Sunday, October 14, 2012

Fitness News #75 - How not to get fat eating fast food

I once purchased a chicken dinner from a local takeaway.  I was the only customer, yet it took what felt like forever to arrive.  At home I looked up the definition of fast food and its definition is food that can be prepared quickly, so technically my chicken dinner still qualified as fast food.  The definition of fast food doesn't exclude the proposition that fast food could be good for you.

Eat fast food and not get fat

 The Visit to Hungry Jacks

Driving back from Gouldburn I was getting low on fuel, it was 2.30pm and I hadn't had lunch, so I pulled into the servo, refueling the car.  It was also time to refuel myself and next to the servo was Hungry Jacks.  I think I last ate at Hungry Jacks about a year ago.  Anyway the first thing I noticed was that next to each item on the menu was the kilojoules for each item.  I'm a bit behind the times, tending to think in calories, but that didn't matter as it was it was easy to see what the difference was between the options.

You could argue that I should have packed my own lunch rather than buying and you would be correct, but it didn't happen this time.

Comparing the burgers, the grilled chicken burger was a tad under half the calories of the Wooper (or whatever they call their mega burger) and small variations in the product made big differences in the kilojoules.  For example the coated (crumbed?) chicken burger had 50% more kilojoules (calories) than the grilled chicken burger.  Now this caught me by surprise, the chicken salad wrap had about the same kilojoules as the equivalent chicken burger, so the wrap itself had the same kilojoules as the burger bun.  Want less kilojoules than the chicken grill burger, then there was  chicken salad at about half the kilojoules of the low kilojoules chicken burger.  The salad appeared to be the contents of the burger, without the bun.  So in the chicken grill burger, half the kilojoules are in the bun.

Lets add the crime.  Small drink and chips had the same kilojoules as the grilled chicken burger and I would assume close to zero nutritional value.  A large drink and chips was double the kilojoules of the small version, the same as the wooper burger.  Lets not go near the free refill, there was a dude who would of weighed about 160kg taking advantage of that.

Vegetarian.... forget it... The Vegetarian burger had the same kilojoules as the Wooper and your only other option was the drink and chips. 

Hungry Jacks Nutrition Guide

Most of you saw the movie Supersize me, where he puts on a heap of weight in a month eating just at McDonalds.  However did you notice that the guy who had the record for the most burgers eaten wasn't fat.  The mentioned that while he ate the burgers, he rarely ate the chips and drink.

Well, there's a rebuttal to Supersize me called  Fat head, its  >>here<< on youtube .  Now while there's a number of things that I disagree with, such as how the portray vegetables as being boring, but it does show that fast food can be eaten without getting fat.

What you should do

  • Ensure you have good food knowledge, often there is a big difference in the value of food between the options that interest you.
  • Consider taking food with you rather than purchasing.  You have better control over food that you make yourself.
  • Avoid manufactured products, it is difficult to know what is in them.  If its manufactured, how do you know what is in it.
  • Have a preference towards foods that are in the same form as they were when they were grown.  The closer to the farm a product the less chance it has been tampered with.
  • Unless you specifically know the nutritional information, always avoid coated products.
  • Don't assume that the independent takeaway is healthier than the big chain.

What if you did nothing

  • . If you don't gain good food knowledge, then you will have no control on the effect of your food purchasing decisions.


My knee still dogs me, but I went to the Australian Road Racing Championships and ended up near the rear of the field in all races

Wednesday 3rd October 2012 - Australian Individual Time Trails Championships

Anyone who saw me on Saturday morning would know that I was quite crook, so I'm pleased just to have to got to the race, the results are incidental.

I've purchased the Orbea off David, so this time it was my bike and not borrowed. However I don't have wheels, so I'm riding on alloy clinchers, so really just a TT frame. I got the handlebars moved back so it meets UCI measurements and it just made the measurements.... just. Just to make life more interesting I suffered calf cramps during the warmup... oh dear..

Race - out
The course was identical to the NSW champs, with didn't mean a lot to me as I didn't race it, but I had read the reports and knew that the way out was slower than the way back. There was a headwind and initially I seem to cut thru it quite well. I chose to run a lower cadence to what I normally run, I knew I wasn't in the best of condition and I wanted to preserve my legs, then in a similar fashion to Kirrijong the speed just disappeared and I played a battle of grinding to a halt and then building back my speed. Start times were a minute apart and I was hoping to make it to halfway without been overtaken, but that wasn't to be as I was overtaken just before the halfway mark.

Race - back
Interestingly the rider that overtook me was slow up a hill and I ended up overtaking him, which was short lived. Knowing that halfway was actually well past halfway, I let my cadence rise and went for it. I was a bit irritated by a couple of things;
- knees hitting elbows. really need to to review my position and see about those extra 5cm allowed in the rules for some situations.
- speedo kept cutting in and out. I tend to race my speedo, but it didn't want to play ball.

Data - this is the first time I've used a Garmin - A little out, but you get the general idea.

Came 13th out of 15 starters, not a good result, but where I expected to turn up. Comparing the data with 2011 championships, I was about 1.5kph slower, when compared with the other riders.

Friday 5th October 2012 - Australian Criterion Championships

Venue: Marulan Driver Training Centre

I put my heart rate monitor on while in the hotel room and it was giving me readings between 90 and 110, depending on what I was doing, not a good sign, still sick. Unlike last year where I was away on a breakaway, this year was about survival and I needed a tactical race, if they went like greyhounds, I was done for.

After warming up sat on the start line for 8 minutes and still started with a heart rate of 140, there was an immediate attack off the line and the field strung out. My speedo was pissing me off, it was reading 25kph downhill...useless. By the end of lap 1 I was on the rear. On lap 2 the rider in front of me blew, I went around him and chased the bunch, went around another rider and just got back on 3/4 lap later, only to be immediately dropped. I chased hard staying in contact for 2 laps but not getting on. Then I cruised for 4 more laps, in case the bunch slowed up, but it didn't and withdrew, 4th to last I think.

Only 9 out of about 19 riders finished. 1st and 2nd were half lap ahead of 3rd and 4th. 5th to 9th was about 3/4 a lap behind.

My speed data is out, it shows an average speed of 25.5kph. I've made an estimate on distant covered at 9k, which gives me a average speed of 38.5, could be wrong.

Cadence shows that I was focusing on preserving myself and not being gun-ho.

Now heart rate, that is a concern, Started at 140, average of 180 and a peak of 191.

I'm not unhappy with the outcome, it didn't come as a surprise and I expect a similar outcome tomorrow in the road race.

Saturday 6th October 2012 - Australian Road Racing championships


Today finished a chapter in a series of races where I wasn't race fit. I had little expectation going up to the start line, however while my heart rate was high, it wasn't as high as yesterday. Then we sat on the line for 24 minutes as they delayed the start. There was about 45 riders.

The first 4k was neutral and the speed was restricted by the leading car, which took us to the circuit itself.

Lap 1 - 56:08
I was dropped on the very first hill. After a bit of solo riding, I made a decision that I wasn't able to catch the bunch in front of me and I should slow down and pick up the rider behind me and encouraged him to ease up to allow the rider behind us to catch. The 3 of us pressed on, collected another rider and had a go at catching the bunch in front of us, of about 10 riders. By the turn around it was clear that them, they were working hard to catch the main bunch. The return leg gave us more down hill and more importantly a tailwind. We collected another rider and immediately lost another.

Lap 2 - 1:01:38
Turned around and straight into the headwind, it was clear we were gone. One rider was dropped leaving the 3 of us. Then a couple of K later I was dropped and lost about 200mtrs on the other 2 and rode solo for say 10k. Up a long hill, I managed to half the distance, which encouraged me to put a special effort into the next hill, I reeled them in and we are back as 3, not far from the turnaround. Once around the turnaround I was dropped again, leaving me half the race remaining to ride solo. Rode about 5k and got overtaken by another race, then about 5k later they sat up and I reeled them back in. I didn't really want to slow down, so I rode up beside the commissionaires car and asked if it was OK to overtake. As I rode past them I said "I'm not in your race" so they wouldn't see me as an attack in their race. I ended up quite a way in front of them, but as I got closer to the finish line, that race was working hard and I realised they were probably finishing, so I slowed up to let them overtake me.

Lap 3 - 1:08:39
My knee was playing up and I had serious thoughts about not doing the lap, but I decided to press on, but took it easy into the headwind, as can be seen in my data. About halfway into the outward leg a car appeared behind me and I realised that I was the last rider who hadn't DNF'ed, I dubbed the car the swag wagon. This spurred me on a bit and I built speed, the turnaround came and I felt good and found pace, there was also a blown rider about a K in front of me and this gave me something to chase. Then I caught the blown rider, for the wrong reason, he had a flat. The swag wagon stopped for the rider with the flat. I rode on and just before the finish line the swag waggon overtook me with that rider on board, doubly confirming me as the last rider to complete.

I don't know the finish time, but I'm guessing I finished 15 - 20 minutes behind the winner. My average speed was 30.4kph, making it my slowest race, a huge difference between last years championship where I averaged 40.0kph, true this years course is slower. I'm not disappointed, its what I expected recovering from my sickie.

Data; or on strava



I've got a couple of classed covered at the beginning of the week, so to rest my knee

Fitness First 
Rockdale Mon 6.00am Ride 
Pitt st Mon 11.30am RPM
Pitt st Mon 1.10pm Ride30 
Five Dock Mon 5.45pm RPM - covered by Carolanne
Rockdale Tue 6.30pm RPM - last class
Top Ryde Wed 6.15pm Ride
Walker St Thu 6.00am RPM
Bond St Thu 11.45am RPM
Riverwood Mon 7.30pm RPM - covered by Jackqueline 
Riverwood Tue 6.15am RPM- covered by Jackqueline

Stadium Fitness Centre Friday 6.15am RPM

Sleep Ride Eat Repeat

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