I ride my bike mostly because I love to, but I know it is a great activity for cardio exercise and general fitness. I'm no ride junkie (yet) -- I ride 3 or 4 times a week, usually for about an hour and a half each outing. My average speed is around 14mph so I figure I ride around 20 miles each ride.
But I want to start to put more focus into the fitness aspect of cycling, and I realize that it means I need to pay more attention to my diet. I'm looking for some suggestions .. so here are my specs. I am:
19 years old
6' 1" (lanky as is)
Typical foods of current diet -- pasta; Subway; peanut butter sandwiches (no jelly. yuck!); pizza; veggies (in moderation) (really not my favorite); fruits (apples, bananas, grapes, oranges); milk; water; occasional root beer .. ice cream, chocolate, Skittles, and Peanut M&M's .. and I love meat. Maybe I eat too much, but something tells me that my metabolism can handle it.
I eat a lot as it is right now and people say I am a bottomless pit, that I have hollow legs or something. I am intimidated by the idea of controlling my diet because it just feels like an idea that means reducing my intake.
I've taken up an exercise regimen that works mostly on my lower body - quads, hamstrings, calves, glutes, lower abs - but I also work on upper abs and arms, just not nearly as much. Purely for aesthetic improvement. :-D
If I want to start including diet in my life for fitness benefits (I want to be tone, not ripped) then what should I look for? I know - proteins and carbs, and avoid saturated fats - but what kinds of foods can I find these in?