Mental Boost

I was feeling a little burnt out when it came time for the ‘briskly paced’ ride which is in my training schedule on Wednesday. Decided to put it off and wake up before work on Thursday, eat an energy bar, ride 12 miles, come home, cool off (usually a 25min process for me), take a shower, and go to work. I won’t bore you with the math, but it was an impossible schedule given that it’s getting light around 5:30am and I need to be at work at 7. I was up at 5 to give it a shot anyway, but failed miserably. After forgetting my helmet, I ended up just cruising around the neighborhood for 2 miles before swinging home and getting ready for work. Good news is that I decided to log all of my training miles above and beyond my commuting miles, so I have a little cushion to fall back on when I screw up my schedule. Thursday was my ‘rest’ day and I put a few miles in there to compensate as well.

The hardest part of upping my schedule has been trying to figure out how to modify my diet to deal with all the extra calories I’m burning now. The easiest thing to do (but not correct) would be to continue eating the way I had on weekdays, and then take the extra calories I exercise and put them towards my weekend ‘deficit’ when we are out on the town living it up. Problem is that it would leave me drained all week long and still not address the transgressions of me eating poorly on the weekend. Alcohol and fried foods are a detriment regardless of how well the calorie equation on my spreadsheet balances out. For the last week I raised my intake slightly during the week, and fairly successfully tried to keep it in check on the weekend.

Now for the sunny part: 2 weeks of non-stop riding coupled with stringent accounting for all my food intake has paid off for the first time in close to 40 weeks. Every Friday morning when I wake up I check my weight. It works better for me than trying to do it every day, which would make me crazy. Today I was greeted by a scale reading 245.2, which is slightly below the range I have been bouncing in for nigh onto a year now. Of course I can’t let myself get too excited because there are anomalies from week to week, both high and low, but I can’t help and wonder if I’ve finally broken out of this demonic range I’ve been in. I’m just going with it and using the momentum to drive my riding schedule for another week. Take what I can get if you will.

There is part of me that wants to eat more protein and try to stave off losing too much muscle. They say you can’t train to get stronger AND lose weight at the same time. If I have to choose between the two, I’ll say I’d rather be a bit weaker and have 10ish less pounds (equivalent to the weight of 1.25 gallons water) of me to push up all those hills this September.

We all gain a little in the winter and take it off a bit in the summer, and if the last 10 years are any indication for me, it only gets harder to take the weight off from here. This is my best chance for the calendar year to break free of this range FOR GOOD. Go team me.

Starting weight when I got back from the Honeymoon — 271
Weight for week 88 (day 613) — 245.2
Gallons of milk you’d have to load into a basket at the supermarket to approximate my progress to this point… — 3.25
Number of pounds I still have to lose before I can really start worrying if my steel framed bicycle is holding me back, and maybe I should get something that has some carbon fiber weaved into it… — 60 (author’s note: a carbon fiber bike is not something I lie awake and dream about – just an illustrative point.)

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