Nutritional adjustments were spot-on; Excellent training ride yesterday.
My past few blogs have focused on some of the unique challenges that often arise in the late stages of a fat loss diet. Eating below maintenance is especially demanding when you’re already very lean (for men, I’m talking about below 8% body fat) and also pushing yourself hard athletically.
In Tuesday’s blog I discussed how important it is to listen to your body (see “All calories are not created equal; First progress photo of 2015“), and heeding that truism is especially vital for me right now.
Having said that, I am very conservative when it comes to making adjustments to my diet and training. I tend to favor small changes at first, and I only break out the big guns when I feel that I have no other choice. That’s why, for example, earlier this week I elected to try minor (and temporary) tweaks to my carbohydrate intake, rather than go with a full-on refeed right out of the gate.
The litmus test for the macronutrient adjustments came yesterday morning in the form of a 89 kilometer/55 mile solo training ride with around 2,000 feet elevation. I wrote in yesterday’s blog that if that training ride didn’t go well, it would be time for a refeed day.
I’m pleased to report that the ride went extremely well. The temporary tweaks to my diet clearly did the trick, because I felt great during the entire 55 mile ride. I consumed a Clif bar between breakfast and the start of the ride, and during the ride I only required a single GU energy gel as intra-ride nutrition. I had no issues with bonks or lack of energy, and actually felt stronger as the ride went on.
The absolutely beautiful–albeit windy–weather conditions made for a very enjoyable ride:
My average speed was 21.1 mi/h (34 km/h), and my NP was 229 watts (Zone 3/Tempo) for 2:36:42. I did several hard (but not maximal) efforts of various lengths on the ride, and felt extremely solid during each one. My recovery after those efforts was surprisingly quick, too. Apart from a forced short stop for road construction, I did not rest on this ride.
After the ride I downed my usual recovery shake, the always awesome Ultimate Recovery Smoothie, and I even treated myself to an extra tablespoon of natural peanut butter (which I shared with Captain Sonny Powerjaws).
After a hard effort like that, I knew I needed to keep the carbs coming throughout the rest of the day. For Meal #4 I duplicated Meal #1, and had a big bowl of oatmeal along with a banana for a total of 11/94/6 (P/C/F). That hit the spot! For Meal #5 I had salmon, brown rice and peas.
This morning I’m feeling very good! The best part? I’m down nearly a full pound. 🙂