All posts in Exercise

Cyclists are no strangers to breaks and fractures, but Andrew Coggan could be forgiven for not expecting a hip fracture from a bike crash at age 30. He may have been less surprised than most of his peers though, having recently been diagnosed with low bone density.
For many cyclists, an injury like Coggan’s is the first sign that bones are not as strong as they should be. Although cyclists are known for staying on top of their training heart rate zones and pedal cadence, increasing research suggests they should also pay attention to their risk of thinning bones.

“Sometimes athletes in their late 20s and early 30s will come in for a femur or a hip fracture, and they’ll be surprised because the fall was really not that bad,” says Dr. Max Testa, a sports medicine physician at the Orthopedic Specialty Hospital in Salt Lake City who routinely treats elite cyclists. “But we’ll look at the X-rays and see that there is some osteopenia [lower-than-normal bone density] there.”
Many factors contribute to osteopenia or osteoporosis (very low bone mineral density) in cyclists, but one of the culprits is the nature of the exercise itself. Cycling is a low-impact sport that puts little mechanical load on the bones. That’s great if you have joint problems, but it’s the weight-bearing nature of exercise that signals bones to create more mass. Without such stress, bones don’t get stronger, making them more prone to injury.

“Dr Maxwell Maltz wrote the bestseller Psycho-Cybernetics. Originally a Plastic Surgeon, Maltz noticed that it took 21 days for amputees to cease feeling phantom sensations in the amputated limb. From further observations he found it took 21 days to create a new habit. Since then the ’21 Day Habit Theory’ has become an accepted part of self-help programs. Brain circuits take engrams (memory traces), and produce neuroconnections and neuropathways only if they are bombarded for 21 days in a row. This means that our brain does not accept ‘new’ data for a change of habit unless it is repeated each day for 21 days (without missing a day).”
This is great news for those new to exercise or those who have dropped out and are hesitant to get back in a routine!
I can write the book on: “A thousand excuses not to exercise.”
Most of us develop some degree of procrastination, mostly because of the idea starting (again) with exercise will be for the rest of our lives.
The hardest part seems to be the beginning and if only we realize that after disciplining ourselves for only 21 days, it becomes easier, (though never easy!).
Gradually we’ll experience the benefits from our exercise in the form of: Improving endurance, muscle tone, metabolism, stress-relief, cardio-vascular capability and even loosing weight.
Also, just the knowledge that exercise will help to reduce risk of heart disease, diabetes and it also will stop arthritis from progressing, should be encouraging.
The higher the reward, the less resistance we might have to stay the course.
Maybe you made New Years resolutions and you are hesitant to begin.
Please view this as suggestion of encouragement.
Here at Precision Bikes we applaud any effort put forth and if we can help you in any way to get (back) into cycling, swimming and/or running, we’re glad to answer your questions and meet your needs the best we can.
So please feel free to call, drop an email or stop by the shop ;)
(collaborated with R.V.)
Please remember, exercise can be fun and you don’t have to go far necesarely!
(Surely this can’t be Smitty?)