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Tuesday, 23 September 2014

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Regular cycling can cut risk of illnesses - Cumbria County Council chief

A PEDAL-PUSHING politician is urging people to use the Pearl Izumi Tour Series race in Barrow as inspiration to get in the saddle.

The major event has been brought to Barrow by Cumbria County Council.

Councillor Patricia Bell, the council’s cabinet member for public health and communities, is a very keen cyclist and has spoken of the enormous health benefits the sport can bring.

Cllr Bell has done the C2C, the UK’s most popular challenge cycle route which runs from the west coast in Cumbria to the east coast in the North East.

She also enjoys the 7 Stanes mountain biking trails in Scotland and her bike rack is an essential piece of equipment whenever she goes away.

Cllr Bell said: “I hope more people will take up cycling as a result of this event and reap the health benefits of this exercise which can bring short and long-term benefits to your health, the environment and your purse.

“Regular cycling can reduce the risk of long-term illnesses such as heart disease, type-2 diabetes and stroke. It can also boost mental wellbeing and keep weight under control.

“For most people, cycling is a safe and effective form of exercise which has a broad appeal.

“It’s a low-impact type of exercise, so it’s easier on your joints than running or other high-impact aerobic activities. But it still helps you get into shape.

“For example, someone who weighs 80kg (12st 9lbs) will burn more than 650 calories with an hour’s riding, and tone their legs and bottom. If you ride up hills or off-road, you will also work your upper body.”

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