Cycling India: A deconstruction

Those of you who have been reading for a while may recall that I used to write a fair amount about running and my workouts in general. That seems like eons ago, right? I have complained mentioned a few times that I have been doing a lot more cycling than running, but I haven’t gotten into much detail. Let’s take a look.

  1. Entertainment: I usually watch CNN or BBC World because I’m really exciting like that. If I’m feeling extra crazy, I watch Masterchef Australia.
  2. Sweet iPod Holder: I have showed this to you all before. Highly effective and environmentally friendly. Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. (On my iPod today: CCR, Green Day, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Pepper)
  3. Houndstooth Waterbottle: It is super cool. I am kind of obsessed with its overwhelming awesomeness.
  4. Chris’ Bike Shorts: I didn’t want to admit this at first, but I’ve been wearing his for a few weeks. Two of my four pairs have become too constricting as my waistline has thickened. I’m happy to say that at least his are still too big, although that might change over the next few months.
  5. Chris’ Cycling Shoes: Has he been riding the bike too? Haha. No, but he was kind enough to share his shoes with my dad during his visit.
  6. (a) Garmin Display (b) Speed and Cadence Sensor: Let’s be realistic, it would drive me crazy not to know exactly how my workout went.
  7. Smelliest of all smelly couch cushions: Not workout related. Not fit to stay on the sofa either.

So what have my workouts looked like? During the course of the week I try to switch up between easy rides, cadance focused rides, big hills, rolling hills, and intervals. But you are riding in place, what do you mean you do hills? If you have used a bike trainer, this is a no-brainer, but before buying one I didn’t really understand this concept either. By shifting gears on the bike you can make it feel like you are going up hill or riding on flat ground.

What constitutes a good workout on a bike anyway? This is hugely up for interpretation. Chris would say “20 miles is a decent ride”. I would counter that not all 20 miles are created equally. After all, riding 20 miles on steep, root and rock laden single track =/= 20 miles on our local (to Indiana) bike path with a total elevation change of like 200 feet. I’m sure you see my point.

When I think about comparing my bike rides to running, according to Garmin, I typically burn in the neighborhood of 500-600 calories when I run for 1-hour. Along those lines, I try to make sure that my bike rides burn 500-600 calories/hour according to Garmin. It is the best measurement tool that I have come up with so far, but I am definitely open to other ideas!

Today’s workout was 20 miles of rolling hills. I totally passed both Chris’ “decent ride” test and my calories burned test! ::High five Chris:: I’ll call this workout a success!

As a side note that I should not have to write here but feel compelled to anyway, yes, I know that I am pregnant and should not be worrying about calories, blah, blah, blah…it is still the best way that I have come up with to measure my cycling workouts. Don’t worry, I am eating them all back, just not in chocolate anymore.

All of this cycling talk is making me super anxious to get home in December and go running! Well, if my body will still allow me to anyway!

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6 comments
  1. Carolyn said:

    Oh Brit, I fell off the face of the earth and missed your announcement! Congrats!!!!

  2. Lauren said:

    Thanks for sharing this. I wandered over from TK and have been following your journey for awhile now. I have been wondering how the cycling would work out while pregnant. I would like to continue once I’m KU, but was wondering how long I would be comfortable doing it. Unfortunately, DH is tall and crazy skinny, so I would definitely have to get a new pair of bike shorts! This was great info though!

    • Brit said:

      I am 27 weeks right now and cycling is still working out. I could see how at some point I might need to raise my seat a bit if my stomach starts getting in the way, but other than that I feel like I should be good to go.

      Chris’ shorts are men’s large, so apparently I’m not bigger than that yet. My women’s small shorts are super uncomfortable now, the two medium pairs are fine, but not nearly as comfy as Chris’!

      As an aside, I don’t think that I would ride outdoors at this point because I would be nervous about the consequences of falling.

  3. Cute post Brit.

    First of all, you look fantastic!

    Secondly, I’ve learned not to read your posts at lunchtime. Thank you for a tame one 🙂 I don’t know how you stomach some of those situations (blech, “cleaning” guy).

    Calories burned is how I measure my spin class effort too. I have no concept of what consitutes a good effort on the bike otherwise. I know you miss your treadmill, but in a few more weeks, I think you’ll really appreciate having the bike over the treadmill.

    • Brit said:

      Thanks! I have days where I look normal and days where I look all puffy like a whale. I don’t know if that is normal or a “Brittany thing”, but I’m just trying to roll with it.

      I’m sorry for writing gross posts. Ironically, I write most of them AS I eat my lunch because my work day here starts after I eat my lunch.

      Good to hear that someone else measures spinning/biking effort the same way. I’m clueless when it comes to cycling.

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