The fog of war (on fat).
It’s looking like the excess water I carried into the first few days of my cut is now gone (see yesterday’s blog, “New overnight bathroom PR set; What is lean mass?“). Last night I only got up once to urinate, which is my normal routine. This morning my scale weight was actually up a couple tenths of a pound over yesterday morning’s weight, so things have stabilized.
I mentioned in yesterday’s blog that all those overnight trips to the bathroom on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning didn’t leave me feeling groggy or tired yesterday. Well, I guess I was, in fact, in need of a little extra sleep: last night I went to bed at 8:30 PM, and I slept almost until 6:00 AM! Sleeping that late is almost unheard of for me. I usually wake up naturally every morning between 4:30 and 5:00 AM.
This is going to be a fairly aggressive cut. I’d like to lose an average of 2.5 pounds per week, which will put me at my goal weight of 155 pounds in eight weeks. Cutting this quickly will affect my power on the bike, but that will only be short-term. Once I return to maintenance-level calories I’ll be fine.
On that note, I have already felt the effects of my caloric reduction. On Tuesday’s ride I was feeling a bonk coming on, and had to consume an energy gel. The ride was fairly hard, but only 45 miles long. Normally on a 45 mile ride, even a pretty fast one, I would not require any food or energy gels. Also, towards the end of that ride I was feeling especially beat. The wind smacked me around through much of that ride (and I was solo), but normally I would not have been so spent.
Of course the hunger pangs that arise as meal times approach is something that we all deal with when cutting body fat. It’s not even the hunger pangs that bother me so much as the “fogginess”. I’m not eating low carb (or anything even close to low carb), but I am very sensitive to blood sugar fluctuations. As I get close to meal times I start to feel a little scatterbrained, and even cranky. Ah, the joys of cutting. 🙂
Reflecting on last year’s cut (starting January 2014), my performance on the bike actually improved–especially early on. The reason for the difference between this year and last year is simple: December 2013 I barely rode my bike, I sat around eating junk food and and I was quite out of shape when I started my cut (my FTP was an abysmal 243). This past December (2014) I ate above maintenance, but I was training hard and remained in excellent condition (my current FTP is 305). So my performance on the bike is massively stronger now compared to what it was at the start of my 2014 cut. Maintaining my current level of performance is nigh impossible without plenty of fuel…
… and that brings me to my next subject. I’m pressed for time and have to close this blog out, but I’ll get into it in tomorrow’s blog.