A Good Plateau

Noom Logo I’ve complained before about a plateau that I was stuck in when I was 197lbs, but now I’m stuck again, but this time for good reason.  Here are my Noom weigh-in’s for July.

  • July 1 – 195.0
  • July 6 – 193.6
  • July 13 – 193.8
  • July 20 – 193.6
  • July 27 – 193.2

From the July 6 weigh-in to the July 20th weigh-in, I believe the reason for the halt in weight loss is because I’ve been eating the Michelina’s frozen dinners and not the Weight Watchers Smart Ones.  See, I thought that because they had the same amount of calories, fat and sodium that they would basically be the same thing, but I guess not.  We recently bought 40 of those too, so when we are able to burn through those, I will start buying the Weight Watchers again.

The reason we bought all those Michelina’s was because they were on sale for .50 cents each.  You can’t beat those prices, especially when we were broke this month.  I had no idea this was going to cause a plateau or even weight gain.

I think I might have an explanation for my current week’s plateau.  On July 20th, I finally started riding my bicycle again, so it has only been 1 week and I have only been out on the bike maybe 4 times, but I’m assuming that this week the reason I haven’t lost any weight is because I am gaining muscle.  At least that’s what I think is going on.

We have a scale which has a Weight Watchers logo on it and it can tell me my body fat, water, bone and BMI, and this week my body fat percentage went down from I believe it was 30.9 down to 29.6, so even though I am still basically the same weight, my body fat percentage has gone down and I believe it is because of the bike.  So, perhaps I think that I am losing fat, but gaining muscle and we all know that muscle weighs more than fat, so therefore, the scale isn’t very helpful to me in determining my weight, but it is helpful in telling me my body fat percentage and BMI.

However, my waist has gone up by 1/2 an inch.  Last week it was 39.5 inches and this week it is 40 inches.  I mean who really knows for sure what is going on.  All I know is that I am going to continue riding the bicycle and I am going to continue to eat a proper healthy diet despite what the scale says because I know that I am going to lose fat even if I gain muscle.

Gaining muscle is actually a very good thing because men who have a lot of muscle will burn more fat when they sleep, so I need to get plenty of rest, exercise and eat a proper diet and I will be on my way to losing more weight.

I’m not expecting that my weight will go down next week, but I hope it will.  We shall see I guess.  Here are my profile, weight graph and exercise summary for the week.

week_30-1 week_30-2 week_30-4

Eating burned calories

july 21 calories

With Noom, my daily calorie allowance is typically 1400 calories if I don’t do any exercise, but if I do exercise, the amount of calories I’m allowed to eat goes up.  Today I had a very unhealthy breakfast at the hospital.  It was 1 cup of cold and semi petrified scrambled eggs, 1 sausage link, 1  strip of bacon, a very dry, very hard biscuit and a banana muffin.  That was 632 calories.  I didn’t think the breakfast would be that many calories, which is why I decided to eat the muffin.  Of course, those are all estimated calories.

I try to eat right, but I can’t always predict when I’m going to have to go to the hospital and visit the cafeteria.  You would think they would have healthy choices, but they didn’t have them in plain sight.  As soon as you walk in there you see donuts and muffins.  They didn’t have any egg whites which is what I would have normally gotten.  They had hard-boiled eggs, but seriously?  Who eats a hard-boiled egg for breakfast?  I might eat one of those once in a while, but not for breakfast, it’s typically around Easter or the holidays when I’m having it deviled lol.  They did have a salad bar, but I’m not going to have salad for breakfast.

I went on a bike ride yesterday and burned 807 calories, so my allotted calories went up to 1800 and I ended up eating 1715 calories.  I was so hungry that I couldn’t help myself.  I was going to rest today, but I went on a 2 hour, 18 mile bike ride because of that high calorie breakfast.  I haven’t eaten all 1910 calories, but it’s very close and very tempting.

The more energy I use to burn calories, the hungrier I get.  Yesterday was my weigh-in day and I was basically the same weight as I was last week, and today I seem to be the same yet again.  I know I can’t predict what’s going to happen day-to-day, but when I don’t lose weight, I become very discouraged.

Tomorrow I’m not going to go bike riding because I have severe sunburn on both my knees and my forearms and my neck, not to mention that I haven’t ridden my bike in a very long time and I need to rest a day in between until my legs are used to it.  I normally don’t go bike riding as late as I did today, but again, who can predict when they have to go to the hospital.  I wasn’t going there for myself, I was going with my partner to visit a friend of his.

Next time, I am going to get up at 6am and go bike riding before the sun can do any serious damage to my skin and I’m also going to wear some sunscreen because my skin is very sensitive.  I am also going to try to stick to eating my 1400 calories even if I am allowed to have 1910 or so calories, that is if the hunger doesn’t consume me.  Speaking of hunger… I would very much like to eat something right now.  I think I will have a banana.

Cycling again… FINALLY!

noom cycling 2013-07-20_09-51-23

Today was the first time in a very long time that I have been able to ride a bicycle for exercise.  Of course I used the Noom app on my Android cell phone.

This is the map, but the statistics are wrong.  The app froze at a few points and I was not given credit for 3.5 miles.  I mapped it out on Google Maps and the roundtrip ride was 11.8 miles, but I was able to add what I missed manually so I got credit for it.

The reason it froze is not the apps fault, I believe it’s that the music was causing it to freeze.  I wasn’t using the built-in music player, so I think that with the Noom app running and other apps running caused my phone to freeze up.  I also kept getting phone calls from home and I got a notification from Facebook and from eBay and from my emails, so I feel that everything was causing my phone to become slow.  So I don’t blame anyone but my phone itself for that happening.  Whatever the app doesn’t record, I can add in manually so I’m not worried.

It’s been a very long time since I was able to ride my bike.  In January I was 264lbs and I was worried about riding my bike because it says in the manual for the bike that it has a weight limit of 250lbs and at that heavy weight, I was afraid I would break something, so I just didn’t ride it.  I waited until I was 245 to ride it again and every time I tried to ride it, the back tire would go flat.  I lost more weight and bought a Bell No Mor Flats tire from Wal-Mart (it was the only place I could buy it) which was a huge mistake because installing it ruined not just the rim which was practically brand spanking new, but it also ruined the tire.  I tried using a tube and I don’t know if it was the scratches in the rim or the wires sticking out of the tire that popped it, but the tube wouldn’t stay inflated.  I was saving money for a new bike because I couldn’t see myself spending $30 – $35 for a new rim and $20 – $25 for a new tire.  My bike was originally only worth $60.

Fortunately we found a thrift store nearby that had a used rim and a used tire and they sold it to me for… wait for it… give me a drum roll please…  $5.  That’s it.  I saved $50 or $60 and saved myself from having to buy a new bike.  Check it out.

bike 1 july 20 2013 bike 2 july 20 2013

I wore my Black Nashbar Bib Shorts with my black Noom shirt and I put my wallet, my phone and my keys in my Noom backpack and set off with only my Noom water bottle to quench my thirst.  I actually didn’t think I would be riding more than I did, so I didn’t bring my Camelbak.  Next time I go out, I will load my Camelbak in my Noom backpack and put my keys, wallet and phone in the front pocket.  Although, I may put my keys in with the camelbak so they don’t scratch up my phone.

When I came home from my walk I was pleased to see that my Nintendo 64 had sold on eBay for $28 plus $21 shipping, so I took a walk to the post office to pick up a Priority box (if it fits it ships), so naturally I did a walking workout, so my total calories burned today was 736 with that extra 3.5 miles added that the Noom app missed on my bike ride.  I normally get a 1400 calorie allowance for my meals, but with the amount of calories that I burned today, I can eat 1770 calories.  Not that I will eat that many, but I know that if I feel hungry for an extra snack, I won’t feel guilty about it.

Today was also weigh-in day and naturally I didn’t lose any weight this week, which is disappointing, but now that I’m exercising again, perhaps this will kick my weight loss back in gear.  I hope so.

noom cycling bike store 2013-07-20_11-34-43 Oh and one more thing.  The spot that I stopped and rested at on the bike trail just so happened to be near a bicycle shop.  That’s the place where I bought my beach cruiser handlebars many years ago.  The store is called Finish Line.  You can’t see their sign or logo in the map, but that’s what they are called.  There is a seat right there on the bike trail which is where I took a break and that’s where I turned around to come back home.  There is a bridge right there too, so if I ever need to, I can cross the bridge and park my bicycle somewhere and go in and buy whatever it is that I need.  Not that I will need to mind you, because I usually buy all of my cycling supplies from Nashbar or Amazon.  I probably won’t need to go in there, but it’s nice to know they are there in case I do need to.

You have no idea how happy I am to be able to ride my bike again.  I really want to finish losing the rest of this weight, of which there is really only 23lbs.  I feel that if I could lose 70lbs with diet alone, I can certainly lose 23 more pounds easily with diet and exercise.  I’m so psyched!

@Noom Week 24

week_24-1 large

This is the beginning of the 3rd week of my 2nd goal to lose weight with Noom.  I started  my first goal on January 5th, 2013 with 63lbs to lose and I lost it with 2 months to spare.  Although I did get lucky that I was 200lbs by my birthday because the weight wasn’t dropping as fast as it was in the beginning, but I think when you have a lot of fat to lose, with just a change of diet it will probably drop a lot faster in the beginning.  Now that my body is used to this new healthy lifestyle, I am not losing weight as easily.

When I started working with Noom, I wasn’t exercising as much as I should have because of my back problems.  I can make excuses all day long, but there really isn’t any excuse for not exercising.  I can do some exercises in my bedroom, on my bed, in my desk chair or standing in front of the TV or even in the hallway or kitchen, it doesn’t matter, but it’s difficult for me to do anything with Degenerative Disc Disease.  I am usually sitting on my desk chair at my desk and of course I have a ton of pain here, but when I go sit or lay on my bed, the pain goes away.

I do have a bicycle and I attempted to ride it on the bicycle trail.  I bought a pair of cycling bib shorts from Bike Nashbar and 2 shirts for cycling, and of course I have 3 shirts from Noom that wick the moisture like my other cycling shirts.  But then I had an accident on my bicycle and broke my arm, so I couldn’t go bike riding.  I bought one of those no flat tubes that’s like a solid rubber tube, but I can’t get it on my wheel and now I’ve ruined the rim AND the tire, so I’m afraid if I buy a new tube, the wires sticking out of the tire is going to pop the new tube, or I might have damaged the rim so there might be metal sticking out of the rim that might pop the new tube.  A new rim is about $30 and I’m sure a new tire is around $20 or $30.  It wouldn’t even be worth my money, I’d be better off buying a new bicycle, but I can’t afford anything, so I have no bike now.

I haven’t examined my bicycle to see if there was any damage to the front rim from the accident.  I bought the bicycle from Walmart in 2004 for $60 so it was a cheap bicycle from the start.  I have replaced about 75% of the bicycle over the years, so I have put literally hundreds of dollars into that bicycle.  The only thing original is the frame, the (I’m going to sound dumb here) the mechanism that the pedals are attached to (LOL) and the chain.  Everything else has been replaced.

Instead of cycling, I’ve been walking which is agony for my back, but I’ve been doing it a couple of times per week just to get some exercise in.  Of course by the time I get home from doing that, I am in so much pain that I just can’t stand living anymore.  Speaking of which, I am in so much pain sitting here typing this that I had to go get the ice pack and take a Vicodin.

walking workout june 14 Anyway, I’ve been trying to walk a mile, but instead of only walking a mile, I will add some distance every time I go out.  Yesterday I walked more than 3 miles.  My back was in absolute agony the entire time, but I didn’t care because I really wanted to burn some calories, which I did.  Here is that workout (left).

I went out with my black Noom shirt, my Noom water bottle and my Noom sunglasses.  I absolutely love my Noom swag lol.  I normally like to go out with my Noom backpack, but I really don’t have anything to put in it, so I don’t have much of a reason to bring it.  If I had a bicycle, I would put my Camelbak inside of it with the hose sticking out and I would clip the hose to the strap to secure it.  I could probably do that on my walk, but I like to hold the water bottle.  I really don’t need 3 liters of water on a 3 mile walk anyway.

My estimated end date isn’t until November, although the Noom weight graph says September 17th if I lose 2lbs per week.  Last week it was September 15th and I lost less than 2lbs this week so naturally the date got pushed by 2 days.  I’m really not in any hurry to be 170lbs though, so no pressure.  I feel that if it happens then it happens.  I don’t want to rush myself because I feel comfortable in my skin the way I am now, so if I lose more weight, then bonus.  The main thing is that I don’t put any pressure on myself to lose any more weight because that’s too stressful and I don’t want my brain releasing cortisol from the stress which will prevent me from losing more weight.  Although the back pain from walking might end up doing that for me.recumbent bicycleI really wish I had a bicycle, it would be so much easier to exercise because then I could sit down the entire time.  I really want a recumbent bicycle though, because then I could sit back which will REALLY be easier on my back.  That would be ideal, but those are REALLY expensive.  If and when I finally get a new bicycle, I’m going to get a beach cruiser or a hybrid.  I mainly just want a bicycle with the big handlebars that will allow me to sit straight up.  My mountain bike had me sitting forward which hurt my shoulder and back, that’s why I had to replace the handlebar with a beach cruiser handlebar.  A hybrid would be better for me than a mountain bike or a road bike (10 speed).  When I do buy a new bike, I will go to Target and get a Huffy because I know Huffy is a good brand.

Anyway, back to reality lol.  This week I weighed in at 197.0 and I still have a way to go to get down to 170lbs.  I am positive that I will eventually reach that goal by September, if not then it happens when it happens.  I will still eat healthy no matter what and I will still go for walks despite the pain until I finally get a new bicycle.

Until next week…

Cheap Rim Strip

rim strip

So my new Noom shirt came today, and by the way I just love it.  I thought, now is a great time to put my wheel back on my bike so I can stand next to it and take a picture with my Noom shirt on.  I filled up the kitchen sink, grabbed the tube and pumped it up a bit so I could dunk it under water to find out if there is a hole or not so I can fix it.  No holes, great!  I go back out on the patio and find this (image above).  The rim strip snapped.

Naturally, I googled it and found out that bike stores will give you a cheap rim strip that will over time become brittle and break, which is exactly what happened here.  The good news is that I can buy a fabric rim strip which is obviously going to last longer.

I went to Nashbar.com which is where I buy all of my cycling accessories online, but they only have rubber rim strips.  I went to Amazon and they have them really cheap, like $3 cheap.  That’s not too bad.  If they are that cheap on Amazon, I wonder if they will be around the same at the bike store.  I will check and see when I have the money.  I won’t be able to go out until I have a Co2 pump anyway, so I won’t worry about anything until I get my next check.

Old Bike Logs

I used to have a page on my blog which showed what my current bike route was with a log that I kept from my old bicycle computer.  Now that I am using the Noom app, everything has changed.  The Noom app keeps all of my rides in the phone and backed up on their website so I never have to worry about logging.  But I figured I would keep these old logs so I can go back to them to see how fast or slow I used to ride compared to how fast or slow I ride now and the future, if that makes sense.

Below is the original text from the original bike logs…

When I started riding my bike for exercise some time in late 2008, I bought a bicycle computer so that I could find out how fast I was going.  I didn’t know that this 20 function computer was going to give me such a wealth of information.

I started logging it on index cards because I knew that they would last longer than if I had typed them out in a file.  Things get deleted and removed, case in point was when my blogs database had crashed.

So here they are with an explanation of the gaps in time between rides.

*DST = Distance (miles), AVS = Average Speed (mph)

Date DST AVS Time Calories Fat Calories
11/03/2008 6.81 10 38 345
11/05/2008 9.014 10.7 50:35 436.6 43.5
11/06/2008 11.231 10.9 1:01:54 536.2 53.5
11/10/2008 18.290 10.7 1:42:33 835.7 81.2
11/11/2008 17.521 11.1 1:34:32 813.7 85.2
11/13/2008 11.907 11.0 1:05:13 552.1 57.6
11/14/2008 11.804 11.4 1:02:29 559.3 61.6
11/15/2008 11.851 11.8 1:00:32 556.7 63.0
11/17/2008 11.644 11.9 58:37 565.3 64.4
11/18/2008 11.804 11.6 1:00:52 558.7 62.5
11/20/2008 2.131 10.6 12:05 106.7 11.0

That seems to be all of 2008.  I am not exactly sure why I stopped then but I’m pretty sure it has something to do with the cold weather and not wanting to freeze my balls off at any time of the day.

I started back up in the spring of 2009

*DST = Distance (miles), AVS = Average Speed (mph)

Date DST AVS Time Calories Fat Calories
04/14/2009 9.273 10.6 52:25 439.2 43.7
04/16/2009 9.589 10.3 56:07 454.7 44.7
04/17/2009 10.396 11.8 52:57 494.7 57.0
04/19/2009 16.603 11.8 1:24:14 780.5 90.0
04/22/2009* 10.396 12.2 52:00
04/23/2009 10.339 11.7 52:51 488.0 56.0
04/27/2009 10.412 11.4 54:40 499.8 55.0
04/29/2009 10.434 12.0 52:25 529.0 59.6
04/30/2009† 7.155 11.1 38:40 357.2 38.2

Notice how my average speed has been in the 11 range with the occasional 12?

* I dropped the bicycle computer, it reset so I lost the rest of the information.  I knew my dst, avs and time but not calories.

† This wasn’t a riding day, I went to the mall on the bike.

*DST = Distance (miles), AVS = Average Speed (mph)

Date DST AVS Time Calories Fat Calories
05/03/2009 10.419 12.1 51:42 525.6 60.7
05/04/2009 10.379 11.9 52:23 498.1 57.6
05/06/2009 10.473 11.9 52:49 526.1 60.3
05/06/2009 10.374 12.3 50:38 501.8 58.9
05/11/2009 10.358 12.1 51:21 508.2 57.8
05/13/2009 11.368 12.2 55:56 557.0 64.9
05/15/2009 12.816 12.6 1:01:00 635.1 76.8
05/17/2009 13.441 12.3 1:05:30 640.9 76.6
05/19/2009 13.580 12.8 1:03:50 670.5 80.3
05/20/2009 16.615 13.0 1:16:41 831.2 101.5
05/21/2009 12.726 12.9 59:12 634.6 77.0
05/23/2009 12.669 12.4 1:01:26 617.7 73.1
05/25/2009 10.276 12.5 49:18 500.6 59.6
05/27/2009 12.740 13.1 58:19 645.9 78.3
05/28/2009 10.376 12.9 48:11 526.1 62.1
05/29/2009 12.781 13.0 59:11 655.3 78.8

Notice how my average speed has been in the 12 range and occasionally 13?

*DST = Distance (miles), AVS = Average Speed (mph)

Date DST AVS Time Calories Fat Calories
06/02/2009 12.722 12.8 59:45 662.2 79.1
06/03/2009 14.285 13.5 1:03:25 749.2 91.9
06/04/2009 14.247 13.4 1:03:54 730.4 90.4
06/08/2009 16.410 13.2 1:14:51 818.0 101.0
06/09/2009 12.707 13.3 57:18 659.9 80.0
06/10/2009 12.896 13.3 58:00 670.7 81.0
06/12/2009 16.376 13.8 1:11:02 858.2 106.7
06/13/2009 16.348 13.6 1:12:11 858.8 105.2
06/15/2009 16.337 13.6 1:11:51 680.3 105.7
06/16/2009 16.324 13.4 1:13:03 841.2 102.5
06/18/2009 16.366 13.5 1:12:42 848.6 103.6
06/19/2009 16.497 13.4 1:13:56 858.5 104.7
06/20/2009 16.351 13.7 1:11:46 850.6 105.2
06/22/2009 16.413 13.6 1:12:44 862.4 105.5
06/23/2009 16.323 13.6 1:11:51 853.2 104.9
06/24/2009 16.380 13.0 1:15:25 824.9 99.8
06/25/2009 16.359 13.0 1:15:24 813.0 99.0
06/27/2009 16.187 14.0 1:09:13 864.1 106.4
06/28/2009 16.481 13.2 1:14:56 848.3 102.7
06/29/2009 16.490 14.0 1:10:55 869.8 107.3

Notice how my average speed has been in the 13 range and a couple of 14’s in the end?

*DST = Distance (miles), AVS = Average Speed (mph)

Date DST AVS Time Calories Fat Calories
07/01/2009 16.503 13.8 1:11:57 870.4 105.5
07/02/2009 19.112 13.7 1:25:00 1002.8 122.4
07/03/2009 19.118 13.9 1:22:54 1008.3 123.7
07/05/2009 20.286 13.6 1:29:30 1067.1 133.2
07/06/2009 20.099 13.9 1:26:41 1075.1 132.0
07/07/2009 20.132 13.5 1:29:46 1043.6 127.4
07/09/2009 20.536 14.2 1:27:01 1093.9 135.9
07/10/2009 21.047 14.0 1:30:33 1105.7 135.8
07/12/2009 16.490 14.0 1:10:55 869.8 107.3
07/13/2009 21.051 14.4 1:27:33 1121.8 140.0
07/14/2009 22.199 14.1 1:34:15 1180.9 147.0
07/16/2009 22.198 14.2 1:34:03 1178.4 146.3
07/17/2009 16.783 13.5 1:14:22 883.7 106.4
07/18/2009 22.859 13.9 1:38:38 1198.0 146.1
07/20/2009 22.985 14.0 1:38:39 1212.5 148.0

Notice how my average speed started out in the 13’s range but then the rest of the time it was in the 14 range?

July 20th was my last ride because my new ergo bicycle seat hurt my shoulder so bad that I couldn’t stand the pain enough to continue riding.  I bought beach cruiser handlebars so that I could ride again and it did help with the pain.  I did try to ride in October.

Date DST AVS Time Calories Fat Calories
10/05/2009 7.331 10.4 42:19 357.6 34.6
10/06/2009 3.883 10.2 22:59 183.1 16.3
10/07/2009 5.446 10.8 30:11 259.5 26.4

Notice how I didn’t go very far?  I was in so much pain that I couldn’t really go that far from the house before having to turn around.  After 3 days I gave up.

My shoulder pain eventually went away on it’s own without any help from any of my doctors despite waiting 8 months for appointments.  I could have been out on the bike trail but I just wasn’t into it anymore.  By July I had enough of the weight that I had gained back so I tried going back out there.  Here is my log.

Date DST AVS Time Calories Fat Calories
07/17/2010 22.559 11.9 1:54:07 1011.9 113.2
07/18/2010 22.489 11.0 2:02:34 965.5 97.1

Unfortunately, the next day after my last ride logged the nut on my back wheel came out as I was riding to the store and I had to walk the bike home with groceries.  The axle really screwed  my wheel up and that was the last time I was able to ride my bike.  I called the bike store and they told me $40 for the wheel and $10 to install it.  It was difficult as it was to pay my bills and I just couldn’t afford to spend that kind of money.  So… that was the end of that until June 2011 when I finally bought a new wheel.

*DST = Distance (miles), AVS = Average Speed (mph)

Date DST AVS Time Cal Fat Cal
07/06/2011 17.172 11.2 1:32:12 868.5 91.6
07/08/2011 22.920 11.9 1:55:52 1162.9 131.3
07/09/2011 22.902 11.5 1:59:18 1132.6 124.2
07/12/2011 22.971 12.2 1:53:16 1160.9 136.2
07/14/2011 22.923 11.9 1:55:20 1159.5 131.6
07/19/2011 22.904 12.5 1:49:44 1169.4 139.9
07/21/2011 22.589 12.8 1:46:09 1176.4 140.8
07/23/2011 22.900 12.7 1:48:10 1219.9 146.5
07/24/2011 22.864 12.7 1:48:09 1208.0 144.5
07/26/2011 22.867 12.9 1:46:00 1193.7 145.7
07/28/2011 22.953 13.0 1:46:08 1198.8 144.9
07/29/2011 23.014 13.3 1:43:53 1226.4 150.1
07/31/2001† 13.030 12.3 1:03:29 671.6 79.6
Date DST AVS Time Cal Fat Cal
08/02/2011 23.159 12.7 1:49:12 1197.0 143.3
08/06/2011 23.019 12.6 1:50:01 1156.7 137.1
08/09/2011 22.986 12.6 1:49:44 1178.5 139.1
08/10/2011 22.979 12.6 1:49:27 1176.7 138.7
08/13/2011 23.022 12.5 1:50:34 1167.0 138.5
08/14/2011 23.055 12.5 1:50:54 1167.5 137.7
08/16/2011 23.031 12.8 1:47:59 1181.1 141.9
08/17/2011 23.259 12.5 1:51:27 1173.1 138.7
08/18/2011 23.089 12.4 1:51:22 1150.2 136.0
08/22/2011 23.460 12.3 1:54:14 1184.6 138.5
08/25/2011 23.009 12.2 1:53:14 1141.7 131.8

*DST = Distance (miles), AVS = Average Speed (mph)
†Rain

I tried to ride again in the Spring of 2012, but I had gained so much weight that every time I sat on the bike, the back wheel would deflate.  Even going to the store, I would end up walking the bike and the groceries home.  I tried pumping the tube up, but even just sitting in the patio it would deflate.  I changed the tube and the same thing happened with several tubes.  I don’t know what is wrong with it.  There isn’t a thorn in the tire and the tubes don’t have holes in them, I checked by inflating them and dunking them in water.  Their valves aren’t malfunctioning, so I really don’t know why they won’t stay inflated.  I am determined to ride in March 2013 even if that means buying an airless tube despite the reviews saying if you are over 200lbs it always feels like riding on a flat tire.

Nashbar Bib Shorts

nashbar bibs

I have been scouring the internet trying to find a good quality, but inexpensive pair of bib cycling shorts.  I already had a pair picked out from Bike Nashbar.com that were on sale for $30.  They were black with red at the bottom, which perfectly matched my red and black theme, but when I had the money to buy them yesterday, they shot up in price to $45.  I was back to the drawing board.

My hunt for a good quality pair of bib shorts at a reasonable price started over from scratch and I had to scour the internet again.  Unfortunately, bib shorts are expensive.  I have seen them go for as low as $100 and as high as $300.  They are just too expensive for my budget, so naturally my only option was to go back to Nashbar and see what they had and read the reviews before making a final decision.

The shorts (image above) that I bought have the padding in the back, which is what I need for my ergo bicycle seat.  Although I’m sure it’s not enough padding, but that’s the only padding I’ve seen so far for bike shorts so it will have to do.  If it doesn’t work out then I’ll try a new bicycle seat, preferably a beach cruiser seat.  I’d like to keep my $70 ergo bicycle seat because it won’t make me impotent like a regular bike seat would (which it was doing and why I had to buy an ergo bike seat).

The shorts that I bought are called Nashbar Gel Ride Bib Shorts and they were $40.  I know, I could have spent $5 more on the ones that I wanted with the red, but I figured with shipping and tax, it would end up being much more, and it was $50 with shipping and tax.  I guess $5 still wouldn’t have mattered, and in retrospect I’m starting to wish I spent the extra $5, but that’s fine.  I really don’t care what color they are as long as they do the job I need them to do.

Of course I will update this post when I get the bib shorts with my findings of the fit and feel and the feel of the gel on my ergo bicycle seat.

To be continued…

I wanted to buy a shirt to go with the bib shorts, but couldn’t afford to spend any more at Nashbar.com.  We went to Sears to pay the bill and to buy a new scale and they had EverLast sport shirts on sale for $10 each.  They are the kind that wick to keep you dry, which is what I needed.  Here they are.  Red and black.

2 everlast shirts Red everlast logo

Gearing Up For Cycling

NBtwitterLogo

Every year for the last few years, I’ve bought things from Nashbar.com for my bicycle.  I bought a townie basket to carry a bag of groceries (I’m going to buy a 2nd one for the other side of the bike soon), a camelbak to keep me hydrated on my 22 mile bike rides and skull caps to soak up the sweat so it doesn’t drip in my eyes.  This year I am buying something that I’ve been missing out on, a pair of bicycle shorts.

I know it sounds cheesy to wear bicycle shorts while riding a bicycle if you aren’t a professional, but I’ve been wearing baggy shorts for years and that is where I have problems.  Baggy shorts are ok, but can cause chafing issues.  My reasons for wanting bicycle shorts is for the tightness, but also because they have gel in them where you sit.  It makes the seat tolerable for the time I’m on the bike.

I have a ergo bike seat that doesn’t have a gel cover because they don’t make them in that size.  However, because I have an ergo seat that makes me sit on my butt bones and not my crotch area, typical bicycle shorts may not work for me because the gel is in the crotch.  The gel will need to be further back, and luckily I found the perfect bib shorts because the gel is in the back.

I am buying the bib shorts because I want to make sure they stay up.  I’d hate to have to keep pulling over every time they start to slide down and I have plumbers crack showing.  I don’t know if that’s a common issue, but I’m a heavy person, so I’m almost positive it might happen to me.

Here are the bib shorts I am going to buy from Nashbar.com.  They are called Nashbar Victory Splice Bib Shorts and they are on sale for $29.99 from $74.99.  They are 60% off so I’m saving $45.

nashbar bib front and back

I think they look pretty cool to wear a shirt under them, but I have a big stomach so it would look funny lol.  Maybe when I get thinner, then I will feel more confident to wear these with a shirt underneath.  Until then, I’ll wear a shirt over.

Here are a few other things I have to help me with cycling.  A Bell helmet that I bought at Target with a helmet mirror that I also bought at Target.  A Bell Bicycle Computer that I bought at Target for $20.  A pair of gloves that was a birthday gift that were bought at Snider’s Cyclry that are meant for people with carpal tunnel syndrome.  2 skull caps and my 3 liter Camelbak that I bought at Nashbar.

bell computer helmet
gloves and skull caps camelbak

I think that if you are going to take on a 22 mile bike ride, you need to be well prepared.  I am going to go further this year by riding 33 miles every time I ride.  Of course I’m going to start off at 10 miles the first time, then go up to 15, then 20 etc.  I need to build up my calf and thigh muscles so I don’t come home in agony and end up in the hospital.  When you are as out of shape as I am, you need to ease your body back into a routine and give your body rest.

Notice how everything is black and red?  That’s because I have a red bicycle with black accents.  I have to keep my theme going lol.  The red in the camelbak is not as pink as you see in the image, I think the flash or the reflectors washed out the dark red color.

I won’t be able to ride until I get my bicycle fixed and I also need to buy a Co2 pump and cartridges, I also need to be 240lbs to be able to start riding, so it’s going to be a few weeks or a month before I start.  I’m just making sure I have everything I need first.

So until then…

Update: So I was a day late and a dollar short and I missed out on these bib shorts and the bicycle pump.  I guess the sale was only for January because on February 1st, the sale was over.  The items that were in my shopping cart went back to regular price.  I wasn’t about to pay full price when I could get them for their sale prices.  So I guess now it’s just a waiting game to see if they will put those things back on sale in the next few weeks or month.  If they don’t then I guess I’m going to have to go to Snider’s Cyclry and see how much they charge.  I bet they will be 10 times more than what I can afford.  I’m looking on Amazon, but the things they have are either very expensive, or they are coming from Hong Kong.  I’m sorry but I can’t wait 3 weeks just to find out they are too tight.  According to their chart, I’m a small lol.  In normal more realistic charts, I’m an XXL.  Big difference.  HUGE!  So I will keep looking for a company that is actually in our country where I can go try it on.  I’ll have to try Sports Authority, maybe even Dick’s sporting goods.

Getting Back In Shape

bike path 2013

As part of my New Years Resolution to lose weight in 2013, I plan on adding an exercise routine that is sure to melt the fat away.  The plan is to get to the bike path here in Bakersfield from my house, then get on the bike path by turning left, and then just keep riding until the path ends which is 16.5 miles out.  At that point I will take about 5 minutes or so to rest before turning around and coming home.

I have done this in the past, but instead of turning left, I’ve always turned right.  That route was only 22 miles round trip.  I wanted to continue, but I’d have to ride in traffic, which I didn’t want to do, to get to Hart Park.  On the way back to the bike path from Hart Park, I’d have to ride uphill, which I did not want to do because I didn’t want to wreck my thigh and calf muscles with too much hard work.  I’m no spring chicken, I have to do what I can to keep my legs strong, but at the same time not ruin them by exercising too hard.

My weight loss coach app called “Noom” will help me this time.  In the past I have used a cheap bicycle computer that I bought at Target, but it didn’t have all of the functions that Noom has, the only thing it can’t do is map my progress.  I do plan on using my bicycle computer to let me know how many miles per hour I am riding and to see what time it is since my phone will be tucked away safely in my camelbak, but I won’t rely on it for anything else.  It’s still a useful tool.

I have tools for fixing my tires, but the one tool that I don’t have that I will need is a Co2 pump and cartridges.  I have a regular hand pump, but I have carpel tunnel syndrome and my hands are getting worse everyday.  I have fingerless gloves that are made for people with carpal tunnel syndrome, but they won’t help my hands when I pump the tire.  The Co2 pump will be a great asset.

I also need bicycle shorts.  They have gel in the butt of the shorts which will help keep my butt from hurting, trust me, I’ll need it lol.  Nashbar has a pair of “Gel Ride Bib Shorts” that I can actually afford.  I will buy that when I get some money later in the week along with the pump and Co2 cartridges.  I’m almost positive that those are the last things that I have always been missing in my bike rides.  I will especially need them if I plan to ride 33 miles per day.

Just like always, I won’t be riding 33 miles on the first day, I will start at 10 miles, then add 1 or 2 more miles everyday until I get to 33.  And I will ride every other day to give my body the rest that it deserves so I don’t overwork myself.

Oh boy, this is going to be a lot of fun.  I can’t wait!

Kinivo BTH220 Bluetooth Stereo Headphone

 

Kinivo BTH220 Bluetooth Stereo Headphone

My new headphones arrived today and I am beyond excited about them.  At first they didn’t fit me and I was ready to throw in the towel and pack them back up to ship back to where they came from, but I gave them another chance and now they fit me like a glove.

I watched a few YouTube reviews which I know I shouldn’t do because they almost always put the product down and compare them to higher end products, but these were okay and gave it a high rating for its price.  One guy said there was a bit of space where sound escapes or whatever, and that is true, it’s not air tight, but when have headphones ever been air tight?  Who cares!

I did call myself on the phone so I could see if I could hear it ring and I did and it answered like it was supposed to when I pushed the button.  So cool!  That’s the issue I had with my other phone when I was riding my bike.  It would be in my camelbak and I couldn’t get to it in time because I’d have to pull over and take the camelbak off and find it and by then the person hung up or was leaving a message.  Sometimes I’d have it in my pocket in my shorts, but it gets uncomfortable in there and I’m always afraid the phone will drop out as I’m riding and I will never even know.  Nobody ever calls me except for my partner, but he is why I have a cell phone, so if I’m out exercising on my bike, he will be able to get in touch with me, or if I have an accident I can call either him or 911 depending on the severity of the accident.

I activated the voice dialing feature and it asked me to choose between the voice dialer that came with the phone or Robin which is an Android’s Siri challenger (it’s free in the Google Play store).  I chose to use Robin by default because the voice dialer that came with the phone sucks.  It never recognizes what I say.  If I say “Call Home” it calls my friend Ruth lol.  At least Robin understands me.

The sound quality is actually amazing.  I pressed the button once and it automatically started playing music that I had on my phone.  I thought I would have to load the music but I didn’t.  It’s more amazing than I thought it would be.  I press the button once to start and stop the music and when it starts back up again, it continues where it left off.  I loaded Noom to begin an exercise and it started, but I could barely hear the voice talking, which is actually fine by me because I don’t want to hear how fast I’m going or how many calories I’m burning.  Surprise me!  I’m actually going to mute that during workouts.

The headphones are very good and I am so glad I bought them.  They are definitely going to come in handy when I begin cycling this Spring as my cardio to help me lose weight.  I normally ride 22 or 23 miles per day which is a bit much for some, but it’s enough for me.  It’s not too much, I could go more but I just don’t want to.  Obviously I haven’t tried them to receive a phone call on the bike because the bike is missing a back tube, but I will find out in a couple of months and I will try to remember to update this post.

I highly recommend these bluetooth headphones.  Mind you, I base my opinion on wearing them for 10 minutes so this isn’t really a review at all, it’s more of a hey it was awesome for the first 10 minutes, you should try it.

If you do have a pair of these, please do me a favor and comment and tell me how you like them and what you use them for.

Update: I wanted to give an update on these since I’ve had them for a week.  The instructions say to charge it fully, then let it drain completely, then charge it again and drain it again.  Holy crap, that is taking forever to do because the battery seems to go on forever.  I’ve already drained it once and that took at least 3 days to do.  I’m on day 2 of trying to drain the battery for the second time.  The way I’m doing it is to just play music all night long.  Well, it has an 8-hour battery right?  Well, 8 hours pass and it’s still going strong.  I use it the whole day and then play music all night again and it’s STILL going.

One of my concerns when I bought these headphones was that it wasn’t going to last my 2-3 hour bike rides, well that’s out the window because I could probably ride for 3 days straight before the battery died lol.  So no worries there for me now.  That’s actually a relief.  The box says 150 hour standby time and 8 hour talk time, so I’m just guessing that if you don’t use them too often, don’t expect to have to charge them more than once or twice a week, if that.  These are damn good headphones in my opinion.  So worth the $30 I paid.

Oh and one more thing.  The sound is AMAZING!  What is it that the annoying reality celebs say?  AMAZEBALLS?  Well, that it is.  The sound is so awesome and you don’t lose quality from that space between the headphone and your ear.  The headphones seem to be a bit stretched out more than it was when I first opened the package.  It goes back to being small, so it’s stretchy I guess lol.  Stretchy hard plastic.  Yeah.

I was watching a YouTube video with Karl Pfeiffer (Ghost Hunters Academy and Ghost Hunters International) and his voice sounds perfect.  It’s not too loud, it’s not too low, it’s exactly the way it should be.  Before I couldn’t watch his videos because the volume on my monitor sucks, same with my Chromebook.  I can finally hear him with these headphones.

Oh I was told in video reviews that you can fold it and put it in the little pouch that they included with the headphones, but they don’t recommend doing that because the plastic gets too loose when you try to fold it.  It stops snapping into place in other words.  So I’m going to take their word for it and keep them open at all times and never store them in the bag.  I’d rather they be in plain sight anyway.

That’s all for now.