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NEW YORK, May 2, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association kicks off American Stroke Month with the launch of CycleNation™. CycleNation™ is a cycling movement, nationally sponsored by Amgen Cardiovascular and CycleBar, to empower the nation to use road bikes, stationary bikes and community indoor cycling classes to get brain and heart healthy while raising funds to continue to support research and community programs to reduce stroke and heart disease. Nearly 801,000 people in the U.S. die from heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases. In fact, someone in the U.S. dies from stroke about every 4 minutes and from heart disease about once every 84 seconds. The good news is that 80 percent of cardiovascular diseases, including stroke, are largely preventable through education, simple lifestyle changes, and action.

While the heart-healthy benefits of physical fitness are well known, the CycleNation™ launch is intended to serve as a reminder that both outdoor and indoor cycling are great for your brain and heart and is a fun way to reduce your risk for heart disease, the nation's No. 1 cause of death, and stroke, the nation's No. 5 cause of death and a leading cause of disability. Recent studies suggest that physical activity, like cycling, can help maintain strong brain function, processing speeds and mental sharpness. Also, cycling strengthens heart muscles, lowers resting pulse and reduces cholesterol.

"We're so pleased the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association chose CycleBar as the organization to help bring active, heart-healthy lifestyles to the nation through the power of cycling,"...