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We’ll be honest: When we heard National Go For A Ride Day was coming up, we got excited. We just assumed it meant ‘get out on your bike’, because that’s one of our favorite activities. Plus, it’s a healthy, low impact sport that’s kind to your muscles, joints and bones—and naturally, we’re all about that.
But after looking into this slightly obscure holiday a little deeper, we found that it’s actually a more all-inclusive event that encourages people to simply get out of the house, take a ride and enjoy the journey—however you see fit. According to daysoftheyear.com, there is no one right way to celebrate. You could walk, hike, bike, skateboard, ride a horse or ski (snow permitting)—the possibilities are endless. The point is to get out there and love life.
Why You Should Care
Physical activity has a huge impact on your overall health. It positively affects just about every system in the body, including the cardiovascular, nervous, GI and muscular systems. Dr. Thomas Fyda, MD and sports medicine specialist at Great Basin Orthopaedics says, “Action helps you stay in shape, keep a healthy weight, improve emotional well being, and relax. It also helps prevent a number of diseases including cancer, heart disease and diabetes.” That’s why Great Basin Orthopaedics recommends treating every day like Go Ride For A Day.
Before You Head Out The Door
If you’re running marathons or measuring your swim distance in miles, this next part is more of a friendly reminder than a pep talk. But for the weekend warriors, on-again-off-again gym goers and office chair dwellers, we have a few important tips before you head out for National Go For a Ride Day—and the other 364 days of the year.
1. If you have a heart condition or other physical concerns, consult a physician before starting a new exercise routine.
2. Warm up slowly. Then stretch before hitting your stride in the exercise of choice.
3. Cooling down and stretching after exercise is just as important as doing it beforehand, if not more so.
4. Increase your speed, frequency and/or distance over time. The general rule of thumb is a 10% increase per week.
Dr. Fyda recommends low-impact exercise daily, especially for people with arthritis. “It’s important to keep your joints moving. Work on your conditioning and burn calories, which helps lower the weight your joints have to bear.”
One Last Piece Of Advice
As you prepare to celebrate National Go For A Ride Day, Dr. Fyda has one final piece of advice. “Get out there and exercise,” says the avid mountain biker, hiker and skier. “Find a partner so you can motivate each other. It’s harder to bail out that way.” Of course, you wouldn’t bail out on National Go For A Ride Day, would you? (We didn’t think so.)
If you have arthritis or an injury that is keeping you from getting out there, schedule a consultation with Dr. Fyda or any of the well-seasoned orthopaedic surgeons at Great Basin Orthopaedics. We’re here to help.