Re: dumb fat person post"Redfoot" <email@example.com> wrote:
> Hi, my brother talked me into signing up for a 7-day / 6-night mountain bike ride from Telluride,
> CO to Moab, UT coming up early June (mostly fire trails). Trouble is that as a parent of a very
> young child, and also finishing up a graduate degree in EE and working fulltime, I've become
> grossly overwight and have not train in almost a year. I'm 6'0" tall and 240 pounds, yeah I'm
> normally heavyset anyweigh (usually around 200 even if at fighting weight) but I am scared now
> because I'm afraid I won't be able to cut it unless I seriously lose some weight and get training.
Sounds like your body type is lots like mine. I found myself being uncomfortably overweight about 8
years ago, after finishing up grad school and then living through the first year of a tough new job.
My advice will be hard to follow, because of your life's time constraints. The demands on your time
won't go away. You'll just have to budget carefully.
Obviously, you'll need to get more exercise for both goals, losing weight, and being prepared to
live through your bike tour. Here's the main key: you need to have longer exercise sessions than
what you may be used to.
Busy people generally work out for less than an hour, especially when they count in the getting
cleaned up afterwords and travelling to/from where they work out. This does *not* cut the
mustard (or fat).
It will hurt getting to the point where you can do it, but you need to double your heart rate, and
keep it up there for over an hour. More time is better.
When you start working out, your body burns energy out of blood sugar. It takes half hour, maybe
45 minutes to go through all that available energy to coax your body into burning fat directly
It may seem like a short-cut to just be hungry when you start working out. Bad idea--there has to be
something readily available for your muscles to use as energy during the first part of the workout
or they'll start consuming their own tissue. As a friend of mine who understands the physiology of
this says, "you need to build a fat-burning fire". The initial blood sugar is the kindling.
Diet is important, but you can't just stop eating. You just have to eat smarter. Once you get
your body used to actually doing physical work, your appetite will change. I promise. I've been
The good news for you is this: you don't have to get down to 200 lbs to be ready for this ride. You
can be 'in shape' and still be overweight. It's a great deal more *fun* to be at a closer-to-ideal
weight, trust me, but you can still function and ride all day, albeit at your own pace, when you're
carrying more meat than you should.
I have fought weight all my life. Back in the 90s when I found myself getting too damned fat, I
turned it around. I'm 6'1". I got up to about
235. Then in about 5 months I lost 35 pounds. I exercised it off. I did a few things to my diet,
like cutting out ice cream and other obvious things, but I didn't consciously cut portions or
take on a formal diet (like Atkins). I ate what I felt like eating. Still do. As long as I'm in
decent shape, my appetite controls itself. Once I start to get fat, it's a vicious cycle
because I'm hungry all the time, and bad food sounds good.
Once I got down below 200 lbs, I got interested in racing. Then I got interested in training for
racing. I changed the way that I ride, from little short ****-around rides of less than 90 minutes
to lo-o-o-ong rides. I've never been more than 210 lbs since then.
I get a little soft every winter, then I get onto a trainer and sweat in place, sometimes for nearly
3 hours at a time. Being on a trainer helps when you're desperate to get more out of the workout,
because you can much more easily stay at an exertion level that will actually burn fat. Use an HRM
if you need to. It helped me get started, but I don't really need one any more. I know how it feels
when I'm working hard enough. The fat melts off. Once I'm into the season I can set a pace and keep
it all damned day. Used to be that I'd really get tired after 2 hours or so. But that's because I
never trained for the longer haul.
Good luck. Hope the advice helps. You can do it if you want to.
Tom Purvis - http://www.arkansasvalley.net/tpurvis/