Below you'll find our currently featured blog article, plus links to our entire collection of posts organized into the following categories:
This collection of blog articles addresses topics such as indoor cycle training techniques, correct hydration, how to setup your exercise or stationary bike and biometric information on some of the rides we offer. We even have a thought provoking series of posts that looks at cycling from the perspective of Chinese medicine.
By Gary J. Hawkins, Founder Ride Fit™
The other day a potential customer asked whether the Ride Fit series of indoor cycle training videos can help you loose weight. It would have been simple just to answer "yes" but it's not quite that straightforward. Doing one thing in isolation is not going to help you loose and sustain weight loss - you need to adopt a more holistic approach to be successful.
Now I'll state clearly for the record that while I'm a doctor, I'm a Doctor of Philosophy and not medicine. Thus, the information provided below is based on common sense, a little reading and the inspirational experience of a good friend of mine, Mike, who has dropped 65lbs in just over a year. He's now back at his target weight and feeling much healthier for it.
Before noting some of my observations about weight loss, and in particular highlighting the success factors relating to my friend's experience, let me mention one word - MODERATION, and follow it with a second word, BALANCE. Whatever you do, do it in moderation and do it with balance. In simple terms this translates to things like:
While it's almost impossible not to have heard about some of the hundred's of different weight loss programs out there, at the end of the day sustained weight loss revolves around the fairly simple concept of burning more calories during the day than you take in. If you do this, your body has to burn energy to make up the difference. Burning up energy can reduce your fat reserves, which in turn reduces your weight. Simple concept!
You basically burn calories in three main ways. Firstly, you burn calories just by being alive - even when you're lying down. This is called Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) and accounts for approximately 60% of the calories burned by an average person. Secondly there is dietary thermogenesis. Described as meal-induced heat production, these are the calories burned in the process of eating, digesting, absorbing and using food. This accounts for about 10% of the calories you burn in a day. Finally, there are calories burned during any type of physical activity. This could range from picking up a pencil (not too many calories burned here) to undertaking your favorite Ride Fit virtual cycling workout exercising on your stationary bike or road bike/turbo-trainer combination (perhaps a very respectable 400 to 800 calories depending on your chosen workout routine).
It is possible to estimate your body's average daily caloric intake to maintain your current body weight for your gender, height, age and activity level. An example calorie calculator can be found the Mayo Clinic website. There are lots of calorie counters out there and the answers you'll get from each will all be a little different but the important thing is these tools give you a starting point. Depending on your personal circumstances this number typically ranges between 1800 to 2500 calories per day. Once you have an idea of this number then you can estimate your required caloric input to start reducing weight. In rough terms, you must burn approximately 3500 calories more than your body requires over a period of time too loose 1lb of fat. Since, as a rule of thumb you should not eat below 1200 calories/day if female and 1600 calories/day if male, it's pretty obvious that if you have to burn this many extra calories to shed just one pound of fat you're not going to do this quickly.
Now some people still might be thinking that weight loss can simply be achieved by eating less. While technically correct, it is far from ideal. Exercise plays an important role in maintaining a healthy body, and it makes it possible to create the required calorie deficit without starving your body and consequently slowing your body's metabolism. As I've ready noted, indoor cycling is a great form of cardiovascular exercise and can burn around 400 - 800 calories for an hour of exercise. There are also some other great cardio workouts available and Mike started to exercise 30 to 40 minutes every day and used a wide variety of methods to ensure he did not get bored.
Like most people, Mike and I have smart phones - we also both use iPads for works. You hopefully already know that playing your Ride Fit videos on either device is a great way of taking your Ride Fit workouts wherever you need them. However, either type of device can also help you in other ways. One way is through apps providing calorie tracking and progress monitoring. Two great apps are Lose It! and myfitnesspal. Both are available for the Apple and Android platforms. Both make tracking your calorific input from food, and your calorie burn from exercise, quick and relatively easy. Are they perfect - no! Are they 100% accurate - no! However, they are accurate enough to help you start reaching your goals. In addition, these apps sometimes offer other helpful features like social media integration so you can share your success with friends, and even motivational advice.
My personal favorite of these two apps is myfitnesspal. One of the things I like about this app is the nutritional guidelines and analysis relating to the food you eat. Not only can you see if your carbs, fat and protein intake are on track but also your sugar. High levels of sugar are present in so many foods today and your body is not ideally equipped to process it. Further, regarding weight loss, eating food with too much sugar results in your body burning the sugar rather than the fat you want to get rid of and also makes you tired, hungry and wanting to eat more. The ability to track sugar intake has allowed me to identify and reduce the intake a number of high sugar foods from my diet like bread, ketchup, salad dressing, canned fruit, peanut butter, soups, cereals and non-diet soda.
Well we've talked briefly about weight loss, calorific input, a balanced diet, exercise and some of the weight loss applications that can help you. To round out the more holistic approach I mentioned at the beginning of this article, a great place to start might be Dr. Oz's 100 Weight Loss Tips. Some of my favorites are:
Well, hopefully this gives you some basic information about weight loss and why a balanced diet and exercise are important in achieving your weight loss goals. Please remember to consult with your doctor before embarking on any weight loss program or practicing any new exercise regime.
Tags: weight loss, help me loose weight, how to loose weight, weight loss fast, weight loss exercise, weight loss tips, healthy weight loss.