Going crazy over 5lbs. Is it worth it?

So, I’m logging food, I’m being semi-strict. I’m just trying to keep my bodyweight hovering around 137lbs. But I struggle to get close to 140 consistently. I’m 5’4" but my BF% is fairly good at just under 18%. I was doing some analysis on bestbikesplit and it looks like 5lbs saves me like 3-5 watts. I mean, is it even worth it?

It seems like 10lbs would make a shining difference. But is it worth all the struggle? I’m not targeting hill climbs or anything. I do want to do decently in road races, but I’m a better crit racer no doubt.

Ps. That is all in hopes I can keep my ftp where it is or higher, of course!

Probably more important to be healthy and happy. If stressing over 5 little pounds is becoming a struggle and burden, then IMO it’s not worth it.
Life’s too short to worry about shit like this.
Also, I’m almost positive if you keep at riding, staying diligent with training and you know, just doing your normal day-to-day, you’ll drop those five pounds!


Now I can eat that homemade banana pudding my husband is making :pray:

I can sit at 142 all day, with NO variation in diet! Which just seems so crazy to me how hard it is to just get rid of 5 stinkin’ pounds.

Eat the pudding.
And honestly, I bet you drop those five pounds and maybe more as you get going! I’m in the same boat as you. I hover around 147 during most of the race season and I would love to just hit that damn 145 or even lower. But, I love food. Im sitting at about 150 right now and feeling pretty good about that.

You must be new here… :wink:

If you’re eating healthy food and feeling strong there’s no reason to stress about the weight. If it is hampering your ability to perform or meet other goals then you can stress about it all day long


It’s funny you say this. I can sit exactly at 142lbs without much effort as long as I’m working out but it’s harder to hold 141lbs and a absolute nightmare trying to stay under 140lbs. As a runner I was by far my fastest at 138lbs but I would literally binge eat an entire box of cereal (to many times) because I was miserable. That’s why I’m preferring the bike because I don’t feel like 5lbs hurts half as much as it does running. Plus everyone basically told me I looked like sh@t at 138lbs

Not worth it. Eat healthy, complete the workouts and let the body fall where it may. I bet you will be faster this way.

Yeah, it sucks food is so darned good.

I read this Reddit post once about weird traits for people and there were two individuals who just plain don’t like food, so they just eat the healthiest unflavored food because they find no joy or interest in it. That’s bananas!!

From experience yeah I think 5lbs lighter is noticeable. Especially for someone like you who is already probably close to the bottom. Meaning a 300 pound person may notice 50 like a 140 pound person will notice 5. But, IME it’s not black and white how being 5lbs lighter get’s noticed (power being equal). For example, 3-5W is really hard to quantify as a gain in performance on the bike unless uber linear ITT. If like me, I think you’ll notice things like being in better position more often; able to respond to more/deeper attacks etc…sort of intangible stuff like that.

But, going crazy over it no.

No, it’s not, but you should probably obsess over it anyways - because, hey, what else ya gonna do?

I try to think of weight like I do fitness. It’s not a constant number, nor should it be. You don’t want to be at peak fitness 4 months before your A race, and nor do you want to be at race weight. For me I have a maximum weight I set that’s a couple of kilos above race weight. If I get close I start to bring it back down a touch. When I’m close to when I want to peak, I can bring that down in 2-3 weeks easy with some firmer calorie control.

Have a think about it, works for me!


Hey, bananas are tasty and enjoyable! :wink:

I think you should stop worrying about the weight, it’s a negative distraction. 3-5 watts is a slightly dirty drivetrain

Have you listened to this week’s Ask A Cycling Coach podcast yet? There’s a very good chat about exactly this, and it’s from a female pro’s perspective. One of the best podcasts yet overall. I hope they bring her back as a regular guest.



@aarontator, I’ll have to get to it on Monday!

Thanks for all the input folks. I’ll just keep on trucking along without fixating on the weight so much. I’d be more excited over a 10 watt ftp bump anyway :blush:


I wouldn’t suffer so much for little chances if you don’t have a specific goal. If you will go for a mountain race I would try it. But maybe you can irk on some other things. Getting faster don’t always mean going lighter. Maybe more efficient, more aero…

When ever I focus on weight my FTP stagnants and losing the weight is a chore.

When I focus on FTP my body composition improves, my power goes up and life is a joy :smile: :sun_with_face:.


If you don’t have a particular focus in your training right now, you could choose training plans or select workouts that keep the intensity lower and maximize the calorie burn per hour. I’ve been doing this for a few weeks and just that little extra has helped me tip that scale to the good.

@CKDaube yeah, I’m pretty focused right now with my training, but it would have been something to definitely hone in on more when I was doing the lesser intensity and longer workouts. I’ve been going the @Nate_Pearson way since I actually listened to Amber on the recent podcasts. She provided excellent insight, and I feel that I’m overall just happier focusing more on training.

I’m floating in that happy medium realm of not barraging my face with horrible foods, but not fixating on every little thing I eat, and keeping the training up!

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What’s your watts/kg? If you are struggling to find 3-5 on the kg side, it’s probably easier to find it on the ftp side.

I’ve gone from semi strict to strict to loose AF and ebbed and flowed 15-20 over the years. I’d answer your question NO.