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Cycling is one of the best cardio workouts around. Instead of spending hours sweating in a crowded gym, biking allows you to exercise outdoors and burn calories while strengthening your muscles.
Bikes come with all sorts of modifications. Some have skinny tires, some are thick, some are made for speed, others for comfort, and all you want to do is choose a bike to get some exercise outside. Selecting an inappropriate type of bicycle may be quite embarrassing when trying to look nonchalant and blend in.
The 8 Best Bikes For Outdoor Exercise:
- Cannondale Quick CX 3
- Hiland 700C Aluminum Hybrid Urban City Bike
- Tern Eclipse X22 The Blackbird
- Trek Marlin 7
- Tommaso Imola Endurance Aluminum Road Bike
- Specialized Sirrus X 4.0
- Trek FX Hybrid
- Schwinn Discover Hybrid
You've probably enviously watched cyclists whizz past on their bikes and been somewhat envious, but what do you do if you don't know what bike to choose? I have singled out some great options for anyone who isn't quite ready for the Tour de France and just wants to feel confident on their bike and get some exercise outdoors.
Bicycles are pretty specific for different terrain and riders, and there's a lot of bike jargon about that new bikers just don't understand. Once you've been cycling for a while, all the terms become standard, so let me cut through the language barrier and help you on your way to find the perfect bike that you can use to exercise outdoors. In a few months, you will also be speaking 'bike' like a pro.
Best 8 Bikes For Outdoor Exercise
Before I kick off with the 8 bikes you should consider when selecting an outdoor exercise bike, let's go through some basics. With all the types of bikes out there, you need to be able to narrow the field to find the right bike for you.
It's not only about you burning calories and enjoying the great outdoors. The bike you select will be your connection between your body and the ground. It is, therefore, essential that you consider these three things when shopping for your bike:
- Where will you be riding? Think about whether the terrain is hilly, gravel, paved, or sandy.
- Work out your budget. Even though you will only be using your bike for outdoor exercise, you will find that models come in a range of prices and can include some high-performance features if you opt for them.
- Size matters. Make sure that your bike fits – the frame size must be based on your height.
Now that you know what to be aware of, let's get into our selection of the best bikes that you can choose for outdoor exercise.
1. Cannondale Quick CX 3
Exercise riders should consider hybrid-style bikes first because they are the perfect combination of road and mountain bikes. They, therefore, offer exercise riders the ruggedness and performance of both styles, all rolled into one versatile bicycle.
The Cannondale Quick CX 3 is the ultimate reasonably-priced hybrid bike. Its sleek design can be adapted to add storage bags, water bottle, and fenders as you become more confident on your cycling journey.
- 40 mm Multisurface tires make it suitable for
- Tektro hydraulic disk brakes offer consistent braking performance
- microSHIFT technology means that the gears are easy to shift without interruption
- Alloy frame which combines strength and lightness
- No puncture protection, so you may need to carry a repair kit
- The wheels are relatively heavy
- The overall weight of the bike is just over 31lbs which is slightly heavier than ideal.
- The bike does not come with fenders attached.
Additional buyers Information
The Cannondale Quick 3 offers riders a comfortable upright position ride that allows for excellent control and view, regardless of whether you are riding in the city or off-road. The bike is available in men's and women's models; the only differences are the colors and the lower standover clearance on the women's model.
This bike is an excellent choice for those needing an outdoor exercise bike. The fitness feature of the Cannondale Quick CX 3 is enhanced by an integrated wheel sensor system that tracks your speed and amount of energy used on each trip and connects to a free Cannondale app that will let you take charge of your exercise program.
2. Hiland 700C Aluminum Hybrid Urban City Bike
Calling all city dwellers! If you will mostly be cycling on city streets and paved surfaces, the Hiland offers a comfortable, stable ride that is perfect for fitness riding or commuting. This neat-looking bike has featured highly in numerous reviews as excellent value for money and reliability rolled into one.
The Hiland is undeniably an entry-level bike priced under $450, so you won't have to break the bank if you just want to add cycling outdoors to your regular exercise routine. However, it comes from an established manufacturer with a solid reputation in the industry.
- It is one of the most inexpensive options that offer great value for money
- It has a super-light aluminum frame and disc brakes
- 40C Kendra tires make it a solid option for city riding
- Shimano Altus derailleurs offer 24 gears and a good range of speeds
- Some reviews have noted that parts like the pedals aren't the best quality
- The saddle may not be as comfortable as you'd like, but that is easy to customize
- This is an entry-level bike perfect for moderate exercise, but it may not be enough bike if you want to cycle more frequently or take it off-road
- Sizing can be tricky, so check carefully before placing an order.
Additional Buyers Information
Hiland offers a lifetime limited warranty on some parts of their bikes. A lifetime warranty covers the frame for the original owner, and most parts also have a one-year guarantee.
It comes in four colors, so if black and white are too dull to suit your style, you can choose silver or a super eye-catching mint green version. The bike is sleek and easy to accessorize with fenders, racks, or lights.
The mechanical disc brake design allows it to stop in a flash, and the all-weather braking makes it a safe option for exercise riders.
3. Tern Eclipse X22 – 'The Blackbird'
If you want something unique, elegant, modern, swift, and just plain awesome, look no further than the Tern Eclipse X22. You will look forward to exercising just so you can get onto this bike! Of course, magnificent things don't come cheap, but think of the Blackbird as an investment in yourself – it truly is a sexy design, and you will be the envy of your fellow cyclists.
Besides being an all-terrain hybrid bike, The Blackbird is made to be fast, so if you like an outdoor exercise workout with a little more intensity, this is the right choice for you. It is also an excellent option for those with limited storage space because a nifty feature is that the bike folds up compactly.
- Powerful hydraulic disc brakes
- Fold up easily for compact storage
- It's a fast and agile design perfect for city riding but also durable enough for rugged terrain.
- Extremely light – it weighs 24.9lbs
- Often out of stock at some suppliers
- They are pretty pricey, so if you only need the bike for exercise, there are more basic bikes available that will be suitable.
- You may not need the folding function.
- Ride quality may not be as smooth as a non-folding bike
Additional Buyers Information
It is quite difficult to find anything negative to say about this nifty bike from the Tern stable. One may expect a folding bike to be flimsy, but on the contrary, the Blackbird can handle riders over 6'5" and a maximum weight of 231 pounds.
Attention to detail on these bikes is evident throughout the design. The wheels are hand-built 26" wheels, fitted with high-performance Kojak tires with puncture protection.
The Blackbird can be fully adjusted to fit your riding preferences. The adjustable VRO handlebar stem allows you to fine-tune your position. Indoor exercising will become a thing of the past if you invest in one of these remarkable bikes!
4. Trek Marlin 7
Let's slow down a little after the Eclipse and get our wheels down securely on the ground. Trek Marlin 7 will let you commute, do your exercise riding, and go on biking adventures on backroads and hilly trails. It is really up for anything, and its rugged design will make you feel like you can conquer the world – or at least ride over anything that stands in your way.
If you like a comfy design in a bike, the fat tires on this bike will keep you comfortably cushioned
- Excellent all-rounder bike that will handle a variety of settings
- 10mm Coil spring-fork effectively protects the bike from shocks and vibrations so you can glide over rocky ground more comfortably
- Disc brakes that are effective in all weather conditions
- Internal cable routing, so the bike looks sleek without skipping any features you'd expect.
- It doesn't have tubeless-ready wheels
- It is a little heavier than some other bikes
- The paint is prone to scratching, so be careful not to park it against scratchy thickets.
- The mountain bike tires may feel a bit heavy-duty for city riding
Additional Buyers Information
Buys may get confused between the various Trek Marlin models. The Marlin 7 is on our list of excellent choices as a great exercise bike because it is designed to be an intermediate-level mountain bike and comes in at a really reasonable price. The Marlin Trek 6 is also a great bike, but it is more intended for beginner riders, and it won't be as suitable to progress to faster events and more challenging rides.
Trek bikes often stand out from the crowd because they are available in a bunch of colors and combinations. These bikes also have some handy features that you may find convenient, like a rear kickstand mount – no more learning precariously against walls.
5. Tommaso Imola Endurance Aluminum Road Bike
The Tommaso Imola Endurance Road Bike is an excellent option for exercise enthusiasts. The bike is solidly built and comes with plenty of benefits that you don't expect on a road bike model under $1000 – some reviewers feel that it outperforms more expensive tier bikes.
- 24-speed gearset and Shimano Claris R2000 shifters set you up for speed.
- 24 lb light aluminum frame
- Great price to value – also has a fully customizable frame so you can easily add rack mounts or fenders, etc.
- Excellent weight support – the front has 20 spokes while the rear has 24.
- It is more expensive than some other options
- The wheels are not as durable as the rest of the bike and may need to be replaced earlier than expected.
- Some reviewers have found the saddle uncomfortable
- The Tommaso Imola is only available online, so you can't test it before you buy
Additional Buyers Information
If you are one of those riders who can't decide what type of handlebars you prefer, the Tommaso Imola features ultra-compact handlebars so that you can utilize all bar positions. This will reduce hand pressure for those times you want to add a little speed and really get a great workout.
The Tommaso Imola Road bike is available in 6 frame sizes, suitable for riders starting at 4'9" right through to 6'5". This elegant bike comes in 3 colors, and even if you don't know much about bikes, you will appreciate the combinations that make it look more expensive than it is. The burnt orange option is particularly eye-catching if you want a bike that stands out.
Tommaso bikes come with a lifetime warranty on the frame and fork, and the brand has US-based customer service staff, so even though you need to buy online, you will be able to find support assistance if you need it.
6. Specialized Sirrus X 4.0
Specialized Sirrus X 4.0 is another hybrid bike that is perfect if you want to do some outdoor exercise, but you suspect that cycling might become your favorite activity. Choosing a bike that will grow with you is important as you embrace cycling as a regular activity. This bike is immensely versatile and is up to the challenge of allowing you to ride further and longer when you are ready.
This Specialized Sirrus X 4.0 has been described as a 'fun bike for exercising' that also offers speed and comfort. This bike is suitable for everything from smooth riding on tarmacs to trail rides and everything in between. The gravel tires and signature shock-absorbing system called Future Shock also provide excellent maneuverability.
- Excellent shock-proof riding experience
- The carbon fork makes the bike lightweight and durable
- Excellent speed and maneuverability
- 38mm pathfinder sport tires
- It may be pricey if you only need the bike for outdoor exercise
- It is not really suitable for long-distance riding
- There was some bad press around a recent recall of these bikes involving a loose crank arm – however, this has been remedied and is not an issue on new bikes
- If you are into speed over a longer distance, the flat handlebars may not be ideal
The zippy Specialized Sirrus X4 has plenty of gears (11-42t) which means you should be able to sail up hills comfortably. The hydraulic disc brakes will enable you to stop on a penny when you come down the other side.
The bike is ergonomically designed, so it is an incredibly comfortable ride. Everything, including handgrips, saddle, and pedals, has been made with the rider's comfort in mind. This is a significant plus factor for anyone who wants to ride for exercise.
Specialized offers an impressive warranty on their bikes. Owners must ensure that they register their products within 90 days to enjoy the generous lifetime warranty that applies to the bike's original owner.
7. Trek FX 1
Trek FX 1 is an excellent value-for-money hybrid exercise bike specifically designed with fitness in mind. Link it to an app on your smartphone, and you will not only be able to enjoy the comfort and fun of riding a really nice, versatile bike, but you will be able to track your progress. This handy feature always makes exercising a lot more rewarding.
The bike is fitted with Bontrager H2 tires which are great for road or track but aren't the best if you need mountain bike performance or will be doing a lot of downhill riding. This bike has linear-pull brakes on the front and rear rims. The brake pads will need to be replaced after a lot of riding, but it is a simple operation, and they are easy to install.
- The bike is fitted with a Shimano 7-speed shifter.
- It has rackmount holes on the frame, so it can quickly be kitted out with accessories.
- Suitable to carry weight up to 300 pounds – so you can also ride with a heavy pack
- Lightweight aluminum frame
- It may not be the best choice for long rides
- It doesn't handle well on rough terrain – it's perfect for city riding
- Some riders find the handlebar grips uncomfortable
- Pedals tend to wear out quite quickly
This is a perfect choice as a general fitness bike, especially if your regular route is on solid surfaces. All Trek bikes are backed by a lifetime warranty and supported by a network of partners, so you won't struggle to find help if you need it. However, for their price, these bikes are incredibly tough, so you shouldn’t need to call them too often.
Reviews on the Trek FX 1 support its popularity as this brand's leading model in hybrid fitness bikes. The affordability and outstanding features of the FX1 make it an excellent choice for anyone who just wants a bike to get fit and enjoy being outdoors without needing to be a bike expert.
8. Schwinn Discover Hybrid Bike
Schwinn is a well-known brand that has been producing quality bicycles since 1895, so they know a few things about creating excellent bikes! The Discover Hybrid Bike attempts to bridge the gap in making a versatile bike that can be used for outdoor exercise on city streets or a fun trail ride on weekends.
This bike looks a little less serious than some of the other bikes out there because it comes fitted with fenders and a rear carrier. These can be handy features if you plan to use your bike to commute or for quick outings to the shops, but it is still an excellent option for anyone who wants to use their bike for outdoor exercise.
- 21 Speed twist shifters ensure smooth gear changes and make it excellent for any terrain.
- Shock-absorbing suspension fork
- Lightweight aluminum frame
- It comes standard with fenders and a carrier for a vintage flair
- You may need some help to assemble your bike when it arrives
- It may not look at serious as some other hybrid bikes
- Not the best choice if you regularly ride in rugged terrain
- You may prefer hydraulic disc brakes
Additional Buyers Information
The Schwinn Discover Hybrid comes in men's and women's models for extra comfort. Reviews on the product are predominantly excellent, and this classically styled bike has many delighted customers.
Although some cyclists may prefer disc brakes, the benefit of the linear brake setup is that it is much easier and less costly to replace, which means you will probably be able to do it yourself. All consumables for this bike are readily available.
The Schwinn Discover Hybrid is designed with comfort in mind. Some riders prefer sitting uprights, while those who prefer speed may like a lower handlebar. Schwinn Discover handlebars are adjustable by height and tilt, so the bike can be set up according to individual preferences. This bike will never compete in a serious triathlon, but for biking around for exercise, it is a solid choice.