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Calories Burned When Riding a Bicycle

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How many calories do you burn cycling?

How many calories do you burn cycling?

How to Calculate Calories Burned Cycling

There is no doubt that cycling is a great exercise and that calories burned while riding a bike can help you as part of a weight loss plan. However, everyone has one question.

How Many Calories Can I Burn When Riding a Bicycle?

This is a popular question asked by many people. Below are figures and information that should help provide an idea of your calorie expenditure from bicycling; therefore, you can potentially tailor your exercise levels in relation to your weight loss goals. Or you can simply just find out how many calories you're burning while you ride your road bike, mountain bike or complete a spinning class; there's no limit to how you can burn calories through cycling.

No matter where you cycle, it's a great form of exercise and a way to burn calories.

How Many Calories Do I Burn Cycling?

Cycling is a great activity to burn calories and below is information on how many calories you can burn road cycling

General figures for calories burned while bicycling are featured below and should give you an idea with regard to how long you need to cycling for when targeting weight loss.

In general you can burn between 400-500 calories for an easy hour of cycling which can have a seriously positive effect on your health and weight loss goals.

Calories Burned in 1 Hour of Cycling

Values for calories burned while cycling adapted from figures from

Speed and intensityWeight= 155lb (70kg)Weight= 185lb (85kg)

Light intensity. 10-12 mph (16-19 kmh)

450 calories

550 calories

Moderate Intensity 12-16 mph (19- 26 kmh)

550 calories

700 calories

Hard cycling 16-20 mph (26-32 kmh)

800 calories

1000 calories

Calories burned cycling can contribute towards a healthy weight loss plan

Calories burned cycling can contribute towards a healthy weight loss plan

How Many Calories Do I Burn During a Studio Cycling Session?

Studio cycling (or spin cycling) is another great form of cycling exercise and a fantastic way to burn calories. Studio cycling classes are also a great way to have fun and meet people who want to improve their fitness and are generally sociable so there's nothing to stop you attending.

Calorie values below are based on a general 45 minute studio cycling class.

Calories Burned During a 45-Minute Studio Cycling Class

Values adapted from

Intensity of cycling exerciseWeight 155 lb (70kg)Weight 185lb (85kg)


330 calories

400 calories


480 calories

640 calories

How Long Do I Have to Cycle to Lose a Pound of Fat?

The equivalent number of calories in a pound of body-fat is 3500 calories. From the figures above based on how far you've cycled and how fast you've travelled you can work out how many calories you've burnt in total? How close to 3500 calories is that?

If you cycle at a moderate intensity of 12-16 miles per hour for 2 hours (and weigh 185 lb) you will likely burn a figure of around 1400 calories. That's over 1/3rd of the way to burning off a pound of fat

Based in these same conditions you'd have to cycle a total of 5 hours to burn a pond of body-fat. You could even space that 5 hour period out over the course of a week as 5 rides of 1 hour duration.

Or you could increase the amount of cycling you do (by a sensible amount) and slowly increase your activity level to further increase the calories you burn cycling- Good luck

Good luck calculating your calories burned while cycling.

It's always good to know calories burned when riding a bicycle although these Mountain Bikers in the Peak District, UK look to be more concerned with having some fun

It's always good to know calories burned when riding a bicycle although these Mountain Bikers in the Peak District, UK look to be more concerned with having some fun

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.


Liam Hallam (author) from Nottingham UK on June 08, 2014:

Thanks Bridgitt, yes a turbo trainer is an excellent way to ride when the weather is too harsh. They're also a great way to allow more control on your training too. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

Bridgitt on June 05, 2014:

It's a great idea to hook up one's road bike or mountain bike or outdoor bike to an indoor trainer and ride it inside when he weather is too poorly, you put on music or tv and can probably do it for 30-90 minutes if you get into it and adjust the resistance to make it easier and harder.

Liam Hallam (author) from Nottingham UK on March 22, 2013:

Thanks parkournut, they're never realistically programmed. I have a heart rate watch that gives an estamation of calories burnt running and the figures never look like anything related to what I'd expect to see from the available info online.

parkournut on March 22, 2013:

I've always wondered how accurate my stationary bike is in detailing calories burned. It says approximately 60 calories are burned every mile, regardless of speed. Not very sophisticated, I suppose.

Liam Hallam (author) from Nottingham UK on July 04, 2012:

Thanks Colin. I'm glad you enjoyed and it has relevance to your 'blas'

Liam Hallam (author) from Nottingham UK on May 12, 2012:

Well I saw plenty of sun today so a spin class was not required. If you're after a hard cycling workout in a warm dry environment it's great- in my mind it is on a par with setting up a turbo trainer in the garage although the class is led by an instructor so you just have to go there and ride which takes away the monotony some people see in turbo training at home

David Taylor from UK on May 11, 2012:

I've never done spinning - is it useful substitute for "real" cycling, so do you keep the benefits when (if) we ever see the sun again?

Liam Hallam (author) from Nottingham UK on May 11, 2012:

Get yourself off to a spinning class plussize-lingerie to get your cycling fix. 3 times a week is a fantastic way to get some healthy exercise.

Lets hope we have some sunshine soon!

Liam Hallam (author) from Nottingham UK on May 11, 2012:

Thanks Jimmy for the feedback- always good to know we're doing something right

Adventure Colin from London (when I'm 'home') on May 11, 2012:

Very interesting information in this hub - I'll bear it in mind during my Sunday blast on the bike.

Jimmy the jock from Scotland on May 10, 2012:

Great advice and well presented, thanks for sharing.....jimmy

David Taylor from UK on May 10, 2012:

Speaking from experience, cycling is excellent for calorie burn - 3 rides a week is a great way to lose weight. I'm struggling at the moment precisely because I can't get out on my bike enough thanks to the terrible UK weather.