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Biking, Cardio and muscle.

solidsneeksolidsneek Posts: 57
Hi guys,

So looking at getting a road bike in the next couple of weeks only a second hand one. I currently weigh 14 stone and go to the gym more now than I have got a bit of chub on my belly but the rest is not too bad. I want to remain around the 14 stone potentially lose it and turn it into the muscle. However I know ill need to do more cardio but don't want to get too think I quite like being a bigger guy with muscle. Is it just about eating and training?

Posts

  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    You can't turn fat into muscle.

    Plenty of big cyclists around - you're not going to get Froome thin unless you really cut down on food and up the cycling immensely.

    Bike rides probably won't burn as many calories as you think. Maybe 30 calories per mile or so.
  • Fenix wrote:
    You can't turn fat into muscle.

    Plenty of big cyclists around - you're not going to get Froome thin unless you really cut down on food and up the cycling immensely.

    Bike rides probably won't burn as many calories as you think. Maybe 30 calories per mile or so.

    No I am aware you can't that's why I am going to lose weight and build muscle but then when I have lost the weight I can decide what I want to do.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,386
    solidsneek wrote:
    Fenix wrote:
    You can't turn fat into muscle.

    Plenty of big cyclists around - you're not going to get Froome thin unless you really cut down on food and up the cycling immensely.

    Bike rides probably won't burn as many calories as you think. Maybe 30 calories per mile or so.

    No I am aware you can't that's why I am going to lose weight and build muscle but then when I have lost the weight I can decide what I want to do.

    'Building muscle' is not really compatible with endurance cycling. If you want to lose weight and build muscle, then cycling might not be the ideal pastime...
  • craigus89craigus89 Posts: 887
    So your question seems to be how to lose weight?

    Diet. 95% diet.

    Cycling is quite efficient in terms of energy usage so as said above you won't burn as many calories as you may think on a ride, so don't think it's an excuse to have a massive burger and 3 beers. Eat well, if you're peckish before or after your ride have a banana and stick to your diet.

    Once you're at the weight you want to be you might want to reconsider if cycling is what you want to do. It won't help you build muscle that's for sure.
  • great advise guys thanks!
  • TBH I will probably only ride 2x a month or so unless I really get in to it so don't think muscle loss is an issue really as long as I eat well as you say and do heavy compound weights.
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    ^ wot they all said. I was doing a lot of cycling but losing no weight until I sorted my diet out. 5:2 is what works for me.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    Two lots of cycling a month ? That's not going to have any effect on you anyway.
  • I don't expect that you will lose much weight only riding twice a month, but I disagree with those who say that cycling won't affect you weight. I have never really not cycled at any time over the last 45 years or so, but I have significantly increased the amount of cycling I am doing over the last year at the expense of my other sport, and although nobody would have said I was overweight I have lost 4 kg in that period.

    30 calories a mile might not seem much, but if you ride 100 miles that is 3000 calories, or enough to allow the average man to double what he is eating, and if they are 100 hard miles then this gets significantly higher. Without putting too much confidence in Strava's algorithms but Strava reckoned that I used nearly 6000 calories riding the Fred Whitton earlier this year which should allow me to have an extra two good dinners.
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    Hmm. If he's only planning to ride twice a month he's unlikely to be doing the Fred Whitton twice.

    If it's the more probable 2 x 2 hour bimbles then it'll be an extra 1600 calories burned a month. What's that? A kitkat finger a day, minus what he eats and drinks on the bike and immediately afterwards? So maybe nothing at all.

    Doing 5:2 eating means a 14,400 calorie deficit a month, plus anything extra I burn by cycling
  • I don't expect that you will lose much weight only riding twice a month, but I disagree with those who say that cycling won't affect you weight. I have never really not cycled at any time over the last 45 years or so, but I have significantly increased the amount of cycling I am doing over the last year at the expense of my other sport, and although nobody would have said I was overweight I have lost 4 kg in that period.

    30 calories a mile might not seem much, but if you ride 100 miles that is 3000 calories, or enough to allow the average man to double what he is eating, and if they are 100 hard miles then this gets significantly higher. Without putting too much confidence in Strava's algorithms but Strava reckoned that I used nearly 6000 calories riding the Fred Whitton earlier this year which should allow me to have an extra two good dinners.

    Yeah biking is just going to be a side hobby I use the gym everyday with weights. I don't want to rely on biking to lose weight TBH I want to just enjoy some long road rides.
  • solidsneek wrote:
    TBH I will probably only ride 2x a month or so unless I really get in to it so don't think muscle loss is an issue really as long as I eat well as you say and do heavy compound weights.

    If you want to cycle to burn Calories relatively quickly on a bike, try more like 3-6 rides a week for up to ~1 hour at a high intensity, depending upon your current cycling fitness.

    If you want to strengthen your leg muscles, include some hard hill reps in your cycle rides, again frequency and how hard depending upon your fitness.

    Lower intensity riding will utilise a greater proportion of your energy requirements from fat reserves, but higher intensity rides will require more energy overall and will largely come from glycogen stores and any simple carbs you consume just before or during the ride.
    ================
    2020 Voodoo Marasa
    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    That's about 6 to 12 times more than he's said he's going to cycle...
  • craigus89craigus89 Posts: 887
    I don't expect that you will lose much weight only riding twice a month, but I disagree with those who say that cycling won't affect you weight. I have never really not cycled at any time over the last 45 years or so, but I have significantly increased the amount of cycling I am doing over the last year at the expense of my other sport, and although nobody would have said I was overweight I have lost 4 kg in that period.

    30 calories a mile might not seem much, but if you ride 100 miles that is 3000 calories, or enough to allow the average man to double what he is eating, and if they are 100 hard miles then this gets significantly higher. Without putting too much confidence in Strava's algorithms but Strava reckoned that I used nearly 6000 calories riding the Fred Whitton earlier this year which should allow me to have an extra two good dinners.

    Cycling doesn't affect it directly though as you've just said, and it's confusing to people who don't understand these things to give anecdotal "I started cycling more and lost weight" stories.

    If you do a long ride and burn 3,000 calories, have say 3 gels and a Cliff bar on the ride, a large piece of flapjack and a latte halfway round, get home and have a big meal because you're hungry, you could easily consume those 3,000 calories and you're back to square one.

    Calories in - Calories out. Simple.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,386

    If you want to strengthen your leg muscles, include some hard hill reps in your cycle rides, again frequency and how hard depending upon your fitness.

    Something like this is unlikely to 'strengthen' your legs in the conventional sense. You would need to be pushing a lot harder against a lot more resistance than it is possible to generate while cycling..
  • jgsijgsi Posts: 5,029
    If OP is a Crossfit guy
    https://youtu.be/y5ehrJLA1lc
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    I used to think that calories in vs calories out / burned was a simple laws of thermodynamics thing. But also pondered why some people seemed to stay thin while others ballooned.

    But in the last couple of years there's been all manner of research about how our billions of intestinal microbes can have quite profound effects.

    So 2 people eating an identical diet can extract differing amounts of energy and lay down or lose differing amounts of fat.
    And two diets of identical calorific content but differing amounts of fat, carbs, protein, fibre etc can give you differing amounts of energy.
    Some people will see a spike in blood sugar from eating one food which produces no such effect in another.
    Some gut bacteria produce essential nutrients we cannot obtain from diet alone, and many break down substances and extract nutrients which our own enzymes cannot.
    Some species respond to calorie restriction or lack of their favoured foodstuff in fiendish ways that make it harder to lose weight

    There's a complicated relationship between you, your microbiome and your diet. Your bugs can influence what you eat and how much, and what you extract from it. At the same time your diet, and especially it's diversity, will influence your microbiome. And both can have marked effects on you.

    So while it's true that if you're overweight but run a consistent calorie deficit, you will lose weight, everyone's experience will be different. Those who find it harder may well have reasons beyond a fondness for Greggs' giant sausage rolls...
  • Imposter wrote:

    If you want to strengthen your leg muscles, include some hard hill reps in your cycle rides, again frequency and how hard depending upon your fitness.

    Something like this is unlikely to 'strengthen' your legs in the conventional sense. You would need to be pushing a lot harder against a lot more resistance than it is possible to generate while cycling..

    How would explain average power increases up cat3/4 hills, if not from legs muscles increasing in strength?

    I've not long come back off a ride where one of the hills I climbed I averaged 344W, which I'm pretty sure is a new power best for me up any cat4 hill, my previous best up the same hill was an average of 306W back in April. 166 vs 167bpm average heart rate, so pretty comparable on that front.
    ================
    2020 Voodoo Marasa
    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo
  • You won’t increase your muscle strength by riding up hills. You’ll increase the endurance of certain muscles but not increase their strength much. If you want to increase the strength you’ll have to think about doing certain muscle specific drills on the bike whilst riding or on a turbo or watt bike or similar. There are plenty of on line resources which can give you instructions on how to do particular drills to improve certain aspects of your riding regarding strength endurance and fitness.
  • craigus89craigus89 Posts: 887
    keef66 wrote:
    I used to think that calories in vs calories out / burned was a simple laws of thermodynamics thing. But also pondered why some people seemed to stay thin while others ballooned.

    But in the last couple of years there's been all manner of research about how our billions of intestinal microbes can have quite profound effects.

    So 2 people eating an identical diet can extract differing amounts of energy and lay down or lose differing amounts of fat.
    And two diets of identical calorific content but differing amounts of fat, carbs, protein, fibre etc can give you differing amounts of energy.
    Some people will see a spike in blood sugar from eating one food which produces no such effect in another.
    Some gut bacteria produce essential nutrients we cannot obtain from diet alone, and many break down substances and extract nutrients which our own enzymes cannot.
    Some species respond to calorie restriction or lack of their favoured foodstuff in fiendish ways that make it harder to lose weight

    There's a complicated relationship between you, your microbiome and your diet. Your bugs can influence what you eat and how much, and what you extract from it. At the same time your diet, and especially it's diversity, will influence your microbiome. And both can have marked effects on you.

    So while it's true that if you're overweight but run a consistent calorie deficit, you will lose weight, everyone's experience will be different. Those who find it harder may well have reasons beyond a fondness for Greggs' giant sausage rolls...

    Absolutely we are all different. I'm pretty lucky in that I've been between 74-77 kilos for 10 years and definitely consume more calories than any apps tell me I should. I never gain weight, I'm sure I could if I really tried but never have.

    I have a friend who is a strict calorie counter, the type that weighs absolutely everything so he can be precise with it, who will go on holiday for a week and put on 2 kilos without even pigging out much.

    Don't know what the difference is, genetics, metabolism, who knows.
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    Imposter wrote:

    If you want to strengthen your leg muscles, include some hard hill reps in your cycle rides, again frequency and how hard depending upon your fitness.

    Something like this is unlikely to 'strengthen' your legs in the conventional sense. You would need to be pushing a lot harder against a lot more resistance than it is possible to generate while cycling..

    How would explain average power increases up cat3/4 hills, if not from legs muscles increasing in strength?

    I've not long come back off a ride where one of the hills I climbed I averaged 344W, which I'm pretty sure is a new power best for me up any cat4 hill, my previous best up the same hill was an average of 306W back in April. 166 vs 167bpm average heart rate, so pretty comparable on that front.

    You’ve answered your own question. What you’ve improved is your sustainable power. Which is what you generally want to do as a cyclist. I suspect Imposter was objecting to the misuse of the term strength. If you want to increase the strength of your leg muscles you need to be doing squats or leg presses with increasingly heavy weights. Neither of which will help you on the bike unless you’re planning to take up track sprinting
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,386

    How would explain average power increases up cat3/4 hills, if not from legs muscles increasing in strength?

    I've not long come back off a ride where one of the hills I climbed I averaged 344W, which I'm pretty sure is a new power best for me up any cat4 hill, my previous best up the same hill was an average of 306W back in April. 166 vs 167bpm average heart rate, so pretty comparable on that front.

    As others have already said - what you are describing there is an increase in aerobic endurance and/or threshold. Not an increase in strength. Power and strength are not the same thing.
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