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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    160

    Body fat questions...

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    So I got measured at 21% with calipers, which seems about right. I did the math, and to get to 17 or 18% I need to lose about 7 lbs of fat.

    For those who have low bf, is it genetic? Do you have to work to maintain that #?

    All other things being equal, is the effort to get down to a "competative" bf worth it for racing, will 7 lbs alter my ability to climb? (Bikemomma, pink kona?)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    North Central Florida
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    3,387
    http://www.active.com/story.cfm?story_id=12207

    Runnergirl,

    Look at this article, it explains exactly how losing fat will help you climb.

    Nanci

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    160
    As with most cycling things, the article is fairly male specific (if I were a guy, my height weight ratio would place me as a top notch climber-clearly the formula doesn't translate).

    The mt. Bike chick website had an interesting article about anaorexia in female pros that discussed climbing vs. sprinting in women's races that was somewhat helpful, but still fairly detached from the level I am at now. I was hoping some ladies who have raced/are racing might have personal insight to share.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    On my bike
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    2,510
    You don't say how old you are, but 21% BF is pretty darn good!

    You need to make sure you don't lose muscle with the fat. Muscle burns lots more calories than fat. Nutrition is the key. If you're determined, you might want to start at fitday.com. You can log your daily food in & get an idea of your calories, fat & carb %, etc.
    To train a dog, you must be more interesting than dirt.

    Trek Project One
    Trek FX 7.4 Hybrid

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Albuquerque NM
    Posts
    15
    hi runnergirl - I dont know that my response will be a lot of help from a racing standpoint but I am a former bodybuilder and i generally keep my bodyfat pretty low year round. Im usually about 12 in my "off season" and 9 ish right now. For me the secret is moderation in eating year round and not letting it drift much higher. I do eat whatever I want once or twice a week and the rest of the week its fairly high protein, lo fat and moderate carbs. The challenge for me with cycling is making sure I get enough carbs to get me through the rides. I find that cycling definately has helped me keep the bodyfat low and I am able to eat more calories now that I am riding about 5 times a week (plus indoor cardio like the elliptical trainer). I know it sounds like a lot of sacrifice but keeping my weight and bodyfat down helps tremendously with pretty much any endurance type sport. I have a pic on yahoo member profiles under the name musclicious505 if you wanna see how about 7 ish percent looks on me. Im not a bodybuilder anymore but still compete now and then in figure contests and hope to try racing next summer.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,617
    Someone buy that girl an Oreo...


    Quote Originally Posted by Musclicious505
    hi runnergirl - I dont know that my response will be a lot of help from a racing standpoint but I am a former bodybuilder and i generally keep my bodyfat pretty low year round. Im usually about 12 in my "off season" and 9 ish right now. For me the secret is moderation in eating year round and not letting it drift much higher. I do eat whatever I want once or twice a week and the rest of the week its fairly high protein, lo fat and moderate carbs. The challenge for me with cycling is making sure I get enough carbs to get me through the rides. I find that cycling definately has helped me keep the bodyfat low and I am able to eat more calories now that I am riding about 5 times a week (plus indoor cardio like the elliptical trainer). I know it sounds like a lot of sacrifice but keeping my weight and bodyfat down helps tremendously with pretty much any endurance type sport. I have a pic on yahoo member profiles under the name musclicious505 if you wanna see how about 7 ish percent looks on me. Im not a bodybuilder anymore but still compete now and then in figure contests and hope to try racing next summer.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Albuquerque NM
    Posts
    15
    Thank you actually I find if I do have something I like each day the eating clean for the rest of the day is no problem. About 9:00 am every day its been strawberry pop tarts lately Its when you deprive yourself all the time that its bad...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
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    On my bike
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    How do you measure your body fat? Scale? Calipers? I'd like to know what mine is, but hear there is lots of variations between the different modalities.
    To train a dog, you must be more interesting than dirt.

    Trek Project One
    Trek FX 7.4 Hybrid

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    160
    I do use fitday-have for about a year now, and it is a great tool. I have a personal trainer who sets me up with weight training every few weeks, and he measured me with calipers. I plan on dropping 7 lbs, and having him check it again-that way it's consistent even if there's some error. The difficulty is that to lose I have to be around 1700 cals a day, while I burn 3000-4000. I ride 200 miles a week (1 long ride, 1 sprint work out, 1 interval workout, 1 race or race like group ride, 2 recovery rides, and 1 moderatly paced group ride). (BTW, this is all under the supervision of a coach) It's really tough getting all my nutrients in with so few calories to work with, not to mention timing eating around daily training.

    My sports medicine doc (also a cyclist-races on the same team) has strictly forbidden me to drop below 16 or 17% bf. According to him anything below 15% is risky and not helpful for an endurence athlete.

    Leah Goldstien is the best female climber in North America according to some, and she looks a lot like me size wise (google her for a pic). If she can outclimb male cat 1/2 racers at that size, it makes me wonder if the size obsession in racing that is common among male racers translates the same for women. I'm begining to think perhaps it's not, superlight women are not the first over the top, at least not from what I've seen.

    I'm going to try to get down around 17-18% (which is what the dr. said was an ok goal) by December or January, but as I'm continuing to train I won't know if weight is a factor in improvement at all, or if I would've seen the same results 5lbs heavier.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Off eating cake.
    Posts
    1,700
    My old gym had these kewl scales in the trainers' office that figured it out for you. I always wanted to know how they worked but kept forgetting to ask.
    Drink coffee and do stupid things faster with more energy.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,617
    Can you stretch out the goal for a slightly later date? That way, you could probably add back in a few more calories to maintain your muscles. As you know, one way to alter your body fat is to either lose fat, or gain muscle.

    Musclicious, just kidding about the oreos. I used to room with a fitness comopetitor, and her diet amazed me. Unfortunately, she hardly ever splurged, which made me feel terrible when I was eating ice cream!




    Quote Originally Posted by runnergirl
    I do use fitday-have for about a year now, and it is a great tool. I have a personal trainer who sets me up with weight training every few weeks, and he measured me with calipers. I plan on dropping 7 lbs, and having him check it again-that way it's consistent even if there's some error. The difficulty is that to lose I have to be around 1700 cals a day, while I burn 3000-4000. I ride 200 miles a week (1 long ride, 1 sprint work out, 1 interval workout, 1 race or race like group ride, 2 recovery rides, and 1 moderatly paced group ride). (BTW, this is all under the supervision of a coach) It's really tough getting all my nutrients in with so few calories to work with, not to mention timing eating around daily training.

    My sports medicine doc (also a cyclist-races on the same team) has strictly forbidden me to drop below 16 or 17% bf. According to him anything below 15% is risky and not helpful for an endurence athlete.

    Leah Goldstien is the best female climber in North America according to some, and she looks a lot like me size wise (google her for a pic). If she can outclimb male cat 1/2 racers at that size, it makes me wonder if the size obsession in racing that is common among male racers translates the same for women. I'm begining to think perhaps it's not, superlight women are not the first over the top, at least not from what I've seen.

    I'm going to try to get down around 17-18% (which is what the dr. said was an ok goal) by December or January, but as I'm continuing to train I won't know if weight is a factor in improvement at all, or if I would've seen the same results 5lbs heavier.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    61

    Ok

    I had to go lift some weights after looking at your pic You look great!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Albuquerque NM
    Posts
    15
    thank you for the comment - thats very kind - not all us bodybuilders look like scary amazons!!

    I have a personal trainer who does mine with calipers - the same person, the same calipers, the same sites at about the same time of day so it is as consistant as possible.

    As far as the recommendation from the doc regarding bodyfat - I know everyone is different and certainly they are the experts - but I have had no health problems related to low body fat and I find I am very rarely sick at all. I have read a lot about the benefits of a low calorie diet and longevity so there is that train of thought also. I have had my bone density done also because I know thats a concern and it seems to be fine. I find that I feel so much better physically and mentally this way - but again everyone is different.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    On my bike
    Posts
    2,510
    Quote Originally Posted by Musclicious505
    hi runnergirl - I have a pic on yahoo member profiles under the name musclicious505 if you wanna see how about 7 ish percent looks on me. Im not a bodybuilder anymore but still compete now and then in figure contests and hope to try racing next summer.
    Wow! You look fabulous! How often do you lift when you're riding 5X week?? Do you do splits or full body? I want your legs!
    To train a dog, you must be more interesting than dirt.

    Trek Project One
    Trek FX 7.4 Hybrid

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Albuquerque NM
    Posts
    15
    thank you - I guess that I feel just because some of us are in our forties we dont have to look it - or have trainers, or chefs or a ton of plastic surgery like the celebs to achieve it!

    I do splits - legs one day, back and biceps another, chest and tris another and then I train my shoulders seperately another day because they have always lagged. So I lift four times in seven days. I go to work pretty early in the am so I am done by 330 and then I go the gym, come home for a break and then get on the bike for about an hour and a half. The trick for me is to train my legs on a day when Im not riding cause it really takes it out of me. I was worried that I would lose leg size from the biking but I think that they are staying lean and have actually grown a tiny bit.

 

 

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