Riding Our Way Fit – Not Thin*

After discussing Carnie Wilson’s second weight loss surgery on Twitter earlier today, an idea took root in my head.

See, I love riding bikes. I ride because I love it, not to lose weight, something that is obvious to anyone who has seen my daily ride. I bought a road bike last year, thinking that riding it would help me get fitter, faster, but mostly it’s just been collecting dust out on my balcony. You see, the problem isn’t with the bike, it’s with me.

All of the road cyclists I know are thin and super-fit. And it’s not as if they aren’t supportive and helpful — they are — but when I ride with them, I’m very conscious of not being anywhere near as fit as they are, and I worry constantly that I’m slowing them down.

I started thinking that surely there were other fat-bottomed folks in the Vancouver area who might be interested in a fun, supportive group fitness ride for heavier riders. We could start slow and gradually work our way up to 50km/50mi or 100km/100mi rides over the course of a few weeks. I’ve been checking out Selene Yeager’s Ride Your Way Lean training book, and while it’s a bit aggressive, there are other options available – David Yeager’s Ride Fit is less aggressive than Yeager’s, and may be more suitable for people who are looking to set a base level of fitness.

So what say you? Does this sound like something you might be interested in? And if you’re a fitter rider, would you be interested in perhaps serving as an informal coach to help us become more comfortable on our bikes? Leave a note in the comments below!

* I felt this title deserved a bit of an explanation. I’m not interested in pursuing weight loss for the sake of being thin, or fitting into a more socially-acceptable dress size. My focus is being as fit as you can possibly be, at whatever weight you are. It’s not my intention to disparage or discourage anyone who wants to ride to get thin. Not at all. However, my goal with this group is to focus on health and fitness at any size.

6 thoughts on “Riding Our Way Fit – Not Thin*

  1. i love the idea of this!
    though i don’t know if i fit in as I don’t have a road bike but i will spread the word to anyone else i know who might be interested in joining!

    • I’m also interested in doing slower rides as well! Thanks for passing it along!

  2. C – I think this is a great idea. I’m not close enough to participate with you, but I think it’s great (I wonder how long it would take me to bike to Vancouver… could be scary). I can certainly identify with the feeling of “slowing others down,” but I also know that I don’t mind riding the road bike alone and allowing myself the opportunity to push myself when I’m ready. I hope that you are able to find a good group of people to ride with because I think this would be good in more than one area of the country/continent/world. I know that I’m the largest person on any group ride I go on and I think it’s because others are intimidated. Personally, I’ve just developed the attitude of “I don’t care” because I want to ride and if they are willing to let me ride with them, then I’m going to go for it when I can.

    • The interesting — and somewhat disheartening — thing is I started a Meetup group, but all of the people who have joined it have been thin. I shouldn’t let that deter me, but it is. 

      • That is unfortunate. I wonder if others who are bigger just think that no one will ride slower to accomodate their needs? This always seems to be the challenge to me… those of us who are larger and want to ride can’t seem to connect with those who are bigger because they don’t see the blogs, or look for the groups. I haven’t quite figured out how to bridge that gap. The few of us that I am aware of are so spread apart there just isn’t hope of riding together. 

        Don’t give up. I know others are out there, and hopefully they’ll find you soon.

      • I’m not sure what else to say – in the group description, I mentioned being a larger cyclist who wants to start slow. But then again, this is Vancouver, and really large people are a rarity here. One person has suggested we do a 25km farm tour sometime this summer, and I think it’s a great idea. 

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