It’s time to get real! Lets talk about your abs, are they ripped or rippled?
As I lay quietly down last night, I begin to think about when I should start my pre-season workouts. And like every year, I’ve been noticing that I’ve put on a warming layer of fat. I’m guessing that some of you are having similar thoughts.
These ideas were prompted by an article I read about Danielson and coach Crawford in the latest issue of Velonews. In which Tom was put on a diet in the pre-season. He lost something like 20 lbs prior to his 2003 season. So I wonder, should I also drop my extra fat before the season starts? Right now, I’m about 15 lbs greater then optimal weight (4-5% fat).
So lets put some of this is perspective. We quibble over the 100g or 110g seatposts and additional 50g hub weight. But my extra 15 lbs, being around 6800g is by far the cheapest part to upgrade. Or is it?
How do I loose weight off the motor? Well, my diets are very controlled. I weight my foods, and attempt to accurately estimate caloric outputs during daily operations and workouts. Obviously I pay close attention to nutritional requirements during this time. So what is the cost of this upgrade?
The cost of this is obvious to us. For me, I’m always hungry. No going out for lunch or dinner. Water… and not so much flavored drinks. And in the off-season, fruits and veggies are hard to get fresh. All of this makes additional stressors to deal with. And then there is the dreaded journal, keeping track of every calorie. Weighing every gram of food, and measuring every drop of liquid (except water). Damn this sucks. The expense of that added fat is put into mental anguish. Don’t think it’s free.
So is it worth it? Well, the current going rate for good bike equipment is about $1/g. So 15 lbs is about $6000 out of my pocket. Ok, money wise, I can’t afford to NOT to loose weight. How about the mental cost.
My brain is only capable of so much. Can a diet in the pre-season cause premature burnout? Yes. That’s a risky issue, BUT there is an off set benefit to the mental drudgery of diet. That is the feeling of light and fast. Seeing those deeply buried veins pop out of your legs, and flying up those hills as fast as that last girl you made a pass at. Being lean and mean puts some power back into our primal instincts. We don’t just want to race, we want to CRUSH and DESTROY the rest of the field. This is good mental health. Take for example Danielson; he went from average foe, to “get out of his way before he runs you off Mt. Washington”. Mentally, he’s the KOM, this is good. My typical early season race is more like, "Oh. F#$% this hurts... this sucks", not really the killer attitude.
So what’s the conclusion? I don’t know. I wish I had more experience with early season diets. It seems like a good idea, but I think the decision is up to my girlfriend. Is she willing to stay home and eat chicken feed with me, instead of going out?
Your input would be appreciated on this subject.