Tips

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