Website design By BotEap.comCycling is a great sport to participate in no matter if your goal is to lose weight, improve endurance, or seek adventure. Whether you’re new to cycling or have been doing it for decades, one thing you’ll become familiar with fairly quickly is the puncture. This is common on both road bikes and mountain bikes. Website design By BotEap.comYou’ll often see used inner tubes on the side of the road, as they usually mark the spot where someone flattered and traded in your old inner tube. This is unfortunate for many reasons. As cyclists, we all hate to see this kind of behavior as it boggles our minds while pedaling about how lazy someone can be. After all, being lazy in the sport of cycling doesn’t pay off. Among all the reasons not to throw your used inner tube on the side of the road, I hope to present one more reason to put that old inner tube in your back jersey pocket and keep it because it will become more valuable as you read this article. . Website design By BotEap.comCycling helps build many muscles in the lower body. However, there are many muscles that are neglected due to the repetitive motion of cycling, as well as the fact that, for the most part, the seat supports your body weight. This doesn’t do much in terms of building functional strength or fitness. Sure, your cardiovascular system is excellent and your quads and calves are in tip-top shape and look great, but what about those muscles that are used to support your body when moving laterally? Even if you’re a triathlete, you’ll do little to no lateral movement while you train. This poses a major problem in terms of maintaining the supporting muscles in the back, stomach, and glutes. Website design By BotEap.comNow back to the old airlock. When you get home from your trip, take the inner tube and a pair of scissors cut the valve stem. Then simply roll the inner tube back on itself to create two loops. Step inside the loops with 2 feet and position the inner tube so it is slightly above the knee and about mid-thigh. From here you will perform what is called a lateral sidestep. Anchor one foot and side step to the side with the other. As you step to the side, you will feel the resistance of your inner tube. At the end of the step, plant the foot you just stepped on and lift the previously planted foot. Continue in one direction until you complete 10-15 steps depending on your type of inner tube. The inner tubes of mountain bikes are going to provide much more resistance. If you have lightweight running inner tubes, these are a good place to start to get a feel for movement and resistance level. As you progress you can try regular 700c tubes and ultimately mountain bike tubes. I like to fit the lighter tubes around my ankles and the heavier mountain bike tubes around my thighs when doing the lateral sidestep. Website design By BotEap.comComplete this exercise as part of your warm-up to activate your lower body muscles immediately after stretching and stretching. Not only does this provide a great warm-up, but it will gradually strengthen the muscles used to stabilize your core while you ride your bike. I’ve also found that this exercise really works the glutes and knee stabilizers. It’s important to include this in your warm-up routine, and over time you’ll start to notice your whole body feeling more stable while on and off the bike.