Getting to your “ideal race weight” can be difficult. If you’re carrying extra weight around you are going to race slower; you’ll want to lose weight to get faster, and run/ride more efficiently. But you can’t just cut out a few calories from your diet – it’s more complicated than that. You want to do that while also shedding fat, but maintaining muscle. Ideally, you’ll want to go into racing season at your goal weight. It can be tricky to try and lose weight and train hard at the same time.
Here are some ways to drop the weight while still maintaining your fitness:
Track Your Food
You don’t have to track and log your food forever, but it does double your changes for weight loss success. Most people who write down their food tend to eat fewer calories and lose more weight. You can do it for a few weeks to get an idea of what you’re eating and how your calorie intake adds up to help you make healthier habits.
Control Your Portions
You don’t have to live without your favorite foods while you’re trying to lose weight, but you do have to control your portions. Plan your larger meals earlier in the day and try to eat a little lighter dinner.
Increase Your Protein
Protein plays a huge rule in weight loss and post workout recovery as well. In order to not lose muscle, you’ll want to get around 20 grams of protein with every meal (80 grams of protein per day). This will help keep you satisfied and keep you recovered to train again the next day.
Keep Checking Your Weight
Weigh yourself weekly to keep yourself on track by continuing to weigh in (on a scale) to make sure you’re still trending towards the number you’re reaching for. Be sure to weigh in at the same time every day and track your results. Just know that you might have some weight fluctuations due to water retention, hormone fluctuations.
Prepare for Slow and Steady Weight Loss
Don’t think that you’re going to loss ten pounds within a few weeks. Losing weight rapidly is the fastest way to regain the weight. A slow and steady weight loss is the best, safest, most effective way to lose the weight. Expect about 1-2 pounds per week on average.
Sure, you might want to lose 10 pounds, but figure out why you really want to lose the weight before you even get started. Set small goals so that getting to that bigger goal doesn’t seem so hard. And remember the numbers on the scale don’t tell the whole story. Usually the tape measure is much more revealing when the weight starts to shift.
Tracking your food and keeping your weight in check is an essential part of every triathlete’s training. Every triathlete is different and has to do their own weight loss/training program, but if you follow the above guidelines it will help you get started, or take a look at Tri Right Coaching. Contact me today to learn how I can help you with your nutrition and training needs!
Train Right, Tri Right!