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  1. #1
    Hoz
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    Riding alone isn't gonna do it. (weight loss)

    I went to St Louis this past wkend to attend my youngest daughters wedding. While there I worked out on the hotel bicycling machine. This one could be programmed for different workouts. You enter your weight and level (1-20) and the machine automatically puts you through your paces. It shows several benchmarks including mileage, speed, time, calories per hour and total calories expended. I set it up to approximate my daily ride, one hour, mostly flat with a few small hills and kept a cadence around 75-80 when possible and averaged 12-15 mph.

    I was disappointed to see at the end of the hour I had expended only 314 calories. At that rate I would need to bike over 10 hours to lose one pound! (3500 calories+ 1 pound).

    Is my thinking off here, or do I need to start peddling harder, longer and faster to lose weight?

  2. #2
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    its easier to pedal those workout bikes. no air resistance, no road resistance, the resistance they do have is pretty easy to pedal along on as well. I could pedal one for an hour when i was in college and not be very tired or even sore. Of course, back then i was mountain biking a few times a week...

    in an hour on a road bike, with an average speed of 15 mph, i burn around 800 calories (i weigh 220 lbs) according to a nutrition for cycling book i have. that doesnt take into account wind resistance, theres always a stiff breeze somewhere on my route to slow me down and make me work harder Also, your taking calorie burned reading from an AVERAGE speed, you burn more calories at a higher speed, than a low speed, but using your average speed for calorie expenditure isnt 100% accurate.

    Try eliptical trainer if you want a better workout in a gym. That or a spinning cycle...

  3. #3
    Evil Genius oopfoo's Avatar
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    Additionally, those workout bikes are pretty inaccurate calorie-counters. Don't sweat it, just don't ride them if you've got other choices.
    -- Michael

  4. #4
    Senior Member lil brown bat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nymtber View Post
    its easier to pedal those workout bikes. no air resistance, no road resistance, the resistance they do have is pretty easy to pedal along on as well.
    +1. That's true of a lot of workout equipment. Look around a gym sometime at people trudging along on treadmills or ellipticals: bad posture, slouched over like they're pushing a shopping cart, watching TV, etc. You can get a good workout on exercise equipment, but with many machines, you won't unless yo're diligent. They have programs and lights and such, but the feedback they give you is still pretty limited: if you're riding a bike and you're seriously doggin' it, you'll start weaving all over the road.

  5. #5
    Senior Member lil brown bat's Avatar
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    Oh, and by the way -- you were asking if you needed to do more than your current bike workout to lose weight. Well...do you? How has your workout been working for you so far? If you want a reasonable workout-by-workout metric about what biking (or anything else) is doing for you, get a heart rate monitor -- but the real measure of whether it's working is, um...is it working?

  6. #6
    Genetics have failed me Scummer's Avatar
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    Those workout bikes have some disgustingly uncomfortable saddles on them. My butt hurts everytime I'm trying to use one for like half an hour.
    But yeah, on your normal bike ride you'll expend more energy.. slight incline, headwind, roll resistance yadda yadda... it all adds up.
    Gelato aficionado.

  7. #7
    Laid back bent rider unixpro's Avatar
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    I agree with all the above. The best way to tell if your workout on the road is working is to weigh yourself daily and monitor your own intake of calories. If you're gaining or steady, then you need to either increase the intensity or duration of your ride, or you need to take in fewer calories. I use my HRM as an estimate of calories burned, both in the gym and on the bike.

    Also, remember that muscle weighs more than fat, so if you're building muscles, you won't see a dramatic weight loss, but your clothes will fit better, you'll feel stronger, and your SO will be so very impressed!

  8. #8
    Back after a long absence joelpalmer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oopfoo View Post
    Additionally, those workout bikes are pretty inaccurate calorie-counters. Don't sweat it, just don't ride them if you've got other choices.
    Second to that. Most of the time they guess based on age and weight but don't really factor in the other things. I love my HRM and use it if I want a serious calorie estimate since it's programmed with all of my data and it actually tracks my HR while working out.
    When the going gets weird the weird turn pro
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  9. #9
    Hoz
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    Quote Originally Posted by lil brown bat View Post
    the real measure of whether it's working is, um...is it working?
    After 9 weeks of daily riding 10-15 miles a day I haven't lost any weight, well, maybe a pound or two. But I could gain that back with a tall drink of water.

    As far as the "other" things I definitely feel better. My legs feel stronger, especially the left knee which had a sprained or torn ligament 2 years ago and gave me problems.

    Clothes ARE fitting better, but I haven't had to buy the next size down, yet.

    I guess the "300 calories" per hour thru me for a loop. I would have thot I was expending more than that.

    Thanks all for the comments.

  10. #10
    AKA Nathan Dr_Robert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoz View Post
    After 9 weeks of daily riding 10-15 miles a day I haven't lost any weight, well, maybe a pound or two. But I could gain that back with a tall drink of water.

    Clothes ARE fitting better, but I haven't had to buy the next size down, yet.
    Sounds like you're building muscle at roughly the same rate that you're burning fat. Same thing happened to me when I first started - I was pretty out of shape, so every it was easy to put on 5-10 pounds of muscle as fast as I burned that first 5-10 pounds of fat. The real measure of success is how you feel and how you look - if you're clothes are fitting better, then you're making definate progress!

    Give it time. Once you're muscles are more fully developed, you'll start dropping the weight.

    -DR
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  11. #11
    Sensible shoes. CastIron's Avatar
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    Counting calories in a laboratory won't do it. So on that, you're right. Incorporating cycling into changing your life will.
    Mike
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    It looks silly when you have quotes from other forum members in your signature. Nobody on this forum is that funny.
    Quote Originally Posted by cedricbosch View Post
    Why am I in your signature.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Bill Kapaun's Avatar
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    Even if you aren't losing weight, if you are losing INCHES, you are improving yourself.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Terrierman's Avatar
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    You are 100% correct, to lose weight it is not just exercise, it is the combination of diet and exercise that works best, just like we've all been told hundreds or maybe even thousands of times. You absolutely positively have to burn more calories than you take in to lose weight. Exercise helps with the burn more calories part of the equation. Choosing a reasonable diet in smaller amounts is the other half of the deal. Simple, but not easy if that makes sense.
    It's all downhill from here. Except the parts that are uphill.

  14. #14
    This Space For Rent Stujoe's Avatar
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    Definitely diet and exercise. I have lost about 25 pounds and 4 inches around my my stomach since I started. I am sure I have gained muscle in my legs too.

    Checked my vitals yesterday and my blood pressure is down to 123/79 and my resting pulse rate is down to 62. I was borderline needing high blood pressure medicine before and my resting pulse rate was in the lower 80's back in May.

    I also do some cardio at the gym (30-40 minutes a day on the elliptical, 4-5 days a week) in addition to the cycling and am on a 'reasonable' diet. I watch what I eat, and eat healthier, but don't count every calorie.

    I firmly believe weight loss is about lifestyle change. Substituting healthy habits for the not so healthy ones. Cycling is a big part for me but not the only part.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Nightcap's Avatar
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    Three months ago my unindicted co-conspirator and I joined Weight Watchers. While it's my first time with them, it's the fourth time in the past twenty years that I've embarked on a campaign to get rid of a significant portion of my body mass. Yeah, it's serious.

    Bicycling, however, is not. I'm decked out in a pair of ludicrous lycra shorts, a flaming chartreuse jersey, gloves with no fingers and a silly styrofoam hat. I'm wearing this clown gettup while perched on a parallelogram of pipes with a couple fragile wheels creating a sort of gyroscope effect as I piston my legs, bumping my belly with my thighs 80 or 90 times a minute. And I'm thinking, "Wheeeeeeee!"

    You don't tell a kid, "Go outside and get at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise, with your heart rate between 65 and 75 percent of maximum." You say, "It's a beautiful day. Go out and play."

    The *real* clydesdales here - the big powerful athletes - may not understand this, but the greatest joy for us obese middle-aged people after a short time on a bike is the sudden realization that you're not an invalid! Life becomes contrained when you're seriously big. You avoid uncomfortable situations, like little seats at Fenway or carnival rides. You don't go hiking or running or even walking much. You don't go out to play anymore.

    Last night I pumped out twenty glorious miles in the fresh sea air, and I was ready for more, but it was a school night. Aw c'mon, do I hafta come in now?

    It's never too late to have a happy childhood. I'm playing. Any other benefits are just gravy.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Terrierman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nightcap View Post
    Three months ago my unindicted co-conspirator and I joined Weight Watchers. While it's my first time with them, it's the fourth time in the past twenty years that I've embarked on a campaign to get rid of a significant portion of my body mass. Yeah, it's serious.

    Bicycling, however, is not. I'm decked out in a pair of ludicrous lycra shorts, a flaming chartreuse jersey, gloves with no fingers and a silly styrofoam hat. I'm wearing this clown gettup while perched on a parallelogram of pipes with a couple fragile wheels creating a sort of gyroscope effect as I piston my legs, bumping my belly with my thighs 80 or 90 times a minute. And I'm thinking, "Wheeeeeeee!"

    You don't tell a kid, "Go outside and get at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise, with your heart rate between 65 and 75 percent of maximum." You say, "It's a beautiful day. Go out and play."

    The *real* clydesdales here - the big powerful athletes - may not understand this, but the greatest joy for us obese middle-aged people after a short time on a bike is the sudden realization that you're not an invalid! Life becomes contrained when you're seriously big. You avoid uncomfortable situations, like little seats at Fenway or carnival rides. You don't go hiking or running or even walking much. You don't go out to play anymore.

    Last night I pumped out twenty glorious miles in the fresh sea air, and I was ready for more, but it was a school night. Aw c'mon, do I hafta come in now?

    It's never too late to have a happy childhood. I'm playing. Any other benefits are just gravy.
    That's pretty much the beauty of a bike, in the Reader's Digest version. Good clean fun is good for you. Well said sir, very well said.
    It's all downhill from here. Except the parts that are uphill.

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