Use your bike to help shed the pounds
If you're anything like us here at TWC, you've already been over-indulging and it's not even Christmas day yet. There's just... yunno... so much delicious food around!
Well we can all be permitted some festive food fun. But after Christmas you'll be keen to stop feeling so bloomin' massive and, perhaps, kickstart even more weight loss to improve your cycling performance in 2015. But how? Lucky for you, you're already into one of the best forms of exercise out there: cycling.
Use your commute
You may think that your commute is too short to be of benefit to your performance or your waistline. But you'd be wrong. Any distance greater than an amount which would present a comfortable walk is worth doing by bike.
This is because your commute is versatile. Low-intensity exercise is perfect for burning fat, and most people's commutes are relatively low-intensity because of traffic. There also the opportunity to do some sprint training as you dash away from the lights.
Read our Simple Cycle Commute Training and Can Your Winter Commute be Part of Your Training Routine? articles for more info on how to make the most out of the start to your day.
Do strength exercises to keep injury at bay
It's tempting to sit on the sofa under a blanket at this time of year. But strength exercises are a great idea – regular exercises will ensure your body is in peak condition and will help keep fatigue at bay. This means you can train better, ride harder, and hopefully continue to lose weight.
Strength exercises also help with staving off a dreaded injury by making your body more resilient. And nothing can ruin a weight loss plan like an unexpected injury. Keep healthy by using our 6 Strength Exercises for Cyclists article.
Eat the right foods
Eating the right foods will not only help you lose weight, but also fuel your ride too. Eat lots of protein, not just for muscle recovery, but also for the satiating benefits (it makes you feel full. Ensure you get plenty of dark, leafy green veg and berries high in antioxidants.
Do not think you should cut out the carbs completely. Remember that if you're on your bike for an extended period, you must consume enough carbohydrate to fuel your ride. Don't go overboard – maintain a healthy attitude to food. Make sure every plate is full of colour and you won't go far wrong!
Have a goal
Choosing a distance or fitness-related goal that you can work towards in order to keep you interested and active. And you may find that in achieving your distance target, you achieve the weight-loss target too.
Another method that many people find effective is signing up for a race in the not-too-distant future so they have no choice but to get on the bicycle for fear of collapsing half way through the actual event. The community element of these events is also a great motivator – see if you can convince any of your friends to do it with you.
Keep it interesting
Don't torture yourself! You don't always half to be in the gym and eating celery. The only way you'll stick to your plan is if you're enthused by it. That means finding fun and creative ways to make food delicious and exercise appealing.