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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 04-09-08, 06:36 AM   #1
Air
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Goals: Short Term or Long Term?

I've gone through a few ups and downs with the whole losing weight thing. Something I tried lately was instead of saying "I'll lose 40 pounds in 6 months" I tried "5 pounds in 3 weeks" which seems to keep me on track and giving me a little more motivation. Also doesn't seem like such a daunting task.

Which works better for you?
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Old 04-09-08, 07:00 AM   #2
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I actually do a combination of both. I start with a big goal, for example I want to lose 104 pounds this year. I then broke that down into quarters. The first quarter I wanted to lose 29 pounds. I then break that down further to provide weekly goals.

I also have riding goals, because I know that sustained weight loss is not going to happen without the exercise. I do those monthly, because I have no idea at what rate my conditioning is going to improve. At the beginning of each month, a calculate what my goals are going to be for that month. Of course, I still have big goals out there like when I want to ride my first full century.

These goals were a little difficult at first. After some trial and error, I am getting pretty good at knowing what my body is capable of. It is also a good idea to have someone checking your goals to keep you pushing yourself.
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Old 04-09-08, 07:44 AM   #3
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I've gone through a few ups and downs with the whole losing weight thing. Something I tried lately was instead of saying "I'll lose 40 pounds in 6 months" I tried "5 pounds in 3 weeks" which seems to keep me on track and giving me a little more motivation. Also doesn't seem like such a daunting task.

Which works better for you?
Macro goals are nice, but often seem unobtainable, so one really needs to break them down into milestones, 40lbs in 6 months, for example 6 months is 26 weeks, so how about 2 pounds a week for 20 out of the next 26 weeks, yeah you could even miss a couple of milestones, and still make your overall goal!
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Old 04-09-08, 09:05 AM   #4
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I go for simplicity. I want to weigh less or the same tomarrow and I do today. That keeps me on track daily.
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Old 04-09-08, 09:10 AM   #5
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Put me down for both, too. I use a hiking metaphor: the view of the mountain peak inspires me and keeps me heading in the right direction, but I have to focus on what's at my feet.
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Old 04-09-08, 09:41 AM   #6
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+1 Combo of both. I have created a spreadsheet that includes short term and longer term goals. And most are targeted at ACTIVITIES, rather than results. I find it easier to control activities, such as a certain number of miles in a day, week, month. And a certain number of workouts per week, month and so on. If you focus on activities, thats really what you can control. Then the results come from these activities (control/increase activity level, decrease intake (calories), and then the result is weight loss).

I would suggest creating a number of simple but meaningful and achievable incremental goals, focused on actitivies. Its the old "SMART" method of goal setting: S = Specific, M = Measurable, A = Attainable, R = Realistic, and T = Timely (ie., by a certain date, rather than open ended).

Here is a website with more info on this process:
http://www.topachievement.com/smart.html

I update my goals based on reality (good or bad) and progress, to keep them fresh and meaningful. I also find it more motivating to stair step goals. Example, on miles in a day: 20mile day, 25 mile, 30 mile, 40 mile, 50 mile, my age, 62 mile, 75 mile, and 100 mile; rather than have a goal to do a century. Depending on where you currently are, you delete the goals you already have passed.

And I keep a diary on palm software, noting all activity by date. I think you can download for free, you do not have to have a palm. I keep it on my laptop.
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Old 04-09-08, 10:15 AM   #7
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Yeah...here it is the second week into April, and I'm re-assessing my goals this year too. I have a long list of excuses for why I've gained 25 lbs, and have not trained as hard or as long as I had wanted to by this time, but I have to admit that general "slackness" is the primary culprit. Oh well. In any event, I'm going to dial back my goals for the year.

I like having both short-term and long term goals. My short-term goals tend to be very do-able, and I split my long-term goals into two categories. 1) Must do and 2) Dream goals.

My short-term goals:
  1. Force myself to ride outside and into the foothills at least once this week, no matter what. Snow and rain is not an excuse this time of year (temps above 25 F in the morning)
  2. Start following a very strict food plan, until I have a better handle on physical versus emotional cravings.
  3. Start going on group rides at least once per week. Saturdays are looking good this spring.
  4. Restrict more of my riding to steady-miles, without as many intervals, while I lose weight. I need a steady-state of calories out for a bit, to help me get started. I've been doing nothing but intervals all winter, and need some base-miles and grinding-type stamina work for a bit.

My long-term goals:
  1. Drop at least 30 lbs by August (dream-goal: 50 lbs)
  2. Finish the Buffalo Bicycle Classic century ride in under 5:30 (dream goal: under 5:00)
  3. Finish the Horsetooth Double Dip century ride (dream goal: do it and not bonk or be wiped out for days and days after)

Have fun out there!


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Old 04-09-08, 11:22 AM   #8
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I found that if you have a goal, that you might not reach it. But if you don't have one, then you are never disappointed. And I gotta tell ya... it feels phenomenal.
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Old 04-10-08, 01:35 AM   #9
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Put me down for both, too. I use a hiking metaphor: the view of the mountain peak inspires me and keeps me heading in the right direction, but I have to focus on what's at my feet.
+1 on that hiking metaphor.

I don't have any specific goals and hence am gaining weight slowly but surely. I will be losing weight whether i like it or not coming up to june but i think in the past, goals make me feel worse especially when I don't reach them time and time again. I might have a look at that SMART process because i think i'm aiming too high. Thanks for the heads up for that wrk101.
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Old 04-10-08, 05:39 AM   #10
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OOOOH Good wording! Do you mind if I steal it?

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Put me down for both, too. I use a hiking metaphor: the view of the mountain peak inspires me and keeps me heading in the right direction, but I have to focus on what's at my feet.
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Old 04-10-08, 05:43 AM   #11
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Put me down for both, too. I use a hiking metaphor: the view of the mountain peak inspires me and keeps me heading in the right direction, but I have to focus on what's at my feet.
I have never heard that before, but I really like that. That is very, very good!!!!!

I have long range goals and I set new goals every month after evaluating the last months progress, or lack there of.
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Old 04-10-08, 06:34 AM   #12
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OOOOH Good wording! Do you mind if I steal it?
Feel free -- I'm sure I'm not the only person who ever thought of it!
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Old 04-10-08, 08:01 AM   #13
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Hey Air, I haven't heard from you in awhile, must be reading the wrong threads

I want to dispose of 30# by the time wintertime comes again. I would be thrilled!

I sometimes remember to use that program I have for Windoze, FitDay. I like it, but only for Windoze, not linux or mac.... rarely fire up the Windoze box.
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Old 04-10-08, 08:25 AM   #14
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for goal setting i use what i call 6/1/6/6/1(pronounced 6-1-6-6-1, like 867-5309, ). i sit down and write down all my goals in the next six days, then the month, then the next 6 weeks, then 6 months, then 1 year. I literally write down everything i want to accomplish within those time periods. Generally i don't complete them all but i'm better off than if i didn't make any of them, that's for sure.
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Old 04-11-08, 08:51 AM   #15
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Hey Air, I haven't heard from you in awhile, must be reading the wrong threads
Haven't seen you either! Hola!

I've been tying up some loose ends before the summer hits (few projects at work, dissertation, nutritionist, have that asthma looked at...you know, little things ).
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Old 04-11-08, 09:36 AM   #16
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I tend to have an ultimate goal that I try not to think about. Then break it down into small increments that I can deal with (and achieve).

An example, I needed to loose at least 100 #s. Seems unthinkable when starting out. But I set my sights on 10 # increments. My goal right now is to get into the 250s, then 240s, then 230s... Etc. When I've reached a goal I feel good about myself (big or small).

I've been stuck in the 260s for too long now. That's OK because I've relied on increased exercise to loose weight, which worked for the first 30ish #s (3 goals met). Now I need to step up my game with diet. I've cut out alcohol (which is a good thing!) and the numbers are moving south again.

If I was only focused on the 100# goal, I would consider myself a failure, and go back to sitting on my arse, eating and drinking myself to death.

I can't wait to see 250s in the next couple of weeks. My other goal is to be in the 240s by the end of may because I have an annual physical.
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Old 04-11-08, 10:25 AM   #17
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I worry less about weight and more about inches off my waist. I hit my goal last year of getting into 34" waist pants and weigh 190. My new goal is to get to a 32" waist pants and weigh 200. It took me 4 months to hit my first goal. I'm on month 4 for my second, still not there. I'm up to 199 and still wearing the same pants. Those last two inches are tough!

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Old 04-13-08, 10:07 PM   #18
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Good question....



Short Term: get home from work tonight.
Long Term: Wake up tomorrow morning.

.....anything beyond this is based on factors over which I have little, if any, control

OK, apologies for the sarcasm!
Truthfully, I am 50 year old "Clyde"; approximately 5'10" tall and 260 lbds; I had shoulder surgery about a year ago and, for the most part, it's taken about a year to recover from it (and get back on my much-beloved TREK 520). I also just bought an older Bianchi road bike to provide me with some additional incentive to get out and "ride".

So, I'll keep you folks posted on my progress.

later- Joe in Minneapolis
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Old 04-14-08, 04:04 AM   #19
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My goals are pretty simple, really.

*Devise a way to self load Eagle on the back of whichever of our two vehicles I am using at the time.
*Get a cycle computer properly installed on Eagle
*Try to river paths outside downtown St Paul
*Based on how it goes set a riding schedule and stick to it
*Stay on the meal plan my Beck helped me devise
*Get into the low 430's by May.
*Hold it all together in the face of the chaotic whirlwind that is my life.

See? Easy Peasy!

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Old 04-14-08, 05:19 AM   #20
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I believe setting big goals is the best approach. If you don't aim high, what are you aiming for? Back when I was 385 pounds I decided I was going to lose 185 of them, and drop to 200. Well, that still hasn't happened, and I've moderated my goal to 220, but I came very close last year, and I'm closing in again. If I set exclusively small scale goals, then I'd still be up around 385.

That said, I also set smaller-scale milestones I wanted to hit. By my third month of weight loss, I'd decided I wanted to lose ten pounds a month. I also decided I wanted to hit my 100 pound weight loss mark by October 14, which was the date of a friend's housewarming. I aimed for the monthly goals while keeping my longer-term goals in sight. I didn't make ten pounds every month, but I did make the housewarming party 100 pounds lighter.

I used the same approach with my century ride last year. I knew I had ten months to go from barely being able to balance - the fellow who helped me learn to ride described me as using the bike as a scooter - to riding a century. Meanwhile, there were all these other, smaller, goals I needed to meet - riding ten miles, riding 50 miles, riding a metric century, learning proper eating and hydration for long rides, learning to ride in traffic, learning to ride in a group, learning to not hit mailboxes or other cyclists..... and I set timelines to learn them.

Think big. Life is a performance, not a dress rehearsal.
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Old 04-15-08, 09:26 AM   #21
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I believe setting big goals is the best approach. If you don't aim high, what are you aiming for?
Um...for where I want to be? Who's to say that "high" is my target?

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Think big. Life is a performance, not a dress rehearsal.
I dislike this analogy. Performances are about putting yourself on stage to try and impress other people, perhaps with something that's only distantly connected with reality. If you view life as a performance and your goal in life as to put on the biggest and best performance you can, your strivings will be directed by the values of the larger society rather than your own intrinsic values, and you will be unable to see the worth in anything that the larger society doesn't ooh and aah over.
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Old 04-15-08, 09:52 AM   #22
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Um...for where I want to be? Who's to say that "high" is my target?
Isn't where you want to be "higher" than where you are now?

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I dislike this analogy. Performances are about putting yourself on stage to try and impress other people, perhaps with something that's only distantly connected with reality. If you view life as a performance and your goal in life as to put on the biggest and best performance you can, your strivings will be directed by the values of the larger society rather than your own intrinsic values, and you will be unable to see the worth in anything that the larger society doesn't ooh and aah over.
I think you are reading too much into my statement. Do you have a better analogy?
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