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Pre-breakfast ride = weight loss?

Old 04-30-12, 01:32 PM
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Pre-breakfast ride = weight loss?

I have read in this forum and a couple of other places that it's a good idea to take a moderately hard ride of 60-90 minutes before breakfast to lose weight. Most sources mentioned having some coffee (caffeine) before starting. True?

PS -
Today, before breakfast, I rode 20 miles with some tough hills in the middle. No caffeine - I don't drink coffee. I felt fine physically after and immediately made and ate an omelet (2 eggs, spinach, onions, peppers) and beans.
Unfortunately at mile 9.6 I lost the cadence sending unit for my Garmin. Tie wraps can't break - it's against the rules! I hit 42 pedaling (50/11) on the way back, but I had to resort to calculations to figure out how fast I was spinning - I didn't know I could spin 120! I usually start to flutter around 107 and I don't remember ever seeing above 110.
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Old 04-30-12, 03:08 PM
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I have read in the past that riding before breakfast can improve the efficiency with with your metabolism turns to burning fat for fuel. Good, I'm sure that's helpful. But clearly its usefulness would be outweighed were you to eat more as a result, which is possible given that you'll be pretty hungry by the end. And there are other studies suggesting that people on diets who eat breakfast tend to be more successful at weight loss. So you pays your money and you takes your choice.

The only thing I am really confident about in this context is that if I ride more, and eat less, I lose weight.
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Old 04-30-12, 05:51 PM
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Riding hungry weakens your performance and puts a lot of stress on your body. Your muscles will quickly turn to breaking down fat stored in the muscle tissue itself (lipids are stored in consolidated fat cells; muscles under high aerobic load will begin to store lipids as if they were fat cells, and burn them directly via oxygen), which gets replenished from later food intake (replenishment from consolidated fat storage would use too much energy). Lipolysis is less of a factor, so you won't lose as much actual chubby-fat and so won't lose weight.

You'll lose weight if you burn more calories than you take in and retain (fat/cholesterol tends to pass through the body in some quantity--for example bile is cholesterol, and you can easily just pass half of that cholesterol as solid waste... though some gets absorbed, sometimes quite a lot of it actually, and sometimes not much at all!).
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Old 04-30-12, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by hobkirk
I have read in this forum and a couple of other places that it's a good idea to take a moderately hard ride of 60-90 minutes before breakfast to lose weight. Most sources mentioned having some coffee (caffeine) before starting. True?

PS -
Today, before breakfast, I rode 20 miles with some tough hills in the middle. No caffeine - I don't drink coffee. I felt fine physically after and immediately made and ate an omelet (2 eggs, spinach, onions, peppers) and beans.
Unfortunately at mile 9.6 I lost the cadence sending unit for my Garmin. Tie wraps can't break - it's against the rules! I hit 42 pedaling (50/11) on the way back, but I had to resort to calculations to figure out how fast I was spinning - I didn't know I could spin 120! I usually start to flutter around 107 and I don't remember ever seeing above 110.
This is true. There are quite a few studies showing positive benefit from this. Specifically, it seems to focus the body's chemical factories on harvesting that body fat instead of always looking first for carbs to burn. Proper base training has been shown to increase the percentage of energy derived from bodyfat, and thus to increase the maximum possible rate of calorie burn when multiple fuels are employed in a normal ride. This is also known as sustained watts.

I don't try to ride hills or go hard before breakfast. I keep it in zone 2 (moderate to easy) and just ride for base. If you're riding for "training" i.e. intervals or efforts, you're better off doing those fueled. You can't harvest body fat fast enough to fuel hard training, and thus you won't be able to achieve the desired stimulus.
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Old 05-01-12, 10:31 PM
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I've found this to be true, but as CFB stated I also will not get into red zone stuff and keep it moderate. If I stay at low to medium intensity before breakfast, fueling on a couple cups of coffee, I find myself to loose weight. I usually do this early in the season to loose the pounds gained from the winter
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Old 05-02-12, 06:19 AM
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Worked for me. I ride 80 minutes at moderate intensity every morning with nothing but a bottle of water. Just enough to get the heart rate up a little and the muscles primed. Then I eat breakfast. If I want to go more than 30 miles or I want to go faster I'll eat first. Does it make you hungrier? Perhaps, but if I have a lot of cereal in the morning I just make up for it by eating less at dinner time. Lost 11kg in 3 months that way and I'm still losing that weight. Now to get the skin back into shape... thats more of a challenge.

As for pushing into anaerobic speeds without eating, really bad idea. Your body starts to shut down really fast.
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Old 05-02-12, 09:05 AM
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When you wake up, your blood sugar is low and stable. When you eat any type of carb your body produces insulin which triggers fat storage. So there is truth to this. But if the net result is that your training suffers, and you dont keep your heart rate in the zone (60%-75% of maximum HR), you'll offset this effect.
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Old 05-03-12, 03:47 PM
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pretty much every saturday i ride with only a cup of coffee and some water in my system. i usually do 10-30 miles on my old 35lbs bike with 2" tires (i just got a new bike today though). i have lost a lot of weight in the last year, does a pre-breakfast ride help? i'm not 100% sure, but i like to think so.

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Old 05-09-12, 09:02 PM
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I often go for a ride without food in the morning. It is only 20 miles and I rarely am hungry first thing in the morning. I normally ride it pretty hard unless I do not feel like it

As I am perusing this segment looking for weight loss ideas I am not sure how much it helps
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