I think the straw that broke it was stepping on the scale yesterday and having it show me the third in a straight string of increases, this one a  1.4-pound gain to 229.6 from the previous day. It’s certainly not the intake that’s driving that number in the wrong direction; I’ve been pretty good at keeping it to an average of 2,300 calories per day. No, it’s the output that’s keeping me stuck in this purgatory. The entire lack of it. This was not a surprise to me, just a long-overdue wakeup call.

And so after pronouncing to my wife last night that I would get up and I would go for a bike ride, mindblowingly for only the second time in two months, I did get up this morning wrestling victoriously against  the usual apathy and excuses  and got on my bike at 6:30 a.m. for a 14-mile sunrise ride up to to the Riverside Drive bridge by the 134 Freeway and back. Oh yeah, and it was pretty out there (click it for the bigger picture).

And what I’ve figured from that hour-long jaunt is that the six pounds I’ve lost over this past 50 days of calorie counting has come entirely from atrophied leg muscle. Seriously, I came off the LA River Bikeway at Fletcher, and by the time I got up the slight grade on Glendale and Silver Lake boulevards to the reservoir — a gentle incline that I used to blast across without giving it a second thought — the legs t’were a-burnin’ and the wind I was a-suckin’. Wow.

The payoff however came when I got home and stepped on the scale and said “I dare you to piss me off” and it opted  not to, instead showing me at 225.4 — a new low.

Sure, I know in this see-saw scene I’m likely to step on the device tomorrow and have it show me 228.8, but I can deal with it as long as I keep my patience and my ass in the bike saddle more than once a month.