Today’s been a Bit of a “Curate’s Egg”

For those of you who don’t know what I’m waffling on about…

The term derives from a cartoon published in the humorous British magazine Punch on 9 November 1895. Drawn by George du Maurier and entitled “True Humility”, it pictures a timid-looking curate taking breakfast in his bishop’s house. The bishop remarks with candid honesty to his lowly guest: “I’m afraid you’ve got a bad egg, Mr Jones.” The curate replies, desperate not to offend his eminent host and ultimate employer: “Oh, no, my Lord, I assure you that parts of it are excellent!”

And that’s been my Day – Good in Parts…

Good – Weigh In showed that my body fat was under 15%, didn’t believe it (it had been 22% last week…)

Bad – turned out there was something on the surface of the scales that was conductiveand screwing the figures.

Good – when wiped off, BF went back to 21.3%

Bad – but I’d also gained 0.1kg

Good – My new shorts turned up in the post, and they fit perfectly

Bad – they’re Castelli’s, so they’re a depressing size XXXL

Good – but I know that everything Castelli is 2 sizes smaller than “conventional weaponry”

Bad – fancied toast for breakfast – and only bread in house was green and furry

Good – local shop had a pack of english muffins (nom,nom,nom)

Good – I’ve found a buyer for the Chairlift

Bad – the quote for de-install/re-install was a bit higher than I was expecting

Bad – computer didn’t shutdown properly last night, and managed to kill the boot sector of one of the hard disks

More Bad – it’s the hard disk with all my documents, pictures, music, bike ride logs on it

Good – my business files are on a different server (well – strictly 2 servers and a backup device)

Bad – it was nearly a fortnight since the last backup of the data

Good – at least I had a backup

More Good – a quick “disk image” to save the state of the data, followed by running chkdsk /f rebuilt the boot sector and file system, and appears to have munged something like 3 files, all of which were old files and on the last backup

Bad – fixing this load of crap meant I was much later out of the door than I intended to be – I was hoping to throw the bike in the back of the car, drive out somewhere and do a different route for a change, but didn’t get sorted ’till 11am and my intended location was a good hours drive each way, so a ride would have put me in rush hour traffic on the way home – “trucs que pour une Alouette”

Good – decided on a “follow my nose” wander around some of the backroad villages east of home, and rediscovered just how nice some of them are!

wonder what the rest of the day’s got in store for me…

Because frankly, the downs have’nt been bad enough to even slightly spoil the ups!  It’s all about the way you look at things, which brings me back to our friend the curate earlier in ths post…

Nearly 2 Years in, and time to Assess and Re-Target

Well, after a pretty successful first 23 months, I decided it was time to start planning the next stage of my journey down this road to fitness.

First step co-incidedwith a trip to the Nutrition/Dietician’s clinic – and commenced, as I’m now getting used to, with a Dexa scan, and a quick sit in the Bodpod.   After a quick jump on the scales, I was allowed to dress properly again, and we sat down for a proper look at where I was, and where to go…

Basically, the first 18 months were there to get me to a weight where was no longer killing myself…   Since Christmas 2012, I’ve basically been re-grouping, and slowing down on the weight loss, allowing the loose skin to catch up with the rest of my body, and – in the words of my Physio “Working on the Engine, Rather than the Bodywork” –

So, in the first 18 months, I lost 72.3kg.  In the ensuing 5 months, I’ve lost the grand total of 1.2kg.   I also lost my Dad, which has obviously meant that frankly I’ve not been exactly focussed on diet and training in the same way.   However, it’s not been a complete bust – the tape measure and body fat calipers say that I’ve probably lost nearer 6kg of fat, or at least re-assigned it as muscle!   I’ve also dropped 5cm around the chest and 4cm at the waist, so at least 1 shirt size (even in Castelli/Santini sizing!!)

Anyway, I’ve come back with a new set of goals and working targets.

  1. First of all, my initial “guessed target” for weight of 15st (210lb, 95kg) which, in fairness was a complete shot in the dark – as in “if I can get back to 2 stone heavier than when I was riding seriously, i’ll be happy” has been re-assessed in the light of the result of my latest Dexa scan.   And – allowing for everything else, we’ve come up with an Ideal target of 14st (196lb, 88.5kg) – which if I more or less maintain current muscle mass puts me nicely into single figure body fat%.   So, my ticker has changed to reflect the new final, final goal.
  2. Also, my overall activity levels have changed, as I’m no longer spending hours sitting, spending time with my Dad.   Instead, i’m either working around the house or out for a walk, or such like.    So, I’ve upped my activity setting in the diet/fitness profile.
  3. And third, because I’ve been complaining that it’s taking me longer to recover from rides and so forth, I’ve been recommended to increase the % of calories from protiens,whilst keeping at least 50% of energy from carbs, and reducing fats to take up the slack – I’ve been recommended to shoot for between 1.4/1.6g of protein per Kg of LEAN body weight per day, to ensure enough “building blocks” are still there to help me recover from back-to-back rides etc…

Now all I need to do is to get back into the training groove – frankly, i’m still finding it a little difficult to focus on targetted riding – I’ll be going along nicely, and then something completely unrelated regarding what I’m going to do in the future will pop-up and I just loose sight of the whole session 😦

Month 8 Update

Month 8 – 23rd February 2012 to 22nd March 2012

Starting Weight 288.9lb –  Closing  weight 278.4lb – Weight loss of 10.5lb

Starting BMI 38.3  – Closing BMI 36.9 – BMI drop of 1.4 points

Exercise Stats

21 days featured a ride on the bike, for a total of 32h45min,

Average speed 14.8 mph

Miles Rode 483.57 (only 105.30 of which being indoor miles)

Calories Burned 32,306 ( or the equivalent of  9.23lb of fat! – Once again, I’ve been eating some of the calories back.   I’ve also amended the calorie burn figures using a couple of handy power calculation plugins in Sportstrack3, which take the existing speed, incline and HR data from the Garmin, add in weather details (i.e. wind speed and direction) and muscle efficiency data factor and come up with a power output.   This it then used to provide a more accurate calorie information – one that is substantially lower than the figures calculated by the garmin – hence the greatly reduced burn figure this month.

Did well on the riding front, good mileage, if a little less than the prior month – the cold took it’s toll early doors,  but since then I’ve been able to stay mainly on the road and off the trainer, hence the reduced average speed.   And – I finally cracked the 20 stone mark.   Next goal – 17 stone – or 238lb for the former colonials 107.5kg for the continentals.

Non-Scale-Victory Time…

I’ve Just spend a couple of hours going through my wardrobe. So far that’s 3 sacks of clothing for the charity shops – all the stuff that’s now too big. Also had what’s probably a “Non Scale Victory”…

Tried on my work suit. It fits me a little bit like the one David Byrne from Talking heads wore! So, I worked back through my old work suits (or at least the ones I’ve kept!).

6 Years ago. Nope, trousers 6 inch too loose, jacket like a sack.

12 years ago, nope trousers still fall off, Jacket awful.

20 years ago (kept for sentimental reasons if i’m honest! – plus couldn’t bear to throw away a perfect condition Hugo Boss suit) – Trousers perfect, and the jacket’s a wee bit tight on the arms! Which, If I’m honest, it always was ever so slightly…

So – that’s 20 years of wear and tear on the body wound back I suppose…

if only it worked for the face!

Month 7 Summary

Month 7 – 23rd January 2012 to 22nd February 2012

Starting Weight 296.6lb –  Closing  weight 288.9lb – Weight loss of 7.7lb

Starting BMI 39.3  – Closing BMI 38.3 – BMI drop of 1.0 points

Exercise Stats

21 days spent on the bike, for a total of 34h26min,

Average speed 15.8 mph

Miles Rode 543.3 (254.5 of which being indoor miles)

Calories Burned 43,306 ( or the equivalent of  12.37lb of fat! – I have to admit though, as the mileage and duration have increased, I’ve also been eating some of the calories back.   I’ve also been looking into the calorie burn figures, and tbh, the Garmin is pretty much hopelessly optimistic.   I’m currently investigating a couple of strategies, which involve calorie burn calculations via power metering – though I’m also sorely tempted to simplify things and just book half what the Garmin says…)

Did well on the riding front, good mileage, albeit lots of it on the trainer, rather than the road – hence the high average speed again – though I do seem now to have standardised my road ride on a 24-25 mile circuit, rather than the former 15 mile loop.   Still not under 20-Stone though, but currently fighting my way through a head cold, and hopeing it doesn’t get any worse – if it’s above the neck, then it’s safe to train, otherwise, I’m off the road/rollers for the duration!!!

New Toys

Couple of bits and bobs in the post today –

First off, a new Gilet, from fleabay.   Not a lot to be said about it frankly, other than it’s actually a little on the big side for me – there’s a first with cycling kit!  It’s light, Blue, and windproof, and takes very little space in my back pocket.  What the hell do you want for £13 posted 😉

Second was a Cycleops Wheel Riser for use with the Turbo Trainer.   It’s a cracking bit of kit, much taller than the one that comes with the Tacx Bushido.  Holds the wheel solidly enough but still allows a bit of side to side motion without ripping the rim off the hub.

Third, and slightly belated, the cheap chinese copy BMC long sleeve jacket I bought a couple of months ago, actually fits now.   So – next time I get a chance for a outdoor ride, I’ll be giving it a crack.

Fourth – and even more belated, 6 years ago, I bought an Altura Nevis jacket.   It was the largest size they made, and I bought it via mail-order as a hopeful punt.   Needless to say, it wasn’t big enough, and it’s been in the wardrobe ever since.   Well – guess what – I tried it on tonight, and it fits.  Still a little snug, and I doubt I’d get anthing more than a base layer under it without it being tight rather than snug, but it does zip up – whereas 6 years ago it was 3 inches adrift of zipping…   To say this left me rather happy is something of an understatement!!

And finally for now, I bought some warm-up cream – anything to save the off-chance of the odd tweaked muscle here and there.   I love the smell of Belgian Knee-Warmers in the morning, it smells like Pro….







Over-Thinking things…

Well – i’ve had a day off today – spent it catching up with all the “domestic” stuff plus a little side project with photography. I’m a moderator on a photography Forum (yes, there is a life outside of Blogging, MFP, Garmin Connect and the riding the Bike…) and last year I decided to mark my Birthday with a “Travelling Camera” thread – I boxed up a plastic fantastic Holga film camera, 5 rolls of film and a bunch of prepaid return envelopes for the film. I then called for volunteers to shoot some pictures on film – a new experience for some of the members smile Anyway – to cut things short, the second roll of film finally popped through the letterbox yesterday – so I just HAD to develop and scan the pictures, didn’t I laugh

To be honest though, I’d had three pretty tough (for me) days on the bike – I’ve been trying to up my mileage, and the last three days have seen me manage 92 miles – not bad for someone who was averaging maybe 7-8 miles a day last August!

Anyway, while I was waiting for the negatives to dry, I spent a while on the computer, going over my calorie burn figures etc. and had a little bit of a scary thought. I’ve been booking down the calorie burn from the Garmin, as an addition to the figure given to me for food rations by MFP. The problem is, as I understand it, the Garmin’s figure is the TOTAL # of kcals burned in that 105 minutes. Which means If I add in this total to MFP I’m double-counting my BMR for that 105 minutes. It’s not been over critical, as frankly, I’ve not been eating back most of the exercise calories – however – as the time on the bike is increasing, as is the number of kcals burned, obviously i’m going to have to begin to do so – otherwise i’m going to end up with the dreaded “bonk” 40 miles from home…

Also, it helps explain the “hole” in my figures – I’d calculated my food shortfall calories, added in my riding calories, totalled the figures up each month and divided by 3500 – the figure my Dr. told me constituted a lb. of body fat. And whaddya know – I was losing a bit less than I should have all the time. However, re-visiting the figures with the “BMR Adjustment” applied, and the overall accuracy improved quite substantially. At the moment, I’m not going to worry about this – it’s quite a chunk of extra math/spreadsheet work, but as the miles increase, and the time on the bike goes up, the “buggeration factor” will become more material.

To put a few figures on it – yesterday’s ride was 1h45m – and booked as 2116 kcal. My BMR per the MFP tools is 2239kcal/day or (2239/(24*60)=1.55486kcal / minute – or 163 kcal for the ride duration. So – I should have booked the ride as 1953 kcals instead.

So In summary: What We have learned today:

  1. It was sunny and dry, and I should have gone out on the bike.
  2. Old School film takes too long to dry, and leaves me too much time to think about things.
  3. I need to keep busier, or I end up over-thinking things. laugh