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quicksilver555 05-30-08 11:59 PM

Need some advice.
Hi everyone, this is my first post aside from my intro and Id just like to say Im glad to be a part of the community!
Id like to start out by saying that I am a new rider and Im here looking for advice as to how I should go about reaching some goals of mine. I am a 23 year old dude who is 5'9" and 220 lbs and Im very unhappy with my health. I drastically changed my diet about 3 months ago to healthier foods and started to walk to and from work (30 blocks each way) every day. A few weeks ago I felt that this wasn't enough to loose the kind of weight I wanted so I decided to invest in a Cannondale F7 bike and start cycling instead of walking. I have had my bike for 1 whole week now and have been peddling to work and back every day so far (5 days) and was planning to hit up the trails near my house (that go on for miles n' miles) tomorrow. I still have to stop though and ask myself if Im doing enough, is my 60 blocks a day during the week and 1 day of the weekend for and hour or two really good enough to bring me down to a good weight? Id appreciate any advice you all could give for a big guy like myself to burn off this fat and enjoy the benefits of good health. Thanks for taking the time to read this :)


Tom Stormcrowe 05-31-08 12:02 AM

You are on a bike forum, asking if you should ride more? I bet you already know the answer........YES! :D

You need to find excuses to go riding to the Grocery, the hardware store, drag the wife out riding, and every other conceivable way to get pedaling. ;)

quicksilver555 05-31-08 12:12 AM

K I guess I should have seen that answer coming, thanks and will do :)

Tom Stormcrowe 05-31-08 12:22 AM

Not a problem ;) Welcome to the addiction, by the way. We're glad to have you here. :D

v1k1ng1001 05-31-08 12:29 AM

Welcome! :beer: I have two quick recommendations if you really want to drop some weight:

1. Ride more. Just get on the bike more. Ride home after work, grab a quick snack and then hit the trails for a few hours.

2. Get in the gym and start lifting for an hour 2-3 days/wk. You'll replace fat with muscle and, if that's not enough, that muscle will increase your metabolism. Protein supplements can really help in the beginning.

Between diet, riding and lifting, you will see a dramatic change.

Fribley 05-31-08 12:47 AM

I just started biking to work also. I have the same goals of "lose weight" except my goal weight is your starting weight, i weighed in at 275 a week ago, four days of commuting to work, with about a half an hour of joy-riding before i get to work that is out of my way, and a 14 mile trip today, i have dropped 7 pounds in 5 days. Also some diet changes and no soda helped greatly. So granted i have more to lose therefore i would lose it faster but it does work and its the most enjoyable form of excerise i have ever done. Also I can say that the weight lifting suggestion will help alot also. Any training combined with a weight regiman will help you greatly, i definitely plan on joining my local gym, the only problem is I broke the bank on buying my bike with my very limited budget and now have to wait a week for my next paycheck, and then two weeks after that i may be able to afford a computer for my bike.

Also if your like me your 60 block a day will go up, and your hour or two on the weekends will go up the more to get used to the ride the more you will want to ride. Its been said again and again that you just need to get out there a ride and you will be amazed with your progress and performance. Going from almost sedentary to planning a 30 mile round trip next weekend is pretty amazeing to me. So yes rideing is good, is it enough? thats up to you if you dont think so ride more, or try the weights, but whatever happens just have fun out on your bike.

sstorkel 05-31-08 03:12 AM

Are you cycling enough to lose weight? Keep it up for a week or two, then you can tell us! Every body reacts differently to diets and exercise. I could tell you what I do, but I can almost guarantee that you wouldn't see the same results... That said, here are a few general suggestions:

1) Focus on the percentage of your weight that's fat, not the absolute number. There may be periods where you're exercising hard and won't lose a pound! Why? Perhaps because you're replacing fat with muscle, which is generally a good thing. Buying a scale that measures your body fat percentage in addition to your weight is a decent way to keep track of this. Just keep in mind that the numbers can fluctuate quite a bit from day to day or even hour to hour. Look for trends over a couple of days or a week; don't too worried by the day-to-day numbers.

2) You lose weight by creating a calorie deficit. The bigger the deficit, the more weight you lose. If you eat right while creating this calorie deficit, you're more likely to lose fat and less likely to lose muscle. I seem to recall reading that you had to create a deficit of 3500 calories to lose one pound of fat!

3) Consider buying a heart rate monitor. Most also include an estimate of calories burned during exercise. This number is just a guess, and it's often a wildly exaggerated guess. Still, I think it's a decent way to measure the relative intensity of your exercise. I've noticed, for example, that the 10-mile loop I ride during lunchtime started out with an indicated 750 calories burned and now that I'm in better shape the HRM says I'm only burning about 500 calories. Time for me to ride further or up the pace!

4) Work to vary your routine, up your pace, and increase distance. The body is surprisingly good at adapting to exercise. So much so, that if you continue to ride the same route day after day and week after week your body will eventually adapt and you probably won't see as much benefit from riding that same route. I like to try to mix up my riding as much as possible: different routes, different terrain profiles, different intensity levels, etc. Plus, it's just a lot more interesting :)

quicksilver555 05-31-08 11:19 AM

All good advice, thanks alot guys and Ill keep you updated on my progress in this thread.

wrk101 05-31-08 04:51 PM

I would say this is a good start. To really begin burning calories, I target 100 miles minimum per week. My first ride February 08 was a total of 3 1/2 miles, and I was worn out at that point!! But you will be surprised how fast the rate improves. By March I did a 33 mile ride, by May I did a 62 mile ride.

60 blocks is not going to burn a lot of calories. I am similar to your size, and figure I am burning about one pound for every 100 miles (3500 calories). This is a rough estimate, and a conservative one, as I do not want to lull myself into thinking I can eat a lot more. So if I eat at a maintain weight rate, the extra exercise should result in a one pound per week weight loss. I have been pretty close to that rate. So if you are shooting for weight loss, either ramp up the exercise or eat less. I find the ramping up to be an easier trade-off.

I would add a ten mile loop to your ride home each night, you should be able to do that in about 45 minutes. I would consider this an investment in your long term health.

You are off to a great start! Congrats!

ScotteeD 05-31-08 06:34 PM

Yeah I tend to lean towards the 100 mile per pound rule also. However you can off set this a little by doing intervals and hills once you get some base miles in.

The main thing is just get out and ride and ride and then ride some more. The addiction will set in before you know it and then when you don't ride, you feel guilty.:ride:

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