How To Track Cycling On An Apple Watch

Cycling is one of the most efficient strategies for burning calories, resulting in significant weight loss. If you look forward to tracking your cycling activities, you probably have an Apple Watch. It is a must-have device for fitness enthusiasts keen on tracking their cycling workout progress.

Are you struggling to maintain your fat level at the top? If so, you are in the right place. However, how do you track cycling activities on your new Apple watch?

This article has been crafted to track your indoor or outdoor cycling workout. It discusses crucial cycling tips to ensure you are updated on how to track your fitness process.

Six Steps Necessary For Tracking Cycling Activities On Your Apple Watch

Step 1: Determine The Operating System That Your Watch Is Using

It is essential to note that most fitness apps do not operate on older OS versions. Thus, your Apple Watch should run on OS 4.0 or higher. It should also have an operating system of iOS 11 or more.

Step 2: Open Your Workout App And Sign In

It is the second step toward tracking your workout progress. The watch comes with an inbuilt workout app to help you track your progress. Alternatively, you can download from the app store a customized cycling app that gives you a fulfilling workout experience.

Step 3: Choose The Workout You Want To Begin

Do you want an indoor or outdoor cycling activity?

Selecting the right features depending on your desired cycling type is essential. Under the outdoor workout, select Outdoor Cycle. The cycling mode ensures you get the correct data on calories burnt and heart rate based on the physical exertion on the bike.

What happens if you select the wrong workout mode? The watch will track the calories the body burns, but the resultant data will not be correct as it utilizes a different metric.

Outdoor cycling app

Step 4: Establish Exercise Objectives

Setting the goals for each ride can help you work towards certain fitness goals. How much weight do you want to lose? How many miles do you want to ride?

If you tap on the “…” under Outdoor Cycle, you can set specific workout goals like calories burned, distance, or time.

Step 5: Tap “Workout” To Start The Activity

After setting up the app and selecting the activity you want to undertake, it is time to start your ride.

Immediately after you start your cycling activity, your watch will automatically start tracking your progress. This is possible because the Apple Watch uses advanced algorithms to recognize when you start a workout.

During the exercise, check your watch for metrics. You will see the heart rate, your average speed, elevation gain, and total distance. 

Step 6: Session End

After completing your workout, what next? Tap the end button. From the watch screen, you can view the statistical performance of your exercise. Then, tap “done” to save your work data on the app.

How Do You Track Your Fitness Data?

Now that you can read and record your daily data, how do you pull it from the app for analysis after a certain period? A fitness watch’s primary goal is to look back from the beginning and see the progress you’ve made. The analysis will help you determine the next step to take.

Your daily activity will be displayed on an individual chart in the form of colored rings in a circle. To view your fitness data on the app, tap the activity icon, and three colored rings will appear.

Workout rings Apple Watch

The red colored rig in the above image indicates the number of calories burnt in a day irrespective of the activity. The inner blue-colored ring shows the number of hours spent standing in a day. Lastly, the green chart displays the time spent during cycling exercise.

For weekly data review, scroll to the bottom of the activity page. Select “Weekly Summary.” The app will display data for the entire week. You can also view more data from the start by selecting the duration you want.

Also, from the chart, you can statistically tell the value you have achieved in every activity. If you manage to complete the ring, it means that you have achieved your daily set goals for that activity.

You may also like to read How To Pair Apple Watch With Zwift – Step By Step Guide.

Does Your Apple Watch Track Your Exertion Only When Working Out?

Surprisingly, no. The app will record the statistics without activating workout mode if you are involved in any rigorous activity like cycling. As long as the watch remains on your wrist, it will continue monitoring any physical activities undertaken throughout the day.

Is The App Data Affected By The Stops? 

No, as a cyclist tracking your fitness progress, you do not have to worry about the numerous stops you make. The app has auto-pause functionality.

This function allows the watch to stop counting during stops and resume after restarting the cycling activity. However, you have to ensure that the auto pause is on. Go to your watch settings and turn it on.

Instructions on how to do this can be found at the bottom of this post.

Auto pause Apple Watch

Related article – 5 Of The Best Bands For Apple Watch Cyclists

Essential Features Of The Cycling App Watch

Detection Of Fall Off

What happens when you fall off your bike?

Fall detection is one of the best features that this app has. Ensure that it is set to turn on automatically, and it will detect your fall. If you are 55 or older, your fall will be automatically recorded. What happens if you are 18 to 55 years old? If you have this feature turned on, it will still detect your fall.

Have you fallen off your bike and remained motionless? Worry not. When you step off your bike, the watch will call 911 and notify your emergency contacts of your location.

How do you activate this function? Ensure you have updated the watch to the latest OS. The Apple series should also be series four or higher. From the settings, tap on SOS and select Fall Detection, then decide for that specific workout or at all times.

Voice Prompt Functionality

Checking your workout progress while cycling can be tedious. How about if the app could give you voice milestones of your progress? 

This helpful feature would allow you to beat up personal time without having to glance down at your progress. You can connect it to your headphones or your Bluetooth earbuds. However, you have to ensure the silent mode is not turned on; otherwise, you will hear nothing.

Related article – 5 Of The Best Cycling Headphones

Apple Watch cycling app

The Auto Pause Feature

This feature allows you to pause when you are not cycling automatically. It is essential as it prevents false recording statistics about your workout. It is important to keep this feature on auto-pause.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Auto-Pause On Your Phone? 

  • Step 1: Go to the Settings on your Apple Watch. Scroll down and tap “Workout”.
  • Step 2: Under Workout settings, scroll down to auto pause and press it to go into the menu. Toggle the auto-pause switch.

Ensure that running and cycling are toggled on unless you want the auto pause tagged for one activity, like cycling only.

What Is The Battery Life Of An Apple Watch?

If you love cycling for hours or a whole day like I do, you might wonder about the battery lifespan. The truth is that Series 7 can only last seven hours with GPS enabled during an outdoor activity or six hours with GPS and LTE enabled. This is a significant setback for day-long riders.

For long-day activities, consider carrying a charging pack. Take a break and charge up. The watch will stop recording if the auto pause function is on.

Is Apple Watch Accurate For Cycling?

Based on my personal experience the Apple Watch is fairly accurate. The calories burned and mileage is slightly off. Let’s face it, we’re not Tour De France riders here!

Like most fitness trackers, it’s within tolerance levels. As long as you use the same device consistently, you will be able to draw out fitness trends.

Related article – 5 Of The Best Bike Fitness Trackers

Part time TCP contributor, full time cycling enthusiast! I am USAC qualified cycling coach - my forte and passion are working with new or inexperienced cyclists.

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