We will cut to the chase: Most sources show that recumbent bicycles burn 400-450 calories per hour. upright bikes can burn 500 calories an hour, while spin bikes can burn 600 calories an hour.
Recumbent bikes are also a good choice compared to Pilates and moderate walking, leisure swimming, or other back-friendly activities.
However, that’s only part of the story. Continue reading to learn more about the factors that influence calorie burning and what you could do to lose weight quicker.
Factors That Influence Calorie Burn for Recumbent Bikes
Factors that can influence how much you eat on a recumbent bicycle include:
You will burn more calories the faster you go because your body is more motivated to maintain that speed. So:
- 500 calories per hour burned at 12 mph
- 60 calories per hour burned by 15mph
Your Body Composition
Your metabolic rate is affected by your body composition. Your body will burn more calories when you are resting than when you are active.
- You’re more fit than a normal person and have stronger muscles,
- You are more likely to be overweight/obese than someone who is lighter.
For example, at ten mph, you’ll burn:
- 350 calories/ hour if you’re 200 pounds
- 440 calories/ hour if you’re 240 pounds
Different metabolisms exist depending on age, biological sex and pre-existing conditions. These factors can affect your heart rate, muscle mass, and fat ratio, which will determine your resting metabolic rate speed.
A faster resting metabolism requires more energy to function than a slower BMR.
- Women of the same age and weight as men burn calories more quickly than men.
- People of a younger age burn more calories than those of the same weight.
- People with slow heart rates due to certain metabolic conditions (e.g. underactive thyroids), burn less calories than those with higher resting heart rate in the same age group, sex and weight.
How to burn more calories on your recumbent bike
You need to burn more calories if you want your recumbent bicycle to lose weight quickly. Here’s how to do it:
Interval training is a great way to burn calories, according to research. It activates both your anaerobic and aerobic systems. This means that you will:
- Carbohydrates can be burned directly
- To convert carbs to energy, use oxygen
HIIT is a combination of periods of pedaling at 80-100% the intensity you can handle and periods of intensity of 40-50%. So, you can:
- For 20-30 seconds, pedal hard
- Continue that with 10-15 seconds of less intensity
- Continue the whole pattern for approximately 20-30 minutes
Your upper body can be added to the mix
Your entire body needs more energy than if your arms are at your sides. Start incorporating your arms into the mix by:
- Hand weights
- These bodyweight exercises involve the same movements as above, but with a different focus.
Shorten Your Workouts
You did read it correctly. Do not increase your workout time. Instead, reduce the duration of your workouts. But listen to your body.
It’s okay to not feel exhausted at the end. Instead, you should aim for a pleasant soreness and an increase in energy. You don’t want to feel exhausted after a workout.
Long training sessions:
- You can destroy your muscle mass, especially if there aren’t enough rest days between.
- Reduce your metabolic rate, especially for those who are doing steady-state cardio
A good rule of thumb is to ride your recumbent bike for 30-60 minutes at maximum intensity every day.
Use a heart-rate monitor
Consider a chest strap or fitness watch if your recumbent bike does not have pulse sensors. These devices not only show you the beats per minute but also indicate which heart-rate range it falls within.
A 34-year old female who is 132 lbs can see these numbers and intervals on her watch.
- 120 bpm: high-intensity
- 140 beats per minute: cardio
- 160 bpm anaerobic
- 180 bpm VO2 maximum
You will burn significant calories by using the cardio and high-intensity cardio ranges. Your body will begin to burn fat once you are in the anaerobic/VO2 max range.
Calculated Calories from Recumbent Bicycles
The recumbent bike burns significant calories and helps you lose weight faster than other low-impact exercise. The 400-500 calories per hour that you can expect to consume will depend on how fast you are working out and what type of exercise you do.
Be patient, be mindful of your body and train smarter, not harder, to make more progress.