• Yeah, this is the way I look after a really hard workout (click on the image to get the full effect). Normally I wipe my face as I ride, but this time I thought I’d forego that in order to capture the full effect. It’s not the toughest workout I’ve had, but I’m not doggin’ it, either. My wife thinks that this photo makes me look like a serial killer. It does look a little creepy.
  • Diet: I’m trying to eat more fruit and vegetables, while reducing my intake of carbs.
  • It’s crucial that your bike fit you properly. An improper fit will reduce your riding efficiency and potentially lead to joint or muscle injury. Many bike shops (including The Bike Palace) offer fitting services, or you can search online for fitting advice. I just raised the seat on my stationary bike. Once you’ve made changes in your bike’s seat height, take the bike out for short ride to confirm that the change is good for you. Don’t make major adjustments immediately before a long ride. You don’t want to be 20 miles away from home when you realize that your seat is misadjusted and you’re in pain (and with no tools to fix the problem). I found out almost immediately that the height adjustment was wrong for me, so I changed it back.
  • Make sure that your bike is fit for use. I went out for a ride recently, realizing that a nut had come loose on one of my toe clips. During the ride, the other nut came loose, leaving my toe clip dangling by its strap. This might have proven dangerous. Unlike an errant shoe string, which would almost certainly be ripped apart if caught in the crank, toe straps are much more durable and it seems possible that your foot could be injured as the strap is caught up in the crank, which is rotating under serious force. As I’ve mentioned before—get your bike checked out at your local bike shop before you get too involved in a cycling exercise program. Your safety depends on it! Mechanical failures on the road can get you badly hurt (or worse).
  • Don’t fret about your weight or any of the other vital signs from day-to-day. If you “fall off the wagon” and eat too much, or eat improperly, just pick yourself up and continue. This will be a long war. You’ll probably lose some battles, but don’t let that occasional defeat distract you from your ultimate goal.
  • Let me know how you’re doing. I’d like to hear your experiences, tips, whatever you have to offer.
  • Riding the stationary bicycle is definitely different from riding on the road. I seem to get a better aerobic workout on the stationary bike, perhaps because I can focus solely on the pedals, rather than on the road ahead. The road bike seems to work my legs more effectively, however.