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  1. #2526
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    Hello everyone I am new here and really appreciate reading the stories of big guys and gals getting out there and riding.

    A story about me and my reason for researching here(sorry it got a little longer than I planned).

    I am 44, 6' 275 LBS and really need to loose some weight and get in shape. High blood pressure, smoker for 28 years, borderline diabetic and due to a genetic issue on blood thinners for life. 20 years ago used to ride 20-30 miles 3-4 times a week, ran a 5 mile loop every morning and I weighed 175-180 and then got divorced, had a bout of depression and ate to 'feel better' and sat in front of the computer/tv pretty much all my free time.

    Fast forward to spring 2008, weighed 300lbs was on blood pressure meds and at my physical the doctor said better loose some weight and quit smoking now or your heading for a heart attack. I decided to buy some better camera gear and go out and photograph. Got reasonably good Exercise lost a little weight still at 280 Lbs or so I could not walk far enough off the road carrying my gear to get the shots I wanted. kept at it all summer until August 2008 when I was getting ready for bed and I got dizzy, then nausea set in then my right arm went numb. I told my daughter to call 911 and then my entire right side went numb and I was vomiting. the parametics arrived 10-15 minutes later and asked me questions but I was unable to make words come out, I could think of what I wanted to say but i would just mumble some incoherint sounds. I had a stroke, luckily 2 days later I had regained mobility in my right side and was able to leave the hospital on the 4th day. I continued walking and photographing and could walk a mile without sitting down but was still little winded. down to 250 or so then I injured my knee and over 6 months ballooned back to 280 that was in the fall of 2010. I fell into a complacent mindset that I am doing fine, I am taking my meds so all is well, March 2012 when I was sitting down at my desk and I had a shooting pain in the middle of my upper back, then I got a tight feeling in my chest and called 911. A heart attack...

    So here I am a 44 yr old thats already had a stroke and heart attack both thankfully with no permenant damage other than a slight short term memory deficit. I have to change my life NOW. I have stopped smoking. I am in the shopping phase for my first return bike and have pretty much settled on either a Cannondale CX3 or a Trek 7.5 fx. I am planning on taking off the stock wheels and having a set of 36 spokers built up and slap some 700 28 or 30 rubber on there but have not locked down a builder/brand on that yet. if anyone has suggestions please let me know.

    This idea I have about beginning training. Work with a nutritionist to work on a decent food plan ( not horrible now but need to tweak it I am sure ). Buy a trainer and run intervals in-doors in the evenings while preparing dinner or laundry or whatever to increase my cardio endurance which is pathetic right now (walked up 5 flights of stairs due to elevator being out at the office just about killed me). Get on and do 10-15 minutes whatever I can manage at a reasonable cadence 60-70 RPM then return to chores then do another 5-10 minutes at 90-100RPM and do chores repeat. I will also do rides on the Saturday working on distance and not pace. Take Sunday as a full recovery day. Once I built up the endurance and strength to make it, I am hoping about a month from starting, commute to from work home a couple times a week while doing intervals on the off days. google maps says door to door is 15.3 miles, mostly flat though there are a 10 overpasses and 3 are pretty steep and tall. luckily I can take the train in and ride home until I get the stamina to do a round trip commute.

    Thanks for bearing with me through that long introduction,
    Mark

  2. #2527
    Senior Member goldfinch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sjscorpiomark View Post
    Hello everyone I am new here and really appreciate reading the stories of big guys and gals getting out there and riding.

    A story about me and my reason for researching here(sorry it got a little longer than I planned).

    I am 44, 6' 275 LBS and really need to loose some weight and get in shape. High blood pressure, smoker for 28 years, borderline diabetic and due to a genetic issue on blood thinners for life. 20 years ago used to ride 20-30 miles 3-4 times a week, ran a 5 mile loop every morning and I weighed 175-180 and then got divorced, had a bout of depression and ate to 'feel better' and sat in front of the computer/tv pretty much all my free time.

    Fast forward to spring 2008, weighed 300lbs was on blood pressure meds and at my physical the doctor said better loose some weight and quit smoking now or your heading for a heart attack. I decided to buy some better camera gear and go out and photograph. Got reasonably good Exercise lost a little weight still at 280 Lbs or so I could not walk far enough off the road carrying my gear to get the shots I wanted. kept at it all summer until August 2008 when I was getting ready for bed and I got dizzy, then nausea set in then my right arm went numb. I told my daughter to call 911 and then my entire right side went numb and I was vomiting. the parametics arrived 10-15 minutes later and asked me questions but I was unable to make words come out, I could think of what I wanted to say but i would just mumble some incoherint sounds. I had a stroke, luckily 2 days later I had regained mobility in my right side and was able to leave the hospital on the 4th day. I continued walking and photographing and could walk a mile without sitting down but was still little winded. down to 250 or so then I injured my knee and over 6 months ballooned back to 280 that was in the fall of 2010. I fell into a complacent mindset that I am doing fine, I am taking my meds so all is well, March 2012 when I was sitting down at my desk and I had a shooting pain in the middle of my upper back, then I got a tight feeling in my chest and called 911. A heart attack...

    So here I am a 44 yr old thats already had a stroke and heart attack both thankfully with no permenant damage other than a slight short term memory deficit. I have to change my life NOW. I have stopped smoking. I am in the shopping phase for my first return bike and have pretty much settled on either a Cannondale CX3 or a Trek 7.5 fx. I am planning on taking off the stock wheels and having a set of 36 spokers built up and slap some 700 28 or 30 rubber on there but have not locked down a builder/brand on that yet. if anyone has suggestions please let me know.

    This idea I have about beginning training. Work with a nutritionist to work on a decent food plan ( not horrible now but need to tweak it I am sure ). Buy a trainer and run intervals in-doors in the evenings while preparing dinner or laundry or whatever to increase my cardio endurance which is pathetic right now (walked up 5 flights of stairs due to elevator being out at the office just about killed me). Get on and do 10-15 minutes whatever I can manage at a reasonable cadence 60-70 RPM then return to chores then do another 5-10 minutes at 90-100RPM and do chores repeat. I will also do rides on the Saturday working on distance and not pace. Take Sunday as a full recovery day. Once I built up the endurance and strength to make it, I am hoping about a month from starting, commute to from work home a couple times a week while doing intervals on the off days. google maps says door to door is 15.3 miles, mostly flat though there are a 10 overpasses and 3 are pretty steep and tall. luckily I can take the train in and ride home until I get the stamina to do a round trip commute.

    Thanks for bearing with me through that long introduction,
    Mark
    Welcome Mark and thank you for your story. I see that you bought the Trek 7.5 FX. That is a great bike. Riding helped me lose weight. Not so much from burning calories, but from the desire to be able to ride more and have that good feeling that comes from improving fitness.

  3. #2528
    Starting over CraigB's Avatar
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    Mark, I would add one important ingredient in your training program. Have fun. Don't start out pushing yourself so hard that you lose the enjoyment factor of riding. If it becomes something you dread you'll be hard pressed to keep at it. So indulge yourself a little and work into it slowly.
    Craig in Indy

  4. #2529
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    Good on you Mark.
    We are all here because we are on the larger side of life. I started riding in August 11 knowing I had to do something to get my weight down from close to 300. I killed a set of wheels along the way but no bikes.

    I accept I will always be a clyde. I have sprinters legs and at over 6'4" 210# will be about as thin as I could ever expect to be - a love of the good life and work-life balance dictate some moderation.

    Even now at 240# people tell me not to lose more - but as others have said, the desire to get better and maybe match some smaller folks on a few hills is a real carrot to get down to as close to 210# as I can because at 210 I will kill most on the flats.

    I have been blessed with a great friend who has encouraged and supported me cycling. Although a much more advanced rider he took the time to ride with me and kept me going. We just completed a charity pack ride from Sydney to Surfers Paradise (Australia) which is just under 600miles in 7 days. The amazing thing about cycling is that with perseverance and training you can achieve these remarkable results in such a short period of time.

    Mark - I hope you can find a friend that will do the same for you as Jim has done for me -it reinforces the social side of cycling rather than purely the exercise benefits.

  5. #2530
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    I just wanted to throw this out, even though I expect many here have heard it and, one way or another, have scorned it or tried it or whatever it! I'm 64 and ride - or did up until four weeks back - a 28 mile round trip to work; I would do this two or three times a week. My weight has climbed from 180 to 222 in a couple of years due to meds I was placed on and - well - due to me continuing to eat as I always have done despite indications a change was clearly needed. Also, I love to cook, curries, stews and anything new and novel. Despite riding and the gym on days I did not ride, I was steadily gaining weight.


    We have a friend who - also due to illness and a rapidly expanding waist line - was required to lose weight and she tried a low carb diet. She did not do the full Atkins approach, she simply cut out carbs like bread - sigh, pasta - groan, potatoes - misery, anything with flour in it - tears, sugar - and so on. It worked big time!


    A month ago I followed suit, just to see what would happen. High protein, low carb. I made soups with HEAVY CREAM! Steaks, lots of vegetables - which we were doing anyway. There are tons of low carb recipes and many of them surprisingly good. When we eat out now I skip the fries - MAN is that hard! And we tell them "no bread please."


    Saturday I was 108.7.


    Damn thing is working well.


    I am very interested to see how this works on the hills, over 10 pounds in four weeks, a nice chunk of weight. Saturday I was able to use a belt I could not do up four weeks ago.


    I have had stomach problems, digestive issues, etc., due to the sudden change in diet and - no doubt - due to my age; but none of them anything I could not deal with, and the fact the my scales are showing positive results is an incentive.


    I have found that ONE cup of coffee a day with sugar seems to be fine, the rest of the time I fiddle with the piddly packets of non-sugar sweetener, all of which leave a taste in my mouth, but - again - it's well worth it.


    My current issue is breathlessness. I was on a holter monitor last year for a day and I have been inspected and detected and rejected by the local doctors - there are all sorts of quirks, but nothing they can put a finger on, and nothing to worry about. Yet I run out of breath. This has happened before, but now it is more frequent - devastating at mile 5 on a 14 mile ride. So - I suppose - it's going to be back to the quack...


    But - for what it's worth - the low carb thing has shown spectacular results and is really not too hard. We'll see if I can get back to 180. Then - a large bowl of pasta arrabiata smothered in parmesan - just the one...


    So there it is - hope it helps.


    Lawrence

  6. #2531
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    Quote Originally Posted by rasmith3530 View Post
    I believe that I fully qualify as a Clydesdale. I'm 58 years old, 5'11" tall, and currently weigh about 295, down from 315. When I was in the Navy, back in the early 1970s, I used to weigh 175. I'd like to get much closer to 200 lbs. To achieve this, I have several bikes, including a stationary bike, an old Schwinn XR7. I'm finding it harder to drop the weight and build muscle at my present age, but realize that I need to do this to possibly conquer my Type II Diabetes.

    Good luck to all those struggling to fight the Battle of the Bulge!
    Wanted to update. I had a wonderful thing happen on Saturday. Since beginning my weight loss regimen, I have not bought any new clothing. At the time I began, at 315, I was just beginning to transition to slacks with a 52" waist. Although I am not at my goal yet, I decided that I did need something a bit closer to fit. I figured that I had to be about a 46" waist by now. Well, I walked out of the store with a pair of jeans that were a 42" waist! This could work!!! ;-)

    Oops, almost forgot to note that a few weeks ago, I had a fasting blood workup, and my A1C (three month average) was at 6.0, the high end of normal.
    Schwinn '80 Cruiser, '91 CrossCut, '91 CrissCross Cannondale'10 Quick 4
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  7. #2532
    Senior Member dygituljunky's Avatar
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    I've hit another plateau at 241 lb. I know why, this time. This past month has included illness, events, and good eating. Time to get back with the game plan...

  8. #2533
    Senior Member WonderMonkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CraigB View Post
    Mark, I would add one important ingredient in your training program. Have fun. Don't start out pushing yourself so hard that you lose the enjoyment factor of riding. If it becomes something you dread you'll be hard pressed to keep at it. So indulge yourself a little and work into it slowly.
    Here you go. I fight this all the time.

  9. #2534
    just ride
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    This thread has been very motivating for me - thanks guys!

    My Clydesdale background:
    I've ridden a bike since I was a little kid. But years of poor nutritional choices, lack of exercise, and stress have helped pack on the pounds. I'm currently 252 and 5'7". I want to drop 52 lbs. by the end of 2012 via a better lifestyle and fun exercise on my bike. In fact, that's why I got a new bike, because running sucks. Before the whether gets crappy, I'm going to buy a good indoor trainer and keep at it. I went and installed a ticker in my signature and look forward to making it count down!!!
    what is this 'road tax' you speak of?

  10. #2535
    Senior Member Chugosh's Avatar
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    I believe this would be about the right spot.

    Last August I weighed in at 372 pounds. Now, as of June 1st anyway, I am at 336 pounds. My wife went on a diet with a 12 step program for food addiction and lost over a hundred in the same time frame, and I have sort of been along for the ride. Anyway they say that once you begin doing right things for your health, you begin to want to do other things as well. So I want a bike, and I want to resume cycling after a long absence from it.

    Oh, I almost forgot. I am 6'6" as well.

  11. #2536
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    I miss riding as well... 7 years and 90 lbs later, I thought it was finally time to turn my life around. The first week was just awful. Every hunger pang came with a headache that made you wanna just gorge something down to make it go away. But after awhile, you somehow get used to the smaller portions and you start wondering if that junk food is worth putting in your mouth since you'll have to exercise again for an hour just to make up for it. I miss my road bikes and I can't wait to ride them the way they were meant to be ridden again. Looks like I'm in good company here though. Good luck to everybody.

  12. #2537
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    doom troll, you sound like my long lost brother man. I am 5'8" and 220 at the moment 29" inseam. When fighting fit about 180-185 lbs. Keep up the good work man.

  13. #2538
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    I'm at 270 still. Got my Surly last year so I converted my TCX into a roady.
    Bicycle-0282.jpg

  14. #2539
    Senior Member Dad 2 3's Avatar
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    Noob here and I certainly qualify as a Clyde.

    First a little background I'm an RN and work in the cath lab (where the emergency heart attacks come for help) at a busy hospital in an urban area. You would think in my profession and dealing in cardiac issues it would keep me mindful of my health, but since becoming an RN I've packed on the pounds. 242 to be exact, and at 5' 8" I'm not exactly at a healthy weight. I guess the combination of high stress and boredom on my days off lead to very poor eating habits. Last month I decided that for the better of myself as well as my wife and children I decided I needed to make a change. Along with smaller portions and healthier eating came the thought to buy a bike. My wife and I bought a couple Trek 7.2's and after the first ride I was absolutely hooked. So after a month and a mere 223 miles here I am at 226.5lbs. I'm riding further each week (71 miles last week and 35 so far this week), and am feeling much better. I have a looooonnnng ways to go, but the stories here are keeping me going. Thanks!!

  15. #2540
    Brain in a Jar Evil Mastermind's Avatar
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    Hi people,

    What an excellent resource we have here. An asset to a newcomer such as myself, for sure.

    I'm out of shape (started at 251), just picked up a Cannondale Bad Boy used from a friend and have been using it to commute to university. It's great! This will be my third week and already my stamina is improving, lost 6lbs, and am looking forward to the next ride. Plans are in the works to check out some of the bike paths available in SoCal, since I'm rapidly progressing past the purely commuter stage of my training. Just wanted to say hello and thanks for all the helpful data.

  16. #2541
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    OK, I am 285. I have weightlifted for over 20 years and probably would be 250 in good shape. I don't have a mtn bike and am in the hunt. Something used that can take a pounding. I have chondromalsia is my left knee. Biking would be no impact compared to running. I have no plans to spend alot of money and do not want to compete. Maybe ride for exercise, ride with my family for family exercise which would be awesome.

  17. #2542
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    Great thread, really gets me motivated to get outside and peddle the weight off! I am 28 and heading towards 300 lbs, currently at 275. I am a former combat medic and served a few tours in Iraq. I came home with severe PTSD, depression, and a hatred of life. During one of my 30 mile hikes, I suffered micro tears in both of my achilles tendons and that was pretty much it. For years I ate my feelings away and only now coming out of that dark hole. I was accepted into a PhD program and finally saw something good in my life that I accomplished. So, I decided to finally lose the weight and took up running with my wife, but due to my achilles...that is just not an option. I thught about biking, but figured I was too large. So, my father-in-law took me out while I was vacationing in Colorado and we went for a short 20-mile ride and I fell in love. The wind, the sights, the noise (or lack thereof), the smells...I finally felt awake!

    I got back home to Arizona 10 days ago and decided to get a bike. I bought '12 Trek 7000 and I am having quite a bit of fun. I went out the night I got it for a quick 5 mile ride next to my wife, who was running. Today, I went out and pushed myself and went 10 miles at a much faster pace than before. Nothing crazy, 11 mph avg, but it was in 100 degree heat. I cant wait to get back out there again tomorrow! I am thinking of moving to clipless pedals, I found my feet sliding around quite a bit on my ride today. However, I am just not sure if it is right for a beginner, 1 week of riding, to move to those.

    Now, I am just rambling.

  18. #2543
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    Hi everyone,
    I've been doing alot of reading so I figured I would let everyone know a little about me. I'm 54...6'...and weigh in at 315 lbs. I was a powerlifter in my younger days and am aspiring to losing weight. I'd like to lose 50 minimum. I have an older Trek on an indoor trainer but just purchased a '12 Giant Talon 0. I love it and can't wait to get some miles on it.
    Tim

  19. #2544
    AYBABTU evoguy's Avatar
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    Evening all,
    So ya I'm a bit of a bit boy, 6'3 and 240ish. I hope to get back down to my HS weight of 170. I tried running, but after being the the service my knees don't care for that. So between this and swimming I hope to drop a few LB by next summer.
    My step dad is a huge biking nerd so I hope that by next year I can be in enough of shape to ride a century with him...should be fun.

  20. #2545
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    Since I have not officially introduced myself yet, my name is John, I am 26, earlier this year I stumbled upon the blog http://bendoeslife.tumblr.com/ reading thought what he went through really motivated me. I finally weighed myself after not doing so for years and I was shocked by the number (330) I had to find a second scale to double check. sadly it was correct. So in March, I started eating better and started running on the treadmill at my gym.

    After about a month I was down to 305 and someone mentioned to me I should run a 5k race, so I did and two months later I ran a 10k race. During the 10k I was running with another person and they mentioned they were training for a triathlon. That got me thinking that I should do it to, so I bought a bike and here I am.

    I am down to 278 now and am doing my first tri in August.

  21. #2546
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    Hi all,

    I'm Scott. At the beginning of June, I felt I needed a change. On June first, I weighted in at 348, at 5'7" that is alot of extra bulk. I don't have a bike yet, waiting for the right one. I have been watching what I eat more and walking. I'm now down to 331. A week and a half ago, I went to the doctor for a twisted ankle. While there the doctor decided I should get some blood work done. At 33, I have high blood pressure and pre-diabetic, I'm now on meds...it has pushed me to get healthier.

  22. #2547
    Climbers Apprentice vesteroid's Avatar
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    Scott, you can change all that with diet and exercise. Don't give in to medicines to control things that (for most of us) can be controlled by other means.

    I strongly suggest setting real goals, writing them down, and also a plan to achieve them. I know personally having goals that are timed and real is the only way I can stay on my training.

    Get some help on the diet...either using one of the free calorie tracker websites, or something like weight watchers. Set a goal to buy that bike. Map out a plan to do so...whether it be saving a fixed amount each week, or reading Craigslist each day, or asking here for bike advice, just start doing it.

    Set a goal for an exercise target...since you don't have a bike yet, set a goal for x weeks in the future to walk 10 miles non stop. Make a plan to slowly build up to that. Set at least 4 days a week aside for exercise.

    Jump in the forums, there are a lot of great people here with tons (pun intended) of personal experience doing exactly what you are going to be doing.

  23. #2548
    Watching and waiting. jethro56's Avatar
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    Vesteroid gives some good advice. Most of the really big guys here started with walking 3-4 days a week. I'd shoot for 20 minutes at whatever pace is comfortable. For me the really big deal was making exercise an enjoyable habit. That takes time. What you want is a program that you'll stay with for the long haul.

  24. #2549
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    Hi, fellow Clydesdales, good to meet you. I'm a noob, 60 years old, about 6'1" (if I haven't shrunk more) and now weigh in at 300 pounds (after dropping 26 on weight watchers already, and wanting to lose at least another...50? 75?). I've been riding on and off (mostly off, lol) for the past couple years, but now more regularly for the past month or so. As my handle implies, I'm technologically impaired and know nothing about bike sizes, spokes, truing, etc., so maybe I'll learn something here. Anyway, I'm currently riding a Schwinn cruiser, from the lbs, now riding about 8.5 miles around the neighborhood, and hopefully getting faster and stronger, slowly.

  25. #2550
    Watching and waiting. jethro56's Avatar
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    Lots of Amish ride around here. They wear straw hats instead of helmets.

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