2600 miles later, I weigh the same

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by neilkod, Oct 10, 2004.

  1. neilkod

    neilkod New Member

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    When I first started road cycling, March of this year I was at 240! I wasn't exactly a cycling 'newbie' as I've been avidly mountain biking last year and took 3-4 spinning classes per week to get ready for the road bike.

    Interestingly enough, I haven't really lost any 'weight' 2600 miles later. However, my body has changed dramatically, I've become a lot learner and more defined, but the weight is the same. Haven't really checked body fat. I've lost inches around my weight, and my face looks different.

    Is this normal?

    A bit about my riding: I ride approximately 120 miles each week. Sometimes its just the 10-15 miles each way to and from work, sometimes I go on longer rides on lunch hour/weekends. I am definitely an 80-rpm big-gear-masher. I do climb lots and lots and lots of hills (I live in Utah) and feel that I've become a pretty decent climber, considering I'm carrying all this weight around. I'm able to ride in centuries and the MS-150 with no problem.

    In short, I think that in a short few months, I've become a heck of a rider.

    A bit about my eating habits: Not great but not too shabby. I avoid the fatty foods, fried foods, fast food, donuts, etc. I drink 1-2 cups of coffee/tea daily. Have a beer every now and then. Not a huge snacker.

    Are my experiences normal? Dont get me wrong, I feel great about the changes in my body, especially my fat loss and my new cycling ability.

    Any others share my experiences?
     
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  2. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    My experience says that to lose weight, you have to diet. Don't know what your ideal weight is, but if you lost 30-40 pounds, you'd notice a big difference on the hills.

    Still, you're seeing all the right changes; probably have cut your bodyfat % way down. With your drop in waist size, and increase in fitness, you're a lot healthier too.
     
  3. mattv2099

    mattv2099 New Member

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    Sounds like you are doing a heck of a job...

    But it's just physics and math dude. Eat less and ride more.

    Maybe do some racing? Definately get some high intensity training in your program. HIgher intensity burns more calories.


    Good luck.
     
  4. ksteede

    ksteede New Member

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    Sounds to me like you're a typical mesomorph - that is you gain and/or maintain muscle mass quite easily.

    How tall are you?

    I started riding in March as well, and have dropped from 228lbs to 198lbs. Waist size as dropped from 38" to 24". I am 6'3" and have just decided that my goal is to ride faster, so I'd like to lose another 10lbs. I'm an ectomorph (naturally long and lean) so dropping the weight may be easier for me.

    The answer to your question "are there others that share your experience" depends on natural body types. For a mesomorph, your experience is quite normal, but for an ectomorph, it would be surprising.

    How you proceed would depend on your goals.
     
  5. neilkod

    neilkod New Member

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    6'3".

    For what its worth, I feel that I've become far stronger ever since I stopped trying to keep above 100 cadence. I'm now at my best riding at around 80 or so in a larger gear. My legs have grown quite a bit, pants feel a lot looser in the waist but much tighter in the thigh! Is my riding style not conducive to losing the pounds?
     
  6. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    It's not for you. Not from what you've described. But it's not for me either. Not any riding style.

    I have ridden close to 3000 miles since Spring and haven't lost 1 single pound either. In fact, since July '03 I've gained ~20 Lbs. My quads actually measure slightly larger than they did 20 some years ago when I was doing multiple sets of 10 reps of full squats with 300+ Lbs!

    Have I lost weight from cycling 3000 miles at moderate intensities? No. Have I lost bodyfat from cycling? Yes. Have I put on muscle weight? Yes. Am I fitter? Hell yes! I can live with that. I hope things keeps going in that direction too.

    Trust me Neilkod, people would kill for a metabolism like yours.
     
  7. neilkod

    neilkod New Member

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    That's wild. A few weeks ago, I injured my back and couldn't get on the bike for 2-3 weeks. Believe me, I was depressed-couldn't wait to get back on the bike. Turns out during that period, i actually lost about 8 pounds. I've ridden > 250 miles since getting back on the bike(including a brutal canyon climb) and the weight is back on. Sounds like you and I are in the same boat.

    I've always been big/heavy but not what one would call fat. Its great to hear other people are in the same boat. I'm happy with the body fat loss, I'm motivated to go out and have it tested.
     
  8. Aztec

    Aztec New Member

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    Unreal.

    Put me down as one that would kill for that.

    I'd be in the damn NFL with that kind of genetics.
     
  9. neilkod

    neilkod New Member

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    That goes against what I was thinking though...Pardon my ignorance (I'm no doctor, just an Oracle geek, but if I had a terrific metabolism, wouldn't i be a walking beanpole after pouring blood sweat & tears on my bike 5 days a week?
     
  10. DarrylZ

    DarrylZ New Member

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    Are my experiences normal? Dont get me wrong, I feel great about the changes in my body, especially my fat loss and my new cycling ability.

    Any others share my experiences?[/QUOTE]

    Hi Neilkod
    You have my empathy, also started again in Dec/jan this year after a 6 year absence,
    To date have put in 4900km's, with a fairly mixed and stringent programme over the last 9 months, eating fairly decently.
    And not lost 1 friggin kilo, weight will vary within 1,5 to 3 kilo's on any given day. Sitting at 101 - 104kg (+-220 -224lbs) .
    Ive experienced similar body changes, and not to worried about the weight thing, since im also 6'3' and whilst i have no doubt id be faster on the hills etc if i lost some more weight, i enjoy my riding as much as anyone.

    Good luck but most of all enjoy,

    work at your weakness & enjoy what your good at
     
  11. DarrylZ

    DarrylZ New Member

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    I forgot to ask since their are a few similarly built riders to myself here,
    How many Kcalories are you bruning in a ride.

    To give you an idea on Sunday we did a 102km race in fairly windy circumstances but on a fairly undulating course.
    In 3h24 min i burnt 3367kcal.
    Was wondering what other's in my weight and size category were burning up.

    D
     
  12. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Two weeks ago I did a 50 miler in just under 3 hours. According to this web site - http://www.primusweb.com/cgi-bin/fpc/actcalc.pl - I burned just over 4,000 calories in 3 hours riding at 17.0 MPH. Most of my 50 mile rides take between 3 hrs 10 min to 3 hrs 20 min.

    I can't vouch for the accuracy of that web site but it was very close to the calorie counter function on my Polar A5. I don't have the A5 anymore so I can't use it for any computations. My current HRM has a calorie counting function but it is no where near accurate.

    I weigh between 240 - 245 Lbs.
     
  13. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Nope. From what you have described you are not an Ectomorph. Your body is adapting to physical stress by adding muscle weight and burning bodyfat. You are probably what we call in bodybuilding circles as a "fast gainer" or Mesomorph.

    My body classification is that of the Endo-Mesomorph. I don't lose bodyfat easily but I do gain muscle much easier than most, even on workouts of short duration. My quads have gained size riding 8 - 12 hours a week at about 75% of max heart rate. It shocks the crap out of my cousin who is the head personal trainer at one of Indianapolis' exclusive sports clubs. He's a lean, red twitch, endurance type Ectomorph. He doesn't even have to diet but he'll never be able to build up any appreciable muscle mass. Not even with weights, let alone with cycling as you and I have done.

    By the way, I'm not really a Doctor, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.
     
  14. kcoleman

    kcoleman New Member

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    You might not be eating enough. I found that it was actually difficult to lose weight when riding too hard. Your body knows that you are going to use it so it stores it up. . When I focused too much on aerobic exercise like running and cycling, I didnt have the dramatic weight lose that I had when I mixed it up with weight training. Also, I noticed that when I mixed up the training, say from riding to running every so often I dropped the pounds. The body is a very adaptable machine so it gets used to the demands you place on it and becomes very efficient in its use of energy. Try doing lots of sprints at high cadence every once in a while rather than the big gear mashing up hills to keep your body on its toes. Not sure of the scientific proof of this but that was my experience and also alot of what I have read.
     
  15. Lorenzob

    Lorenzob New Member

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    One of the reason could be that you are working at a high heart rate - doing climbs - and a a low rpm.
    To lose weight you need to work around 100rpm (middle chain - middle cassette) keeping your heart rate around 80-90% max and do mainly flat terrain, bearing in mind that for the first hour you will burn mainly sugars, and only then you start burning the fat deposit.
    I had the same experience - I was only doing climbs and rough terrain, but now I try to do those circuit no more than once a week.
     
  16. neilkod

    neilkod New Member

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    I'm a little confused-if I'm pushing a big gear along at 23 mph, would that be considered a high heart rate? Do you think that's about 80-90%? I have access to a HRM, maybe I give that a try. Whenever I try and go lower gear, higher cadence, my speed drops by a few MPH.
     
  17. Carrera

    Carrera New Member

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    Forget diets. Diets aren't necessary and will slow your metabolism down.
    I had the same experience as you (see earlier threads) and can maybe shed some light on your case.
    Firstly, you say your actual bike performance is good. So, this is the main thing don't you think? Why undermine your energy level and progress by starving your body of food?
    What happens is your body is clinging on to mass and this will take time to change. Your metabolism probably hasn't speeded up that much so far but, again, this will happen in its own time. I also suspect you haven't yet hit your body with the required work output that will send your metabolism into high gear. You need to do longer rides and stay in the seat for up to 3 - 4 hours (possibly once a week).
    Here I speak from experience. I spent some 8 months busting my butt on the bike, yet my waist was still stuck at 36 inches and I was still a little heavy. Then I started training much harder and did long 3 hour rides with loads of climbing and my metabolism just speeded up like hell. I was stuffing pizza and chocolate and burning it up no problem. I think the longer rides did it for me and disproved the idea that you need to diet to lose weight (in my own opinion).
    Ride harder and longer, eat well and be patient. Weight loss tends to take place gradually and the body needs time to adapt to new demands that are made.

     
  18. winston_the_cat

    winston_the_cat New Member

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    Would like to add my "twopennorth".

    After a series of false starts to the years in my early thirties (horrid viral infections, freak accidents, etc.) and then a move to "fatland" (sorry but the stats don't lie) I had been through a 5 year effective lay off from the bike. I'd been living in denial until I bought some relatively decent scales which told me the truth. Horrid too, 220 lbs. When I raced back in the UK in my early twenties, I ws 175-180 (I'm 6ft 1, by the way). In fact I was about that in 1998 when I last did really extreme riding and some racing and just before the pestilence started.

    I've had incredible luck this year to find myself actually at home for a period of several months uninterrupted (from end of July onwards) and in Michigan this has corresponded with severe dry spells and a September heatwave. It reminded me of the south of France. I got back on the bike desperate to lose weight (injured pride etc.) and to feel fit again, but I was really worried I would find I was past it and things were somehow different. It has been a very interesting experience. Anyhow. My weight dropped like a stone for the first month and a half. September was nearly 1100 miles (August was quieter) but I noticed that in spite of continuous 250 mile weeks, weight loss ground to a halt at 200 lbs. Still 20 lbs above racing weight. Like everyone else here is reporting, I fit my clothes perfectly again, avoiding the ignominy and expense of changing my wardrobe, but the weight isn't off yet. Still, I am only 2 and a bit months into this and have just passed 2000 miles. My speed is down on 5-10 years ago. Training then could be anywhere up to 23 mph average for 40 miles (on my own). In a group, it was potentially 25 mph. Now, I am pushing 20 mph for anywhere up to 60 miles (on my own). I have a relatively high cadence (100 +). I almost never grind big gears.

    I have read that fluids are retained to hold glycogen when you go through long periods of inactivity. In any case, as I understood it, there is a fairly substantial and permanent intial fluid loss anytime you lose weight (by diet or by exerice or both). The other obvious factor influencing weight that is widely reported is the build up of muscle mass. My legs are still not as big as they used to be, but I am somewhat heavier chested than I was when I was younger. I suspect much of this is going to go later on as I do more training. I have heard from other people starting again that there are certain plateaus in weight. Sometimes it needs a new season to see things change for the better. Most people I have talked to reported reaching their original racing weight eventually from similar starting positions to mine. However, these were former racers and they had resumed racing again which obviously implies very intensive training.

    Very interesting subject anyway. According to many simplistic height/body weight indices, many of us on this page are close to or actually are obese! This seems rather perverse to me. Obese people don't commonly go on 2-4hr bike rides at break neck speeds and recover the next day to go to work. I think this is a subject worthy of substantial research. I also suspect many medics are poorly informed when seeing patients. I stay away from doctors nowadays for fear of being diagnosed with yet another "something horrid" anyway...
     
  19. Lorenzob

    Lorenzob New Member

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    Hi Neilkod, that is exactly the point - if you go lighter to keep the same speed you need to move your legs much faster. That is by the way Amstrong's secret. Ulrich is the opposite, that is also why he is much fatter than Lance. Clearly the bpm depends on your age, the normal formula is 220-age * required zone (80 to 85% for weight loss) e.g. if you are 40, 180 would be your 100%, so to lose weight you should ride around 140-150 bpm. It means to cycle mainly flat, as the moment you start climbing you are probably getting around 170or more bpm
     
  20. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    OMG! That is so far off the mark I don't even know where to begin.
     
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