Reaching and Maintaining That Riding Weight

Guest poster Don Blount is back, with an item on getting back to his best weight — and staying there.

BlountOnBikingFor some, it may not be their thing to weigh, measure or tally just about everything they eat and drink.

But it works for me.

This system has helped me lose weight and keep it off for nearly two years.

And this philosophy has become more than a “diet” or “eating plan,” it has become part of my lifestyle. It works with my personality.

I watch what I eat, schedule my exercise and as a result I am able to maintain the weight that I want.

This was my Thursday dinner: chicken, green beans and red potatoes
This was my Thursday dinner: chicken, green beans and red potatoes

I have written previously about my weight loss, counting calories, etc.

I learned that for me to maintain a good cycling weight and a better weight overall than the 196 pounds I carried a few years ago that I need accountability.

It is not enough for me to go: “Oh, I will eat smaller portions and exercise more.” I need something to tell me what a portion size is and how much exercise I have done.

On most days for lunch I will take a salad. This has chicken, carrots and cheese in addition to lettuce and a balsamic vinegar/extra virgin olive oil dressing.
On most days for lunch I will take a salad. This has chicken, carrots and cheese in addition to lettuce and a balsamic vinegar/extra virgin olive oil dressing.

I learned that I cannot maintain a proper weight solely through diet or solely through exercise; that I need a combination of the two.

I learned that it is difficult for me to eat solely 1,750 calories a day I find that a normal day’s intake for me is about 2,600 calories. A normal day of movement for me – exercise, walking and the like – burns about 900 calories, which reduces my net calorie intake to that 1,750 range. And it also means the proper combination of protein, fat, carbs, etc. but that’s a topic for another post.

After the work is done, I have my day's meals prepared: lunch, dinner and snacks.
After the work is done, I have my day’s meals prepared: lunch, dinner and snacks.

Going into hip replacement surgery I knew that the level and intensity of my exercise would be greatly restricted, by my standards I basically sat for five weeks, and I expected to gain at least a few pounds. And have gained about five pounds.

Still, I am not sweating that weight gain, at least not yet, as I become more active I expect to get back to my normal riding weight.

 

They Tried to Make Me Go to Rehab — I Said Yes, Yes, Yes!

Guest poster Don Blount sets an example for us all by the way he’s coming back from hip replacement surgery.

BlountOnBiking
April 20 marked 39 days since I underwent surgery to replace my left hip.

Since then my focus has been on recovery, rehab and rest.

This is my second hip replacement; my right hip was replaced with an artificial joint in 2004. But this time around a less-invasive surgery has enabled me to recover more quickly.

I checked into the hospital at 12:30 p.m. March 12, underwent surgery later that day, and was on my way home by 2:30 p.m. March 13, a stay of 26 hours.

Because I was fit, my surgeon’s directions was to monitor any swelling I had in my leg. A physical therapist instructed me to not overdo it.

I was on a bike trainer by Sunday. I was not pedaling fast, hard or with any resistance but I was pedaling.

Trainer_Rehab

I spent my days doing rehab exercises and reading while elevating and icing my leg. I read nine books in 30 days and watched live at least part of every game of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.

My rehab includes:

  • Bike. First on the trainer and now on the road.

Bike_Selfie copy

  • Pool. I have a series of exercises to do in the pool to strengthen my hip and legs. This workout takes about 50 minutes.
  • Gym. Leg extensions, leg curls, leg presses, calf raises, resistance bands, treadmill and elliptical trainer. This workout takes about 90 minutes. Here’s a look.
  • Exercises for core, hamstrings, quadriceps and glutes and stretches for quadriceps. Click here to view workout video:

I am still working on walking without a limp and building my stamina. I find that rest includes a lot of naps after rehab work.

Without question, cycling has helped me through this process. Physically, I am in better shape and that has its obvious benefits. But mentally having ridden hills, centuries and double centuries helped me too. As I have told others, recovering from hip replacement surgery is nothing compared to going up a long difficult climb.

Overall, I am pleased with my progress. I returned to work on April 15 and although I am doing well, I do not receive full clearance until June 12, which is three months after surgery. Hmm, that would put the Bass Lake Powerhouse Double Century just under four months away….

Year in Review — Looking Back, Looking Ahead (Guest Post)

Our friend Don Blount is reflecting on a banner cycling year.

BlountOnBiking2014 was a big cycling year for me.

Here are my totals: 6,512.46 miles (10,481 kilometers), 191,828 feet (58,469 meters) of climbing, 401 hours, 51 minutes of riding time.

That was 1,045 mi (1,682.8 km) and 80,000 ft (24,384 m) and 70 hrs of riding time more than in 2013. I completed one organized century, and five centuries in training; three double metric centuries, including the Tour of the California Alps Death Ride, and a double century.

Yet when I was asked my most memorable ride of the year, I struggle to answer as I had a number of memorable rides

Here is the list:

  • January: Climbed Mt. Diablo in Contra Costa County, Calif for the first time. This ride was 49.44 mi. (79.6 km) with 5,853 ft (1,784 m) of climbing in 3 hrs 57 mins.
At the top of Mt. Diablo.
At the top of Mt. Diablo.
  • February: Pedaling Paths to Independence metric century in Linden, Calif. 64.43 miles (103.7 km), 1,115 ft (340 m), 3 hrs, 30 mins. I received my handmade, custom steel Tallerico bike a few days before this ride and this was my first significant ride on it.
  • April: Tierra Bella double metric century in Gilroy, Calif. 127 mi. (204 km), 8,632 ft. (2,631 m), 8 hrs 54 mins. This was the first time I traveled with my bike to do an organized ride. This double metric would also be my biggest ride to date and I did it on the 10-year anniversary of having my right hip replaced.
At Tierra Bella.
At Tierra Bella.
  • May: Lodi Sunrise Century, Lodi, Calif. 101 miles (1652.54 km), 2,391 ft (893 m), 7 hrs, 43 mins. My sister-in-law, Gina, came to California from her home in Columbus, Ohio to celebrate her birthday and ride her first century. I rode with her and it was fun to help someone achieve that goal. It was only in the previous October that I had completed my first.
  • May: Sierra Century double metric century, Plymouth, Calif. 122 mi (196 km), 10,965 ft (3,342 m), 8 hrs, 41 mins. I had not ridden this course but I was feeling poorly going up a difficult climb called Slug Gulch. Once I finished that climb, another rider and I raced to get to the lunch stop before the cut off. One rest stop worker told me that I had arrived too late and could not continue. And then a friend also worked at the rest stop intervened, telling that worker that he was wrong and that I had arrived well within the cutoff. I set off, recovered and finished the double metric.
  • June: Canyon Classic, Patterson, Calif. 93.34 mi. (150 km), 7,756 ft (2,364 m), 6 hrs, 50 mins. This was my first time riding to the top of Mt. Hamilton. At the lunch stop at Lick Observatory I remembered talking to this guy who was basically telling me that I could not do a double century. I remember thinking, “I will show you….”
  • June: Four-pass training ride with my crazy doctor, Bear Valley, Calif. 83.04 mi. (133.64 km), 11,033 ft (3,363 m), 8 hrs, 10 mins. This would be my first time riding in the Sierras. We started in Hermit Valley, rode Ebbetts Pass, both sides of Monitor Pass then to Markleville, the other side of Ebbetts and back to Hermit Valley.
Monitor Pass.
Monitor Pass.
  • July: Death Ride Tour of the California Alps Markleeville, Calif.124.21 mi (200 km), 15,030 ft (4,581 m), 11 hrs, 19 mins This was the hardest ride of the year. I knew I could do at least four passes but I wanted to do all five. And I did.
The Death Ride.
The Death Ride.
  • October: Bass Lake Powerhouse Double Century Clovis, Calif. 201.4 mi. (324 km), 11,503 ft (3,506 m), 14 hrs 30 mins. My first double century.

Clearly, I entered a whole new world of riding in 2014.

In 2015, I am registered again for the Death Ride but I am also training for my first California Triple Crown, three double centuries within the calendar year. I was on track to do them.

But you might have heard the old proverb: Man makes plans, and God laughs.