Weight is a cyclists nemesis.
Too heavy, and climbing is hard. Too thin, and there isn’t enough muscle to keep up.
We spend a small fortune on the newest, lightest, and most aerodynamic equipment and kits to save a few ounces and watts. We are better advised to work on the engine.
Build a stronger, leaner body and you will be able to keep up with the best, regardless of the equipment.
I learned this lesson late. In the past 2 years I have lost 25+ pounds, and at the same time strengthened my legs, core, and upper body. I climb faster and more easily. I keep pace with cyclists half my age. I have never felt as confident, and competent on the bike.
But not everyone agrees. Those who knew me before, think I’m too thin. They are mostly overweight. I keep reassuring them I am fine, and that this is a natural, healthy weight for me. I don’t need belly fat to be healthy.
I lost this weight by managing my diet and training schedule –
- 2 years ago, I started an intermittent fasting schedule – 18 hours fasting, and a 6 hour eating window.
- I started training in a fasted state, in the morning before breaking the fast.
- My first meal after the workout is always oatmeal with a banana, berries, and a tablespoon of peanut butter.
This regimen took the weight off, particularly around the waist. I went from a 34″ to 28″ waist in less than a year. If I veer off this schedule, I begin putting weight back on.
I don’t think it would matter what I ate, but I’m vegetarian, largely vegan, preferring simple, homemade meals. This helps but isn’t necessary.
So, if you take cycling seriously, loose some weight, don’t get caught up in purchasing the newest and lightest components.
Upgrade yourself, not your bike.
I am on the heavy side – I suffer on the climbs, but I go downhill like nobody’s business.
I rode Whistler Gran Fondo in 2017 (in the rain). From Vancouver to Squamish, is up-down-up-down. I would rocket past people on the downhill and try to keep my momentum. The people I passed on the descent would catch-up and pass me on the following climb. Then I became a pylon on the steady ascent from Squamish to Whistler 🙂
I can justify some pricey purchases for comfort or functionality, but weight savings are not in the argument.
I did the whistler Fondo in 2017 too. I was the opposite. I. Limbed well but was freighters on the descents in the rain. I had crashed the previous year at 65 kph and was a little nervous. Since then I have trained a lot, lost weight, and gotten stronger.