Intense Cardio Training and Muscle Mass

  • animal11

    Posts: 2

    Sep 16, 2012 9:20 PM GMT
    I am going to be training for AIDS Lifecycle, which will have me on a bike training 100+ miles per week at least. I'm looking forward to the experience, but also worried that so much cardio training will hurt my modest muscle gains. During the training period, I would at least like to lock my current muscle gains where they are and try not to lose any.

    Anyone have any tips for how to eat / train at the gym during this period in order to not bike my muscle mass away?
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    Sep 17, 2012 1:03 AM GMT
    Continue lifting the same amount of weight you do in the gym but for fewer reps. Just do 1-2 sets max. That will maintain your muscles assuming you compensate the biking with increased calories (ie eat more, eat calorically denser food such as nuts/peanut butter, consider gels/chews for long bike rides, don't miss meals, eat frequently). After you are done training for biking you will still have your strength and can just work for getting reps back to whatever level of hypertrophy you want...or you could consider strength training and keeping reps and sets low and increasing the weight you lift.

    Edit: also how intense is this cardio if you are doing 100 miles a week? It sounds like a low work rate for long periods of time, in which case the top advice is best. Intense cardio usually means things like sprints, interval training, stand up uphill biking... and by definition you shouldn't be able to do it for very long before you're pooped with a heart rate over 165 for most people.
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    Sep 17, 2012 3:17 AM GMT
    It's all about diet. You could do all of the cardio you want, but you'll have to increase your calorie intake.
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    Sep 17, 2012 3:25 AM GMT
    I bike 40km six times a week, 3 of which I do sprints and go as hard as I can and I've been making steady progress with my speeds as well as at the gym.

    Just eat eat eat and then eat some more icon_biggrin.gif

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    Sep 17, 2012 3:34 AM GMT
    The SF AIDS Foundation will be hosting seminars to talk about what to eat and how to train. GO. They are worthwhile. I did the Seismic Challenge a few years ago and learned a lot about diet and being prepared for a ride that long.

    Good luck!!

    And remember to take a camera with you. You will be able to capture moments you will want to treasure.
  • BuiltStrong

    Posts: 20

    Sep 17, 2012 3:16 PM GMT
    uoft23 saidI bike 40km six times a week, 3 of which I do sprints and go as hard as I can and I've been making steady progress with my speeds as well as at the gym.

    Just eat eat eat and then eat some more icon_biggrin.gif



    I recently completed the Friends for Life Bike Rally from Toronto to Montreal http://www.bikerally.org/(about 112km per day), during the beginning of training rides in April, I was clocking in at 22k-25km p/h by the time the ride left in end of July I was closer to 35km p/h and the last 3 days of the ride was clocking an average of 40km.

    Like uoft23 I do about 40-50km two times a week, and combine sprints and distance. Just vary up your training rides: one day is pure sprints and the other is pure endurance (trust me you will need that aspect).

    I also did the RJ Muscle-Building 12 week program http://www.realjock.com/workout/901/ and did two cycles of it (6 months) prior to the actual ride and that program combined with training rides got my body in the shape it needed to do 100km rides back to back on weekends for training as well for the actual ride itself. And eat, eat, eat and then eat some more as was stated but try to be 'clean' about it. And drink water water only. No juices and skip the gatoraide except on your rides (and water that down 1/2 and half).
  • animal11

    Posts: 2

    Sep 22, 2012 2:26 AM GMT
    Thanks so much guys for the advice. Looks like I will need to concentrate on increased calorie intake [which I have enough trouble with as it is icon_smile.gif ].

    I will def. take all of your advice to heart!!