More Nuance Around Weight Loss

The only thing I’m disagreeing with you is in separating “focus” or “goals”. It’s just one package of improvement.

Yea, but one individual can flip the prioritization of one over the other compared to another individual.

The second part of this paragraph is 100% not what TR recommends, so this is a bit of a false equivalence.

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It’s possible I missed something. Has the message not always been, “dont worry about dieting, your body will find its ideal body composition?”

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How does that translate to “ modern, western, sedentary, overindulged lifestyle”?

TR continually talks about eating right, choosing whole foods, proper carbohydrates, etc.


It kinda is as you say est right part of that is eat the correct amount of calories for your life and workload. If you are starting off to many calories you arent eating right at the basic level you need to adjust that down and correct your balance there and run a slight deficits. Me eating super healthy whole foods etc but eating 3000 calories a day when my daily intake should be around 2000 and im only doing 800kj of work 3 times a week isnt eating right, even if i am only putting good food in. Weight control is rather a simple math equation of how much you put in and how much you burn. Coming at this as a starting point of 230lbs january 22 and dropped down to 216 just by increasing frequency of workload through the rest of 2022. Now further down to 204 with more stringent calorie counting. At the same time with introducing structured training ftp has gone from 257 october 22 to 300 april 23. When it comes to performace a minor 2-5lb swing isnt gonna make a huge difference. I also could still drop another 15-20lbs and plan to but its not a huge rush. To make it sustainable it needs to be a longer term change for me working a minor deficit.

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Ok that is true.

I guess I’m seeing their advice as contradictory is the issue. On the one hand, eat extremely healthy, veggies, etc. on the other hand, fuel the work, dont diet on or off the bike, your body composition will take care of itself. I just dont see that being the case.

Especially if you want performance gain and weight loss, you really need to actively manage things all the way around…there is no…“your body just takes care of it.” I that’s why has set me off about their phrasing.

Heck, looking back and really thinking about this, I think it very well may be the single line of Jonathans, “your body will find the composition it needs to be.” That’s infuriating me…your body becomes what one chooses to sculpt it into.

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Never heard them to say emphasized part in podcast :thinking:


Yea honestly I’m now trying to remember exactly WHAT I’ve heard. I may have extrapolated from the “your body gets to the composition it needs to be at” statements.

Right, my takeaway have always been “fuel the workout, manage weight with daily diet and let body take whatever shape it needs to deliver performance.”


I think it’s just that last bit I take issue with. The “let the body take whatever shape” part implies changing body shape requires no thought or action on the oart of the owner.


I’ve never heard this explitictly, but I do somewhat agree implicitly.

They focus on saying - Don’t diet on the bike, give your body the nutrients it needs, don’t diet on recovery weeks or rest days, your body composition will work itself out over time. I don’t know if I’ve ever heard or seen them once talk about running a calorie deficit without coming off like they’re trying to scare people away from it. That doesn’t work for everyone.

Now, if you’re a conspiracy theorist you’ll say it’s because they make their money off of helping people lift FTP (as opposed to W/KG), and the best way to lift FTP is fuel at all costs :smiley: (I don’t think this is it, I think that it’s just they’re talking about what works for them without addressing the other side)

I agree with this, but I feel like they even want to scare people away from the “manage weight with daily diet” portion.

Some people will see the biggest performance benefit by losing weight, it’s going to depend.

That statement is made in the context of someone who has already chosen to train so they are already actively making decisions. Believe its more meant to be taken in context of you body may want to be built like wout van aert not tom pidcock so dont try to force it to look like pidcocks. Once youre down to a healthy weight focus on the power and strengths of your body. Everybodys body type is different so lean into the benefits of yours for performance gains and race to the strength of your build.


I understand what you’re saying, and I certainly agree. I’m built somewhere in between what a road and track sprinter would look like. It would be horribly counterproductive for me to lean up enough to have climbing be a relative strength. I’d have to drop a lot of muscle mass for it.

That said…IF that is the context those statements should be taken in…I think TR should make that much more clear. It just strikes me as they’re copping out and steering clear of the idea of weight loss, which is doing a disservice to their community engaged in endurance sports in which weight is very much a factor…

I’m not a conspiracy theorist about this…I think TR is just being intentionally a bit vague/coy to avlid getting pulled into body shaming territory, etc.

Theyre not your doctor though. Your primary care should tell you if you should lose weight, they dont have a medical history of every user in their system to tell people what to do. They prescribe workouts for cycling. If you have checked every healthy box with your doctor and are in an ideal weight range for your height and age, what they say would be true.

I do think this is the case. Unfortunately, it forgets that a lot of people’s bodies naturally want to look more like George Foreman than George Hincapie.


Exactly my experience. I am now trying to limit my calorie deficit to 500-600 per day and if it turns out to be only 300 then I am now in a mindset of “so what”.

Previously I’d do these long rides and come back with a huge deficit and think I don’t want to waste this and try not to eat to much when I got home. Result: no weight loss over months as I think I overate the following days to compensate. Also “I’m ok having that cake because of yesterday” coming into it. I’m now eating more on the bike and trying to engineer only a 500/600 cal deficit per ride. and see where that takes me.

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A lot of people I follow on Twitter poo-poo what they call CICO – calories in < calories out. So obviously they don’t measure or act on objective measures of what they eat and their exercise/activity. Functionally however, that is exactly what they do and from what I can see they are successful.

However for many of us, if we are not doing that we are putting on weight or failing to lose weight. I count myself in this group. I can eat A LOT of food and that is even without having a few drinks to encourage it.


I think it’s important to remember that ALL weight loss ALWAYS comes from calories in vs calories out. There are no exceptions.

Any on its face reasonable counter-point to this that has an effect on weight loss, when examined, fundamentally alters, perhaps in unexpected ways, either the calories in or out.


It seems fairly reasonable that having a significant amount of fat to lose means that performance is best improved by losing that fat. I haven’t done the maths but I assume it’s far easier to up your w/kg by 10% by losing fat than it is by upping your ftp?

I’m not really a proper cyclist but I like TR (the podcasts, the forum, and the application) and have dipped in an out but not had much success with the programs as my trainer setup is agony after 60 mins and I cannot sustain the intensity in the program for many sessions.

So, how to use TR if losing weight is your primary goal? Assuming that one cannot sustain the prescribed intensity (on SSBLV1/2) on a meaningful calorie deficit, would it be best to drop your ftp in the app by say 10% or leave it to AI FTP but drop the workout intensity to 90% and stick to the program? Or would it be best to drop the main programs and go to polarised or just zone 2 riding?

What have you guys that lost significant (10kg/25lbs+) done?

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