I try to ride my bike for 20-25 minutes a day, three times a week. It is not a leisurely ride, but rather a "sprint workout". This is a high intensity workout in which you aim to raise your heart rate by pushing yourself to ride as fast as you can for 20-30 seconds, and then allow yourself 90 seconds to recover. The cycle (no pun intended) is repeated 8 times. It is best to have about a 3 minute warm up riding at a comfortable speed, and then a 2 minute cool down. The best part of this for me, with my time constraints, is that instead of an hour long cardio workout, I'm done in about 20 minutes!
I didn't come up with this plan all on my own but read about this system in Phil Campbell's book, Ready, Set, Go! Synergy Fitness. The idea he presents is that anaerobic exercise, - or sprint style interval training - will promote the release of the Human Growth Hormone in our bodies. This will lead to weight control and a reversal of the metabolic slow down associated with aging beginning in our middle years. And I am all about the anti-aging thing.
After the bike ride, and especially on days that I don't ride, I try to get in anywhere from 20-40 minutes of targeted exercises and/or weights. But that will be the subject of another blog.
I'm all about a little of getting in the anti-stress thing too, which for me these days is some time spent gardening and working in the yard - which isn't really work to me, but rather enjoyment. So I have to post this picture of an Awaikoe dahlia plant I just bought and re-potted. I find the flowers so amazingly beautiful that just sitting and looking at it is peaceful and relaxing to me. I snapped a bunch of pictures of it, mainly because I am camera-challenged, and got a few good ones out of the lot. Here's a couple:
I Hope these brighten your day! They definitely brighten mine!