Back to Keto – and a DNF

June of 2018 we got back from a family vacation (which included Mrs. AdultOnset’s first 70.3 IM). The next morning I looked in the mirror and said, “Oh goodness. Changes must be made.” (actually I got on the scale and screeched, “WTF?!?” but that other version sounds more dignified…)

I went with a very low carb approach – aka the ketogenic diet. And it worked well for me. I dropped 40+ lbs. over the next couple months and then continued eating that way until January of ’20 when I realized the training load for my own 70.3 was going to need some carbs.

Training this spring had me put on about 10 lbs. but I believe most of that was muscle. The high protein diet and lots of workouts — including strength training. My percentage of body fat stayed the same so I didn’t worry much about it. June and July, however, added another 5 (or more *cough*) lbs. All my races were cancelled and motivation was flagging fast… I decided it was time to lean out a bit while training slows down and went back to keto a few weeks ago.

Well, I haven’t been as diligent as I was last time around. So I’ve been in and out of ketosis many times this past month. Which is not good for any sort of endurance efforts. I’m not “fat burning acclimated” yet which, from experience, will take me a month or so. In the meantime I’m pretty much a gimp. I’m still reasonably strong, but I have very little stamina.

And I really felt that earlier today when I went to ride up Trail Ridge Road from the Grand Lake side. I’ve been looking forward to this ride for months! I couldn’t wait to tackle it (I did the Estes side last year (in ketosis) and had a ball). This morning was the day and I started the ride pretty excited to be able to finally notch this one.

The warmup went well. We had about 12 miles of riding out of town and into Rocky Mountain National Park to get warmed up and ready to go. I felt good and the pace was relaxed considering the roughly 1-2% grade. But once it was “go” time and the climb started for real, I was almost instantly out of gas. The big muscles of my legs were sore and heavy and after about 2 miles of climbing I pulled over and pulled the plug. I just didn’t have the legs for it today.

My first hill climbing DNF. How absolutely embarrassing!

I have a plan and for the next few weeks. I’ll work on being much more stringent about the diet and really focus on getting acclimated to being fat burning and then get back out there and tackle some hard efforts and see how it goes. Perhaps I’ll have to go hybrid and mix in some carbs before big efforts. We’ll be experimenting if necessary.

But damn I’m disappointed in how today went.

Thankfully the rest of the weekend in and around Grand Lake was awesome. Some fun chats with team and coach, some kayaking with my adventurous wife, hikes, great meals and even a little shopping.

Onwards and upwards (literally)!

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