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  1. #1
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    1st post with questions...

    First of all, I am going to announce up front that I am a clyde. This is truth. I am getting back into riding to NOT be a clyde, and this is truth. The point is, I want to lose about 100 pounds. Now, knowing that, I have a few questions of you guys -

    My bike is a Trek 7000 and it is heavy. Would it behoove me try to lighten this puppy up a bit? Im asking because I started back riding it and my legs just seem to not wanna push after about a half mile. Its like they turn to rubber and I get frustrated as hell and just wanna quit. Would lighting the bike up a bit help or should I just HTFU and try to push through this? Is it the weight of the bike or the weight of the rider that is doing this to me?

    Also...if you were just starting back at 310 pounds...what distances would you shoot for? Are there any types of training plans that will help me with the weight loss?

    Thanks for any help!

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigGuy55 View Post
    First of all, I am going to announce up front that I am a clyde. This is truth. I am getting back into riding to NOT be a clyde, and this is truth. The point is, I want to lose about 100 pounds. Now, knowing that, I have a few questions of you guys -

    My bike is a Trek 7000 and it is heavy. Would it behoove me try to lighten this puppy up a bit? Im asking because I started back riding it and my legs just seem to not wanna push after about a half mile. Its like they turn to rubber and I get frustrated as hell and just wanna quit. Would lighting the bike up a bit help or should I just HTFU and try to push through this? Is it the weight of the bike or the weight of the rider that is doing this to me?

    Also...if you were just starting back at 310 pounds...what distances would you shoot for? Are there any types of training plans that will help me with the weight loss?

    Thanks for any help!
    Should you get a lighter bike? No.
    How far should you ride to start? Not very far...depends on the terrain, but for the first few weeks only a few miles should be good. Have you seen a doctor to determine if it's safe for you to start exercising and what you should attempt? I'd want to do that first to make sure there are no conditions that could cause problems if you start pushing it. The main thing is to get some consistency, get your metabolism working more.
    i work for some bike racers...
    2013 Trek Madone 5.9 w/ '12 SRAM Red
    2010 Cervelo T1 sprint bike
    Ruger 10-22TD
    Smith&Wesson M&P 15-22
    Smith&Wesson M&P 9
    oh, those belong in another forum

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by cxwrench View Post
    Should you get a lighter bike? No.
    How far should you ride to start? Not very far...depends on the terrain, but for the first few weeks only a few miles should be good. Have you seen a doctor to determine if it's safe for you to start exercising and what you should attempt? I'd want to do that first to make sure there are no conditions that could cause problems if you start pushing it. The main thing is to get some consistency, get your metabolism working more.
    Actually, yes I have talked to my doctor and she is all for it (riding). I had a heart cath last year because of some pain I was having, but the cardiologist told me I had the heart of a 19 year old (im 47).

    So, changing tires to a lighter set wont help me. Ok. Guess I just gotta remember im not 18 and in my prime shape any longer (as much as I want to be).

  4. #4
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    A lighter bike will only help you in that it will lighten your wallet! Cycling takes time to develop your stamina. Just ride your bike, as much as you can! Keep the intensity low for the most part but a few brief hard efforts mixed in will get your body used to working harder. I would suggest you set your goals around time first (30 minutes, 1 hour etc..) as this will ensure your efforts remain lower intensity.

    I would also suggest looking at your diet, eliminating sugar and simple carbs and get your carbs from veggies instead. Keep eating healthy fats and lean proteins to keep from cannibalizing your muscle mass.

    It is also good to ride multiple times a day so if a 1 hour ride is too hard try 2 30 minute ones instead. You will burn the same amount of calories but just not get as much of the endurance enhancing benfits but not what you are focusing on right now.

  5. #5
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    Welcome Big Guy!

    I returned to cycling after I retired and developed foot problems. It took me weeks to get to just a 5 mile ride. As I exercised I became [in time] completely mobile again. Bicycling has transformed me.

    I did see my doctor before I started cycling and I wore a heart monitor at first too... for safety's sake. Do see your doctor... you want to be safe.

    I continued to gain weight even after I was cycling. I got up to 257 pounds before I started using a diet app with my cycling. I used "Lose it!" "My Fitness Pal" is well liked as well. Both are free smartphone/tablet downloads. They use the Internet to look-up and count calories. A person can starve themselves to death... but an over-eater will never exercise themselves thin.

    Sensible dieting and exercise makes losing weight simple.... almost effortless... and even sorta fun. It took me 4 months to get down to my ideal weight (183 pounds) after I started using the diet app and bicycling.

    I started cycling, riding on a used heavy old bike. Actually even though I now own a decent new alloy bicycle... I've also purchased and restored a couple old steel bicycles. You'll never be able to shave 100 pounds from a bicycle. I'd just ride what you have for now.... if it's solid.

    I continue to monitor my eating... I've developed new eating habits. Mostly now... I watch snacking. I eat a simple breakfast, and have a nice salad for lunch. For dinner I have a traditional full healthy hot meal. For the most part... I don't eat between dinner and breakfast. Except in bad weather I bicycle most days.
    If I didn't bicycle when the weather is bad... I wouldn't be a cyclist. I'd just be another old fat man... with a bicycle hanging in his garage.

    Urban Cycling.... Overcome your fears (a YouTube Link).
    Learn to cycle in traffic
    Or... just HTFU

  6. #6
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    Hi there, BigGuy! First, I would find my distance limit. The distance you can typically go before getting tired. It would behoove you to get a bicycle computer for this exercise. Next, I would cycle everyday at a specific time and challenge myself an extra 1/4 mile, each way at the beginning of each week. For example, if your limit turns out to be 7 miles round trip. That would mean that you would cycle 3.75 miles out, and then 3.75 miles back home, the following week. That's a total of 7.5 miles round trip for the following week. The reason that you're finding it so difficult to cycle right now, is because of your weight. I was once obese. As an obese person, I found it difficult to walk, climb stairs, and ride my bicycle, as well. You'll soon find that as you lose weight, cycling will become much much easier! Therefore, no worries! Just cycle everyday without relent. After a little while, you'll get better and better with time. You'll also be losing a lotta weight too! Always stop when you get too tired, whether you reach your goal, the "distance limit", or not!
    Last edited by Zeet; 07-17-2013 at 03:35 AM.
    A chromoly steel bicycle will last just as long as titanium, if kept dry.

  7. #7
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    Dave has great advice in wearing a HR monitor. You can very quickly push it into the red zone when you first start and that could be both good and bad. You wont know until you know your body better.

    You can get a city tire like the Schwable Big Apple to get less rolling resistance.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigGuy55 View Post
    First of all, I am going to announce up front that I am a clyde. This is truth. I am getting back into riding to NOT be a clyde, and this is truth. The point is, I want to lose about 100 pounds. Now, knowing that, I have a few questions of you guys -

    My bike is a Trek 7000 and it is heavy. Would it behoove me try to lighten this puppy up a bit? Im asking because I started back riding it and my legs just seem to not wanna push after about a half mile. Its like they turn to rubber and I get frustrated as hell and just wanna quit. Would lighting the bike up a bit help or should I just HTFU and try to push through this? Is it the weight of the bike or the weight of the rider that is doing this to me?

    Also...if you were just starting back at 310 pounds...what distances would you shoot for? Are there any types of training plans that will help me with the weight loss?

    Thanks for any help!
    No you should not get a lighter bike. The Trek is fine for now. Maybe you could spend a lot of money and get a bike that is 10 pounds lighter. You would not notice a difference until you lost a lot of weight yourself.

    In terms of distance, give it time. Even if you are starting out riding just a mile, that mile is still a lot better than sitting around doing nothing. I like the idea of an HRM to help you monitor your exertion level.

    Finally, having lost about 65 pounds myself, going from 210 to 145 at a height of 5'7", I have to tell you that you are not likely to lose a lot of weight through cycling on its own. You need to get on and follow a structured weight loss plan. I did (and still do) Weight Watchers but there are many plans out there. The key is to find one and stick with it, and realize that you are making permanent lifestyle changes, not going on a diet. By and large weight loss occurs in the kitchen, not out on the road. Cycling will help you lose weight, and keep it off, but what (and how much) you eat plays a much bigger role in the process.

  9. #9
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    thanks guys! Gonna look into that HR monitor and am definitely gonna change my eating habits starting today!

  10. #10
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    Can you add some additional walking to your program? Both "formal" like walking a mile or whatever and informal like parking your car further away from a store or office or walking a flight of stairs. Bottom line increase your movement. But I agree with all comments above. A lighter bike isn't going to help. If you saved 20 lbs with a lighter bike that is less than .06% of the total body weight, current really heavy bike weight, stuff on the bike and riding clothing. I suspect real weigth savings is even less than that.
    "The problem with losing your mind is that by the time you realize it's gone, it's too late to get it back."
    Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson

  11. #11
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    As for the walking...Ive got some back problems that keep me from doing a whole lot of real walking. But I will do aha I can

  12. #12
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    BigGuy55, I am another who lost quite a bit of weight, though not as much as you hope to. My experience was that the weight loss was at least 80 percent changing how I ate and no more than 20 percent exercise. And I worked out like a maniac when I was losing weight. Weight watchers helped give me a structure to guide my diet modifications, but lots of methods would work. I think it is important to follow some sort of widely accepted plan. Pledging to yourself that you will just eat less is unlikely to yield long-term success.

    When I started cycling again 17 months ago, I started with 4 miles and had trouble climbing the stairs back into the house when I finished. I whittled away at it, adding a few more minutes each ride. Now my normal rides are 30 miles in 2 hours. The benefits of fitness go far beyond just weight loss, too. There is a feeling of well being that comes over me every time I take a good ride.

    Keep it up, and keep posting. There are a lot of very helpful, experienced cyclists here to offer advice and answer questions.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigGuy55 View Post
    thanks guys! Gonna look into that HR monitor and am definitely gonna change my eating habits starting today!
    I found that by not eating starches (potatoes, cereals, pizza, pasta, etc..), cutting out sugar, and not eating after 7pm, helped me cut down on my weight dramatically. Eating many different types of vegetables (not so many fruits, due to sugars) and cooking chicken in a variety of ways (not so much fried), also helped me to lose weight. Eating a lot of vegetable and tomato soup, also helped. Therefore, diet coupled along with exercise and cycling should be the ticket! Good Luck!
    A chromoly steel bicycle will last just as long as titanium, if kept dry.

  14. #14
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    Hey BigGuy55...have you looked into eating a whole food, plant based diet? It's a great way to lose weight, and get healthy for life. Look up engine2diet.com, they are a great resource. There are also a ton of other websites (google whole food plant based diet) that can really help you out.

    I'm new to cycling too...49 years old and never exercised in my life. I LOVE my bike and have dropped weight and my cholesterol since eating plant based I've never felt better in my life.
    Don't tell me I'm not supposed to be here, cause this is where I am.


  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lindy B. View Post
    Hey BigGuy55...have you looked into eating a whole food, plant based diet? It's a great way to lose weight, and get healthy for life. Look up engine2diet.com, they are a great resource. There are also a ton of other websites (google whole food plant based diet) that can really help you out.

    I'm new to cycling too...49 years old and never exercised in my life. I LOVE my bike and have dropped weight and my cholesterol since eating plant based I've never felt better in my life.
    Ill check it out, bit need to warn you that I am a MAJOR meat eater. I can do without starches and carbs (I dont currently, but I can) and I can do without sugar, but to do without meat is kind of a deal breaker. Nothing like meat cooking over a fire.

  16. #16
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    My husband and I were also big meat eaters, but after eating plant based since January, we really don't miss it and don't really crave it. (Though, there was that Freddie's Steakburger on July 4th we broke down and ate!!) The first step for me was cutting out sugar and dairy. I'm originally from Wisconsin, dairy was a major part of my life!! I also started juicing after watching Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead.

    It was just an idea I wanted to put out there for you. Never having exercised, it took me a while to not believe I wouldn't die on my bike. But, I went from zero miles to my highest so far..27 in just 6-7 weeks.

    I have to say, my gas grill has been very lonely this year, with only some occasional veggies put on it Oh well.

    Don't tell me I'm not supposed to be here, cause this is where I am.


  17. #17
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    Lindy...I went and perused the site you shared and maybe I might be able to do this (with a little cheating of a burger every now and then). Im gonna look more into it. Damned Whole foods is so expensive though, and with no job right now it may be hard to get all of those ingredients.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigGuy55 View Post
    Lindy...I went and perused the site you shared and maybe I might be able to do this (with a little cheating of a burger every now and then). Im gonna look more into it. Damned Whole foods is so expensive though, and with no job right now it may be hard to get all of those ingredients.
    If you can't afford it right now, don't worry about it! Just eat a lotta green leafy vegetables to fill up on. Vegetables like cabbage, collards, kale, mustards, spinach, lettuce, etc...Next, toss in some BBQ'ed, grilled, steamed, baked, or broiled chicken. Keep your fat intake down. That means, if you are going to eat red meats, only eat lean portions. Try to stick with poultry and fish. Maybe treat yourself, once a week with a hamburger or two, but that's it! Mostly, just eat green veggies and poultry, with a lotta tomatoes mixed in there. Soups work really well, because soup fills you up, but it's mostly water. Keep your portion sizes down and ride your bike everyday. If you ride it both in the am and the pm, your weight will noticeably drop every single week. This time next year, you'll be at least 100 lbs lighter and light years healthier! That's what I did, and I lost over a hundred pounds in less than 1 whole year! Also, it takes more energy to digest raw veggies, as opposed to cooked veggies. The more raw veggies you eat, the more calories (energy units) you'll burn. The more calories you burn, the faster you lose weight! Good raw veggies are veggies like broccoli, cabbage, carrots, spinach, brussel sprouts, etc..Try to avoid fruit juice, but do eat the fruit of the juice you'd like to drink. However, limit your fruit intake, because most fruits contain a lotta sugar (fructose). Try to drink at least one gallon of water per day (shoot for 1.5 gallons). The more water you drink, the greater likelihood you'll lose more weight. Make sure you drink one large cool glass of water, about 10 minutes before you prepare your plate for dinner. Try to get used to green tea, without sugar. Drink a lotta that green tea to increase your water intake. Also, try to avoid breads and rice (starches)...Good Luck!
    Last edited by Zeet; 07-19-2013 at 05:46 PM.
    A chromoly steel bicycle will last just as long as titanium, if kept dry.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeet View Post
    If you can't afford it right now, don't worry about it! Just eat a lotta green leafy vegetables to fill up on. Vegetables like cabbage, collards, kale, mustards, spinach, lettuce, etc...Next, toss in some BBQ'ed, grilled, steamed, baked, or broiled chicken. Keep your fat intake down. That means, if you are going to eat red meats, only eat lean portions. Try to stick with poultry and fish. Maybe treat yourself, once a week with a hamburger or two, but that's it! Mostly, just eat green veggies and poultry, with a lotta tomatoes mixed in there. Soups work really well, because soup fills you up, but it's mostly water. Keep your portion sizes down and ride your bike everyday. If you ride it both in the am and the pm, your weight will noticeably drop every single week. This time next year, you'll be at least 100 lbs lighter and light years healthier! That's what I did, and I lost over a hundred pounds in less than 1 whole year! Also, it takes more energy to digest raw veggies, as opposed to cooked veggies. The more raw veggies you eat, the more calories (energy units) you'll burn. The more calories you burn, the faster you lose weight! Good raw veggies are veggies like broccoli, cabbage, carrots, spinach, brussel sprouts, etc..Try to avoid fruit juice, but do eat the fruit of the juice you'd like to drink. However, limit your fruit intake, because most fruits contain a lotta sugar (fructose). Try to drink at least one gallon of water per day (shoot for 1.5 gallons). The more water you drink, the greater likelihood you'll lose more weight. Make sure you drink one large cool glass of water, about 10 minutes before you prepare your plate for dinner. Try to get used to green tea, without sugar. Drink a lotta that green tea to increase your water intake. Also, try to avoid breads and rice (starches)...Good Luck!
    LOTS of great info in there! Thanks. I want to say that I DO love red meat, but I ALSO love chicken and fish. In fact, I consider chicken and fish "meat", so if I can have chicken and fish, I can do without the red meat for sure! Salads...LOVE em! Nuts and beans and legumes, LOVE em! broccoli, cabbage, carrots, spinach, brussel sprouts LOVE EM! I do like these cooked, however. I can do raw broccoli and carrots all day long as well as celery (I know, mostly water). And water, hmmmm...drinking a LOT of sweet tea lately (Im a Southerner. No sweet tea s blasphemous! LOL). I will try to drink as much water as I can from here on out.

    Ya know, when I was in college, I was a champion powerlifter. Strong as an ox and big as hell with muscle. About 20 years ago I stopped lifting for some odd reason and started packing on the pounds. I used to tell EVERYONE who would listen that you eat for function, not taste. I lived by that back then. Wish I would have stuck with that. Oh well, live and learn!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigGuy55 View Post
    LOTS of great info in there! Thanks. I want to say that I DO love red meat, but I ALSO love chicken and fish. In fact, I consider chicken and fish "meat", so if I can have chicken and fish, I can do without the red meat for sure! Salads...LOVE em! Nuts and beans and legumes, LOVE em! broccoli, cabbage, carrots, spinach, brussel sprouts LOVE EM! I do like these cooked, however. I can do raw broccoli and carrots all day long as well as celery (I know, mostly water). And water, hmmmm...drinking a LOT of sweet tea lately (Im a Southerner. No sweet tea s blasphemous! LOL). I will try to drink as much water as I can from here on out.

    Ya know, when I was in college, I was a champion powerlifter. Strong as an ox and big as hell with muscle. About 20 years ago I stopped lifting for some odd reason and started packing on the pounds. I used to tell EVERYONE who would listen that you eat for function, not taste. I lived by that back then. Wish I would have stuck with that. Oh well, live and learn!
    Everything sounds good, BigGuy! However, you've got to watch those nuts. Some can be very fattening. Have you seen some squirrels and chip monks here lately! Good nuts to eat are Brazil nuts, Walnuts, Chestnuts, Macadamias, Pine nuts, Almonds, and sesame seeds. Avoid Cashews and Peanuts altogether! Cut down on all sugars. Try to go without sugar altogether. Eating sugar, candy, and sweets is like placing weight and fat, directly onto your body. Try to get used to tea completely without sugar. Sugar and sweetness is you enemy. Look upon sugar, as a beautiful woman with an incurable and highly contagious disease. It might taste good for the moment, but tomorrow the bell tolls!
    A chromoly steel bicycle will last just as long as titanium, if kept dry.

  21. #21
    Burnum Upus Quadricepus
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigGuy55 View Post
    Also...if you were just starting back at 310 pounds...what distances would you shoot for? Are there any types of training plans that will help me with the weight loss?
    read this article about a guy who LOST 320 pounds by riding a bike: Losing Weight by Riding a Bike | Bicycling Magazine

    They gloss over the diet part, but his training plan was simple--he rode as far as he could, then rode one more mile.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by brucew View Post
    read this article about a guy who LOST 320 pounds by riding a bike: Losing Weight by Riding a Bike | Bicycling Magazine

    They gloss over the diet part, but his training plan was simple--he rode as far as he could, then rode one more mile.
    OMG! What a very poignant, gripping, and beautiful story!
    A chromoly steel bicycle will last just as long as titanium, if kept dry.

  23. #23
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    Love that story! Very inspiring!

  24. #24
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    I'm in the same boat. Used to powerlift, weight 260 pounds but with a couple visible abs so I wasn't that fat. Just muscular. Stopped lifting, gain a load of weight and ballooned up to 320 pounds. Stayed like that for about 6 years. I'd loose some weight, gain it back, loose it, gain it. Never really got much below 295 though. I got in to biking, mountain biking at first, then a road bike. Still didn't really loose much. This year I got dedicated. I started on Christmas at 320 pounds and made the decision to clean up my act. So I just started eating clean. In April I got back on the mountain bike and started really riding a lot. Last month I dusted off the road bike and I've been hammering the miles as much as I can. I also started eating Paleo two months ago. Riding plus a clean diet and adding Paleo to the mix, I weighed in this morning at 261.

    So yeah, diet is key. You need to clean it up. I wouldn't say you have to subscribe to any certain "diet" or program, but simply cleaning it up will go a long ways. IMO, stop with at least white processed junk. White potatoes, white rice, white bread, ect. Eliminate sugar. I love sweets. It's hard. But you gotta do it. I'd even reduce or stop with grains. Increase the vegetables as much as you can. Eat lean meats if you choose to and try to reduce red meat. Add fish if you don't already. Fruits are awesome too. Keep the intake moderate. I say that, but I have a problem eating too much fruit honestly. I can polish off a whole large watermelon in a single day...lol...but hey, I'm still loosing weight so I guess it can be that bad. I chose Paleo because it follows the way I want to eat. In a nut shell, it's meat/fish/eggs, veggies, and fruit/nuts. No grains, no starchy carbs, no sugar, no dairy (I still eat yogurt and a little cheese), ect. It's working, I find the food options unlimited, and I'm never hungry. I also throw in some intermediate fasting for good measure.

  25. #25
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    I wish I were born with the medium built body instead of this chunky crap I have dealt with for my whole 47 years. It sucks that some people can eat what they want when they want and never gain a pound while I can LOOK at a potato and gain 5. I really do want to eat a leaner, cleaner way but actually dont know what "cleaner" is. I know leaner, and I can cut red meat out entirely and eat just chicken and fish and be happy with it, its the "cleaner" part that I have trouble with. Are you talking fresh veggies and fruits as "clean"?

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