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Get on your bike for your heart, says cardiac specialist

Riding instead of driving can make a "huge difference"...

A Cambridge cardiac specialist says cycling can make a "huge difference" to your heart health. as the British Heart Foundation (BHF) encourages people to change their lifestyle and get more active to look after their hearts.

Getting on your bike is one of the lifestyle changes experts are recommending as part of the British Heart Foundation's (BHF) Heart Month.

The BHF is urging people to take at least 10 minutes a day to help improve their heart health with its 10 Minute Challenge.

Participants will get an activity or other challenge in their email inbox every day for ten days. "Busy lifestyle?" says the BHF. "No excuse! Each challenge takes a maximum of 10 minutes to complete."

One of the bodies backing the BHF's latest campaign is NHS Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group. The organisation's clinical lead for coronary heart disease, Dr Amrit Takhar told Cambridge News: “Making small changes to the way you live can significantly reduce the risk of CHD and other heart and circulatory conditions.

“By taking your bike to work instead of driving, or swapping sugary drinks for water, you can make a huge difference to your heart health. Walking an extra 2000 steps a day can reduce your heart disease risk by 10 per cent.

“It doesn’t matter if you don’t have much time to spare, take on the Heart Month Challenge this February and take ten minutes a day to look after your heart.”

John has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.

He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.

Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for Along with founder Tony Farrelly, John was on the launch team for and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.

John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.

He joined in 2013. He lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

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