Stationary Bike Workouts For Beginners

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Adjusting A Recumbent Bike

Stationary Bike Workout for Beginners | 20 Minute

A recumbent bike is slightly different because your feet are in front of you rather than below you, and there are no handles. Avoid leaning forward. The seat should support your back. When your legs are extended, they should be bent slightly. Adjust accordingly.

If you are taking a spin class, ask your instructor any questions you have about adjusting the bike. Making sure your stationary bike is at the appropriate height can make a big difference in your comfort and safety during a ride.

How To Adjust Your Exercise Bike

We’ve explored the benefits of doing a regular beginner exercise bike routine, but to get the max out of your bike, it’s important to adjust it to your body. To do so, follow these simple adjustment tips:

  • When standing next to your upright bike, the seat should be level with the top of your hip bone. This is important for cycling comfort and the leverage you apply to the pedals.
  • Adjust the seat backward or forwards depending on your height. When the seat is in the correct position, your kneecaps should be directly over your feet when they are resting on pedals at 3 and 9 o’clock.
  • Handlebars should be adjusted so your shoulders sit above your elbows and hips. This prevents undue strain on the neck and back. As you become more experienced, try lowering the handlebars to boost your workout efficiency and strengthen your core muscles.

What We Don’t Like

  • Weight capacity: 275 lbs.
  • Features: 10″ smart HD touchscreen, ergonomic pedals, integrated fan, water bottle holder

If you have joint or mobility issuesbut still want to break a sweatcycling is a good choice for weight loss. And with whisper-quiet SMR Silent Magnetic Resistance technology and a 10″ smart HD touchscreen, the ProForm Pro C10U bike feels a lot more expensive than it actually is.

While we miss the lack of on-board workouts, this bike does come with a 30-day trial of iFit, which has a ton of on-demand options. And the ergonomic pedals, water bottle holder, and integrated fan keep users cool and comfortable as they sweat.

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Repeat For 15 Minutes

The goal is to not only do a few intervals.

You will want to repeat the 30 seconds and 30 seconds cycle until you have completed 15 minutes.

This is when you are going to be ready to move onto the next part of the workout.

The key factors include:

  • Shortening the Intervals If Tiring Easily
  • Staying Hydrated During Rest Phase

It is challenging and you are going to start feeling winded if you are putting in the effort during these bursts of intensity.

This is why paying attention to your body is key.

Dont overextend yourself if you are feeling pain and/or seem to be losing control of your heart rate. This is when it is time to dial things back a bit.

To do this, you can increase the rest interval by 10 seconds.

How To Do The Workout

30 Day Stationary Bike Challenge For Beginners

After adjusting your bike, start with the warm-up, then follow each segment of the workout.

  • Find a pace/resistance that allows you to work at the suggested rate of perceived exertion on a scale of 1 to 10 . RPE is how hard it feels to work at the level of resistance you’ve chosen. If it feels too hard, back off on the resistance and speed. If it’s too easy, increase the resistance.
  • Your legs may get tired quickly if you’re not used to the bike. It takes time to build endurance, so go as long as you can and stop when you are ready. You can add a little time to each workout to slowly build strength and endurance. You can even stop and stretch your legs if needed.
  • Perform this workout about three times a week with a day of rest in between.
  • Progress by adding a few minutes each time you workout until you’re up to 30 minutes.

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Types Of Stationary Bikes

There are generally three different types of stationary bikes: upright, recumbent, and dual-action. Each one offers slightly different benefits.

Depending on your fitness level, joint health, and workout goals, you can focus on just one bike, or for more variety, you can try all of them at different times.

Weight And Weight Capacity

In general, the industry standard for weight capacity is about 300 pounds. If you are close to that threshold, you’ll want to look for an option with a higher capacity. In terms of how much the bike weighs, that can vary from about 50 pounds for lightweight models to well over 100 pounds. If you choose a heavier bike, look for transport wheels that make moving it easier.

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Best Stationary Bike Workout For Advanced Riders

Our last workout comes from Mens Journal. If you really want to feel the burn, this workout is for you.

  • Warm-up for 10-15 minutes with low-intensity cycling
  • Pedal as hard as you can for 15 minutes
  • Pedal as hard as you can for 10 minutes
  • Pedal as hard as you can for 5 minutes
  • Cool down with 5 minutes of low-intensity cycling

This workout is sure to leave your legs feeling like Jell-O and your heart pumping.

The Bike Workout: Cardio And Strength For Higher Levels

FULL SEATED Stationary Bike Workout for Beginners

This 45-minute routine builds three key elements all indoor and outdoor cyclists need to perform their best: cardiovascular fitness, leg strength, and an efficient pedal stroke, said Emily Booth, national education manager of indoor cycle for Life Time.

The workout starts with a 10-minute warm-up, then you’ll move on to the main event, where you’ll focus on nailing each skill during 3-minute work sets. For that main workout, make sure to repeat it for 2-4 rounds. Finally, you’ll finish off with a 5-minute cool down. Thanks to the length of the working sets, this workout is ideal for intermediate and advanced cyclists, said Booth.

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Best Stationary Bike Workout For Beginner Riders

Our first workout comes from Healthline. They advise starting with s 25-35 minute workout and then adding more time as your body adapts.

  • Warm-up with 5-10 minutes of low intensity pedaling
  • Turn the energy level up to medium intensity for 5 minutes
  • Followed by high intensity for 1-2 minutes
  • Back to medium intensity for 5 minutes
  • High intensity for 1-2 minutes
  • Back to medium intensity for 5 minutes
  • Cool down with 5 minutes of low-intensity cycling

This routine is sure to get your heart rate up without over-taxing your system.

Allows For Injury Rehab

If you’re recovering from a knee strain or injury, the stationary bike can be a helpful rehabilitation tool. The bike distributes stress among the quadricep muscles, calves, core, glutes, and knees, so that the knees don’t take the brunt of the workout. To protect your knees, ensure that your seat is at the right height for you.

Biking and indoor cycling also are low-impact exercises. For this reason, your exercise bike can be beneficial for recovery training days or healing from an injury.

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Best Recumbent Bike Workouts To Torch Fat


Similar to washing dishes and taking out the trash, not many like to do it. But just like you wouldn’t continue piling dishes around an already packed sink , cardio is still one of those things that need to get done.

Interestingly, though, most people dont have an issue with cardio. They have a problem with what they believe cardio to be. Yes, running hill sprints until you puke or taking an intense boot camp class are two forms of cardio. But, so is walking your dog or riding an exercise bike.

Whats more, you dont have to beat yourself into the ground to get an effective workout. In fact, low-intensity cardio is highly beneficial.

And one of the best modes of low-intensity cardio is a recumbent exercise bike. If you have been curious about the sit-down stationary bike and wondered about its effectiveness, you came to the right place.

In this article, we will cover:

  • What is a recumbent bike?
  • Whether you can get a good cardio workout on a recumbent bike
  • Recumbent bike vs. upright bike vs. treadmill
  • 5 recumbent bike workout examples
  • How frequently to use the recumbent bike

Recumbent Exercise Bike With Arm Workout

30 Minute Stationary Bike Interval Workout

Including upper body workouts during recumbent bike routines is a good way to increase strength and endurance throughout your body, as opposed to just in the legs.

Some recumbent bikes may have arm attachments, otherwise you can simply do arm movements or include dumbbell exercises.

If opting for dumbbells, use light weights between 5 and 12 pounds each to start and increase the weight gradually over time.

You can incorporate upper body exercises with any recumbent bike routine or follow programs specifically designed to include dumbbells and upper body movements.

Some of the most common exercises that you can incorporate into your already existing recumbent bike routine include bicep curls, cross body punches, front raises, lateral raises, shoulder presses, tricep extensions, and upright rows.

If you choose to add upper body movements to your existing routine, consider adding the exercise to the high effort portions of the routine, rather than the segments with reduced effort.

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Workout Plans For Different Fitness Levels

  • For beginners

    If youre just beginning to building your fitness, the key is to start slowly and to gradually add more time and intensity.

    Start with a 25- to 35-minute workout and progress from there, adding time in 1-minute increments as you build up your fitness.

    Heres a sample beginners workout:

  • Start off pedaling at a low intensity for 5-10 minutes.
  • Switch to medium intensity for 5 minutes, followed by:
  • high intensity for 1-2 minutes
  • medium intensity for 5 minutes
  • high intensity for 1-2 minutes
  • medium intensity for 5 minutes
  • Finish by pedaling at a low intensity for 5 minutes.
  • For weight loss

    This type of workout helps to burn calories and body fat, and it can be a good option to include in a weight loss plan. Its also a good option if you want to switch up your resistance levels quickly.

    Heres a sample weight loss workout plan:

  • Start off pedaling at a low intensity for 5-10 minutes.
  • Switch to medium intensity for 3-5 minutes.
  • Alternate between high intensity and medium intensity for the next 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Cool down by pedaling at a low intensity for 5-10 minutes.
  • Once youve built up your fitness, you may want to boost your strength and stamina with interval training.

    Heres a sample interval training plan:

  • Start off pedaling at a low intensity for 10 minutes.
  • Switch to medium intensity for 10 minutes, followed by:
  • high intensity for 2 minutes
  • low intensity for 2 minutes
  • high intensity for 2 minutes
  • low intensity for 2 minutes
  • high intensity for 2 minutes
  • Everyone Can Benefit From This Low

    Fitness expert David Jack is a huge fan of the recumbent bike. The reason: Unlike most of the ground-based activity we dowalking, hiking, tennis, and so onthe recumbent bike offers a new movement pattern that takes us off our feet and unloads the joints. This makes it an especially good option for people with knee, ankle, or hip issues. Watch the video above, and follow this step-by-step guide to get started.

    As always, safety is key. The exercises here may be different or more advanced than those youll experience in a SilverSneakers class. If you have a chronic condition, an injury, or balance issues, talk to your doctor about how you can exercise safely.

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    Circuit Training Program : Exercise Bike Workout For Beginners:

    • 5-minute warm-up at a low resistance level. RPE 4-minute warm-up at a low resistance level. RPE 4
    • 3 minutes – increase the resistance level between one to four intervals, so youre at RPE 5. This resistance level is your baseline.
    • 2 minutes – increase the resistance level again, so you’re at about RPE 5 or 6.
    • 3 minutes – decrease resistance or your pace back to your baseline, RPE 5.
    • 2 minutes – increase your pace again, so you’re working slightly harder than baseline. RPE 5 or 6.
    • 5 minutes – decrease the pace to a comfortable level to cool down. Approximately RPE 4.

    If youre new to exercising on a stationary bike, you may not be able to maintain the pace for very long. However, you will build up your stamina to easily complete this 20-minute workout routine.

    Strengthens Your Legs And Lower Body Muscles

    HIIT for Fat Loss | 20 minute Stationary Bike Workout for Beginners

    Riding a stationary bike can help build strength in your legs, especially if you use a higher resistance.

    You’ll get a good stretch in your calves, hamstrings and quadriceps from pedaling. Additionally, it can work the muscles in your core and glutes. If you use a bicycle with handles, youll also be able to work your upper body muscles, including biceps and triceps.

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    What Does A Beginner Cycling Workout Look Like

    If youre new to cycling, you might have questions about how long to ride for and how often to get on your bike. Seacat says, pay more attention to getting into a consistent cycling routine.

    Dont worry so much about pace or distance, he says. “You’re just getting a feel for the bike and how you move.”

    If jumping right into the training plan below feels intimidating, make it a goal to set aside 20 minutes two or three times a week for about two weeks, and leisurely ride around the neighborhood or on a bike path.

    The first step is making getting out on your bike feel easy and nonintimidating, Seacat says.

    The Right Speed Distance And Resistance

    You need to align your speed, distance and resistance to the goal of your workout. If you are wanting to do a steady-state workout to burn calories and improve your cardio fitness, you should use a resistance that will allow you to keep going without overstressing your muscles and joints.

    If you are doing a HIIT workout, you need to use a speed that will allow you to pedal at maximum speed for the duration of your sprint sessions. If the resistance is too high you will not be able to go far enough.

    For best effects in terms of both weight loss, strength gain and cardiovascular improvement you should vary the type of workout youre doing and adjust your speed, distance and resistance level.

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    Can I Get A Good Cardio Workout On A Recumbent Bike

    Dont mistake comfort for ineffectiveness. Its a common misconception that recumbent bikes are not as effective as other cardiovascular machines. But, they provide a suitable workout for beginners and experienced exercisers alike and as an added benefit, they make for great low-impact workouts.

    We know regular cardiovascular exercise is great for the heart, lungs, and muscles, but can you get a good workout on a recumbent bike?

    Research shows exercising on a recumbent bike improves VO2, respiratory exchange ratio, blood lactate, energy expenditure, and muscle swelling1. V02 max and respiratory exchange ratio are widely considered accurate measurements of cardiovascular fitness.

    The Bike Workout: Cycle Fartlek

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    Fartlek training is a fun way to mix HIIT with steady-state cardio, said Kristian Flores, CSCS, a strength and conditioning coach in New York City. And while many people associate Fartlek training with running, you can apply the principle of “speed play” to nearly any activity you chooseincluding this stationary bike workout.

    Part of the appeal of Fartlek workouts is that they’re often unstructuredyou go as hard as you can for as long as you can, and recover until you’re ready to go hard again. So really, the workout is all in your hands . This also makes Fartlek workouts great for all fitness levels, as your effort and work-rest intervals are based on your current ability. But no matter your experience level, Fartlek training can help you build endurance and power, Flores said.

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    Stationary Bike Workout Plan For Beginners

    TechAwards is a reader-supported website. Purchases made through links may earn a commission.

    The stationary bike is a popular cardio machine that helps you attain your fitness goals. One of the best features about it is that it is easy to use. It requires very little know-how to start, as well as minimal supervision.

    Are you a beginner?

    Perhaps youre just a person who wants a cardio machine that you could use without any help in your homes comfort?

    Regardless of who you are, the stationary bike can provide you with everything necessary to help you effortlessly perform different workouts and hit your fitness goals.

    Just 10 minutes per day on your bike can remarkably boost your energy levels and improve your moods, not to mention the cardiovascular benefits youll get out of it.

    This article focuses on helping you become fit with an effective stationary bike workout plan .

    So, lets get straight to the workout program!

    How To Track Your Workout

    There are a number of apps out there thatll help you track your progress and record your workouts. Many of them connect to your bike allowing for two great things. One, you can select rides and the app will adjust the difficulty all on its own. Two, many of them come with destination rides. If you have a TV or screen in your exercise room, you can cast a pre-recorded ride onto the screen. Suddenly youre cycling through Spain, and not your laundry room/exercise space. Some of these apps even allow you to ride with others in real-time and compete. Here are some of the best apps for stationary cycling:

    • Road Grand Tours

    We hope that youll enjoy these workouts whether youre new to stationary bike training, or just looking to mix up your routine. Cycling indoors is a great form of training, and the number of workouts out there is endless. Paired with proper nutrition, these workouts are sure to have you looking and feeling your best.

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