Weight Loss – What I learned from cycling and cake

At a time of year when many people have a resolution to create more health or to gain lightness, this cautionary tale may be useful reading.

The more I got into road cycling the more I became aware of the relationship between cycling and cake (try Googling ‘cycling and cake’). Rides would start at cafes with coffee and cake. Destinations were defined by the quality of the coffee and cake.
Now I may not be a coffee drinker, however, I do love great wedges of freshly baked cake. And it has been a problem. As many of you may already know, three years ago I set out with some simple intentions to eat more healthily and ride my bike regularly.
With these simple intentions, I gained around 20kgs of lightness and became fitter than I had been for years. To achieve this I had to overcome some competing commitments. One of the best examples of a competing commitment was the deeply ingrained (from childhood) rule that I had to clean everything off my plate. This was a big challenge if I was setting out to eat less.
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And so as I cycled more and more I found myself gleefully creating a new competing commitment. Cycling and cake went hand in hand. If I cycled then cake would surely, literally, be on the menu. With enough cycling this was OK, however, when my cycling activity lessens in the winter (cycling and icy roads do not mix) this was more of a problem.
This winter the cake/cycling ratio got completely out of kilter, and so I had created a new competing commitment. And with that new competing commitment came a new 5kgs of heaviness. (If you consume 100kcal per day more than you require, this will create around 5kgs of additional body weight in a year).
I am now choosing the break this new competing commitment. The cycling/cake ratio is being returned to one where the cycling dominates, not the cake.
Good luck with your journey – I look forward to hearing about the competing commitments that you notice.

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