Advice on getting into shape

I am rather frustrated right now…

I’ve been riding for about 7 months… One of my goals with riding was to lose weight… When I started riding I was floating between 230 and 235… Now, a half a year later, and I am floating between 230 and 235… (I cleaned up my diet too… I stopped drinking soda’s and tried to generally eat more healthy…)

Two days ago I rode the Flume Trail in Tahoe. Very beautiful ride… I have heard that people like to do it on cokers, so I thought that I should be able to do ok on my 24" muni…

Well, it kicked my butt… It’s now Monday and my legs are still really stiff and sore. I can’t imagine how people would do that ride on cokers (tho watching Terry’s new video gives me some clues…)

I try to ride a half hour to an hour every weekday, and do a longer ride on the weekends… I’ve done 4 somewhat long muni rides (10+ miles) recently and all of them have kicked my butt…

So, I am looking for ways to get into better unicycling shape… Do I just need to keep going at it and hope things come around eventually? Should I try to change my routine some? Do I just have unrealistic expectations? How did you guys progress?



maybe take less food intake, my athletic coaches tell me to not just stuff yourself until your about to pop. also try to ride in the morning before you eat breakfast beacause that burns energy from your fat and not the food you just ate. other than that it seems like your doing alot of riding and keep it up.:slight_smile:

muscle is heavier than fat…

Muscle is heavier than fat. That could be part of it.

For me at least, the unicycle weight loss plan has worked.

When I started riding in June 2006, I weighed about 178. I now weigh 159.

I usually ride between 2 and 4 miles per day over hilly terrain. When I feel like I can easily cover the route, I change it around a bit. The weight loss seemed to come faster after I changed from a 24" to a 700c (29") in February. I’m not sure why that would be an issue.

When I ride in the morning, it’s usually before breakfast.

I haven’t really figured out the diet thing, but I try to avoid anything with high fructose corn syrup (it’s in almost everything, unfortunately). I am also eating more protein than usual. I rarely drink alcohol. I also eat smaller meals and more of them.

Hope that helps. Keep it up.


About not losing weight after 7 months is probally because you’ve built much more muscle, which you probally know weighs 3 times more than fat. I’m sure after a while you won’t be gaining muscle so fast so you’ll begin losing weight. Good Luck!

Yo Keld! That’s a lot of great riding my hats off to you! You’re very motivated which is so important! I was wondering the EXACT SAME thing after I had been riding for about 4 months–I wondered why I was still breathing hard on only moderate trails, and not losing weight; I wanted to trim my waist a bit and lose the “love handles” haha!

Well, at about the 5th month the weight started to just come off and my stamina went way up. Now after about 1.5 years I’m afraid to miss even a day, feeling I’d risk losing all the gains I’ve made!

Just keep at it and I’m sure you will see the results you want! Cutting out those sodas was a good idea, and improving your diet. Just don’t push yourself too hard.:smiley:

I’ve you’ve been doing a lot of riding, its likely that your body composition has changed even though you’re still the same weight. (eg. lost weight but gained muscle). To get in better unicycling shape, just keep riding. If a ride kicks your ass, do it a few more times and it will get much easier (and you’ll get more fit). I also like to cross train with running and weights.

If weight loss is your concern, I’ll share with you my strategy.

  1. Get a journal and write down EVERYTHING you eat and how many calories it contains. This will require some research about portion size and the caloric content of food.

  2. Figure out how many calories you burn (google is your friend, look for BMR calculators)

  3. write down all your activities for the day and how many calories you burned doing them (again google is your friend).

  4. Substract calorie in from calories burned to figure out your net gain or loss.

If you do this accurately, you’ll be in control of the direction of your weight. If forces you to learn about the foods you’re taking in and it forces you to be accountable to yourself.

Very simplistically, you need to use more calories than you consume. There are two obvious ways to achieve that:

  • Use more
  • Consume less [/LIST]

    If you simply consume less, your metabolism will slow down. So that means that you need to keep your exercise rate up.

    Building up your strength is building up your muscles. Muscles are high maintenance, so they burn calories even when you are resting.

    With vigorous excercise, you only get into the “weight loss zone” after 20 minutes or so.

    If you exercise hard, you continue to burn off calories for a while after you finish.

    I lost a lot of weight a few years ago by:

  • Cutting out alcohol
  • Having no puddings or sweet snacks
  • Riding hard for an hour or more 3 or 4 times a week. [/LIST] I have put some of it back on recently by [LIST=1]
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Having puddings and sweet snacks
  • Hardly riding at all. [/LIST]
  • Me too.

    I felt that I wasn’t losing weight despite unicycling almost daily.

    I started Karate. I go 2 or 3 times a week. It’s strengthened my legs and vastly improved my stamina and fitness. (Not to mention the fact that the weather has been rubbish for unicycling this summer so I haven’t been unicycling so much this summer)

    You left out a key part of your strategy:

    1. Ignore all this stuff for six months, then schedule a huge, intimidating ride that you know you’ll have to force yourself to train for.

    Yes, that’s the “scare myself into fitness strategy”

    A good example: Sign up for Ride the Lobster where you know you’ll be competing against the best unicyclists in the world.

    Thank you all for you input.

    I think part of my frustration is that I was a cross country/track athelte in college. Back then I was at about 155 lbs and less than 5% body fat. At that time I was eating 8000 - 10000 calories a day and burning them all… I remember what being in shape felt like…

    But now I am older, and many years of desk jobs and far less activity has slowed all that down. I don’t expect to get back down to the 150’s, but I would love to lose about 50 lbs…

    As for scheduling a scary ride… that sounds, well… scary… :wink:

    And as for RTL, well… um… At least let me get a road uni first… :open_mouth:


    I am in shape, round is a shape!!

    I should just avoid the scale

    After a week of sobriety, a lot of riding and weight lifting, eating vegetables, the good low cal. life, I couldn’t resist stepping on the super market scale. Even though I know squatting (a weight exercise), makes me put on weight. So of course I feel bad. I weigh 186, same as last week. Better then the 200 when I started to ride 4 months ago, but my heart sinks to see a whole week doesn’t give me a “better” number. I think I will just quit the damn scale. It is a crappy useless tool.
    Fortunately, I have a better one. My lovely tape measure. It says my belly is 39.3", almost 1/2 inch better then last week. So I have in fact lost fat and gained muscle. What is needed is a better way of measure. Here is a link to my favorite online condition calculator.
    This uses a combination of belly size and body weight to give a much truer picture then body weight alone.
    My diet tips are to buy a large variety of fresh veggies. Microwave up a big bowl of them with some fish. Make this the mainstay of daily food consumtion.
    You can really stuff yourself with veggies, not feel hungrey, and still remain low cal.
    Tip 2 is to eat a variety of fruit mixed with no fat cottage cheese before bed. Cottage cheese is one of the slowest to digest proteins, a favorite body builder technique.

    I’m in a similar situation, although weight loss wasn’t my intention, it would just be a nice side benefit of riding. For me I think it has taken awhile just to develop some of the baseline muscles to do the sport (after 5 months of riding!). So now that I can actually ride up some steep hills, I’m in a better position to start losing weight. I’ve maybe only lost 5 lbs. At almost 40, I think it just takes alot longer than your comparison to 20 years old back in the day. Quality of food is a big one, don’t eat junk, it’s good for nothin. You mentioned the long rides are kickin your butt, so there’s your answer of what you need to do more of. Instead of riding everyday during the week, add another long ride during the week then take the day after (or day before) off. The long rides are where you will burn alot of energy/calories and build more endurance/muscle. Don’t feel bad because something is hard for you on a 24 muni that is a joyride for some people on cokers. Being 230, you’ve got to work very hard in comparison to some 150 lb guy on a coker just bouncing along the trail. Just keep at it and give it time, and stay hungry. The weight will drop off, and remember to drink a bunch of water all the time.

    Hmm, I wonder who you might be referring to, haha! :stuck_out_tongue:

    If you have gained muscle but stayed the same weight that actually may be good. If you increase your % of muscle that will raise your metabloism. Keep at the riding and improved diet and the pounds will start to come off. I think it is important to be active every day.

    Always eat breakfast, it raises your metabolism for the day. Also exersise before breakfast, that raises you metabolism even more.

    Eat 5 or 6 meals a day (again, increases metabolizm). Stay away from ‘low fat’ or ‘non-fat’ foods (non-fat milk and plain yogurt/cottage cheese are OK), most of it has tons of sugar added to it. No trans fats. Lots of fiber (helps your body disolve fat). No midnight snacks. I noticed a big change when I stopped eating by around 7 PM. I had to make sure I had a good sized lunch and afternoon snack in addition do a 6:30ish dinner so I wouldn’t get hungry later that night.

    Try to ride every day. To increase your leg strength w/o hills ride standing up, SIF, or SIB for long distances. I commute on my uni and if I’ve left too late to uni, I ride my road b*ke and I make sure I throw some exersises throughout the day (sissor kicks, double leg lifts, single leg squats, high rep push-ups, etc).

    long rides are good for you but for weight lose it is better to do multiple rides in one day. the reason for this is that you metabolizm increases when you exercise but also stays high for a while after a workout. this means if you ride 10 miles a day but do if 1 mile at a time with 30 minute breaks in between you will burn more fat.

    So you want to lose weight huh? Well I don’t know what other people have told you or anything but If you actually want to lose weight your gonna have to completely change the way you eat.

    Now I’m not gonna tell you what foods to eat because its already pretty clear what foods you need to take in and which ones you need to phase out. So what I will tell you is the secret to losing weight.

    Now this might or might not makes sense to you but I dont care what you think because its the truth. If your body is only eating 3 times a day it is only processing food 3 times a day. What your aiming for is to cut down your portions of food that your eating in meals and try eating every 2 hours or so. I know it sounds bad but it works. When your body is getting food all the time your metabolism is gonna work overtime and keep processing the food no matter what. That “basically” how it works. There are other web sites and trainers that can explain it to you better so if you would like to know more the information is out there.

    Just incase you dont believe me I know other athletes who eat every 30 minutes and they have less body fat than a emo girl.

    So I hope this helps you and I know some might not believe this but its the truth and sometimes people just don’t want to hear it. It would also behoove you if you maybe did a morning work out like they said.

    It’s true that you should eat more frequently than three times a day, but it only works if you actually reduce the number of calories you’re taking in.

    The reason it works is that if you wait until you’re hungry, really hungry, the tendency is to gorge and take in way too many calories. Also, big meals keep your stomach large, which then in turn will require another large meal to feel full again. Smaller meals cause your stomach to shrink and you need less to feel full.

    …but it still really boils down to calories taken in vs. calories burned.

    Yes, very cogent point! Common sense dictates that if you simply reduce your daily intake of calories, you will lose weight; if you also add a regular, rigorous exercise program, the weight will come off much faster!

    With the amount of riding that I do almost daily–muni and cokering-- i don’t worry about indulging in my big slice of 7 layer, all-chocolate cake every other day! :stuck_out_tongue: Maybe I should be more worried about contracting diabetes from the massive amount of sugar it has in it! :astonished: I can’t help it it’s soooo good!:smiley: