May is National Bike Month! Bike Week is officially May 13-19 with Friday, May 17th being National Bike to Work Day. If you already ride your bike, you know how wonderful it can feel. If you don’t ride a bicycle, it might be a good time to try it out and see if you like it. Here in Chico we have a great biking community with pretty good designated bicycle lanes, and we have beautiful places like Lower Bidwell Park where you can ride on a flat, fairly shaded path.
You might be wondering why a women’s health doctor is talking to you about bike riding. Well, there are several reasons. We understand that gynecology extends past the parameters of the pelvic floor– we have to take into consideration mental health, vitamin deficiencies, exercise habits, stress, and all things that contribute to a woman’s health. Exercise is one of the most important things you can do to keep yourself healthy (men, too!). It can lessen anxiety or depression, get you out in the sunshine, it can lower blood pressure and stress levels, keep your heart healthy, help stabilize blood sugar levels, and it can be a lot easier on the body than running or jogging because you’re in the seated position and not putting so much pressure on those joints.
Make sure to grab a helmet, obey all traffic rules as if you were a car, get lights for in the front and back, and wear an obvious color. Try a loop around your neighborhood, and then slowly build up from there. And who knows, maybe you’ll find a new healthy hobby the whole family can enjoy! (Tip: If you find the bike seat irritating your genital area, choose a bike with a more upright position so you’re putting pressure on the sit-bones instead of leaning forward.)