Monday, October 3, 2011

Racing Weight

Closing up the racing season, I've decided to try another approach to weight loss.  After loosing 60 pounds in 2010 using calorie counting and exercise, I've struggled with the last 20 in 2011.  I lost 7 pounds in the first few months of the year, but have been in a holding pattern since then.

I realized in the last several months, that my endurance sport activities were somewhat hindering my weight loss efforts.  I went looking for sound advice and found plenty of weight loss advice out there for those that are looking to get off the couch.  But not much to go on for those that are already working out 5+ hours per week.  I guess it's assumed that "those people" are already at an optimal weight.  Simply increasing my activity and lowering my calories is not sufficient at this point.

I knew that I need to "clean up" my diet, and was curious about timing my nutrition around my workouts.  I've been swimming and cycling more, and don't want to abandon my new interests.  How to continue training the way I want to, fuel nutritiously and adequately, and still loose body fat?  Enter Racing Weight by Matt Fitzgerald.

This book reads like a Runners World magazine.  There's plenty of science and cool athlete back stories.  Matt isn't asking me to never have another chocolate bar, or workout 12 hours a week.  It's about moderation, and about timing my clean fuel around my specific workouts.
The points system is used to assign points to high quality foods.  The goal is to get as many points as possible in a day.  The author allows for one "freebie" drink per day such as a soda or a beer, and also gives leeway for up to 3 cups of coffee per day, lightly sweetened of course.

The quick start guide has all the direction to make the necessary calculations needed to determine how many calories you burn in a day and the nutrition portion operates on a basic calorie deficit principle.  It is suggested that you count calories for the first 2 weeks to get your bearings, but the author writes to those that are already choosy about what goes in as fuel.  No need to get things down to the gnats eyebrow, here.

Unlike other "diet books," Racing Weight includes an amazing 8 week training program specific for your sport.  There is a separate chapter for runners, cyclists, swimmers, cross country skiing, and triathletes.  A separate chapter illustrates over 30 strength training exercises that are utilized on sport specific weight training days.  The over-arching goal is to maintain muscle mass, loose body fat, and continuing training to increase performance in my sport.

So, I believe it's time to bid farewell to my "insurance policy."  I want to be lean and fast.  I want to be able to swim fast, bike hard, and run light.   I know that this new book won't loose the weight for me - but I'm hoping that the sane advice and the training direction will help.

My Mid-Section Insurance Policy
Bye-bye little belly, hello faster times and tougher races!


  1. I found you via Runninghood! I'm a NE native and it's good to see you here!!

  2. I love Matt Fitzgerald! I will have to check this out sometime. NOt that I want to loose weight. But I do want to fuel more efficiently. Thanks for the great review. I am mailing your sticker tomorrow! :)

  3. Amanda - I plan on checking out Brain Training for Runners, next! Thanks for the sticker - can't wait!!