When the cold is starting to creep in and the rain is starting to get more ceaseless than sporadic, it’s hard to get motivated  to start a fitness program. Even less appealing is one that counts exposure to the unpredictable British weather as one of its key components. However, since we usually eat more as the nights get darker and the necessity for hibernation increases, a remedy is required. Something healthy, fun and rewarding that usurps the frequenting the gym.

Of course, it would be easy to join the legions of gym bunnies and muscle bound he-men there, but memberships cost money and not everyone can afford to splash out £100 per month for the privilege. Thankfully there is an alternative.

Get Fit With Cycling

Cycling is a great way to keep fit. Cycling builds your aerobic fitness as well as toning your legs and bum, making you look and feel radiant. If you cycle regularly, you will soon notice an improvement in all areas of your body, plus your energy levels will soar as a result of doing regular exercise. This is goes a long way to keeping your heart healthy both physically and potentially, romantically – you’ll be fighting off potential suitors with a bicycle pump with your new look body. The trouble is, you might not feel too positive about cycling when the weather is poor and the evenings dark.But don’t let short days and bad weather put you off – there are lots of ways to incorporate cycling into your daily routine and improve your fitness levels at the same time.

Buy a great bike

A bike, obviously, is essential if you want to start doing a bit of cycling. In an ideal world you already have a bike sitting in the garage, seat well worn-in anticipating your firm buttocks, but if you don’t, it should be easy to pick a decent quality second-hand bike up for next to nothing. Alternatively, check out your company’s cycle to work scheme and see if you can use it to buy a new bike. There are rules attached to the cycle to work scheme and you will need to show that it is possible to cycle to work from home, but if you fit the criteria, it is a great way of buying a new bike, tax free.

If you’re in the market for purchasing a new bike, make sure you do your research before buying as you can often find massive discounts online. To help you narrow down your options, always pick a bike according to your size and height. You can do this by using an online bike size calculator. We found this bike size chart guide by mybikexl for your convenience.

The Road Is Your Catwalk

Cycling in the autumn requires more kit than summer cycling. For one thing you will need waterproofs to protect you from the weather, and for another, bikes lights and hi-viz clothing is a must-have. Fear not though, because cycling-chic, especially in the capital, is very much en vogue. Cycling in the winter doesn’t have to be miserable, however. You could restrict your outdoor cycling to the weekend and buy a stationery cycle for indoor fitness training in the week. That way you can enjoy the fitness benefits of cycling without the horror of biking through horizontal hail.

Start Slowly

It is not a good idea to plan a long ride on your new bike if you haven’t done much exercise recently, as it will probably take your down a peg or two and end up denting your confidence.A good idea is to build up your tolerance slowly. To begin with, plan a few short rides – for as long as you think your backside will stand it – and then gradually increase the time you spend in the saddle. As long as you take it easy in the early stages, you will enjoy yourself a lot more.

The best bit about cycling all autumn is that come the summer time, you won’t have to panic about working on your beach-ready body – yours will already be in tip-top shape!

Rachel Stevenson
Rachel Stevenson
Rachel is the beauty and fashion director at IDEAL. She loves trying new products and is an avid fan of London's fashion, from the high end to the high street.

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