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Dogmama
08-22-2002, 07:58 PM
I thought this was another flash-in-the-pan diet, but more people (Christiane Northrup, Andrew Weil) have embraced a low carb diet. Has anybody tried to do a low carb diet and maintain their cycling routine? I'm finding that I have much less stamina than when I eat carbs. Maybe I just need to reduce my cycling & wait until my body readjusts? Or is this bunk?

I want to ride a century this Fall, so I have to do some serious training. I've bonked before & it wasn't fun!

Thanks for any opinions, ideas or info!

Kim

Juliette
08-23-2002, 12:55 PM
A low-carb diet did not work for me. A couple of years ago, I went on the Atkins Diet. The first two weeks where carbs are severely limted (like 20 grams per day), I felt just horrible all day and it got worse when I exercised. I would try to mtn bike or hike and I thought I would collapse. My whole body felt like it was suddenly made out of lead.

I tried this plan because some people have reported losing like 11 pounds in the first two weeks. I lost 3. Eleven pounds would have been worth feeling miserable, but 3 was not.

Low-carb diets may work for some active people, but maybe you need to work into it slowly. Also, if I were to try it again, I would do something less restrictive like Carbohydrate Addicts or Sugar Busters.

Mitexi
09-02-2002, 08:30 AM
My husband has tried low carb diets in the past and says they leave you with very little to no energy and he always felt rundown. Definitely not the way to go if you are even semi-active.

Balanced diet still seems to be the way to go. Can benefit from eating less carbs, but still necessary for energy.

cycling@42
09-03-2002, 04:55 AM
Several years ago I did the PR Nutrition program. I was teaching aerobics at the time and can say I never had a problem with depleted energy, after the first week or so. The program follows a 40/30/30 diet plan so you are restricted with the carbs but you still get them. I thought it was a great program. After that "initial period" I really believe I was feeling much better...more energy, clearer thinking, reduced body fat. Now, I haven't seen any ads in fitness magazine lately but I know there are books for sale about the program. I was around 35 when I did this. Weight has never been a problem for me. I'm 5' 5" and 113 pounds. However, I am not all that lean. I think the plan did decrease body fat. Then I got married, had a baby, didn't want to "plan" my eating that severely. Got lazy I guess. Good luck finding the program that works for you. If you really think about the way these low carb diets work, it does make sense.

spin baby
07-16-2003, 08:47 PM
Low carbs? Well.... I have basicly eliminated the white death from my diet such as sugar, flour, rice and potatoes for over a year and I average 250K a week.

I did hit the wall energy wise one morning last week, but I had been riding hard on an empty stomach and it is very hot here now, so lots of sweating. I think my electrolytes got screwed up and I had no glucose left to draw on.

My biking mentor suggested I eat carbs right before my ride and to drink gatoraid or some such while I was riding to give myself something to draw on. I tried it and it worked although it took a couple of days to get a glucose reserve in my body, but things are tickedy boo now.

My diet constists of fruit, veggies, dairy and protein in the form of meat and nuts. Gone are bladder infections, yeast infrections, heartburn, acid reflux, bloating (other than moontime), and constant burping up of the last 5 things I ate.

aka_kim
07-17-2003, 12:42 PM
Just saw an article today that says Lance Armstrong tries to get 70 percent of his daily calories from carbohydrate, 15 percent from fat, and 15 percent from protein. So if you wanna ride like Lance....

I for one could never go low carb -- what... no potatoes, no rice, no bread, no pasta, and most importantly, no beer! Never.

P.S. Spin Baby, just wanted to say I love the Okanagan valley. I've visited twice for Ironman Canada (as a spectator), and really liked the scenery, the people, the orchards and wineries, and hiking the KVR. I envy you having that trail right in your backyard.

spin baby
07-17-2003, 06:32 PM
Hey Kim... : )

No beer? Now who said anything about giving up beer? ; )

The thing about Lance is... he's a guy... and that means an entirely different physiology to me. Their metabolism burns way faster I believe, so they can eat way more carbs than us fems.

But, like I said, I have taken to eating carbs only before I ride as I do find that I can "carb out" really easy.

The Ironman. LOL. Takes the city over for that day. You don't do anything where you have to cross main street in a car let me tell ya. Takes for flippin ever. But it is an amazing thing to watch the athletes.

Trek420
07-17-2003, 08:13 PM
"basicly eliminated the white death from my diet such as sugar, flour, rice and potatoes for over a year and I average 250K a week. "

I tried low carb, lost inches and some weight. I felt fine, felt lighter, endurance was good...but then I had my body fat tested. It wasn't the dunk test and not 100% acurate but....I'd added 5% body fat too my already not-exactly-lean frame because the inches I lost were all muscle.

Not good.

So I agree with you I'm trying to limit the sugar, no simple carbohydrates, complex is fine, whole grains etc but skip the processed stuff and reduce fat.

My goal is to weigh what my drivers license says I weigh ;-)

"My diet constists of fruit, veggies, dairy and protein in the form of meat and nuts. Gone are bladder infections, yeast infrections, heartburn, acid reflux, bloating (other than moontime), and constant burping up of the last 5 things I ate."

Sounds like a good plan

Trek420
07-17-2003, 08:16 PM
"The thing about Lance is... he's a guy... and that means an entirely different physiology to me. Their metabolism burns way faster I believe, so they can eat way more carbs than us fems."

I read that the riders need to eat 9,000 calories a day on the Tour. Hey, if we raced our bikes for a living we could pretty much eat anything we want too!

Irulan
07-18-2003, 08:25 AM
when I"ve totally limited carbs, two things have happened.

The bad thing is the total lack of energy. The good thing is breaking the craving for carbs.

Nowadays, I just try to limit carbs excpet when riding hard, then all bets are off. I find I tend to bloat up when I eat a lot of carbohydrate also. For me it's the snacking carbs that I have to force myself to avoid. I've been trying to stick with protien and fruit.

Irulan

Terry
07-19-2003, 04:16 PM
This low-carb thing is really something...the way I see it (and I see it all day everyday from training people for a living) is, everyone metabolizes DIFFERENTLY, yet, we all have the same, basic machinery. I think you have to figure out for yourself HOW you metabolize. It's the old GIGO formula: garbage in/garbage out. What you take in on a daily basis is what you should burn on a daily basis. If you are very active on Monday and do nothing on Tuesday, adjust your intake and balance the meals accordingly. Burn what you use and use good fuel. You've body will tell you whether bread bloats you or beer floats you!

I could tell you all stories, reference diets, books, ect all day long, but, the bottom line is always the same; if you leave out a food group, you'll eventually pay the price. If you eat more than you burn, you'll gain weight. Cutting back too far on carbs will eventually lead to the brain getting fuzzy, the muscles aches, less energy ect.

40/30/30 plans are a great way to balance meals and get your needs met...as far as celebs endorsing diets, that's been going on FOREVER and I avoid them like the plague!
Terry

spin baby
07-19-2003, 04:52 PM
Hey Terry.....

Good points.

I researched lots before I decided to eliminate the majority of WHITE carbs from my diet, and for sure..... if you don't know about what vitamins and minerals you are elininating and make sure you are getting these from another food group or natural suppliment, one should not dabble.

I get the majority of carbs from eating alot of fruit, but even with that.... I can tell when my body is getting low, and I then have to eat some heavy bread or a big bowl of oatmeal. But, I wait till my body sends the message.

Up to this point, I have never been able to define where the line is for me around what is to much or to little carb, and I don't have the time or the initiative to do the math around food to make sure I am in the 40/30/30 zone. I spent tooooo much of my life obsessing over food and body image... and now I just want to live hard, ride hard and have no worries. ; )

ChainsOflove
07-19-2003, 06:26 PM
I am a sugar-holic and I can't stay on no-carbs for long. Plus I get wicked constipated! 40-30-30 is good but a pain to prepare all those meals and snacks.

am trying to forget about 'diets' and concentrate on more riding and exercise. Diets just hammer your self esteem.

spin baby
07-19-2003, 08:00 PM
Diet. That four letter word.

Dogmama
07-19-2003, 08:12 PM
Diets, by definition, don't work. You have to change your way of eating for life. And I don't think people can stick to a low/no carb diet for life.

On a low carb diet,I get really cranky. I'm prone to depression. Carbs help increase serotonin levels. Gimme my bagel and nobody gets hurt!

I stick to whole grains, fruits, etc. and feel pretty good. If I start binging on junk carbs, my lupus flares. So, I have an automatic "stop sign" in my body.

A lady I work with is doing Atkins and has lost quite a bit of weight but doesn't look good. Drawn, pale and flabby. She salivates at my morning bran muffin (made at home, of course, with organic ingrediants...no kidding). Plus, she's really moody. No thanks.

In another five years, it will be something else. Maybe the cave man diet, or the whole-food-don't-cook-anything diet.

"Ever eat a piece of petrified wood? Some parts are edible, you know!"

spin baby
07-19-2003, 09:16 PM
Originally posted by Dogmama
"Ever eat a piece of petrified wood? Some parts are edible, you know!"

LOL


I like your "horn broke... see finger" as well.

This discussion got me wondering about specific nutrition for cyclists... and I came across these that are an interesting read for anyone who wants to maximize fat reduction or training output.

http://www.cptips.com/cmplxcb.htm#cl

http://www.cptips.com/protein.htm#hiprot

I am going to have to read it a couple of times to figure out what I need to change about how I am eating... but I can see a couple of places where I have shot myself in the lead pedal foot.

Terry
07-19-2003, 11:15 PM
Changing the way you eat is considered a "lifestyle change" or "lifestyle choice"...call it what you may, but it all takes "practice". It shouldn't be THE focus of your being UNLESS you are told by a medical professional that if you don't change the way you eat, you're gonna wind up self-destructing...

As far as 30/40/40 thing goes, don't sweat it. Just try to eat SOMETHING healthy from each food group each time you sit and consume. I agree, giving up processed foods is a great way to start changing the eating pattern--for many, it IS a lifestyle change. Sorry, but you DO have to prepare when you make a choice to change something about yourself...as in, make time to shop and prepare your nutition.

I always tell clients to just do their best for 2 days...just 2 days of eating as healthy as possible. The third day, just screw up and see how you feel (usually yuky). If you can tackle the "d" word for two days at a time, you'll wind up on the "good foot" 4 days out of 7. I'll take those odds for a start!

The Atkins thing...every single trainer and nutitionist I talk to just shake their heads in sorrow. Yeah sure, you can run your car on no oil 90 miles and it will make it from point A to B, but at what cost?? I think Atkins died from a fall because he didn't have enough carbs in him to function! He was an nut that believed that if you were diabetic and followed his diet , you could give up injections/insulin tablets. I heard him say it on a talk show just before he died. The body machine cannot survive on his theory because there is too much evidence that proves other wise. Why does loosing 10 lbs have to feel so bad and screw up your body chemistry make it right? I think Atkins dieting is soooo destructive. Also, those folks who tell me, "Oh I do a modified form of Atkins" or "I just do Atkins for a few days"...you're really not doing more than a crash diet...you'd do better with a 24 hour fast.

Sorry if I lecture...it's your body.
Terry

Dogmama
07-20-2003, 05:23 AM
Terry,

I, for one, really appreciate the words of wisdom from somebody in the field. So, please, keep lecturing!!

Your comments about the Atkins diet are really right-on. Especially, why does losing 10 pounds have to screw up your body so badly?

Yeah, it does take time to prepare good healthy meals. But it doesn't have to be a gourmet feast each time. There is a huge website http://allrecipes.com/ that has lots of recipes that have even been judged by the readers. I've acquired lots of new recipes that are good & fast (plus, you can print them out for a recipe card, scale down the quantities, etc.)

I, for one, think that making time for myself is worth it. It's a message that I give myself - I'm worth the extra 30-45 minutes to prepare a meal rather than going through the fast food drive through (I eat fast food about once every 5 years).

I've also found a little market that sells organic. Heaven! If you haven't had organic apples, melons, squash, even zucchini & lettuce, you're really missing out. It's hard to go back to a conventional, waxy apple once you've had a juicy crisp organic! After awhile, you can taste the chemicals - especially in root vegetables like carrots. Yeah, it costs a little more. But, like the beauty product, "I'm worth it."

hibiscus09
07-20-2003, 05:51 AM
I tried the Atkins diet once for 9 days (before I started cycling) and on day 9, I just decided I didn't care if it made me thinner or not -- I need to function. :D I've also tried a cyclical ketogenic diet & felt the same about that diet. You just eat like Atkins & then carb up on the weekend for a day and a half or so.

I just started cycling about a month ago & am trying to figure out how to adjust my diet to go along with cycling. My longest ride (yesterday) so far has been 25 miles. I know I need to up the carbs for longer rides.

Before cycling, I have been lifting & doing cardio at the gym on a diet that was 45%protein/30%carbs/25% fat. That worked well for lifting -- I'm 41 years old & my bodyfat is in the 14 to 15% range. I weigh 125 lbs.

Now, I need to figure out how many carbs I need to take in to support cycling. I've registered to do the MS150 in late September & definitely want to have proper nutrition for cycling a long distance. I'm still learning -- I'll check out the above links. I have no trouble eating healthy -- I just want to make sure I'm eating the correct ratios of carbs/proteins/fats to support cycling.

Dogmama -- I usually give myself a cheat meal once a week & I LOVE the Allrecipes site. If you want to be extra bad, check out the Almond Joy Cookies II. Those are lethal & extra yummy. :D

Irulan
07-20-2003, 07:47 AM
Originally posted by ChainsOflove
I am a sugar-holic and I can't stay on no-carbs for long. Plus I get wicked constipated! 40-30-30 is good but a pain to prepare all those meals and snacks.

am trying to forget about 'diets' and concentrate on more riding and exercise. Diets just hammer your self esteem.

Surely you are aware that you can get addicted to sugar?

I find that if I ignore the cravings they go away after a few days (for sugar/carbs) and then I can eat a healty amount instead of what ever I see to put in my mouth.

Irulan