Best way to increase fitness and stamina for women

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by disorganisedmum, 13 Jul 2012.

  1. Hi there,I'm a newbie so please be gentle! I have a Specialized Dolce Road bike and am really into it.I'm looking to increase my fitness and stamina,can I do that from just cycling or do I need to mix it up with other forms of excersize?I do circuit training once or twice a week and also kettlebells.I am 5'1 and weigh approx 10 st.On paper that looks alot for my height but I'm a size 12 but very curvy!With all the circuit training I guess i've put on more muscle but I would like to lose weight.I do generally watch what I eat,very little starchy carbs.Lots of protein esp after rides and so on.I have been doing avg about 60 miles a week with 1 ride hills,2 long,steady distance but am looking to generally increase mileage but I'm not sure if I also need to be more technical i.e. cadence (is that how fast the wheels go round,sorry).Alos I don't really understand how to tell what gear you're in.I know about the 3 rings but that's it.
    I appreciate there is alot of waffling here but if anyone could decipher and give me any advice I would be so grateful

    can't wait to get out on the bike and out in some serious miles!
     
    re84uk and Gixer Rob like this.
  2. Congrats on getting out. IMO the best way to improve Stamina on the bike is to gradually increase your mileage and don't worry about speed, it'll come in its own good time.
     
    subaqua likes this.
  3. Gixer Rob

    Gixer Rob Active Member

    Location:
    Staffs Moorlands
    hi..and welcome :hello:
    cadence refers to the revolutions per minute of the crank...how many times a minute your pedals go around...
    fairly new to cycling myself...but have spent many years in gyms (semi pro MMA for 3 yrs)
    you sound like your pretty much into your fitness and its always good to mix your training up..shocks the body and muscles....
    what I have found though is that the more time you spend on the bike the comfier and more confident you become....cycling in the gym is fine but realy is no substitute for getting out on the roads..
    I ride a mix of fairly flat routes and hilly ones.....
    as Im a newbie I stand to be corrected but I vary my cadence,using easier/harder gears,,and when i started didnt realy worry about actual gear was in,if it felt ok it was the right one...

    Im sure the more experienced members will be along soon with better advice and knowledge...
    enjoy your cycling!!!!^_^

    Rob
     
  4. OP
    OP
    disorganisedmum

    disorganisedmum Regular

    Thanks so much for replying.So you think I should concentrate on miles not speed?Is it ok to go out every day?My boys have broken up for summer so it's going to be quite hard getting out other than very early,say about 5-6am,gulp.Should I eat before I go,like a banana or go on empty.Sould I do a mixture of hills and flat work?There a very few hills in Southend apart from Hadleigh Park where Olympic mountain biking will be held.Sorry for all the questions,just want to get it right.Incidently I have found riding a real therapy to help my depression so hence why I want to get out as much as poss.
     
  5. Gixer Rob

    Gixer Rob Active Member

    Location:
    Staffs Moorlands
    only my opinion but id concentrate on miles more than speed for now,,,maybe have a little sprint over short section if you feel up to it...average speed will come..do you have a cycling computer on your bike??records max MPH,,average MPH,distance etc.....
    personaly I dont ride every day,,I ride one day,gym the next and have 2 days a week doing nothing...weather permitting!!!!:sad:
    and your right!! i find cycling very theraptutic!! if im feeling angry or bit down with work its a great boost..adrenaline and endorphins id guess :wahhey:
     
  6. Former User

    Former User Guest

    What the heck were you welding in a gym that took 3 years?
     
  7. OP
    OP
    disorganisedmum

    disorganisedmum Regular

    Yes,I've got a bike computer,fairly basic but it does the job.So it sounds like I'm sort of on track (parden the pun!).Any advice on getting my weight down?Diet is fairly good,say 70% good,30% iffy.Need to get rid of baby belly ( I call it that but now that my youngest is about to start big school,I prob can't).Will cycling,circuit training do that?
     
  8. Gixer Rob

    Gixer Rob Active Member

    Location:
    Staffs Moorlands
    ^_^ one of us is missing something!!...
    MMA....Mixed Martial Arts
    rather than Manual Metal Arc welding!! ^_^
     
    disorganisedmum likes this.
  9. Yip miles is better than speed. Everyday is good but not vital, besides rest days are important too. I wouldn't go out on empty, I like to have a light breakfast (a couple of Weetabix typically) and carry a banana/ cereal bar and maybe stop at a cafe (depending on company or distance). I also like to mix it up (climbing/ flat) as I find that more interesting/ varying but don't worry about it; above all an enjoyable route/cycle will encourage you to do more, good luck.
     
  10. Gixer Rob

    Gixer Rob Active Member

    Location:
    Staffs Moorlands
    bowl of porridge with a bit of golden cyrup sets me up...dont forget your water bottle and a drink of water before you set off....
    I was also advised to try and vary my routes or ride them in reverse direction...stops them being boring and stops you 'saving' yourself on easy sections because you know a hard section is coming up
     
    disorganisedmum likes this.
  11. time is better than miles..
     
  12. OP
    OP
    disorganisedmum

    disorganisedmum Regular

    Hmmm,now I'm confused.Ride for a set time or set mileage?My last bike ride was 20 miles in 1hr 24.Avg speed was 13.64.No idea if that's good or bad.That included a few small hills but was mostly flat.
     
  13. Gixer Rob

    Gixer Rob Active Member

    Location:
    Staffs Moorlands
    thats a good time/mileage/ave mph for a newbie!!!..much better than i was!!!

    time or mileage id think...up to you... i decide to do a 17 mile,a 25 or a 33 in the week depending what time i get up in the afternoon ( work nights mon-thurs) and how tired i am..some thing bit further at wknd...
    and gradually see my times coming down..hopefully!!!
     
  14. Sandra6

    Sandra6 Veteran

    Location:
    Cumbria
    I don't think there is a right/wrong when it comes to miles v speed, go with what you feel happiest with.
    Everyone is different and has different goals or wants different things from cycling.
    If you're going 20miles and not feeling like you've worked out then you could try doing it faster or you could go further, try both and see which makes you sweat more!
    As for weight loss, I'm working on a 7 year old baby belly myself!
    Weight loss is as much to do with what you eat as how many calories you burn. Your body has probably adjusted to your current input-output ratio and your weight will have plateaued. To get back to weightloss you either need to do more or eat better. It's not always a case of eating less, just eating smarter. If it's natural and good for you eat lots of it, if it isn't don't put it in the shopping trolley in the first place!
    A really good kick start is to go veggie for a week and cut out alcohol, sweets and other "naughties" .
    Don't try cycling on empty though, you'll just feel bad afterwards.
     
  15. Time, Mileage the two things equate and it doesn't matter what you do as long as you enjoy it. WRT to your ride if it felt good, it was a good speed.
     
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