Biking to Boost Medical Weight Loss

Though obesity is widespread in the US, it isn’t necessarily caused by laziness—despite what some people may think. Over 250 genes can increase your risk of developing obesity, particularly the FTO gene on chromosome 16. Unfortunately, this condition is considered a disease, meaning genetics can make you more vulnerable to diabetes, heart disease, liver disease, and even cancer.

That’s why healthcare professionals often recommend weight management to treat it. Since genetics make it more challenging to lose excess weight, obese individuals are eligible to take medications, primarily GLP-1 for weight loss, to ease the process. Semaglutide, tirzepatide, and liraglutide, sold under the brand names Ozempic, Mounjaro, and Saxenda, are all FDA-approved drugs that reduce your appetite, so you naturally eat less. With them, you can lose an average of 15% of your current weight.

If you’ve been prescribed a weight loss medication for obesity, it won’t be effective without regular exercise. Biking is one of the best activities you can do to combat genetic obesity. Here’s more on why it can help and how you can bike right for medical weight loss.

Why bike for medical weight loss?

The reason why you still need healthy lifestyle changes when using weight loss medications is that you can still gain pounds back. These drugs only work while you’re taking them. By building habits like moving more, you can more easily maintain your new weight even after you’ve finished a course of these medications.

It’s also important to remember that you’re using these drugs to become healthier—not just to get thinner. So how can biking help? For one, it’s an aerobic activity. It’ll increase your heart rate, body temperature, and the depth of your breaths, improving your stamina and steadily raising the number of calories you burn on each ride. More importantly, it’s fun!

Because you can do it no matter your fitness level and on any route of your choice, it’s easy to start biking and even more enjoyable to continue. If you find exercise to be a chore, biking might be your answer.

How to Bike for Boosting Medical Weight Loss

Equip your ride

Famous Cyclists

Obese individuals face unique challenges when they bike. A larger abdomen, for instance, can prevent you from breathing deeply and pedaling efficiently. Regular bikes may also be too small for you. Fortunately, you can easily fix these issues by getting a bike that works for you. Many brands offer designs that suit specific body types, so try the body fit tools they offer to help you find the right size.

Check out the weight limit information on your chosen model to ensure it can comfortably carry you as you ride. Finally, consider getting a bike with a sturdy steel frame and wide tires to accommodate you better. That way, it’s guaranteed to last throughout the entirety of your medical weight loss treatment plan and beyond—and you can continue cycling as a healthy fitness habit even after you finished shedding some pounds.

Eat well

A balanced diet can do more than just boost the effects of weight loss medications by speeding your metabolism and enhancing your muscles’ calorie-burning activities. It can also give you the power you need to bike, which is why it’s crucial to get the proper nutrition. We recommend fueling your rides with carbohydrates like whole grains for energy, protein from lean meats like chicken to strengthen your muscles and boost your performance, and fruits and vegetables to hasten the recovery process.

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    Eat at least two hours beforehand to allow for proper digestion and immediately after so your body can start repairing itself.

    Pace yourself

    spinning exercise

    If you’re starting at a lower fitness level, that can limit the length of the routes you can complete without burning out. So rather than following what everyone else does, pace yourself and modify your routine to suit your needs. Start with shorter sessions before increasing the intensity of your workouts.

    Riding for half an hour, once or twice a week in your neighborhood can help you build a biking habit, improve your stamina, enhance your fitness, and support medical weight loss over time.

    Be kind

    The most important thing to remember is to focus on you. It’ll be hard not to compare yourself to more experienced cyclists who can complete more difficult routes faster, especially when you’re just getting started. Don’t let that discourage you from pushing forward. Keep your eye on the prize—medical weight loss for better wellness—and remind yourself that as you bike, you’re already getting healthier, even if the results aren’t visible yet.

    You can even join bike clubs like All Bodies on Bikes, which push for inclusivity if you want additional support. Such safe spaces are great places where you can share the joy of biking with fellow cyclists and even get advice on how to reach your health goals with this pastime.

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    Biking to Boost Medical Weight Loss — Bike Hacks