I finished school back in May, and have led a pretty much sedentary life since then. Since I no longer have a regular commute, and we've had a heat wave around here, my riding has been limited to short jaunts; barely long enough for me to break a sweat.
I commuted to and from my clinical placement almost daily for a whole year and managed to lose about 15 pounds. In the two months that I've been off I've put it all back on. When this realization dawned on me last week I promised myself that I would commit to healthier eating and to get back in the saddle.
My Athena-esque wife has had some success with Weight Watchers and has managed to lose 40 pounds and to keep it off, slipping under Athena status for the first time in recent memory. She's been feeling uninspired as of late and I figured that if I committed to the program then she would be more willing to commit herself. So far, so good (although we're only on day 3 ).
Today turned out to be a very nice day, so my wife and I decided to go out for a nice bike ride. I have the happy duty of hauling our 4-year-old son on his Trail-a-Bike. The ride was about 12 km (~7.5 miles) along surface streets and a riverside MUP. It was the longest ride I have done in some time, and I found myself having to stop twice to catch my breath. By the time we got home I had Jello legs and had to sit on the step for a few minutes to recover.
I feel like I'm back where I started; I was amazed how quickly I seemed to lose my cycling legs (and lungs). My only real consolation came when I added up the weight that I was hauling: My 315 lbs, plus about 30 for my bike, another 25 for the TAB, and 35 for my son totaled up to over 400 pounds! Add the couple of modest hills found on my route and I can understand the strain. That said, I've done the same route earlier in the year with a heavier bike (although both my son and I were a few pounds lighter), and I never had the same struggles that I had today.
Anyway, I never felt in any real danger (i.e., no bonk), but it was disconcerting nonetheless. I wonder if my recent change in diet had any effect. Can anyone relate to my experience? In any case, I plan to get back in the saddle ASAP, and I will work my way up to longer routes. I hope to eventually ride a metric century with my son in tow. I plan to lighten up the tow vehicle and increase its efficiency with a rigid fork swap, and hopefully after shedding a few pounds myself a Father & Son charity ride will be in reach.
Thanks for your continued support!