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  1. #1
    Senior Member ChrisM2097's Avatar
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    Weight starts coming off when I STOP riding?

    Anyone else experience this?

    I ride regularly, make good food choices, and I'm at a plateau for several months. I haven't ridden in about a week (very busy with other priorities - no time to even commute), and I've been weighing myself every morning, and I've been dropping nearly a lb every day. No diet changes.
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  2. #2
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    I retain a LOT of water when doing intense cycling, and I'm having exactly the same week as you this week.

    I also find when I'm doing a lot of intense exercise, 5-6 days a week, that I HUNGER. it's a very hard effort to keep from eating everything in sight, and impossible to stop the middle of the night snacks.

  3. #3
    Senior Member mprelaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brando_T. View Post
    I retain a LOT of water when doing intense cycling, and I'm having exactly the same week as you this week.

    I also find when I'm doing a lot of intense exercise, 5-6 days a week, that I HUNGER. it's a very hard effort to keep from eating everything in sight, and impossible to stop the middle of the night snacks.
    Both of these are true. Water retention does happen. That's the main reason why I tend to lose weight if I take some time off the bike. Two weeks ago, I was away for the weekend, traveling to my daughter's college graduation. I was off the bike from Friday to Monday, and dropped 5 pounds. The other clue: on Saturday, I was urinating like there was no tomorrow. Seemed like I was making a pit stop every 50 miles or so.

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    I experience the same thing, water weighs a lot...

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    I interpret the water retention as my body thinking "listen, buddy, we're worried you're going to put us through the wringer again, we're just going to hold onto some of this liquid just in case"

    Which entertains me but I'm sure is totally inaccurate.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Mithrandir's Avatar
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    After 2 months of intense cycling, I have completely failed to lose any weight at all.

    I cut out gatorade. I cut out all sweets. I cut out power gels. I cut out alcohol. I cut out eating during rides; cut the granola bars, energy bars, etc. I cut out bread. For zeus's sake, BREAD! GAHHHHH.


    End result: I finally went over 400 pounds again this morning, hitting 402 for the first time in 16 months. Farking hell.

    There is something very wrong with my body and I don't know what to do anymore. I have one more trick up my sleeve:

    I'm going to wake up early and go biking first thing in the morning, without eating any food beforehand. My thinking is that with no food in my system, I will be burning fat. I'll go for an hour in the morning (15ish miles), hopefully that'll raise my metabolism through the rest of the day. Then do my work, then go for a longer 25-35 mile ride at night. Maybe, just maybe, I'll start losing weight again. Otherwise, I'm at my wits end and am about to just give up.

  7. #7
    Senior Member ChrisM2097's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mithrandir View Post
    After 2 months of intense cycling, I have completely failed to lose any weight at all.

    I cut out gatorade. I cut out all sweets. I cut out power gels. I cut out alcohol. I cut out eating during rides; cut the granola bars, energy bars, etc. I cut out bread. For zeus's sake, BREAD! GAHHHHH.


    End result: I finally went over 400 pounds again this morning, hitting 402 for the first time in 16 months. Farking hell.

    There is something very wrong with my body and I don't know what to do anymore. I have one more trick up my sleeve:

    I'm going to wake up early and go biking first thing in the morning, without eating any food beforehand. My thinking is that with no food in my system, I will be burning fat. I'll go for an hour in the morning (15ish miles), hopefully that'll raise my metabolism through the rest of the day. Then do my work, then go for a longer 25-35 mile ride at night. Maybe, just maybe, I'll start losing weight again. Otherwise, I'm at my wits end and am about to just give up.
    Let us know how it works out for you. I have a feeling that it may have the opposite effect - your body may react similarly to how bodies react when you eat only a couple large meals a day - starvation mode, where your body basically starts storing more fat "just in case". Just because your body doesn't have any food in it doesn't mean that you don't have any glucose to 'burn' for energy...which is your body's preferred source of energy. This is precisely why eating low-carb works as a weight-loss diet...reducing intake of foods that 'turn into' sugar, and your body has to find another source of energy.

    Eating many small meals may be the trick...and it's something that I still haven't gotten into the habit of doing...and maybe that's the reason why I haven't been losing weight recently. I still don't eat breakfast during the weekdays. I only eat two meals a day usually.
    Chris
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  8. #8
    Senior Member mprelaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brando_T. View Post
    I interpret the water retention as my body thinking "listen, buddy, we're worried you're going to put us through the wringer again, we're just going to hold onto some of this liquid just in case"

    Which entertains me but I'm sure is totally inaccurate.
    I don't know, but as a lay person, it makes sense to me that during periods of intense effort, bodies retain more water. Let's face it, most of us probably don't drink as often as we should during a ride.

  9. #9
    Senior Member mlander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mithrandir View Post
    . Otherwise, I'm at my wits end and am about to just give up.
    Hate to see you so discouraged! Don't give up! Exercise is great for your body AND for your mind, weight-loss or no weight-loss. That should be inspiration enough.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mprelaw View Post
    I don't know, but as a lay person, it makes sense to me that during periods of intense effort, bodies retain more water. Let's face it, most of us probably don't drink as often as we should during a ride.
    I also find when riding I do not realize I am sweating so much, always drying off in the breeze. I have to remember to drink water. When I forget, I can feel the cramping start.

    Mithrander - keep at it, it will come off. The low-carb diets work for many, my wife swears by Atkins. It just make here really grumpy...

  11. #11
    Climbers Apprentice vesteroid's Avatar
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    Mith,

    There is a mountain of evidence out there that says cutting calories beyond a reasonable level inhibits weight loss, especially in conjunction with a substantial increase in exercise. Just this week a study was released about how a small control group was fed 500 calories a day for a month and their hormone levels were measured before and after. After the severely restricted diet, the hormones that control appetite, were severely out of whack (as in they didnt get the signal they were full)

    I think I read this on runnersworld online...will see if I can find it.

    I can also tell you from personal experience, that cutting carbs and trying to do extended endurance events, dont mix.

    I think if you are gaining weight after two months, I would agree something is off, I would think in that period it should be dropping.

    I can also tell you from personal experience I have seen 10 lb swings in my weight in two weeks. So if you total weight loss to date has been low, then seeing it jump right back up in not uncommon.

    I would take a very serious look at EVERY SINGLE THING YOU ARE EATING. There are tons of good food loggers on the internet. DO that for two weeks, then you ought to be able to draw some intelligent conclusions.

    We all know exercise increases calorie usage in our bodies, and if we are limiting (within reasonable guidelines) our calorie intake, we will lose weight over time.

    I have lost 30 lbs or 12% of my body weight but it has taken me since thanksgiving. I have had a solid month where my weight didnt go down, but then for no reason dropped 5 lbs. I have been discourage each week it actually went up, but I kept at it. I actually plot mine over time and being able to see the overall trend still going down has helped me a lot. In other words I have stopped worrying about one week of weight gain, but if that trend line bottoms and starts back up...well then I am getting worried.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Mithrandir's Avatar
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    So here's why I think the exercise-in-the-morning will work:

    2 years ago when I started I was at 460 pounds. I would exercise 30-40 minutes a day on an indoor recumbent machine, 5 times a week, always after work. I wouldn't eat anything inbetween noon and 6 or 7pm when I started exercising. I lost around 3 pounds a week to bottom out at around 370.

    Then I started biking, and the weight loss just completely stopped. That's all I changed, was biking for real and my exercise times went from 30-40 minutes a day to 120 minutes a day. I lost another 10 pounds from May-November of last year to hit 360 (hardly any loss compared to what I was doing before), but then in December my office closed and my routine was completely destroyed. Now I eat small snacks whenever I feel like it; nothing major I'm still at only about 1800 calories a day, and I've resumed the 500-miles-a-month I was doing last year, but now I'm actually gaining weight.

    I have no idea, this is all so very frustrating. I don't want to go back to just 30-40 minute exercise. That bored me to death. I love being out on the bike, racking up the miles.

  13. #13
    Climbers Apprentice vesteroid's Avatar
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    not sure I followed you, but here are some thoughts.

    first I am clearly no expert, so take all this with a grain of salt, but I am one of those people who reads a lot, and tries to retain all they read.

    in the end it gets down to calories in vs out. I will bet you, you are being somewhat lenient on what you are actually eating, and optimistic on what you are burning. Just because you exercise twice as long, doesnt mean you are burning twice as many calories.

    If you dont believe me, try running for 30 minutes, and riding for an hour, and then tell me what you think.

  14. #14
    Super Moderator tractorlegs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mithrandir View Post
    So here's why I think the exercise-in-the-morning will work:

    2 years ago when I started I was at 460 pounds. I would exercise 30-40 minutes a day on an indoor recumbent machine, 5 times a week, always after work. I wouldn't eat anything inbetween noon and 6 or 7pm when I started exercising. I lost around 3 pounds a week to bottom out at around 370.

    Then I started biking, and the weight loss just completely stopped. That's all I changed, was biking for real and my exercise times went from 30-40 minutes a day to 120 minutes a day. I lost another 10 pounds from May-November of last year to hit 360 (hardly any loss compared to what I was doing before), but then in December my office closed and my routine was completely destroyed. Now I eat small snacks whenever I feel like it; nothing major I'm still at only about 1800 calories a day, and I've resumed the 500-miles-a-month I was doing last year, but now I'm actually gaining weight.

    I have no idea, this is all so very frustrating. I don't want to go back to just 30-40 minute exercise. That bored me to death. I love being out on the bike, racking up the miles.
    Mithrandir, I don't want to seem like a WW fanboy, but there's several of us on the forums here that are members of Weight Watchers. Myself, RedC, ChefIsaac, some others, and it's a program that is working very well for all of us. It might be an idea to take a look at their website, they may or may not be able to help you - just a suggestion
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  15. #15
    Senior Member goldfinch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vesteroid View Post
    in the end it gets down to calories in vs out. I will bet you, you are being somewhat lenient on what you are actually eating, and optimistic on what you are burning. Just because you exercise twice as long, doesnt mean you are burning twice as many calories.
    1800 is the minimum Mith should be eating, so even if there is some slop I doubt that he is eating too much, no matter what his activity level. But counting errors is a possibility. Mith, do you weigh your food? How meticulous are you in your counting?

    I know about at least one study that paired a very low calorie diet with lots of aerobic exercise. This caused a larger decrease in metabolic rate than diet alone. Inotherwords, the body starts doing what it can to conserve energy. Sorry, I poked around and can't find the cite. Another issue may be too much cortisol from the stress of dieting and exercising. Cortisol promotes fat accumulation/retention and can relate to leptin resistence. It is also possible that all the exercise is doing weird things in water retention.

    To speculate, Mith you might consider upping up the calories for a few days to relieve some stress on your system, and then return to your diet. Or stop exercising for a few days and see if weight drops off. Or try intermittent fasting. And vary the types of exercise you do, biking three days a week and weight training two days a week.
    Last edited by goldfinch; 05-30-12 at 05:42 PM.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mithrandir View Post
    After 2 months of intense cycling, I have completely failed to lose any weight at all.

    I cut out gatorade. I cut out all sweets. I cut out power gels. I cut out alcohol. I cut out eating during rides; cut the granola bars, energy bars, etc. I cut out bread. For zeus's sake, BREAD! GAHHHHH.


    End result: I finally went over 400 pounds again this morning, hitting 402 for the first time in 16 months. Farking hell.

    There is something very wrong with my body and I don't know what to do anymore. I have one more trick up my sleeve:

    I'm going to wake up early and go biking first thing in the morning, without eating any food beforehand. My thinking is that with no food in my system, I will be burning fat. I'll go for an hour in the morning (15ish miles), hopefully that'll raise my metabolism through the rest of the day. Then do my work, then go for a longer 25-35 mile ride at night. Maybe, just maybe, I'll start losing weight again. Otherwise, I'm at my wits end and am about to just give up.
    Are you tracking what you eat? Writing it down, etc?

    The weeks I do not write stuff down and track it are the weeks I always gain. If you are tracking it, post one or two days of what you are eating. It would help us out to help you out.

    Also, Tract is right, WW is great. Accountability, support, learning, etc. If I would have known about it earlier in life, I would have done it for sure.

  17. #17
    Climbers Apprentice vesteroid's Avatar
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    I have to second Isaac and tl. While I have not done ww, it has far too many success stories (including all these here ) for it to be all bad.

    You are seeing the results of your actions, in short if it's to working, you have to change something up, and ww seems to be a proven system that also seems to support the increase in exercise.

    On top of that you have people,here with lots of experience on ww who are more than willing to help.

    Give it two months of steady, accurate use then decide if it made a difference. I can't imagine the small expense of joining the program is not a qualified investment in your future.

  18. #18
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    For me, WW has given me so much. It is not a cure all... you gotta do you work, but it opens up your eyes to everything.

  19. #19
    Senior Member kookaburra1701's Avatar
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    Sort of - my work schedule is an odd one. 6 10-hour night shifts in a row, and then I get 8 days off. So I put all of my real "training" into those 8 days, and just eat sensibly and commute to work (6 mi round trip) during the 6 days.

    The 6 days are when I lose weight, but the amount of weight I lose seems to be very dependent on how hard I trained during the eight days.

    Also if I have so much as ONE friggin' soda all weight loss stops dead.
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