12 Reasons to Get On Your Bike and Just Ride Through Folsom, Roseville, and Placerville
Longer, warmer days are beginning to beckon us outside. Instead of going for your daily walk or driving to grab groceries, why not dust off your bike and go for a spin? If you need a reason to ride, look no further. Local experts share why they prefer two wheels over four, and why you should too.
Relieve stress. “Bikes are fun and energizing. For me, it’s a huge stress reliever and a free space to think about life,” says Justin Kerntz, former manager of Bob’s Cycle Center in Roseville, who used to commute nine miles each way, every day, rain or shine, to work.
Boost endorphins. “I love riding outdoors because it’s a great way to get a boost of endorphins pumping through your body,” says Heather Hayes, owner and instructor at TrueNorth Cycle & Barre Studio in Folsom. “The physical exercise paired with breathing in fresh air and being in nature is an incredible mood booster, not to mention a great cardio workout.”
It’s an all-in-one exercise. If it’s a rainy day but you still want to get moving, think about an indoor cycling class, suggests Lise Edwards, co-owner of HouseRide Cycling Studio in Roseville. “It focuses on speed, endurance, power, and strength, [so] you’re able to integrate all the important aspects of training into your weekly fitness routine without having to switch equipment.”
Ideal for every body. Bike riding is a low-impact workout that’s far easier on your joints, compared to other cardio activities. “It’s a great way to cross-train and save your body from injury, aches, and pains,” Edwards says.
Help your health. According to Brett Bollinger, senior trails planner at Folsom’s Parks and Recreation Department, bike riding “[aids in] better lung health, promotes weight loss, decreases stress, improves mental health and sleep, builds muscle, and increases flexibility.”
Meet new people. “You can increase your social network through group rides,” Bollinger says. For a list of local group rides, visit sacboomer.com.
Feel free. For Kerntz, he loves the sense of freedom and accomplishment that comes with riding a bike. “I think back to first learning to ride, [and it was] my first real sense of freedom. I was finally in the driver’s seat—the captain and the navigator,” he says. “Getting on a bike today gives you a new way to feel free…free from the daily grind, free from self-doubt, and free from stress.”
Get to know your town. “California has some of the world’s most beautiful landscapes, and Ernest Hemingway, I feel, said it best: ‘It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and can coast down them.’ Thus, you remember them as they actually are,” Kerntz says.
Save money. “Riding your bike to work [or run errands] a couple days a week is a good way to reduce pollution and save money on gas,” Hayes says.
Have time to yourself. “Bike riding represents the promise of the open road, the enthralling sense of speed and movement, and the quiet places in my community. With the challenge of the backcountry, single-track trails, I find myself pushing my physical, mental, and emotional limits,” says Heath Sherratt, founder and owner of The Hub in Roseville.
Strengthen your muscles. “You’ll burn body fat and build muscle all at the same time, since bike riding focuses a lot on strengthening your large muscle groups and smaller stabilizer muscles,” Edwards says.
Make up your own reason. “The fun of bike riding is finding new reasons to ride—maybe a new trail or route, inviting friends to join, and sharing with others the joy of it all,” Kerntz says. “I challenge everyone to find some of their own reasons for why they like to ride.”
By Kourtney Jason
Older adults interested in seeing the world via two wheels will want to check out these companies.
Compiled by Megan Wiskus
International Bicycle Tours offers special “70 Plusser Bike & Barge Tours” through various countries in Northern Europe (Belgium, France, Holland); what’s more, the cost is a flat fee minus your age, so the older you are, the cheaper it is. internationalbicycletours.com/70-plusser-tours
Senior Cycling offers bicycle tours for seniors and active adults age 50 and up through Florida, Colorado, the Pacific Northwest, Canada, and other envy-inducing locales. seniorcycling.com
Lifecycle Adventures can create private bike tours for small groups of seniors. Routes can be customized to suit your style and speed of riding with optional activities (think cooking classes, winery tours, and hiking). Destinations include California, Hawaii, the San Juan Islands, and Europe. lifecycleadventures.com/2014/02/bike-tours-for-seniors
Following the rules of the road will keep you and others safe as you bike around town.
Use a polite bell to let others know you’re there and have working lights.
Communication with your fellow riders and pedestrians will keep everyone safe.
A good helmet should fit comfortably and allow for efficient ventilation.
Take your bike in for regular maintenance and tune-ups. And pay attention to when something might be off.
Make sure both front and rear brakes are working properly and don’t get too worn down.
Don’t ride on sidewalks. Instead, use the street, bike lane, or bike path.
HAVE YOU HEARD?
Folsom Cycling Without Age—a nonprofit dedicated to providing 30-40-minute rickshaw rides along Folsom’s bike trails to seniors in assisted-living facilities—is currently seeking monetary donations to purchase and maintain rickshaw bikes. Local businesses, churches, and residents interested in making a tax-deductible donation can send checks (payable to Lean Into The Rock, memo: "cycling") to 6920 Fair Oaks Boulevard, Suite 105, Carmichael, CA 95608. For more info, contact Dave at 916-990-2195.