I wonder how everyone is doing with new year's resolutions. Having got down to 202 lbs last year the wheels fell off (metaphorically speaking of course). I think I just don't want to leave the clydes forum. My excuses included lack of time and bad weather....the usual bull!
My resolution was to get back to an active lifestyle which I have kept to by taking up swimming since it was too cold and rainy to enjoy cycling. Last weekend I dusted off the bike and went for a ride on my usual route which last year stretched to 80 miles at my peak. Oh my god! How unfit have I become. I managed to scrape together 15 miles, 3 rest stops and a sore ass. I'm a noob again! I wondered if I had to go through all the pain to regain the ground I had lost. The next day I was determined to try the same route again but the butt pain was too much to bear so I went swimming again.
If I am going to keep up my resolution I had better get used to the saddle again as swimming is starting to bore me. Hope everyone's resolutions are still strong...mine's starting to wobble. I'm going to go ride again tomorrow morning and maybe get further than 15 miles!
I find that it definitely comes back quicker. I read a book once that described our VO2 Max depends on the sport we're doing and the muscle memory we have. If you've been swimming you are most likely not out of shape, just out of bicycling shape. My experience is that it comes back relatively quickly, much quicker than it took to get into that bicycling shape originally.