So, I'm a newbie and an oldie to this forum. I was here a long time ago, maybe a couple years, when I started to get into road biking, however it fell apart with my Architectural Thesis in school which wound up taking me the better part of a couple years to get through. That coupled with many all-nighters, fast foods and excessive Dr. Peppers and Monster's to keep me through the major of no-sleep solidified me into the Clyde category, giving a helping push from the 210,220 range to my somewhat current norm of 250 on my meager 5'8" frame.
Now- I've worked construction/repair jobs and other things my life so a lot is muscle (not trying to make toooo many excuses, my family is built thicker, the Scottish in me, and at my best I was 180 at this height). Anyways, long story short, I've all but finished my thesis book to receive my diploma, moved back home and started working on the family business of restoring and renovating vacant apartment units- construction work basically. The fast food and super late nights ended, but the weight hasn't and with my friend's fiance trying to get me a girl, I think I now have the needed motivation as I have dusted off the ol' bike which got it's full blown tune up before I moved back.
Started off last Monday morning with a good 9.5 mile ride that blew me out, followed up with 3 days on an elliptical slowly working on stamina while my seat recovered. Hit the bike path again and got through 14 miles before exhausting. Took a day off and walked one of the family dogs as a little break, another 2 days on the elliptical, pushing even harder for longer continuous periods, and hit the bike again on Monday... blew through the first 20 miles with no issue, following a legs on fire 14 miles on the way back home . Took today off of all exercise for recovery and plan to run some more tomorrow while I build up my tolerance for my bike seat again.
Just wanted to introduce myself because I intend to get back down to a healthy weight and felt that I'll need the added aid of this community in case anything else falls apart. I'm totally thrilled because today is the first day I noticed my shirt feeling looser around my midsection .
Now where I need your guys help and advice:
I did wonder, however- if anyone had some advice for the bane of my existence.. Large thighs run in my family and I'm really looking to tone and develop and slim down my legs, with an emphasis on my thighs and calves. I'm capping my bike rides at no more than the 34 miles I did because I just don't have the time to do that normally, but is there something I can do on my rides which would be beneficial to toning and weight loss? I'm already doing the other things I need- healthier food, way more water, dropping down to a can of soda (if that) a week, and I'm just hoping biking is the best way to slim down the legs. I think the elliptical is a killer on the full body, but there's a bit more resistance in the legs involved I believe. Should I work on upping my cadence as much as I can without bouncing in my seat? Or slowly shift to the higher gears while working to maintain my average speed? I've been averaging 15-18mph on my rides with occasional bursts to 20 and lows of 12-14.
Biking will help tone and develop muscles in the legs, but it won't get rid of fat, at least not there specifically. Spot reducing has been shown repeatedly to be a myth, at least according to reputable medical science. The muscles in the area you're exercising don't metabolize the fat in their vicinity - the entire system does, so it that stored energy gets pulled from fat all over the place. Your body accumulates fat in its various places and parts according to its own sequence and it largely comes off in the reverse order, or so they say.
Spot reducing has been shown repeatedly to be a myth, at least according to reputable medical science.
To make matters worse, attempts at spot-reducing will almost always have the opposite effect of what you want... since not only does the body not take fake from that area, but you are now building muscle in that area, thus making it even larger than before.