Bicycle Fitness and Beyond

Improved fitness was not one of our goals when we started this three year bike ride, but it has been one of the benefits. It seems that biking for 6ish hours per day, rarely being idle, sleeping 8-10 hours per night, eating a vegan diet with minimal processed foods, and drinking lots of water is good for you. For the first time since middle school I am able to fit into a size 31” waist jeans and my body fat percentage is in a really healthy place. My BMI still says that I am overweight but the BMI is garbage, so I don’t care about that. Overall, I’m pretty happy with my health, but I still want to improve. I’ve plateaued off in my fitness recently so I need to make some changes to see further improvement.

The reasons I want to improve are threefold. First, I’ve never really seen what my body can do. I’ve never seen if I can get well-defined muscles or how strong I can get. I only get one life with this amazing machine, it would be a shame not to see what it can do. Second, when the bike ride ends I don’t want to fall into a fitness slump and get unhealthy again. To do that I need to have routines that don’t rely on my special life right now. Lastly, and kind of most importantly to me, is the Lester Burnham reason: I want to look good naked. I enjoy going to clothing optional events (sexual or otherwise) and my confidence is boosted if I like how I look.

So, to do this I am implementing a 30-day plan to try to get into a routine. I know from personal experience that I tend to work best with 30-day or so challenges, it is short enough for me to see a goal in sight but long enough for some lasting changes. Like most health routine it is going to attack exercise and diet. This should help get rid of the extra fat I want to burn and help build muscle mass. My diet is the easier part, I’ve never had much trouble eating healthy when I put my mind to it, and the changes I need to make are kind of minimal. I need to cut out the occasional soda I have (or at least get a diet one instead of regular), I need to make my nighttime meals a little smaller, cut out the occasional cookie/ice cream/chips, and eat my other meals more slowly instead of scarfing down three hummus wraps before my brain can register my stomach contents. Clearly, I won’t be perfect at all these things for the next month, but hopefully I can be more aware of what I’m doing when I eat and make more conscious decisions.

Working out is going to be a bit more difficult. I don’t have regular access to a gym, which means I am stuck with body weight exercises. Luckily, there is a lot you can do with that. Hell, the entire military workout program expects you to operate without equipment. My legs are in great shape now so I am going to focus on upper body (arms, chest, back) and abdominal muscles. I am going to start doing a 30-day planking program that I found online, as well as a 30-day push-up program. I’m modifying them both due to my current fitness level but using the same pattern to create a challenge fit for me (starting Day 20 for plank and day 17 for pushups). I do need to figure out a way to do a more intense arm workout (particularly biceps), so hopefully I can find a pull-up bar daily or turn my equipment into some weights. I do carry a lot of water and stuff with me so I am sure I can figure something out.

Oh well, we will see how this goes and how sexy I can get myself feeling.

30-day-plank-challenge-chart

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