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Road cycling weight loss program?

Old 05-13-06, 03:36 PM
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BeeTL
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Road cycling weight loss program?

I am riding about 80-100 miles per week. I'm going to try to get to 120 per week over the summer. I'm not losing weight with riding alone. I average 17.5 mph over 40 miles on mostly flat or slightly rolling terrain.

What is a simple program to follow that will help me lose 25-50 pounds in six months while improving speed and stamina?

I've read a fair amount about nutrition, so I'm really looking for applied knowledge that is cycling specific. Links are appreciated.

Thanks!

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Old 05-13-06, 03:40 PM
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Eating smarter, not necessarily less, will help. I have tried in the past eating less carbs on all days except the day before a big ride. This had worked for me. All the other usual previso's about diets still stand. Eat less, exercise more.
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Old 05-13-06, 04:12 PM
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I am following something similar to the last reply. I eat about 100g carbs on non riding days. I eat a pre ride high carb meal, carbs during the ride and a carb meal to refuel after the ride. I don't skimp on carbs before during or after as this is just silly.

I also match my carb intake, on the night before a ride, to the duration/intensity of the ride on the following morning. So if I am going to go for a long ride or particularly hard ride I will have plenty of carbs but not if the ride is going to be easy or short.

basically I try to get just enough carbs top allow me to train at a high level whilst helping to facillitate fat loss.

Obviously to lose weight you must take in less calories than you burn. Try not to do it too fast. I am losing at about 1/2 a pound per week and am making great fitness gains at present

p.s my basic meal structure is approx. 20g carbs plus 20-30g protein about 5 times per day. This assumes low fat protein sources and PLENTY of vegies

Cheers
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Old 05-13-06, 04:37 PM
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Ok, I think I can reply to this with a little bit of first hand experience. Last July, when I got my first road bike, I was 225. I'm 6'1.5".... so I wasn't terribly overweight by non-cycling standards. But, I used to be about 160lbs when I was just out of highschool. I had some knee injuries at that time and when I started undergrad I wasn't active enough, and put on a bit of weight. Last year, my third year of grad school, I decided to get into cycling to get back into shape without killing my knees. I got hooked on road riding, and it's really payed off. I'm sitting at 182lbs right now. That's nearly 45 lbs lost since last July.... I'm pretty pleased with that.... although I'm still working to get down to about 170 by the end of this season. It's so much easier to haul by butt up khills now! Anyhow... I think all the dieting crap is just that... crap. ride enough and it won't matter! I did cutout a few excesses here and there.... not as many soft drinks during the day.... limit eatting cookies and ice cream to only a time or two a week... etc. I'm sure that stuff helped, but in reality I know it's just the riding. You have to eat to have energy to ride! Bottom line... don't stuff your face with potato chips and snickers.... and ride ride ride! You'll be amazed at how the weight melts off.
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Old 05-13-06, 04:39 PM
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The simplest program is to keep track of how many calories you eat versus how many you consume. You can eat whatever the hell you want--just stop eating once you've reached 1000 fewer calories than you are going to burn that day. At that rate you'll lose 2 pounds per week. A free site like fitday.com makes this very easy to do. Any other diet strategy is just GUESSING.

I say this as someone who lost 65 pounds and at 38 years old now has a visible six pack for the first time in his life. For me, it made more sense to target one pound per week of weight loss and take my time, but YMMV.

--Steve
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Old 05-13-06, 05:04 PM
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That is my goal: visible six pack.

I am down from 215 to 173 this morning, and all of that since last june. I am sure I didn't do it all right in the beginning, since I probably didn't eat enough due to lack of knowledge of nutrition. However, unlike some who put it all back on after the riding season ends, I managed to maintain weight all winter. Now I want to put the nail in the coffin for the summer season.
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Old 05-13-06, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by briscoelab
Ok, I think I can reply to this with a little bit of first hand experience. Last July, when I got my first road bike, I was 225. I'm 6'1.5".... so I wasn't terribly overweight by non-cycling standards. But, I used to be about 160lbs when I was just out of highschool. I had some knee injuries at that time and when I started undergrad I wasn't active enough, and put on a bit of weight. Last year, my third year of grad school, I decided to get into cycling to get back into shape without killing my knees. I got hooked on road riding, and it's really payed off. I'm sitting at 182lbs right now. That's nearly 45 lbs lost since last July.... I'm pretty pleased with that.... although I'm still working to get down to about 170 by the end of this season. It's so much easier to haul by butt up khills now! Anyhow... I think all the dieting crap is just that... crap. ride enough and it won't matter! I did cutout a few excesses here and there.... not as many soft drinks during the day.... limit eatting cookies and ice cream to only a time or two a week... etc. I'm sure that stuff helped, but in reality I know it's just the riding. You have to eat to have energy to ride! Bottom line... don't stuff your face with potato chips and snickers.... and ride ride ride! You'll be amazed at how the weight melts off.
Sounds like a diet to me!
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Old 05-14-06, 01:14 AM
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Originally Posted by WheresWaldo
Sounds like a diet to me!
I think of it more as common sense 6 Mt Dew a day == bad news
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Old 05-14-06, 04:51 AM
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Originally Posted by BeeTL
I've read a fair amount about nutrition, so I'm really looking for applied knowledge that is cycling specific. Links are appreciated.

Thanks!

I won't bore you with dieting info since you asked for cycling info, I assume if you are asking about weight loss you are eating correctly. You mentioned you are not losing weight riding alone, I can relate, my everyday riding partner is recovering from surgery so I have seen my competitive juices aren't pushing me on solo rides. The obvious answer is find a club, but I understand the Garmin Edge 305 has a virtual race program, once you have ridden a route the GPS remembers it and remembers your time so you can see if you are behind the last time you rode and speed up if you want to drop your virtual self. Just an idea since you mentioned being alone. I don't own one, but I am thinking about it. It seems to me it would help your average speed(not that I think 17.5 needs help, that is where I am at too) and faster times would translate into more calories burned. Good luck with your weight loss, I have dropped close to 50 myself, and I know what it is like to hit a wall.
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Old 05-14-06, 05:21 AM
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Originally Posted by BeeTL
I am riding about 80-100 miles per week. I'm going to try to get to 120 per week over the summer. I'm not losing weight with riding alone. I average 17.5 mph over 40 miles on mostly flat or slightly rolling terrain.

What is a simple program to follow that will help me lose 25-50 pounds in six months while improving speed and stamina?

I've read a fair amount about nutrition, so I'm really looking for applied knowledge that is cycling specific. Links are appreciated.

Thanks!

Want Simple. Create a deficit. Burn more calories than you consume.
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Old 05-14-06, 06:28 AM
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Originally Posted by jjmolyet
It seems to me it would help your average speed(not that I think 17.5 needs help, that is where I am at too) and faster times would translate into more calories burned.
Riding 50 miles at 25mph doesn't burn more calories than riding 50 miles at 10 miles per hour.

--Steve
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Old 05-14-06, 07:04 AM
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Originally Posted by zimbo
Riding 50 miles at 25mph doesn't burn more calories than riding 50 miles at 10 miles per hour.

--Steve
In fact you may burn more fat at the slower pace. And that is really what it is all about. No one wants to loose 10 lb of muscle.
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Old 05-14-06, 07:15 AM
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Originally Posted by zimbo
Riding 50 miles at 25mph doesn't burn more calories than riding 50 miles at 10 miles per hour.

--Steve
I never suggested that he shorten the duration of his ride? Race the virtual rider and continue.
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Old 05-14-06, 07:45 AM
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Assuming that you're not simply impatitient, it sounds like you're pretty much in balance between intake and what you're burning on the road. As posted variously above, you can shift to a better calorie balance, generally less sugar/fat, more complex carb/protein. You can also add more miles. I think the extra miles will have a more dramatic effect, but even this will be slow. If you're burning off 2 pounds a month, that may not sound like much but it adds up by August.

I dropped from 160+ last spring to 150 by the fall just by cycling about 100 miles per week. I had to travel a lot for business last fall and this winter (no bike!), so I was back up to 160+. The weight is slowly coming off again. At least for me, there is no quick fix.
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Old 05-14-06, 08:40 AM
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For me losing weight was all about changing my diet to include more protein and complex carbs. If you you don't feel hungry, you'll eat less.
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Old 05-14-06, 08:56 AM
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Don't worry so much about how much you weigh as about how strong you feel. It's more about weight to strength ratio than weight alone. Also, 17.5 over 40 miles of flats sounds like your not working hard enough.
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Old 05-14-06, 11:02 AM
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weight watchers!
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Old 05-14-06, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by zimbo
Riding 50 miles at 25mph doesn't burn more calories than riding 50 miles at 10 miles per hour.

--Steve
This just isn't true. Look it up, run the numbers. Increasing intensity will burn more calories even though duration is reduced ( within reason) especially if you are more than doubling the intensity


Originally Posted by Trekke
In fact you may burn more fat at the slower pace. And that is really what it is all about. No one wants to loose 10 lb of muscle.

You may in fact burn more fat as a percentage of total calories burned at the slower pace, but you will burn more total calories, and hence more total fat, at a higher intensity/faster pace. This is also pretty well supported by evidence, all it takes is 20 minutes on google, so I'll let you find the links yourselves.
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Old 05-14-06, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by kandnhome
This just isn't true. Look it up, run the numbers. Increasing intensity will burn more calories even though duration is reduced ( within reason) especially if you are more than doubling the intensity.
Calories burned is roughly a measure of total work done.

--Steve
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Old 05-14-06, 12:03 PM
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Originally Posted by zimbo
Riding 50 miles at 25mph doesn't burn more calories than riding 50 miles at 10 miles per hour.

--Steve
It doesn't? It's not a linear thing when you consider aerodynamic effects.
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Old 05-14-06, 12:12 PM
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Originally Posted by kandnhome
This just isn't true. Look it up, run the numbers. Increasing intensity will burn more calories even though duration is reduced ( within reason) especially if you are more than doubling the intensity





You may in fact burn more fat as a percentage of total calories burned at the slower pace, but you will burn more total calories, and hence more total fat, at a higher intensity/faster pace. This is also pretty well supported by evidence, all it takes is 20 minutes on google, so I'll let you find the links yourselves.
this is right-on, according to my research and personal experience. i lost 25 pounds this offseason doing 60-minute max hill/interval riding/running while eating clean.

now, improving speed and stamina while doing this? i found that simply losing the weight did wonders. i went on a hilly 3-hour group ride yesterday and had maybe one of my best rides ever. the most i'd ridden this year previously was 60 minutes. (rough weather all spring.)

there's lots of variables in the equation, but the general rule is creating a max calorie deficit of 7,000 calories a week - half from food, half from exercise. you'll lose 2 pounds a week and most of that should be fat.
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Old 05-14-06, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by BeeTL
What is a simple program to follow that will help me lose 25-50 pounds in six months while improving speed and stamina?
1) Hit the hills.

2) Avoid processed foods.

Climb until you’re skinny.
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Old 05-14-06, 01:15 PM
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Rua a mile, walk a mile = same calories burned. Same thing applies to the bike.

Simple to loose weight. Burn more calories than u consume.
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Old 05-14-06, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by oilman_15106
Run a mile, walk a mile = same calories burned. Same thing applies to the bike.
That's true, but since most of us have a certain time to exercise:

Run an hour, walk an hour = BIG difference in calories burned! Similar for the bike, but probably not quite as dramatic a difference. (There are few faster ways to burn calories than running. Treading water in the Arctic Ocean is one of them, but I don't recommend it !)

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Old 05-14-06, 01:54 PM
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worth repeating, from my own experience and research...

higher intensity = more calories burned. intensity/resistance counts for a whole lot.

taken to extremes, what will burn more:

10 miles riding up a mountain on a fixed gear? or 10 miles riding flat w/ no wind?
3 miles of jumping rope w/ a 30-pound backpack in 40 minutes? or 3 miles strolled over an entire day?
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