Have you been thinking about changing your fitness routine? There are so many things to consider when it comes to your health, and having to choose a workout can only make things harder. Stuck between deciding whether you should do more walking or use an exercise bike? Fortunately, you’ve come to the right place! We’ve put together a complete guide to help you decide which is better an exercise bike or walking to give you once less thing to think about!
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Which Is Better an Exercise Bike or Walking
There are a lot of important components of fitness. What is important to one person may not matter to another. So, to make your decision as easy as possible, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most important considerations and what that means for your choice between an exercise bike or walking.
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Technically, walking can be done anywhere. In fact, you could walk laps around your home all day and get the same amount of steps as someone who goes for length nature walks. However, that’s often not a very exciting workout! When it comes to walking, you have a few choices. You can buy a treadmill to get your steps in from the comfort of your own home, or you can walk outdoors.
Unfortunately, a treadmill can be one of the pricer fitness machines. They do come in a range of prices, though. If you’re willing to give up some of the more in-depth analytics screens which are frequently designed for runners than you can find a more budget-friendly price. If you chose the outdoor walking route, your biggest expenses will be a comfortable pair of trainers and any additional accessories.
Exercise bikes are found in gyms all over the world. If you already have a membership, they’ll be easy to find. They are also incredibly easy to keep in your home, whether you have a home gym or just enough space for an exercise bike. They tend to run a lot cheaper than most treadmills, too. While it doesn’t beat the non-existent price of walking outdoors, it remains a budget-friendly choice.
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Walking and using an exercise bike are ways of exercising that will help you burn calories and lose weight if you’re doing enough of it. However, this is an area where one option outshines the other. The use of an exercise bike is a faster way to help you lose weight.
A person of average height and weight can burn as many as 391 calories on an exercise bike after only 30 minutes (if you’re using it vigorously). Depending on your body and the intensity of your workout, this can go up or down. That’s not a bad number! Biking is guaranteed to work up a sweat.
Comparatively, someone of the same weight is likely to burn anywhere between 75-100 calories per mile of walking. Most people walk a mile in about 20 minutes. So, it’ll take quite a bit more time to burn as many calories from walking! You can certainly increase the number of calories burned if you’re walking uphill and at a brisk pace, but it will still be less than the exercise bike.
Walking is one of the lowest intensity workouts you can find. So, it’s perfect for those who have health concerns that are triggered by high-intensity exercise. It’s also incredibly easy to modify. If you feel out of breath or any type of pain, you can slow down or stop immediately. The biggest risk with walking is that if you are walking in an area alone and you fall down, you may struggle to find help. So, if this is a concern, make sure to walk with a buddy or keep a cellphone on you whenever you go out for walks. Fortunately, this is not a concern if you’re using a treadmill.
Exercise bikes also have a limited impact on your joints and muscles. Since you’re suspended, you’re putting less stress on your body. It’s certainly a step-up from many exercise machines and activities (like running), though it still isn’t as safe as walking.
When deciding which is better an exercise bike or walking, you always have the option of going for both. Since walking and exercise bike use are both low impact, you can do both with confidence that you aren’t going to overwork your body.
Weight loss isn’t always the only reason for exercising! Many folks choose to exercise to work on specific parts of their body or gain more overall strength. So, what parts of the body do each exercise target?
Walking will help in the following areas:
- Glutes (especially when walking uphill)
- Hip flexors
Using an exercise bike will help with these areas:
- Upper body (biceps, triceps, shoulders – if the bicycle has handles)
So, both mode of exercise is almost tied when it comes to the number of areas that it targets. If you want to work on the strength of your legs, it’s not a huge difference. Though, the exercise bike has a slight edge for walking out the core and the back.
Curious about comparing other exercises? Check out some of our other guides!
There are clear strengths and weaknesses when choosing which is better an exercise bike or walking. Exercise bikes are going to workout more parts of your body and help you lose weight faster, while also having budget-friendly options. Walking, on the other hand, is the ultimate safe choice, and can even be done for free if you choose to walk outside. However, it’ll work fewer parts of your body and take longer for you to lose weight if that’s your goal. No matter what you decide to choose, you can be confident that they’re both solid options for improving your fitness!