At the end of October, while I was going through the various health checks to determine the extent of my asthma, the nurse asked me to step on the scales. 85.1kg the digital display flashed back at me. I knew I was overweight but that number shocked me a little bit and the scale of the challenge of the Etape du Tour suddenly seemed much greater, so I set myself a target of 73kg as that would bring me into an ideal weight bracket for my height and age. Now that’s not an easy task at all as that is nearly 2 stone in old money, but I’m determined and having something to focus on usually has a very positive effect on me (my wife may say to the point of obsession). I’ve been weighing myself every Wednesday morning and logging the results with an app, I knew I was close to a stone loss so I hopped on the scales after a Zwift session today.
78.35kg! That’s just under 12st 5lbs, I don’t think I’ve been that light since I was a teenager. Don’t get me wrong, I know that is still weighty but I was delighted!
That means I have now lost over a stone in under 2 months, I reckon that is pretty good going right?!
So, how have I gone about it? Pretty simple really, I’ve cut the crap out of my diet (chocolate, crisps etc) and increased the amount of cardio exercise that I’m doing. I’m not living a monk’s life, that’s no fun, I’ll still have the odd takeaway and a beer with friends but now everything is in moderation.
Cutting out the weights in favour of more cardio has definitely helped too, as has reducing my gym sessions to once a week (the other one reverting to a Zwift based workout). I’ve started back on Zwift with the old favourite, the SST short workout. It’s great for building base fitness but I’ve dialled back the watts so I can concentrate on keeping the cadence high, as I improve I’ll move the watts up in increments and start to incorporate different workouts. This week I have done purely Zwift work, no gym at all and I feel great.
The system is already noticing the changes and keeps trying to push the FTP number back up automatically but I think I’ll keep doing it my way for now
Out on the bike I’ve focused on tackling hills that have given me problems in the past, improving my technique and testing out what this new lightweight Iain can do. The weather has been incredibly kind over the past few weekends so I’ve managed to get some good rides in, there’s been a bit of debris around where the rains have washed it into the road and I’ve been glad of my tubeless tyres!
I don’t mind the cold, or the rain to a certain extent, it’s the wind that puts me off riding my bike. Luckily we haven’t been subjected to many of the storms that the rest of the UK has seen so stomping away through a headwind has been a fairly minimal experience.
Of course Christmas is coming up and that will be a big test of my resolve when it comes to maintaining my sensible diet, but the promise of multiple rides over two weeks off is quite exciting! I just hope the weather manages dry, crisp and clear for some perfect winter (s)miles. If not, you’ll catch me on Zwift but it just ain’t the same is it….