Lets find a Cafe (or tearoom)

Lets find a Cafe (or tearoom)

Locations of reviewed cafes

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Friday, 17 April 2015

Calorie Boffins. Latest World record attempt news

Calorie neutral bike ride world record attempt update

Due to a distinct lack of cycling guests, I decided to use yesterday for some more research and practice for my calorie neutral bike ride world record attempt on 11th September. I thought I would test out the route for the potential last 8 cafes on my route. 

For those unfamiliar with the calorie neutral bike ride concept then there are seven rules that must be followed for an official world record attempt. I have included the list of rules at the bottom of the post but for today I would be only focusing on rule 6. 

Rule 6. From the time of arriving at the cafe 300 calories must be burnt off before the next cafe can be visited thus making the ride calorie neutral. (300 calories is based on in-depth internet research on average calories of cakes and scones plus average calories of a hot drink (Tea, coffee, hot chocolate). 

Using the data from my previous two practice rides I had been able to optimised the route in order that the minimum distance would be needed between stops to be able to burn the necessary 300 calories. As always I was using my Garmin Forerunner 910XT, with a heart rate monitor, to measure the calories. 

With GPS route, notebook and calorie counter all in place I set off early, before breakfast, to the start point for the day which would be the Hen House near Wymondham. On this ride I would only be stopping if I felt I was running out of energy as today it was all about the route.

With wind behind I was soon at the end of the drive to the Hen House so initialised my gadgets for a day of data gathering. I arrived at the first stop, which was Lincolns Tea Shoppe in Hingham, and I was confident that I had pedalled just the right number of miles in order to shift the necessary calories. On arrival I stopped and checked my Garmin Forerunner 910XT calorie count readout. I was shocked and mystified to find I had only burnt 223 calories. I was obviously disappointed and surprised that it was this many calories short but made a note to add a couple more miles on to the route and set off again. 

Next cafe on the list was Tabnabs in Mattishall but checking my Garmin Forerunner 910XT calorie count on arrival I again found I was many calories short. If every cafe required an extra couple of miles then the 20 cafe target I had set for the world record attempt would not be possible. Rather dejected I decided to keep going and cycle to the next stop, Yaxham Mill Cafe Bar, to have Breakfast.
Yaxham mill, where you can find a cafe bar
Due to my GPS trying to take me across Farmer Browns ploughed field I had to add a bit extra on to this leg so I was confident the necessary calories would be burnt. Although I was in the middle of nowhere I still locked my bike before going inside to check the latest readings. I nervously flicked to the calorie screen and my heart sunk as yet again I was well down on the target. Things were now looking serious but at times like this I cheer myself up by ordering a hot chocolate and cheese scone.
Good looking drink and scone
Despite this not being a cafe reviewing ride, force of habit took over and I found myself taking a photograph of the food and drink before I had realised I had done it. The refreshments were very good and replaced some of the tiny amount of calories I had apparently burned. As an aside I did note that the last time I had had a cheese scone at Yaxham mill Cafe Bar (see.Is there such thing as a free lunch?) I had reported that I felt it needed to be a bit cheesier. However on this occasion I'm happy to report that the amount of cheese was up to standard and I was very content with the cheesiness.

Suitably refuelled it was back on the bike for a loop round to Yaxham Waters cafe with the pattern of not enough calories repeated again.
Yaxham waters cafe extension looks like it is coming on very well
Calorie count wise it was the same story on the way to Chalfonts in Hingham before the longest trip of the day from Hingham to Janey's village cafe in Hethersett. By this time I had covered over 50 miles and only had a cheese scone and hot chocolate to keep me going so I decide it was time for a calorie top up.
Ready for refuelling at Janey's village cafe
I ordered another hot chocolate plus carrot cake, to make sure I got some vegetables for a balanced diet. As I waited for them to arrive I noticed that this was the only time I had hit my calorie target and had overshot by 100. This made no sense as I had only gone a couple of miles further than the distances between the other cafes. I was now starting to suspect my Garmin Forerunner 910XT calorie counting abilities were suspect and decided some in depth calorie internet based research would be required when I returned home.

When it arrived I was very pleased that the carrot cake was a very generous (and tasty) slice which, like a Pavlovian dog with an I-phone, I had photographed before I knew it.
Good looking, and tasting, drink and carrot cake, but should I eat the cream?
The carrot cake did come with cream which I ate on this occasion. However I made a note that I must not on the actual world record attempt as it would be unaccounted for extra calories and could nullify my attempt!

I now felt fully recharged and so I hopped back on my bike for the ride to the last stop which was the Station Bistro in Wymondham with another insufficient calorie count.

When I got home I updated all the data to my spreadsheets which showed, according to my Garmin Forerunner 910XT, I was now operating at a much lower calories per mile rate than on the previous two practice rides. 

With all the data I now had plus the inconstancies of my Garmin Forerunner 910XT calorie counting I was at a lose to know what to make of it all. I decided I needed to hand all the data over to some boffins so they could crunch the numbers in a super computer and come up with the answer as to how far I need to cycle between cafes in order to burn 300 calories and keep my ride calorie neutral.
Boffins crunching my cycle ride data
and analysing the calorie count using their supercomputer
Fortunately I happen to know lots of boffins so they were able to quickly report back. Professor Boffin confirmed that my Garmin forerunner 910XT was probably not recording enough calories due to an inaccurate heart rate monitor and their estimate was that I only needed to do about 5 miles or 20 mins cycling to burn the calories at my target 15mph speed. They suggested I did the calorie counting without a heart rate monitor for a more consistent result.

I will therefore have to re do the route again on this basis and with no heart rate monitor to confuse things.

For clarity I have added a new rule, 8, about calorie counting equipment

Calorie neutral bike ride record attempt rules
1. The holder of the record will have visited the highest number of different cafes during a single day.
2. All cafes must be independent and not part of national chains
3. All cafes must be visited within their normal opening hours and not open early or kept opened late for a record attempt
4. At each cafe a standard portion of cake or a scone (fruit or cheese) must be consumed. Biscuits, flapjacks, tiffin or anything pre-packaged will not count.
5. At each cafe a standard hot drink must be consumed. (Tea, coffee or hot chocolate). If served in a pot or jug than one cups worth must be drunk.
6. From the time of arriving at the cafe 300 calories must be burnt off before the next cafe can be visited thus making the ride calorie neutral. (300 calories is based on in-depth internet research on average calories of cakes and scones plus average calories of a hot drink (Tea, coffee, hot chocolate). 
7. If extra calories have been used up between cafes then that is tough as they can not be credited against other legs of the ride.
8. Calories burnt to be counted on a generic calorie counting device using only cycle speed, rider weight and age to calculate calorie usage. No heart rate consideration is required.

For data buffs here is today's useless data
calories  time (min) miles av speed mph calories
/mile
calories
/min
Heart rate
To Hen House 246 32.8 7.79 14.2 31.58 7.50 106
To Lincolns 223 26.5 6.86 15.5 32.51 8.42 115
To Tabnabs 215 28.95 7.87 16.3 27.32 7.43 114
To Yaxham Mill 228 32.75 8.29 15.2 27.50 6.96 111
Yaxham Mill 20 18 1.11 75
To Yaxham Waters 219 28 7.17 15.35 30.54 7.82 115
To Chalfonts 190 26.9 6.9 15.4 27.54 7.06 67
To Janeys Village Café 414 38.45 9.11 14.2 45.44 10.77 122
Janeys Village Café 18 20.6 0.87 76
To Station Bristro 185 29.6 6.52 13.2 28.37 6.25 80
To Home 208 32.75 7.44 13.6 27.96 6.35 76
Totals 2166 315.3 67.95 14.73