Summer Cycling: Fad, Fitness or Just Plain Old Fun?

Whatever the case may be, people are cycling more than ever.  It may be a while, if ever, before people totally replace their four-wheel monsters for two wheels (especially in a city like ours), but biking is spreading like wildfire.  Many non-biking commuters rush home to go for a quick run or to the gym.  While those who bike can rest comforted knowing that their commute is doubling to help meet daily fitness requirements.  In addition to the health benefits, biking seems to be the progressive, environmentally friendly mode of transportation for many.  In other words…it’s cool.

From the proliferation of Capital Bikeshare locations popping up on almost every corner to the surge of new bike repair shops in nearly every community, biking appears to be not only a community success but a commercial one as well.  Our own community has just seen the opening of a new bike shop on H Street (The Daily Rider), which not only sells bikes and does repairs, but is also building a rapidly popular social bike riding club. 

Our library (Northeast) offers several books and resources to help you join the fad, maintain fitness or just have some plain old fun.  Below are just a couple:

Where To Bike: Best In City and Suburbs by Matt WittmerWhere to Bike: Best Biking in City and Suburbs
By Matt Wittmer
796.6409
W832

Book Description:

•    Cycling is booming. It’s free, healthy, environmentally friendly, sustainable and most of all, its fun. But Where to Bike?
•    Where to Bike Washington, DC has 97 fun and interesting rides to motivate and inspire
•    It contains 58 interesting rides for adults and 39 kids’ rides for toddlers and beginners.

There’s also a section covering how to prepare and what to take with you.

Fitness Cycling by Dede BarryFitness Cycling: Programs for all levels, interests and distances
By Dede Demet Barry
796.6
B279

Book Description:

Tired of the same ride at the same pace yielding the same results day after day? With Fitness Cycling, you will achieve maximum results from every cycling workout, whether you're trying to improve your times, bike longer distances, or simply increase your fitness level. With 60 workouts and 13 proven training programs at your fingertips, you will improve your physical conditioning and your performance.

World-class cyclists Michael and Dede Demet Barry, with noted exercise physiologist Dr. Shannon Sovndal, guide you through assessing your cycling fitness level and selecting a training program based on your individual goals.

The dozens of workouts include endurance rides, hill and speed training, time trials and strength and lactate threshold sessions. Workouts are arranged into four training zones to lead you from building a base to maintaining peak condition based on your fitness level and cycling ambition. Warm-up and cool-down methods, as well as expert conditioning guidelines, provide the information you need for more informed training, faster times and improved fitness.

Put an end to the monotonous rides and begin cranking out meaningful miles. Whether you're looking to jump-start your training or to peak for a race, Fitness Cycling ensures that every workout keeps you on pace to meet your goals.

--by Stephen Deadwyler