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  1. #1
    Dirt Bomb sknhgy's Avatar
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    How do I lose some weight?

    I just turned 53 years old. I ride an average of 14 miles/day, 4 days/week. On weekends I get in longer, recreational rides, usually around 25-30 miles, and up to 60 miles. I'm 5'8" and weigh 215 lbs. I have always been a big eater and I have never made any kind of concerted effort to loose weight before. Now I am just tired of being so big. This may sound strange, but how do you loose weight? Are there any tips or tricks that work other than eating less. If I told myself I was just going to eat less, it would seem difficult to gauge how much less I was eating.
    Also, I quit smoking about 5 years ago and I put on about 25 lbs. I would like to take off 30.
    Can anyone share their experiences with me?

    I know, I spelled "lose" wrong, but I can't get it to edit.
    Last edited by sknhgy; 02-24-08 at 07:37 AM.
    more cops have been killed by donuts than guns in chicago it is a medical fact ask any doctor.

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    Exercise more (double the miles & add strength training), cut fats and calories in general, drink only water. Helped me drop over 30 lbs. Oh, yeah. I also divorced my first wife.... the biggest weight ever lifted from my shoulders.
    Oh I used to be disgusted and now I try to be amused. But since their wings have got rusted, you know, the angels wanna wear my red shoes. But when they told me 'bout their side of the bargain, that's when I knew that I could not refuse. And I won't get any older, now the angels wanna wear my red shoes.

  3. #3
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    There are, of course, all kinds of ways to go about it, but if you want pretty much of a no-brainer, mostly healthy approach, check out "The Abs Diet" on Amazon or your local bookstore. It's a reasonably balanced lifetime eating and fitness plan that includes a lot of "guy" food, most of which is easy to prepare--peanut butter, turkey, fresh fruits, smoothies, etc. I don't always apply the principles, but when I do, it works for me.
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  4. #4
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    ELEM, eat less, exercise more. Unless you burn more calories than you consume, you won't lose weight.

    Eat more fruits, vegetable, whole grains.

    Eat less bread, sweets, meat, carbs, fat.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

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    Senior Member Garfield Cat's Avatar
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    The basic thing is that you have to want to change. The old habits have to be replaced with different habits. This is usually a big upheaval emotionally, physically, psychologically.

    Biking can do a lot because its kind of addictive in itself. Trainers tell us that moderate intensity rides for extended perids of time is the trick for fat burning. Thus, time not distance is your main thing.

    In your household, tell everyone what you want to achieve. That's going to be your support group. Check your health insurance card and get the toll free number. Call for services and get an appointment with their local nutritionist/dietitian. Start planning and make it your own.

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    The exercise component of your plan seems pretty good. You can realistically only increase your mileage only so much before actually living on the bike.

    Seems like you need to control food intake. How about weighing out food portions? And counting calories? Do this for as long as it takes until your eating habits are changed.

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    Cantre Member Turtle Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
    ELEM, eat less, exercise more. Unless you burn more calories than you consume, you won't lose weight.

    Eat more fruits, vegetable, whole grains.

    Eat less bread, sweets, meat, carbs, fat.
    +1 Also quit drinking soda and drink more water, at least 4 - 16 oz bottles a day.

    TJ (age 54 and 100 lbs. down)

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    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    The easiest way to get more time on the bike without taking as much out of your life is to commute by bicycle if possible.

    One thing I do to avoid soda is to drink Sparkling water. The grocery store house brand in 2 litre bottles tastes just the same as Perrier. It gives me those bubbles I'm craving.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  9. #9
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    One trick that could help. Eat very slowly. It takes a while for your brain to realize that your stomach is full. I was forced into eating slowly by stomach surgery years ago and now i'm usually the last one finished when eating with a group. Eating too fast probably helped cause the ulcer (that perforated) causing the surgery to be necessary in the first place.
    "Put me on a highway. Show me a sign. Take it to the limit one more time"
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  10. #10
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    sknhgy-I struggled with the same thing and finally found something that worked for me.

    I was at 220 lbs at peak (I found the 40's are just a terrible period for your health) and actually got down to 165 lbs this summer. For me it's now just the way I live..........and I feel better, sleep better and enjoy it!!!!

    For me it's simply thinking "calories in (anything you stuff in your mouth) versus calories out (exercise + your metabolism)".

    I never wanted to or had a desire to do it but I finally started counting the calories I was taking in so I'd know for sure what my baseline was. I wrote down everything I was eating for about a month and determined how many calories was associated with it. It's amazing how it adds up during the day. At first I needed a calorie guide to help me but after a week I got really good at estimating the calories without even looking at a list. After you know what your baseline is (the amount of calories that keeps your weight constant), develp a target that is under that.

    I think mine went from 2200-2400 down to 1800 calories per day.

    You will need to weigh yourself daily-at the same time (morning or before bed) every day. You need to have one day of the week as "weigh-in" day. I use Saturday mornings as that is the day I always wanted to be lightest for my rides. I'd suggest having a target and writing down your progress so you can see how well you are progressing. Seeing your weight coming off just helps to keep you highly motivated.

    It sounds like if your weight has stabilized you're taking in about the right number of calories to keep your weight constant with the amount of calories that you are burning.

    So, like Bluesdawg said, if you want to lose weight-you have to manage both the input and the output. What worked for me was a measured, controlled method over time. I think you can easily do 1 lb a week if you really wanted to.

    You still need to be somewhat selective about what you eat-although I was able to just manage portions as much anything. You really have to manage snacks. The evening was the worst for me. It took about 3 weeks of really grinding through it to get to where my body adjusted to the reduced intake and didn't crave sometimes. Be careful of thinking you need to replace all the calories you're burning through exercise. If you eat all you want you're defeating the purpose of the exercise from a losing weight perspective. You will feel hungry but just eat smart.

    Give yourself small portions of things you crave-don't completely withhold or else you WILL binge on that food-chocolate is the one thing I have to really watch and I still manage 3-4 years later........

    So, if you reduce your "calories in" increase the time and mileages (not necessarily effort) of the exercise your weight will really start to come off in a nice controlled and healthy manner.

    Good luck and let us know if we can help along the way.

    Oh yeah-set aside some money for either getting some new pants and belts or having the stuff you're weating altered. I keep one pair of slacks around just as a reminder of where I once was. I think I lost about 5 inches around the waist........

  11. #11
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    Oh, here's another little trick that works for me re: burning calories. I bought a cheap digital pedometer and set a minimum walking goal of 5 miles every day. It's not that hard--but it does take some effort. Some days, I set a higher goal of between 7 and 10 miles (in addition to cycling of course).
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

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    Dirt Bomb sknhgy's Avatar
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    Thanks for the help. It gives me something to go on. Yes, I think I eat too fast. That can be changed. Right now, with work and everything, I don't see how I can increase the mileage. In fact, I've already made riding a top priority.
    more cops have been killed by donuts than guns in chicago it is a medical fact ask any doctor.

  13. #13
    My other car is a bike TruF's Avatar
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    South Beach works for us. It's simple: avoid the bad carbs, eat lots of vegetables and some protein, avoid sugars, even juice (better to eat an orange or a carrot than orange juice or carrot juice). I just read an article in the Economist that one of the worse things dieters can do is eat or drink stuff with artificial sweeteners. Turns out that sugar is one way the brain recognizes when we've eaten enough. We eat and drink more of foods with artificial sweeteners than if it had sugar. This means more calories. I suspect the same is true for fat.

    Good luck!
    Embrace diversity: hug a conservative.

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    I lost 35 pounds a few years back. I had a few tricks that seemed to work for me, but I wasn't on any particular diet.

    First, write down everything that you eat, in a spreadsheet or wherever. I was keeping a mileage log so I put it there. Along with the food, put in your weight at a standard time of day. What you are doing is building a non-scientific food vs. weight chart that can keep you motivated. When you eat well for a period you should see some weight drop. That cheeseburger will stare back at you when it doesn't.

    Second, make a list of foods that you like that you know are really bad. Mine were ice cream, beer, chocolate and cheese. Now completely give them up. Cross them off your mental list of things you will eat. Have an apple instead.

    Third, eat everything else sensibly. Don't overdo the other foods you allow yourself. I still ate burgers every now and then without worrying about it. But also consider one meal a day to be only lighter foods. I ate mostly salad at lunch for over a year. Watch the fat too. I stopped putting butter on bagels, only used non-fat dairy when available, non-fat salad dressing.

    Fourth, ride lots, and ride fast. If you don't have any more time to ride than you currently do, make the best of it and ride as fast as you can, and get faster while you do it. I kept track of my miles along with the food and my weight, and the weeks I rode over 100 miles consistently were the weeks where the weight dropped. This only works though if you are watching what you eat as well.

    I went from a somewhat round guy, at 193 pounds on a 5'7" frame to a skinny guy in a year and a half, back to what I looked like in my 30s.

    One other thing too, don't stop, you'll put it back on. I broke both wrists in a cycling accident after this and put some of it back on.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by sknhgy View Post
    I just turned 53 years old. I ride an average of 14 miles/day, 4 days/week. On weekends I get in longer, recreational rides, usually around 25-30 miles, and up to 60 miles. I'm 5'8" and weigh 215 lbs. I have always been a big eater and I have never made any kind of concerted effort to loose weight before. Now I am just tired of being so big. This may sound strange, but how do you loose weight? Are there any tips or tricks that work other than eating less. If I told myself I was just going to eat less, it would seem difficult to gauge how much less I was eating.
    Also, I quit smoking about 5 years ago and I put on about 25 lbs. I would like to take off 30.
    Can anyone share their experiences with me?
    The sentence I highlighted in blue is exactly why I encourage folks who want to lose weight -- but have no idea how to reduce their intake, and what "less food" really looks like -- to make an appointment with a registered dietitian who can give you a food plan you can follow for the rest of your life. You'll be amazed how small a real, healthy portion is, and how many empty/extra calories you might be consuming above what you need to lose weight. There is a learning curve, but you will learn exactly how much you need to eat to lose weight based on your current weight and activity level.

    I follow an eating plan for hypoglycemia, 1600 cal/day. It took me 4 years to lose almost 50 lbs., slow by most people's standards but MUCH easier to keep it off. I feel great! My energy is always good, I don't have mood swings, I sleep well, and I haven't been sick for more than a year. I don't need to lose any more weight (I'd like to lose another 6-7) but I still follow this way of eating every day and I plan to continue for the rest of my life. I eat cookies, ice cream, and fries, but only occasionally and not a lot at a time (again, the portion sizes by the dietitian will help with that). I do eat cookies and food bars during rides (they are excellent fuel for me). I don't want to go back to my old habits of overeating. I was never a binge eater, I ate just enough to gain or to prevent weight loss. I also had acid reflux which is now completely under control and that also was done without the help of medication.

    This plan helps me most when we go out to eat. I can eyeball the food and know if I need to take some of it home, or if I can eat it all.

    Another benefit of seeing a dietitian or nutritionist is that you can continue consulting with that person when you need support or advice. This is not a temporary diet, it's something intended to be followed for the rest of your life. It gets easier, and you'll feel better and want to continue once you see how much better you look and feel. Again... this is not a crazy fad diet. It's an excellent way of learning how to eat healthier foods in healthier portions, and still being able to eat a treat and still lose weight.

    One more note: Here's my own trick to help me say "no" to the temptation of eating the wrong foods too often. I just say "Not this time, maybe tomorrow." Then, tomorrow I'll say it again. Our cafeteria at work has an amazing selection of breakfast pastries of all kinds. Fortunately, they also serve delicious steel cut oatmeal which I have come to love so much that it's easy to skip the pastry. But, since I have to pass the pastry line to get to the oatmeal, I often stop to take a look. Then, I say "Not this time, maybe on Friday." It's an easy out, and not unrealistic like saying "I can't eat one until I lose xxx pounds....." which often leads to "Oh forget it!"

    Whatever you do, don't skip meals! Eat smaller amounts of healthy foods throughout the day.

    If you don't want to do this or don't know where else to begin, eliminate soda entirely, save desserts for special occasions, DON'T SKIP MEALS, and reduce your portion size just a little bit. A portion of chicken or steak is about the size of a deck of cards... a portion of potatoes/rice is less than 1 cup. Eliminate white pasta/bread/rice and eat whole grains instead.

    You can do it!
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  16. #16
    Senior Member guybierhaus's Avatar
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    To track what you eat, I have found Fitday.com very useful. Mostly because it does show some foods I thought were not so high in calories in fact are. Dark chocolate is just as high as milk chocolate. Peanut butter or just peanuts are great foods, however again very high in calories and so easy to over indulge. I also rode for a year before weight came off. I'm told you first firm up the flabby muscles and muscle weighs more than fat. Currently I'm stuck, waiting for weather to warm up. And I suspect it helps to have some in house support. My wife is killing me with pies, cakes, chips, pasta and bread. She also wants to lose weight??
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  17. #17
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    OH, and you might want to try fitday.com to record what you eat and learn the nutritional value and calories in foods you are eating.
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    Senior Member guybierhaus's Avatar
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    "and the weeks I rode over 100 miles consistently were the weeks where the weight dropped.", Zacter

    Ditto. This was exactly the case with me. Was trying to ride longer routes, sort of in training for a birthday ride of 62 miles, and discovered when I put together a few weeks of 100 plus miles, the weight came off.
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  19. #19
    Grammar Cop Condorita's Avatar
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    Do not weigh in every day. Don't even weigh in every week. You're going to build muscle before you lose fat, and seeing that scale not moving, or not moving much (or, worse, moving up!), for what could be weeks at a time is very disheartening. Get your starting weight and starting measurements. This is important because you may find clothes getting looser but the scale not changing much. Having those measurements to compare from one weights-and-measures day to the next will show the changes you're making. Keep an activities log, too--log the miles you've walked, the miles you've ridden, the miles you've done on the elliptical, the weight-machines circuit. And blog it, even if you keep the blog private and just talk to yourself about what you're doing. Or start your own progress thread here on BF, if you don't feel comfortable with journalling. Make yourself responsible to yourself. Set goals, even if they're only virtual goals--a friend of mine and a friend of hers are walking toward each other, one from the Seattle area, the other from Anaheim, and have determined where in California they'll "meet" each other on paper; and I'm doing the Walk to Rivendell by walking, riding, ellipticalling (that's a word?) my way along with the Fellowship (and yes, there's a website that'll give you distances from point to point on both journeys, Bilbo's with the dwarves and Frodo's to Mordor). Vary Your Activities. That can't be stressed enough.
    That which does not kill me has made a massive tactical blunder.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Condorita View Post
    Do not weigh in every day. Don't even weigh in every week.
    +1000 I know a lot of people will disagree based on their own experiences. If I weighed myself every day, I wouldn't have seen any noticeable progress almost weekly since my weight loss was so slow (and I preferred it that way). And, at times, there might be no loss for a few weeks, then all of a sudden 2 or 3 in one week. So, at the end of the month you'd see 2-3 lbs. lost and feel great about that, rather than get on the scale every day or week and see nothing and get frustrated and think why bother. Weight varies daily based on a lot of variables, including your digestive regularity. Focus instead on just changing to healthier eating habits (fewer calories, healthy foods), dial in on your actual calories required to lose weight with your activity level, continue riding, and the weight will come off. It will. Really. I promise.

    Oh..... and since you do ride a lot, pay close attention to eating enough protein and healthy carbs. DON'T GO LO-CARB -- your body needs carbs for fuel. Instead, eat fewer of them (fewer slices of bread, a smaller helping of potatoes, fewer cookies ), but don't eliminate or drastically reduce them as much as some lo-carb diets do. Carbs themselves don't make us fat..... too many carbs (that aren't burned off as fuel) make us fat.
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    I've lost 65 lbs. doing 15 mile rides on a flat creekside trail 5 days a week. At first, I didn't lose anything and was stumped. My wife pointed out that I needed to cut down on the food too. When I did, the pounds began coming off. The other thing that helped was 'spinning'. Ride in an easier gear but pedal more quickly. This gets the heart rate up big time, and you enter the calorie burning stage.

    It takes time, but is enjoyable and you will be in good shape in no time. Good luck. bk

  22. #22
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    Two years ago I was 55 years old, 5'6" and weighed 200 lbs. and I was a smoker. I lost 40 lbs. in 4 months by working out hard twice a day and limiting my caloric intake to 1500 to 2000 calories per day. Then, I quit smoking cold turkey and, of course resumed my old eating habits. However, I started to ride 12 to 15 miles per day during the week and 25 to 35 miles on Sunday . I now weigh 190 lbs. and I'm in very good shape but it's time to lose the weight again. I've learned I can exercise all day long but unless I reduce my caloric intake the weight will not come off. So, it's back to 1500 to 2000 calories per day.

  23. #23
    Elite Rider Hermes's Avatar
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    There is a LOT of money spent and made on weight loss and the strategies and tactics seem to change every few years. I have never had a weight problem but...I can gain weight.

    There are a number of good suggestions here and as always YMMV.

    I have found that longer distance moderate paced cycling makes me hungry. Yes, I burn a lot of calories but I find myself famished especially on the day after a long ride and I can eat more than I burn. I eat during the ride and recovery and etc, etc, etc.

    Since getting into coached program where the intensity has been increased dramatically and the mileage decreased, I find I lose weight almost instantly (exaggeration). For my body type and genetics, intensity seems to kill my appetite and possibly change my hormone production. I can eat less more easily. Intensity has a dark side of potential injury and that is why I am in a supervised program.

  24. #24
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    Eat less. Here's how:

    I was in the same situation, wanting to lose weight but the constant exercise wasn't working.
    The ritual and act of eating is one that is very habitual. Its hard to change that, I know.
    You have to change your whole point of view of eating. First you must truly choose to
    believe that 'under eating' is ok. I noticed with myself that I used to worry that I wasn't
    selecting enough of a portion at a meal- as if that were a real problem. The key to this
    is to try to eat 'not enough' at meals, but have healthy snacks on hand to fill in the gaps.
    At home, eat just half of that sandwich, or measure 1 cup of leftovers (if you can measure it).
    At a restaurant, have an appetizer for your meal. As for snacking, I typically eat a nut and
    dried berry only trail mix (avoid the trail mix with M&Ms or really sweet dried tropical fruits).
    Eating this way will also help speed up your metabolism since the eating is more evenly
    distributed through the day. Lastly the 20 minute rule. Your mental feeling of full occurs about
    20 minutes after you actually are full. If you have your small meal and are still hungry, wait
    20 minutes before having more. Ive noticed sometimes, when my time is up I actually do feel
    full, so in doing that I successfully avoided over eating.

    The first rule of flats is You don't talk about flats!

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    I think the essence is to positively study your experience of "habit." William James had a lot of good things to say on the subject. Fact is, almost everything we do fits into these habit structures in our behavior. Once you can see it, you will be able to see how you can change it. Although I am not overweight, I did come to believe a few years ago that my eating habits involved too much food: what constituted a meal and what constituted an adequate amount of food eaten per day. Without making any effort, my eating habits have changed over time. It was as though the body/mind was very careful to change its expectations and thusly its habits. Slowly and carefully it did. Now I know that one medium sized meal is all I need in a day. A sandwich, bowl of cereal or couple pieces of fruit in the evening is fine if I had a "big" lunch. There's variety of course but that's the idea: one meal a day is all I need to feel great, go bicycling, whatever. But the change should involve no effort.

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