Eating while riding means you’ll be less likely to indulge in the post-ride binge. We’ve all experienced this voracious state at least once. It’s that moment when you get home feeling so depleted and starving that an entire bag of Cheetos seems to disappear in a matter of minutes. Eating while on your bike not only keeps you properly fueled and in a position for a more healthy recovery, but it also keeps you from stuffing anything and everything in your mouth after your ride.
According to the American College of Sports Medicine’s Guidelines for Exercise Prescription, the recommendation for sustained weight-loss is 60-90 minutes of daily moderate to vigorous physical activity/exercise. At first, 60-90 minutes of exercise seems like a lot. You should start out committing to do about 30 minutes each day and gradually increase up to the recommendation. Remember, your exercise does not have to be 60 minutes all at once. It is fine to do shorter bouts of exercise. For example, you could do 30 minutes two to three times each day to equal the recommended 60-90 minutes total.
Most surprising to me, though, is that if you're upping your fiber intake but not also regularly filling up your water bottle, things tend to get a wee bit, er, backed up. "It's important to add fiber gradually and increase water intake at the same time. Otherwise, instead of helping with digestion, fiber may actually lead to constipation," notes Anna-Lisa Finger, R.D., a certified personal trainer and dietitian. Turns out, I often consume nearly double the recommended 25 grams of fiber daily. Gulp. (Related: Is it Possible to Consume Too Much Fiber?)
Going into nutritional ketosis by following a ketogenic diet is one of the most radical but highly beneficial lifestyle changes you can make to improve your health. As with most dietary changes, always remember to listen to your body. If you feel any side effects other than the ones listed above, then necessary adjustments to your food intake may be needed.
The stroke that will burn the most calories is unsurprisingly the butterfly and you can burn even 150 calories in 10 minutes using this style. But, as you might now, this requires some swimming skills and most of us would have difficulty swimming with that stroke for 10 minutes. That’s why we recommend the next best thing which is freestyle – it is much easier to learn and to swim with and it is still a great choice if you want to lose some unwanted weight.
The number you see on most scales doesn’t tell you what type of tissue you’re carrying — your body composition. Nor can it tell you the type you’re losing if you’re shedding weight (fat or muscle, for example). If it’s all muscle, that’s not a good thing. “Ultimately you want to drop the weight that is non-functional tissue,” nutritionist and author Philip Goglia says. “And that’s body fat.” Targeting a body fat percentage will help you attain an optimal weight with the right composition. A skinfold test is one of the best measures: Six to 10 percent for men and 14 to 20 percent for women (depending on the exact method) tends to achieve the best race weight. Below that you will lose power and performance and degrade your ability to recover.
Most studios offer classes on a mat — usually with props like weights, elastic bands, and a squishy plastic circle called a Magic Circle— or a machine called a reformer, which basically looks like a hospital bed with pulleys, ropes, and levers attached. The intensity level depends on the studio but, for the most part, Pilates is comparable to a barre or somewhat-intensive Vinyasa yoga class. It can be tough, but the focus is mainly on toning, not cardio, so it is unlikely that you will leave a class dripping in sweat.
So what makes cycling so special for weight loss? In short, it makes you happy, says Jimmy Weber, of Enid, Oklahoma, who at 6’2” and 260 pounds is not a small rider, but is now 150 pounds lighter than his max weight of 410 pounds eight years ago. He initially shed weight through bariatric surgery and a lot of walking. But walking his usual seven miles a day got boring and running was out of the question.