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Weight Loss on the Bike using a Power Meter

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Weight Loss on the Bike using a Power Meter

Old 04-27-16, 06:20 AM
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Weight Loss on the Bike using a Power Meter

Using a Power Meter for Weight Loss | Bicycling

This article popped up on my feed last night and I think it is a good one. It has a bunch of good weight loss and cycling info captured in a single article. This is essentially what I try to follow on the bike when possible.
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Old 04-27-16, 06:22 AM
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This is the one I am using:

https://store.stagescycling.com/stag...ival-p847.aspx
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Old 04-27-16, 08:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Jarrett2 View Post
Using a Power Meter for Weight Loss | Bicycling

This article popped up on my feed last night and I think it is a good one. It has a bunch of good weight loss and cycling info captured in a single article. This is essentially what I try to follow on the bike when possible.
It is one possible reason for using a power meter but the reason I would use one is as another measure of improved fitness. Since I started cycling again my blood pressure has gone down, resting HR too, and of course HR while riding. When I ride my trainer, the built in power meter is available to me. The combination of sensors allows me to have objective measures of fitness improvement.

When I go back on the road, I lose the power meter; I think that a power meter will be the first upgrade to my new bike. DC Rainmaker (DC Rainmaker) has a comprehensive review of power meters.
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Old 04-27-16, 08:29 AM
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It's an upgrade I plan on making soon. The cost of entry is dropping dramatically still, for example I note that 4iiii's just announced updated crank arm power meter is soon going to be available for $400 including the left 105 crank arm ($100 more for the Ultegra), and with the DCRainmaker discount, you can knock 10% off that. This is undercutting Stages buy quite a bit (although obviously more limited in selection).
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Old 04-27-16, 11:21 AM
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It took me a while to jump on it, but I'm glad I bought mine. For $399, it seems like a decent investment. It answers a lot of questions.

I like that it allows you to ditch the rest of the sensors so nothing else rubber banded to a wheel or crank arm that can fly off. Something about those things always bugged me a bit anyway. Makes the bike look cleaner without them.

While I initially thought I would be using the numbers more for training purposes, I find now I use it more for weight loss/maintenance, calories burned and cadence.

I was surprised to find that the power meter reports slightly more calories burned than the Strava guesstimate. It made me appreciate Strava's algorithms a little more. Then I have the calories burned from the power meter feed right into MyFitnessPal to sit along side my calories in for the day.

I like knowing that it is as precise as I can get. I have to guess how many calories I burned doing CrossFit for example. I just base it on the level of exertion compared to a bike ride, so the power meter numbers come in handy there as well.

I still keep any eye on my power numbers just so I can go "hmm" when I had a particularly strong ride
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Old 04-27-16, 05:43 PM
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I have power meters on all my bikes & I primarily use the info for training. However, a very big secondary use of the power meter for me is tracking calorie expenditure and I argue frequently that a power meter is awesome for managing energy on the bike.

Interesting article that was linked in the original post, I think much of what is contained in the article is awesome information. I would strongly disagree with the part about needing food in order to work at greater than 75% intensity, though. That is maybe true for newbies but you can train your body to work at a higher intensity in a fasted state for sure. I do it all the time (as in 2-4 times per week).

Think about it: a 40k TT takes about an hour. It's ridden at 100% intensity if you're doing it right. No one eats during a TT. I'm getting ready for an important (to me) 40k TT and I rode a 70 minute TT interval this morning at 98% intensity. This was after an overnight fast and no food or water consumed during the effort. I'm way smaller than many here (but only after losing 50 pounds, so believe me, I get the struggle), at 128 pounds. I'm allotted 1550 cal day. And I burned 971 cal this morning before I ever ate anything. The ability to do this is huge for me, makes losing & managing weight much much easier.

Very key thing for me as well is to manage hunger post-workout. I used to be ravenous after these workouts until I got more serious about recovery. Now I drink a recovery drink that is 1 gm/kg carb and 0.3 gm/kg protein immediately post workout. Then I am fine for 2 hours and just a normal appetite for the rest of the day.

Love my power meters in so many ways.
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Old 04-28-16, 01:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Heathpack View Post
Very key thing for me as well is to manage hunger post-workout. I used to be ravenous after these workouts until I got more serious about recovery. Now I drink a recovery drink that is 1 gm/kg carb and 0.3 gm/kg protein immediately post workout. Then I am fine for 2 hours and just a normal appetite for the rest of the day.
I'm usually OK (appetite wise) after normal riding... 2-3 hours, but if I do a century I will and have eaten anything that isn't nailed down. I'll have to look into a more formal recovery beverage.
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Old 04-28-16, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Heathpack View Post
Very key thing for me as well is to manage hunger post-workout. I used to be ravenous after these workouts until I got more serious about recovery. Now I drink a recovery drink that is 1 gm/kg carb and 0.3 gm/kg protein immediately post workout. Then I am fine for 2 hours and just a normal appetite for the rest of the day.
What type of drinks have this ratio?

I struggle with this a lot. I work out hard in the morning, then all day my hunger is so high that I struggle to not eat bad what I burned off.

I find if I workout later in the evening, I can come home, fight the hunger a couple of hours, then go to sleep. This seems to be more successful, but my schedule more conducive to morning workouts.

Last edited by Jarrett2; 04-28-16 at 07:46 AM.
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Old 04-28-16, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
I'm usually OK (appetite wise) after normal riding... 2-3 hours, but if I do a century I will and have eaten anything that isn't nailed down. I'll have to look into a more formal recovery beverage.
But... why? If you take an entire century at a modest pace, with only a bit of climbing thrown in, you're talking 4-5k calories. Just eat some food. If you're managing to cram in 5k worth after the ride, then you may indeed be doing it wrong.

Related, my "recovery beverage" of choice is just chocolate milk. Gets the job done.
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Old 04-28-16, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Jarrett2 View Post
What type of drinks have this ratio?

I struggle with this a lot. I work out hard in the morning, then all day my hunger is so high that I struggle to not eat bad what I burned off.

I find if I workout later in the evening, I can come home, fight the hunger a couple of hours, then go to sleep. This seems to be more successful, but my schedule more conducive to morning workouts.
I make my own. Have maybe a dozen recipes. My favorite:

Cherry Vanilla Recovery Drink 340 cal/60 gm carb/22 gm pro
12 oz skim milk
2 tablespoons (10 gm) whey protein isolate
6 oz tart cherry juice, frozen into ice cubes (tart cherry juice is an antioxidant powerhouse, great for recovery, Traders Joes is cheapest but I can get it at my regular grocery store too)
2 tablespoons Torani French vanilla syrup (same stuff that goes into coffee drinks)

You really do want to refuel after workouts, not just to manage hunger. You don't want to be in a catabolic state- you just worked out hard, which is a process of intentionally damaging muscles. Post workout your body needs to rebuild and it needs substrate to do that, so protein is important. You also want to set yourself up for success in your next workout and there's some evidence that your muscle is most receptive to soaking up the carb and storing it as glycogen in the time immediately post workout. I am religous about this stuff.

But it's still a good deal calorie-wise, even if you have your delicious recovery drink after you workout. This morning I burned 1000 fasted calories and then drank 300 in my recovery drink. I'm still at a net negative for the day and I won't eat my oatmeal for another 1.5 hours, which will be 3 hours post-workout. If I don't eat my breakfast until 9:30am, there's a good chance I can make it to lunch on just that, or maybe eat a little fruit to tide me over. This is coming from a person with a huge appetite...
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Old 04-28-16, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
But... why? If you take an entire century at a modest pace, with only a bit of climbing thrown in, you're talking 4-5k calories. Just eat some food. If you're managing to cram in 5k worth after the ride, then you may indeed be doing it wrong.

Related, my "recovery beverage" of choice is just chocolate milk. Gets the job done.
I agree it's a decent choice. But a little low on protein and high on carb for my purposes.

Edited to add: for me, a fast century with moderate climbing is only 3000 cal & I'll probably have eaten 1500 cal at least on the ride. The century deficit is not that much greater than a three hour climbing ride for me.

Last edited by Heathpack; 04-28-16 at 09:04 AM.
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Old 04-28-16, 02:57 PM
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Yeah, but you're... umm... compact? I'm still up around 2 bills. The chocomilk I generally buy is (I think) Darigold Re-Fuel, it's ~60g carbs and 20g protein per bottle. And through the magic of science, is lactose free and lasts like 2 months in the fridge. I don't question how it works.

Managing calories seems a bit easier for me, as I am not small, and I ride ~35 miles a day, 7 days a week.
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Old 04-30-16, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
I'm usually OK (appetite wise) after normal riding... 2-3 hours, but if I do a century I will and have eaten anything that isn't nailed down. I'll have to look into a more formal recovery beverage.

Been know to have liquid therapy after those centuries also ...
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Old 04-30-16, 03:09 PM
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Originally Posted by vesteroid View Post
Been know to have liquid therapy after those centuries also ...
Well, that goes without saying.
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Old 04-30-16, 04:59 PM
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Just picked up the PowerPod last week. Not really doing anything with it yet, but recording my power output.

Rainmaker's review of PowerPod is positive and it is easier on the pocketbook than other options.
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Old 05-02-16, 08:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Cychologist View Post
Just picked up the PowerPod last week. Not really doing anything with it yet, but recording my power output.

Rainmaker's review of PowerPod is positive and it is easier on the pocketbook than other options.
Interesting device. Shortcomings I see with the device:
  • Doesn't wake up by itself.
  • Would not give a reading if you are on a trainer because there is no wind.
  • Not removable in seconds to prevent theft.

I hope you'll post comments about your experience with the device. Thanks for bringing the thread back on topic.
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Old 05-02-16, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Cychologist View Post
Just picked up the PowerPod last week. Not really doing anything with it yet, but recording my power output.

Rainmaker's review of PowerPod is positive and it is easier on the pocketbook than other options.
It's an interesting device for sure. I think it's overpriced at $300 though, right now I can get a crank-arm based power meter for only $50 more. If they released a Bluetooth/ANT+ version for $50 less, I'd be tempted.
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Old 05-02-16, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Heathpack View Post
I make my own. Have maybe a dozen recipes. My favorite:

Cherry Vanilla Recovery Drink 340 cal/60 gm carb/22 gm pro
12 oz skim milk
2 tablespoons (10 gm) whey protein isolate
6 oz tart cherry juice, frozen into ice cubes (tart cherry juice is an antioxidant powerhouse, great for recovery, Traders Joes is cheapest but I can get it at my regular grocery store too)
2 tablespoons Torani French vanilla syrup (same stuff that goes into coffee drinks)

You really do want to refuel after workouts, not just to manage hunger. You don't want to be in a catabolic state- you just worked out hard, which is a process of intentionally damaging muscles. Post workout your body needs to rebuild and it needs substrate to do that, so protein is important. You also want to set yourself up for success in your next workout and there's some evidence that your muscle is most receptive to soaking up the carb and storing it as glycogen in the time immediately post workout. I am religous about this stuff.

But it's still a good deal calorie-wise, even if you have your delicious recovery drink after you workout. This morning I burned 1000 fasted calories and then drank 300 in my recovery drink. I'm still at a net negative for the day and I won't eat my oatmeal for another 1.5 hours, which will be 3 hours post-workout. If I don't eat my breakfast until 9:30am, there's a good chance I can make it to lunch on just that, or maybe eat a little fruit to tide me over. This is coming from a person with a huge appetite...
That's my second favorite recovery drink. First is the Creamsicle and third is the Blackberry vanilla.
On a day where I don't workout at more than 85% or so I'll just use a scoop of Promasil that is low carb with some water. Example is yesterdays 1:12 ride. According to the data I used 875kJ at an IF of 0.87. The hard bit was the 20 minute interval at 105% of FTP. The rest of the time was spent at about 60% FTP. For me just using the Promasil that has the protein kept me out of the pantry.
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Old 05-02-16, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by PatrickR400 View Post
Thanks for bringing the thread back on topic.
Lol, when did the thread go off topic?
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Old 05-02-16, 11:31 AM
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Originally Posted by vesteroid View Post
Been know to have liquid therapy after those centuries also ...
You have a rack on the bike for that box of fine bordeaux?
Also, is it a white wine of red wine that goes with Cliff bars?
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Old 05-02-16, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post
It's an interesting device for sure. I think it's overpriced at $300 though, right now I can get a crank-arm based power meter for only $50 more. If they released a Bluetooth/ANT+ version for $50 less, I'd be tempted.
I assume since they are coming out with a Bluetooth/ANT+ model, I got mine for $100 off plus the additional discount from Rainmaker's review site.

I was attracted to the PowerPod because of the easy setup and flexibility in transferring to other bikes.
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Old 05-02-16, 02:35 PM
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I'm "lucky" in that I have to force myself to eat after long rides. I know that it's a sign of not eating enough ON the ride, but I'm also not wolfing down pizzas when I get home.
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Old 05-02-16, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by PatrickR400 View Post
Interesting device. Shortcomings I see with the device:
  • Doesn't wake up by itself.
  • Would not give a reading if you are on a trainer because there is no wind.
  • Not removable in seconds to prevent theft.

I hope you'll post comments about your experience with the device. Thanks for bringing the thread back on topic.
1. The wake up is no problem. I just turn it on when I turn on my Garmin.

2. I don't do trainers anyway. I do spin classes with a group, and that's boring enough. ;-)

3. Any professional thief who would spend the time to unscrew the PowerPod could break my lock and take my entire bike in less time. In fact, one complaint I have is how long it takes to remove the device from the bike. I am going get a longer charging cord and charge the PowerPod on the bike, in the garage.
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Old 05-02-16, 09:19 PM
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Originally Posted by JReade View Post
I'm "lucky" in that I have to force myself to eat after long rides. I know that it's a sign of not eating enough ON the ride, but I'm also not wolfing down pizzas when I get home.

It's a sign that your intensity level is comfortably in the middle of your endurance pace. I can do a metric at the top of Z2 and not need to eat for a couple of hours after getting off the bike. Or I can stay in Z4 for most of the ride and eat a whole pizza.

Problems arise when Z2 meets whole pizza.
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Old 05-02-16, 10:01 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
Problems arise when Z2 meets whole pizza.
Yep.
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