Taking the paper challenge to the next level.
Haha love this! Never knew it was a real “thing.” We used to do this on fire assignments, fold a $20 bill in half, put it on the ground, and whoever can get it (just like that) gets to keep it, talk about a damn funny time haha Serge_A_Storms, King of the Party.
Come back Serge, Coleman misses you!
I dropped off for a bit.
Let’s see…where did we leave off?
Oh yeah, stupid human tricks, tinkering around with fairly meaningless dietary interventions, working out for about 60 minutes/day at a fairly low intensity (burning 500-600 calories/hour).
I think my weight from fall of 2017 until whenever I checked out from here was hovering in the 189 range.
I fired up the tennis game and started playing 2-3 times/week. Fitness improved, but my non-tennis workouts got a bit easier so I could focus some time on flexibility and injury prevention.
The injury that my workouts couldn’t prevent was the one where I smashed the butt of my tennis racquet directly into my knee cap. It caused some major havoc on my knee, so I spent my spring break vacation limping around the pool and icing my knee. Had to have it drained once until finally an MRI showed that it was nothing major. I just needed time to let the aggravation and swelling from the impact subside. It took a good 6 weeks until I could go full speed. Pistol squats still don’t feel the same on that leg, but it’s getting better.
From March-June, I played very little tennis and went back to my basic 1-hour workout, 6-7 days/week.
When the weather got nice, I started getting outside to do some running and some long bike rides.
Then I bought a road bike and I’ve been riding about 120 miles/week for the last month or so. I just did my first 100-mile ride yesterday.
I’m still doing a good amount of dumbbell work and bodyweight stuff, but my focus has really shifted to cycling and will probably stay here for a while.
A quick immersion into this new world of cycling has brought me lots of new insights about general fitness and cardio. I am in WAY better shape now. Hovering in the low 180lb range/9-ish percent body fat without needing to focus so much on macros and protein.
In summary, I’ve traded in my leotard and pink dumbbells for spandex and a helmet. I guess it makes sense that I haven’t spent much time maintaining a training log in a place where most people come to talk about squats and protein and supplements. The rest of life had been busy, so I’ve spent most of my free time learning about cycling.
I do want to share some of the lessons I’ve learned as I approach 1,000 miles logged on the road bike this summer. I will pop back in here soon and get those thoughts down in my log.
Sounds good Serge. We are a pretty diverse bunch so don’t be too shy about your new hobby.
Agreed! Serge, your ramblings are something I’ve always enjoyed. I know for a fact your biking musings will interest us
Random cycling thoughts:
I don’t look much different at 182 now compared to what I looked like at 182 in the past when I was just lifting and eating like a fitness competitor.
I’m still doing some lifting a few days a week, which is probably keeping my upper body looking more like a sprinter or swimmer and less like a skinny-armed cyclist.
I can’t think of a faster way to build cardio fitness than the bike. Probably because you can push pretty hard every day without going into a recovery hole or wearing down your joints.
Miles in the saddle are not enough to stay lean. There are a lot of bikers out there with big guts and flabby legs and asses.
Cyclists seem to be a bit masochistic. They seek pain and discomfort. I’ve never been that way, but I’m starting to understand the mindset.
I’ve always had very tight hamstrings and a spasm-prone lower back. Not anymore. My hamstrings actually feel much softer and less knotty when relaxed. My back feels awesome.
Eating to support performance and recovery is way easier than being stuck in a physique-focused dieting mentality.
Drafting at 25+ mph is exhilarating and liberating. Feels like floating.
Cyclists pedal at far higher cadences than what was always natural for me. It seems to save energy, although there seems to be a lot of debate on this topic.
Fit women look super hot in cycling gear.
No bike yesterday or today - I was in Kansas City for a work trip.
Today I did a jump rope workout outside by the hotel pool.
Over the last few years, I have incorporated jump rope into my normal workouts by doing 2-5 minute sets of high-cadence single jumps between sets of other “stuff”.
Today, I did a rope-only session. I wanted to do 5 sets of 100 consecutive, unbroken double-unders.
I didn’t have my normal jump rope shoes, and my rope length is optimized for singles right now, so the first few attempts, I kept missing at around 20 or so. I also forgot that I can’t wear my headphones and listen to music if I’m trying to do long sets of doubles. I need to have all my senses available and I need to hear the sound of the rope, because the rhythm has to be perfectly dialed in.
So I took the headphones off and crushed 4 sets of 100. It was already about 85 degrees at 7AM, so I was a complete puddle of sweat by then and I couldn’t really grip the rope handles well enough to bang out any more sets of 100. With the fuck-ups in the beginning, I am sure I did more than the equivalent of 500 total, so it was all good. I got to 130 on one set.
The reason I wanted to up the intensity with the rope is because I want to speed up my cardio fitness improvements for the bike. Singles are good, but doubles are just a much faster path to getting the heart rate cranking. It was an intense workout, for sure.
I’m looking forward to a ride tomorrow if the weather cooperates. It will be interesting to see how my legs feel after not riding for a few days.
Wednesday PM - Bike session
Played around with maintaining consistent, smooth pedaling at higher cadences by matching my RPMs to the beat of the music.
I pasted some data from that session in my previous post.
Thursday AM - Jump Rope, Acro Yoga/Breakdance, Dumbbell Work
I pasted the HR monitor data for that session in the post above, too.
Cycling and my typical gym sessions are a great compliment to each other. I’m playing around with ways to make them work even better together. For example, today I tried not to let my heart rate recover too far below 130 at any point. Usually, I take more complete rest periods and let it drop to around 109. But on the bike, that is not really an option unless you are drafting in a group at an easy pace.
Thursday PM - 35 Mile Ride
Broke this up into three parts.
6 mile warmup ride
11.5 miles at 21mph average - intense
17.5 miles back home - relatively easy.
Feeling pretty wiped after a total of 3 hours of exercise and 2100 calories burned.
Purposely over-reaching a bit right now, as I have a long trip coming up where I probably won’t get on a bike for about 9 days. When I get back, my bike legs will be fresh and I plan to attack my standard 11.5 mile Strava segment to see if I can hit a 22 mph average. Once I can push my average for 11.5 miles to 22 or so, I’ll start working on averaging 20 mph for 23 miles. If I can do that, I can pretty much hang on any group ride without getting dropped.
I’ve only ever ridden a mountain bike, and I was never serious… but I remember a 12mph pace sustained was very tiring (impossibly tiring, I would be able to keep that up for long), and a 15mph was a “burst” that I could only maintain for a minute or so.
Im not sure how much efficiency you get out of a good road back, but man 21mph sustained for 11 miles sounds pretty brutal.
You get a TON of efficiency from a road bike, AND 21 mph is absolutely brutal! I sustained 18.7 for 100 miles. That’s a different kind of brutal.
I’ve been wondering if the radical shift in training would result in any differences in fat distribution. The only place with any significant difference compared to when I was at a similar body fat level is my lower back. It’s reading a few points leaner. Everywhere else, the fat is distributed where it normally is. I thought maybe glutes, quads, or hamstrings might be leaner from all those miles in the bike. Nope.
I weighed 180 this morning. At 9% body fat, I’m still holding about the same amount of lean muscle mass as I always have at this level.
Now - if I paired a physique competitor diet with the volume of work I’ve been doing, I could drive that body fat down to about 7% in a matter of weeks. It wouldn’t be worth the trade off in recovery, performance, and ease-of-lifestyle. I’d probably have to give up my new favorite snack, which just ain’t gonna happen:
Road cycling is by far the most brutal form of training I’ve ever done.
Cycling up the hills in Scotland and hitting a ‘wall’ at the top will live with me till the day I die. I’ve never experienced terror and disorientation like that in a gym.
Cycling with a mountain bike is like riding a tank.
A road bike is more like driving a Porsche.
Coleman says, “Eat a sammich!”
yep, lean af with the delts and arms from years past… good work