I train a lot. I actually train more then I really need to for an olympic triathlon that is still 15 weeks away. I didn't want to drop my run volume too much after the half marathon and I swim more then most plans call for, since I feel I still need so much technique work. I do 9 workouts a week, the majority of which are in the hour time range. One of those is a long run and one is a long bike, both of which are nearly 2 hours.
With that much cardio, you would think I'd have no trouble at all dropping weight. Except for one thing:
I am hungry all the time.
We're talking about a legitimate hunger too. It's not a mild nagging that I know I can ignore, wait for my next snack and it will help my weight loss goals. It's more like a wild beast inside of me that starts tearing apart my insides when it's not fed enough.
Sunday I did a 15 km (9.3mi) run, with some serious hills involved. It took me about 1 hour, 45 minutes. Afterwards, I had a glass of chocolate milk (my normal recovery drink) and a giant salad. Then I headed out shopping for a few hours. I didn't bring any food along.
By the time I came home, about 3.5 hours had passed. I had a massive headache and my body felt like it was shutting down. I was feeling nauseous and weak. I needed food. Pure and simple and I hadn't given my body enough.
Now, this isn't always the case. More common is the similar hunger and poor planning (of not bringing along food) and I grab something on the go. The something on the go doesn't tend to be the best choices. While I do try to avoid cookies or pastries, it's commonly a cheese bun or a muffin. Still not the best choice.
So, my weight has not been budging.
Having said all that, I would feel pretty good about my eating habits if I didn't want to lose weight. I eat pretty well and basically balanced overall. I have a high level of activity, and I need to fuel it. Yes, my weight hasn't budged, but it also hasn't budged in the upwards direction. I've spent most of my life on a weight gain/loss yoyo, so the fact that it remains stable and I am actually eating to my needs is kind of cool.
But, I feel like I have some free speed inside of me that wants to get out. Some people spend thousands of dollars on their bike to get more carbon and shave a couple grams. I have the ability to drop a couple dozen pounds and automatically improve my bike and run.
The plan for this week? Simply to track everything I eat. I want to get a better sense of where I am in terms of my intake so that I can look at where to tweak it. I also need to find the balance of how much I can cut without negatively impacting my training. The intention is not to actually cut calories this week; just to observe.
I believe that I can continue to lose weight while training for an olympic. That may not hold true when I start training for longer events, so I better get on it now. I plan to get to a healthy weight over the next few months, and when off season hits, I'd like to figure out what my optimal weight is.