Ever notice the pulse in your blood, the increase in energy, and all around vitality that seems to follow a ride? Granted, most of that is adrenaline. But some additional theories have been hypothesized about a link between exercising and an incredible elevation of the bodies immune system. Though none of these theories have been proven, they do align with the general patterns our bodies operate under for optimum health.
Flushing Out the Lungs
Low impact, aerobic movement often give people a quicker heart rate and leaves them out of breathe. Believe it or not, there have been those who claim that the deep panting may aid in the clean out of bacteria in your air ways and lungs. By doing so, your body is lowering your risk of viral and sinus infections. There has to be some truth to it since deep breathing techniques in yoga and other relaxation routines have been proven to do something similar.
Circulation of White Blood Cells
The police and hospital of your blood, the white blood cells in our immune system, seem to work sluggishly in people who don’t exercise, and in high gear in those who are regularly active. So not only does cycling help get rid of bacteria in your airways, but also in your life liquid. Similarly to adrenaline, the boost to your immunities is temporary, lasting less than three hours. However, that time frame is plenty to keep illness at bay. A person who works out their muscles daily is more likely to stay healthy than someone who does not.
Another level of healthfulness cycling and other exercise can give your immune system is in the production of neuro-hormones to improved cognitive function, elevated mood, and learning. In a nutshell, it drops stress, pedals you plum out of depression, and cranks up creativity and mood. Strangely enough, despite this physiological system improvement, our stress hormone cortisone actually temporarily raises during intense exercise. But the quick fall upon workout completion is what seems to fire up all the advantages our bodies get from any given ride.
A Word of Caution
All this great information doesn’t mean to go hog wild with your rides. Never push yourself too far or beyond realistic limits. Over working your body can and will erode away all the advantages above, dropping your immune system into hibernation and rendering you ill.
For maximum immunities, continue your ride habits or challenge yourself slightly. As Edward Stanley, the Earl of Derby once said, “Those who think they have not time for
bodily exercise bicycling will sooner or later have to find time for illness.” (Slightly modified.) So to avoid bodily plaques, keep on riding!