Tag Archives: holidays

With All the Trimmings ..

I know from past experience that losing weight is not easy. It usually requires a lot of discipline, patience, and fortitude. When I am working hard on my weight, I can generally lose at most about a half-pound a week, and usually not usually even that.

My winter diet started seven weeks ago. As of the weekend, I had lost approximately 6-7 lbs. That may sound like a lot, but I suspect most of it was the excess belly fat I had gained during the latter part of this year. A lot of it was water weight, or more likely, beer weight. Going forward, I expect diminishing returns, and smaller gains.

The goal is to drop another 7 or 8 lbs by Spring, which initially looked like a tall order, but now looks entirely possible. I’ve found the right food combinations that keep my workouts fueled, while not adding unnecessary weight.

Now comes the holidays. Kelli over at Apex Nutrition has some great suggestions on how to keep a diet going during the holidays. Her first point is key — the actual “Holidays” are only a few days. Many people, myself included, blow diets by grazing during the holidays. A cookie here, a brownie there may seem harmless enough, but it adds up.

What I’ve found is that once my body gets into the habit of healthy, light eating, it doesn’t crave a lot of food. If I had only eaten 1,800 calories in a day a few months ago, I would have felt like I was starving. Today that feels normal. As long as I stick to the good habits, the weight will continue to come off, holidays or not.

I’ve also found that it’s easy to break those habits. When I eat too big of a meal, the routine is broken. My body all of a sudden remembers how much I love food, and wants more, more, and more.

The biggest temptation of all is coming this week — Thanksgiving! Like Kelli says, it is good to unwind, enjoy the company of family, and yes, eat. I have to remember to get back on track after Thanksgiving, until the next temptation in late December.

Post-Holidays Training Update

Happy New Year to everyone! A few weeks ago I was in the midst of a strength program. That was a high rep and low weight program. Around the time of the holidays my plan was to transition to a higher weight, lower rep program while gradually getting more bike time. On top of that I hoped to lose another pound or two.

So that didn’t happen.

The weight room program was going great and I was noticing a gradual difference. That was starting to show on the bike as well. The transition was going to begin around Christmas and then after the New Year I would start with the new program. What I didn’t count on was that my gym would close during my normal workout hours in the week between Christmas and New Years. Instead I snuck in a ride and spent a little time on the trainer. At least with that, I wouldn’t lose fitness. Now that the New Year has come and gone, I still haven’t been inside the gym for a number of reasons.

So the transition is still on hold and with a lot around the corner, might not continue, at least not the way I had hoped. Weight training will continue to a certain degree throughout the season, but the focus will probably be on maintenance with minimal gains.

And you know what? That is absolutely fine. The good thing is I am well beyond where I was last year. I’m actually in pretty good riding shape and now need to switch my focus to getting as many base miles as the weather and my schedule allow. At this rate, I’ll be stronger come spring.

Now the diet is another story. Rather than lose weight, I gained a little bit. I have since already trimmed some of that and hopefully that will continue as the training progresses.

This weekend I will be putting that training to the test yet again with some ‘insanely steep climbs,’ as the ride leader calls them. More on that later.