losing weight without losing strength

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by TrekCyclerChic, Dec 13, 2004.

  1. TrekCyclerChic

    TrekCyclerChic New Member

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    ok, so i did a 15 k in november and now I'm in "off season" and I want to lose some weight while I have the chance. I know that 20 lbs would really help me with my goals for the summer. How do i lose weight without strength? I am dieting and eating a lot of protein, and I am still working out. But I'm worried about losing all of the muscle I put on this fall. Any suggestions?
    Thanks
     
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  2. OKpro

    OKpro New Member

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    I got really sick at the end of the season and ended up taking a month off. I incorporated my end of season break with getting healthy. I also lost the 15lbs that I needed to lose. The time to lose weight is when you are not exercising. It works because it takes a while for your metabolism to slow down and if you are not working out you don't really need any calories. If you are trying to train and lose weight it is much harder. Just remember that 3500 calories equals a pound of weight.


     
  3. ed073

    ed073 New Member

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    Energy expended > energy consumed = weight loss.

    Post your training program and your diet.
     
  4. TrekCyclerChic

    TrekCyclerChic New Member

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    for training right now I'm doing weights 2-3 times a week, and riding 60 minutes on my trainer (3-20 min intervals with 5 mins in betweeen) 3-4 days a week. My knee was giving out on my and has been sore since my 15 k run in November, so i've been going very easy.

    Since I'm living on campus my diet is not completely in my hands, however I eat a lot of salad, a little pasta and breads (i'm such a carb junkie) and as much meat as I can get. (mystery meat??)
     
  5. ed073

    ed073 New Member

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    I would say you need to ramp up your aerobic training. More cycling, running (if possible), swimming etc to achieve a calorific deficit. Replace 1 or 2 gym workouts with some quality interval work or the like.
     
  6. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    Your exercise routine sounds good for now. You're smart to easy to let your knee heal totally. Your weight loss is going to come mainly from diet, not exercise.

    You may have trouble getting enough high-quality protein, fruits and vegetables at the campus cafe. Try to get at least 20 grams of good quality protein at each meal. If the mystery meat is high fat, or breaded and fried, skip it....you can bring a can or pouch of tuna with you to the cafeteria and eat that instead for your protein.

    You'll want to stay with the salads, green vegetables and fruit as your main source of carbs. Avoid the high fat dressing and you'll save 200-500 calories.

    Sounds like sugar and starch are your main challenge. I'd suggest you strictly limit your sugar, and have no more than one small serving of high-glycemic starch (bread and pasta) at each meal.

    A moderate weight loss of 1-2 pounds a week won't hurt your strength or energy. It takes time and motivation to change eating habits, but the rewards are great.
     
  7. Carrera

    Carrera New Member

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    I may only be projecting my personal opinion but I oppose the whole concept of dieting to lose weight. The problem with diets is they're usually linked to the short term goal of weight reduction via the concept of depriving the body of nutrition. Any hard-training athlete should be taking in plenty of quality food or risk energy loss/injury.
    I tried dieting on many occasions and winded up with muscle loss, fat gain. sore joints and poor performance.
    My present philosophy is to eat as much as I want of the right types of food and in cases where I seek weight loss I up my cardio considerably and train harder. I seek weight loss over months rather than days.
    If you hammer your cardio work you should wind up with a super fast metabolism or moderately fast depending on genetics.


     
  8. triguy98

    triguy98 New Member

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    In high school as a XC/track runner and my freshman/sophmore year of college I was 165. A little leaner than i would have liked. Started bumming around. Two years later, 210. YUCK! Not a good 210. Started working out and riding again about 1 1/2 ago. I am just NOW at the point where when I look in the mirror, i feel pride again.

    1) it takes time.
    2) usually longer than you'd like (at least, to do it right)
    3) cardio! cardio! cardio!
    4) weights! weights! weights!
    5) variety! I was running and mtn biking a lot. It wasnt untill i started spinning on the road and swimming that i saw great gains.

    I dont believe in diets, but eating right goes a long way. You dont have to be picky, just do the common sense stuff: avoiding fries, axcessive beer, etc.

    Take a multivitamin everyday. And get your calcium. Especially the females, but males usually are not getting anough, either. Latest reseach shows just getting you proper vitamin intake will help you loose weight... without changing anything else.

    Protein after workouts! Protein bars are more easily prepared and consumed, though more expensive in the long run. Protein builds muscle, which burns fat more efficently. Not to mention the great bod it builds <purrr>

    HAVE FUN! enoy it all and be proud of yourself for the direction you are going in. Fitnesss is not measured in pounds, but performance and pride!



     
  9. Fat Hack

    Fat Hack New Member

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    If your muscles are being subjected to the intensity of intervals and weights, etc, that you've described above, and you're not losing weight too quickly, you should maintain the size and strength of your skeletal muscle.

    Losing more than 2 or 3lbs a week (excluding the first week of a modified eating plan), is probably too much, so if you're dropping weight any faster than this, and you notice your gym weights dropping, you're most likely losing muscle tissue and strength.
     
  10. Carrera

    Carrera New Member

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    "But I'm worried about losing all of the muscle I put on this fall."

    It's unusual for a female to gain a lot of muscle. Even guys have to bust their ass to add a few pounds of muscle and very few people can gain any muscle at all when cardio loads are intense.

    Myself I find I will still lose muscle if I weight train and ride hard on the bike for long durations.

    Another snag is that I gain fat when I weight train. This is because broken down muscles require larger amounts of protein to repair themselves so the extra food intake can also lead to fat gain around the proverbial gut. I can fix this by speeding up my metabolism with cardio, of course, but then I tend to shed muscle so it's a catch 22 for me.




     
  11. Iankatz

    Iankatz New Member

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    I can never lose fat I only lose muscle. The more I ride the weaker my uper body gets:(
     
  12. Carrera

    Carrera New Member

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    I'm the same. I'll lose heaps of muscle and a few inches of fat when I cycle for long hours. But if I didn't ride and just lifted heavy for a year I'd end up with a backside like a rhino and a 38 inch gut.


     
  13. Iankatz

    Iankatz New Member

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    How much do you weigh?
     
  14. Carrera

    Carrera New Member

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    I'm about 190 at present. I can get down to 177 no problem if I want to. I wouldn't need to diet at all but would just up my cycling duration.

     
  15. triguy98

    triguy98 New Member

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    In these cases, I can't stress the importance of
    a) protein intake IMMEDIATELY after exercise
    b) push ups, sit ups, free weights

    If you do maintenance weight workouts and intake the proper amount of protein, you will not get weaker. Not too much protein as thats not a good thing, but 1- 1 1/2 scoops in a shake. And remember that gym time is not mess around time. if you workout, you cant get weaker.
     
  16. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    Agree an adequate daily intake of protein is important to muscle building and strength. But right after exercise, everything I've read stresses carbs. The goal is to produce an insulin response during the "glycogen window" so that your body quickly restores the glycogen in the leg muscles. I've found that this practice really helps with recovery.

    Some reports say that including up to 25% protein with the carbs will speed glycogen replacement even more, but don't think this is universally accepted yet.
     
  17. Carrera

    Carrera New Member

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    Hmmm, think I disagree with you slightly. I found that I definitely lose strength and muscle if I cycle a lot yet keep up with weights. But before I continue, let's bear in mind Lance Armstrong only does his weights seasonally and, at that, only does his lower body. Lance stresses that upper body muscle is a dead drag at the level he competes. The top guys fight to squeeze every ounce of weight off their bike and bodies.
    Back to my point, though. When I experimented cycling and weight-training what crashed most was my bench press. I was riding 3 - 4 hours hard on the bike and then hitting the gym the following day. I was consuming vast amounts of food. My bench press went from 300 lbs down to a mere 200 for 4 or 5 reps. I lost heaps of muscle and 3 or 4 inches from my gut. But my cycling and climbing was really good. I guess my body was simply adapting to the endurance training.
    Back strength remained O.K and my leg strength not too bad.



     
  18. OKpro

    OKpro New Member

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    I don't agree. I am a ELITE level cyclist currently in my base training phase. I have probably the toughest coach in the business and train very, very hard. I am in the 16th week of lifting and am using very high reps and sets to help build muscular endurance, ie: 6sets of 55reps at a weight greater than my body weight. I am a vegetarian and use a online nutrition log (www.fitday.com). You do not need to eat a specific amount of protein. All of my protein comes from grains and nuts. The most important thing is carbohydrates. Without them you will fail as a athlete. On a daily basis I am getting 0.6-0.7 g/lb of body weight in protein. This is very adequate for maintaining muscle mass. The goal of a endurance athlete is not to get bigger, but get stronger. Eating a ton of anything will just make you get big and fat. That is not a good thing. I have been amazed at how much stronger I have gotten this year using a combination of endurance riding and weight lifting. I personally hate going to the gym but I am almost done. Weight training is a good thing if you have the time. But, riding is always the best way to be a better rider. Just ask Ric Stern, he knows his stuff. Also, Carmichael's blog in the new issue of Cyclesport Magazine stresses making the most of your training hours. I am very lucky to be able to train full time and going to the gym works for me.





     
  19. Carrera

    Carrera New Member

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    The reps you do are very high, though. I'm not saying that's a bad thing but maybe we understand different definitions of strength. I also do high reps (around 20) but 55 reps per set is very different to what you might do for pure strength.
    Again, I'm not saying it hasn't made you stronger or that you're doing anything wrong. If your cycling is coming along O.K. then that's fine. Stick to what works.
    But how come many guys on the forum do low reps and you go so high? Is it only sprinters who do low reps?
    I was always taught that to get strong specifically (as a sole objective) then about 5 reps is ideal using a pyramid system. Naturally low reps on that level would cripple cycling performance as it taxes the recuperative system.
    Are you sure, though, you're not confusing the differences between power lifter training and cycling training since pure strength has always been attained by low reps. That I know quite well because I trained in an elite gym in Russia in 1997.
    Yes, I agree with you Ric knows a lot about cycling (far more than I do).
    Please explain why you do such high reps and why you feel that is what a cyclist must do. Cheers.



     
  20. TrekCyclerChic

    TrekCyclerChic New Member

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    I think you need to remember a few things if you are getting weaker the longer you keep riding. One is rest! you should rest as hard as you work out. It's very important for your body to repair itself. Two is protein! After a workout, a protein drink (or milk!) is great for your body to repair it's muscles. Right after tearing your muscles apart, if you put protein back into your body, it can repair quickly and much better than if you had no protein. It made a huge difference for me when i wasn't getting srtonger after my long runs or gaining my energy back. These should help you. I know that gaining muscle and losing fat is possible... I did a ton of it this fall... I gained 13 pounds but was "smaller" and had a tigher body than ever before. It was great! So it is possible, even for us girls.
     
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