In 2015 I racked up 2,855 miles by the end of June, my highest total ever. This year’s total isn’t that far off, and it’s very high historically:
And things should have been even closer, but this week I lost Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday to cold symptoms that were just bad enough to keep me off the bike. (You can thank my new coworkers for that, if you like irony. It’s a marvel they didn’t infect me sooner and more severely.) Things look good for another 5,000-mile season, but I’m not chasing 6,237. In fact, I have no mileage goals at all this year.
I leave June at a reasonably lean 190 pounds. That’s 6 pounds lighter than I was on this date last year. In 2015 I didn’t get down to 190 until September. How do fewer miles and fewer rides (79 so far this year, compared to 99 in the first 6 months of 2015) add up to greater weight loss? The difference, I think, is a quite unintentional change in my eating habits. My wife and my son are now so busy with work that big family meals are rare, and being too lazy to cook I have become a grazer. I eat a little here, a little there … just enough to refuel. My body—designed by nature to be a hunter/gatherer, an opportunistic omnivore capable of extracting energy even from things you couldn’t get a maggot to touch—was already starting to respond before my high blood pressure diagnosis. Now that I’m consciously consuming less sodium, I’m moving in a very positive direction. Last year I bottomed out at 185 pounds. That was late October through mid-November: cyclocross season. My 2016 has been characterized so far by lots of endurance work and few high-intensity intervals. As the intensity ramps up in July and August, more pounds should fall away. Perhaps more than anything else I could do, losing weight will help me to have a more successful racing season.