January 10, 2014 by Amy B
Long before I was a runner, my sweat method of choice was the bicycle.
I spent quite a few summers doing long distance bike touring, which sparked my interest in cycling. Down in Detroit, I lived near a few state recreational areas which boasted of some pretty decent bike trails. (They don’t really compare to the trail systems I now live near up here in the great north, but for a city girl? They were sufficient to introduce me to mountain biking.)
I even worked at a bike shop one summer in college. I can’t say I came out of that job a bike mechanic whiz, but I probably knew more than the average bear. Since that time, all empty space in my brain has been saved for running stuff. And where I last left my car keys.
So we came home from Christmas holiday with a spanking new fluid trainer, which I’ve had quite a few opportunities to break in with our weather being pretty nasty – even too nasty for running outdoors. I mean, even I draw the line at “Real Feel of -30F.” (You should too, BTW.)
I’ll be honest: riding in place isn’t my favorite thing to do, but I can watch TV, work up a really good sweat (OMG I sweat so much on this thing – is that normal???) and burn a few extra calories to make up for the 3PM snack meltdown I have every day.
I even got this cool book tray that mounts on the handlebars that does a pretty decent job of holding my tablet or phone. I figure it will come in handy if I move the bike to a different room and don’t have the computer nearby for Hulu or Netflix (or missed episodes of Downton Abbey).
I haven’t been doing what I consider an excessive amount of riding – I probably average 30 minutes – but I am working on building leg strength, keeping my cadence up, and like I said, just getting a good sweat in everyday.
Plus, I’ve been seriously considering this race coming up in May, and I can’t even blame it on beer or anything.
So add in the 100 pushup app workouts (I just finished the 100 pushup one today!!), a run when the weather is decent, and that’s what I’ve been up to lately. I haven’t really seen the scale budge much in the past few weeks but have successfully managed to avoid the holiday weight gain I was really worried about. Even though I’m only down two pounds since we officially started this weight loss challenge, I am confident I’ve put on some muscle this winter, with which I’m totally more than okay.
Next phase of this winter training? Pull together a real cycling training program, keep a long run in my schedule at least every other weekend, and work on my core training, which is seriously lacking.