Lost weight by mountain biking?

Forums Mountain Bike Forum Lost weight by mountain biking?

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    • #252192

      Hi everyone, I’m working on a story that highlights the success of those who have lost weight by mountain biking, or have incorporated riding into a weight loss or fitness regimen and have seen good results.

      The goal is to inspire others through your story, that mountain biking can contribute to a physically healthier lifestyle and be a solid means to get in better shape.

      If you’d like to share your story, please email me – [email protected]




    • #252430

      It would be an interesting read but I for one can’t contribute. Riding motivates me to stay fit but is not a big contributor to that cause.

    • #253032


      I began mountain biking again years ago, because I had a medical procedure and some sciatic issues.  Despite what the doctors told me, I refused to stay still.  Biking was deemed a “safe” low-impact exercise that I could perform.  As with me, nothing is never “low-impact”.  However I have seen the benefits of weight loss and shredding down.  Despite how much or how hard you ride, diet is the biggest key, just the same with lifting weights.  I’ve ridden just about all disciplines, however, road is not my thing.  I have lost weight?  Yes.  However, it’s what I fuel my body with that makes the difference.  Being military field activities will require a high caloric intake and there are times, where despite treacherous climates and rigorous activity, you wouldn’t see a reduction in weight if you had the food, resources, and/or rations to keep it packed on.  I can honestly testify that I have had a reduction in 22 lbs in 6 months easy (I’m guessing/about, for me at least) from biking and just eating better.  Control your portions and fuel your body with the right stuff, that makes all the difference.  That makes me wonder, what would the results be from those that are strict on Keto?  I can’t do that, I believe that the Cookie is one of man’s greatest inventions and refuse to turn that down.

      I bike because I love the outdoors, hitting jumps, cutting up and feeling like a kid.  The exercise is  something that just comes with it.  My goal to stay lighter is the desire to be a little faster and easier to get fancy behind the bars.  I know it’s not a regimen so to say, however that’s my piece.  Take care.


      • #253042

        In my opinion, GTXC4 nailed it.  Diet has more to do with weight loss and maintenance, and <i>health</i>, than anything.  I’ve always been pretty active on a daily basis, which includes straddling mountain bikes since the 70’s.  I’ve also always eaten whatever I felt like, and as much if it as I wanted.  I never “watched” my weight, but always seemed to hover around 175-180.  Apparently I had always been active enough to not expand too much.  I never thought about weight until… well, as my cardiologist told me, you can’t outrun burgers and brats.  That was just after he performed my double bypass three years ago.  Today, I mountain bike just as much and as hard as I always have, which is usually 5+ days a week when possible.  I haven’t changed my activity, but have changed my diet.  I now hover around 160-165 lbs, and am MUCH healthier.  Honestly, that’s all due to diet.

        You hear it all the time… “diet and <i>exercise</i>”.  Every doc says it, and EVERY advertisement for the latest craze in products all stipulate… “you will feel better and lose weight with our amazing product along with a healthy diet and exercise”.  It’s not rocket science.

        So, regarding your request about a story that highlights the success of those who have lost weight by mountain biking… My story is mountain biking on a regular basis kept me alive longer (and lighter) than I probably should have been despite an unhealthy diet.

    • #253107

      Coming from a decade of trading running for beer I’ll say that running will burn more calories per hour than most mtb-ing. However after a decade of running, my knees are mostly shot and I can only run once per week now (down from 3-4 including a long run).  I’ve incorporated MTB now into my routine allowing for 3ish rides per week over lunch.  It’s not completely replaced running but its 80% of the weight burn and turns out to be more fun that running (I now wish I would have started biking 20 years ago)  It fits right into my gym work and occasional running to keep me in check with my caloric intake   I will echo the comments that the intake makes more difference on the weight gain/loss than the output



      • #253357

        I respectfully disagree Ridethestash.  I am a biker with a running problem…or a runner with a biking problem…er…anyways, as always it is all about your own state of fitness, but for me, I hit VO2 max much quicker on an MTB than on my roadie or during a race-pace run.  My 5k pace is roughly 22 flat, not bad for a 38 y/o dad-bod beer snob IMO, but I know there’s better out there.  The only time I’ve hit VO2 max quicker on my roadie than on my MTB was doing KOMs on a 17* grade during a charity ride/race.  Otherwise, I’ve found MTB to be the best all around HIIT for me.  I’m sure its quite different for others though.

        OP, I got out of the Marines in 2009, weighed 235ish, benched 300 consistently, and was squatting 600.  After I got out I forgot how to eat and train, and blew up to 250+ (stopped getting on the scale at 250) and lost a ton of muscle mass.  In the last 5 years I made it down to 175 (marathon training) and am now a comfortable 190-but I’d like to drop a few off the belly.  230 bench on a good day now, but endurance is great.  MTB played the biggest part of that, but beyond that, riding helped save me from devastating, and suicidal, PTSD.  I thank God every day for my bikes.



    • #253354

      Ditto on using MTBing as motivation to drop weight and stay fit rather than the primary source of weight loss. I got dropped on a group ride that included a 12 year old and an 11 year old. I got dropped due to steep climbs that maxed me out so bad I couldn’t catch my breath. I decided that day that I needed to fix the problem: I weighed 255lbs (@5’10”) and I wanted to pedal up steep hills at the same rate people weighing 90lbs were doing it.

      I started researching nutrition and bike specific fitness and before long I came across the “Ask a cycling Coach Podcast” byt TrainerRoad (I dont work for them). I learned a ton about nutrition and hydration there and was also introduced to calorie counting there.

      I started counting calories and the weight started falling off rapidly. I dropped from 255 down to 245 in less than two months. Getting lighter helped a bunch but I was still getting smoked by steep climbs, I decided to try TrainerRoad since I can’t get to the trails on a regular basis where I live. I use an old roadbike mounted on a trainer in conjunction with the TrainerRoad app on my phone and BAM, I’m burning 500-800 calories within an hours workout that didn’t require me to leave the house and I can do it any time of day. This, in combination with eating right helped me get down to 201 lbs ( I’m still working on that last 1 lb to reach my latest goal lol)

      I saw improvement right away from learning about pedalling efficiency and after a few months of off and on training I have now cleared two climbs that I had never been able to get due to them being long and steep. I have decided to get more serious about it and be more consistent with the training now. I hope to knock down the last monstrous climb in my area by March next year. A climb that reaches 21% grade at one point and stays above 15% for the duration.

      I wish I could MTB often enough to use it instead of a trainer, but it’s not in the cards. I suffer during the week so I can enjoy the ride on the weekend a whole lot more.


    • #253370

      I lost over 30 pounds riding and brought my blood work in line.  I found singletrack riding to be a form of exercise that I stuck with and looked forward to.  I have added proper nutrition now as well. I still have weight to lose, I don’t know my FTP, VO2 or anything else, but MTB probably saved my life.

    • #253451

      No weight loss story here but running is what slims me most. Problem is, I really don’t enjoy running very much. Could cut back on the beer and texmex… Naw.

    • #253998

      keeping fit is the reason why I started cycling. I ride bikes a few times a week and control my diet. I know that many people can’t lose weight because they are overeating after cycling. Although they feel good during exercise, exercise does not affect their weight. A friend of mine is an example. But I am different, I spend more time riding and controlling my food intake. After work, I will also spend about an hour riding. Don’t worry about safety, I installed bike light to see and to be seen easily. Then I will relax my muscles for about 15-30 minutes. In this way, I persisted for half a year, and finally achieved weight loss.

    • #579182

      Following a myocardial infarction and heart surgery, my cardiologist set eyes on my fatbike. Marveling at the massive tires and stupid wide rims, he offered a prescription…

      Ride 4x weekly, 1.5 hours each time.

      The trade was if I kept this regimen, I would be off the hook for cardiac rehab. Doesn’t get better than that!

      Bicycles, the best therapists known to exist! Frankly, I have no weight I can loose.

    • #618184

      I would just like to add that in addition to having lost 20 pounds many years ago wen I first started getting serious about mountain biking, it comes with several more very critical health perks. I am now 65 and still ride over 2000 miles a year. I had my annual physical recently and my doctor, who I have had for over ten years, was very impressed that i still have maintained my weight lose, my heart and lungs are in great shape, I am on no meds and my balance, and stamina are remarkable.

      I contribute most of these results exclusively to riding my bikes. The more you ride the longer you will be able too.

    • #621531

      I’ve lost some weight, but my diet and bike work in tandem

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