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DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (61,313)
Fitness Minutes: (15,545)
Posts: 9,713
8/18/13 10:43 P

"Now I'm REALLY confused!!! So does that mean that doing cardio will weaken my muscles?"

If you don't do strength training to preserve lean muscle, then frankly? Yes! Ever hear of "skinny fat"? This is where someone has a low weight, but a high body fat percentage. this is what happens when you don't do adequate strength training while losing weight.

This *does not* mean that cardio is bad for you. Quite the contrary! Just that it's not the whole picture, and for optimum results, you need a complete program.

For a *complete* fitness program, you need to complement your cardio with strength training to offset this muscle loss.

Edited by: DRAGONCHILDE at: 8/18/2013 (22:44)
CANDACEMM Posts: 1,218
8/18/13 9:20 A

Not a fan ... I ended up getting a proform combo which is an elliptical and a recumbent bike. I love it!

GRAPHICS2 Posts: 13,944
8/17/13 9:45 P

I also have a gazelle, and use it at least 3times per week, sometimes just for 10 mins.
It has helped to tighten up my " bum " area quite a bit. I also do floor exercises especially crunches after that. I find the gazelle gives me a good cardio and it me gets warmed up for other exercises.
Oh no, its not a waste of time

MELBA321 Posts: 66
8/17/13 5:43 P

I own one of these. I purchased it several years ago, and went for the biggest and best one at the time. I don't use it regularly now, but would like to get myself back into using it again. When I did use it, the gazelle gave a great cardio, but I also felt a good burn using more resistance and utilizing different methods. The burn was in my gluteus, thighs, calves, shins and even abs and arms. I guess it all depends on how you use it. If you use the lowest resistance & simplified motion, then you will get mainly just cardio. Also, you don't want the gazelle to be your only means of working out.

The biggest issue about these machines that I have... yes, they store away, but mine is pretty big...storing and taking out is not a convenient option. When this is out, I will use it. Yet, when there is no space for it, and I have to store it...I won't use it. You need roughly a good 4' by 7-8' of space to use the machine. Other corner type machines (like weight stations) can provide a better range of workout for the space needed. If you have pets or children, then you also have to worry about keeping the gazelle in an area/zone where you won't accidentally "kick" anyone. --I came too close too many times (when I could no longer keep in a closed room) and the reason it's now "stored".

Edited by: MELBA321 at: 8/17/2013 (17:48)
8/17/13 4:16 P

Thank you, that clarified it for me some. And I knew that it wasn't for building muscle, I'm aiming for cardio (I REALLY need to build that) and for burning calories.

BRITOMART Posts: 8,145
8/17/13 2:20 P

Cardio exercise is good for improving the condition of your heart, lungs, and circulation. It doesn't build muscle strength or 'tone' the body like resistance or weights do.

ANY exercise can be bad if you are eating too few calories to sustain your health. If you are staying in healthy ranges for your age and weight (and activity--accounting for calories burned with your gazelle in your tracking) you should be fine, not weakening, but rather building cardio-vascular/pulmonary health.

The gazelle isn't designed as a muscle-building machine; it's intended as low-impact cardio, and, used properly, does that well.

8/17/13 1:43 P

Now I'm REALLY confused!!! So does that mean that doing cardio will weaken my muscles?And I can't remember the name of the article I read on here--it was late and I was tired, so I most likely misinterpreted what I read. I'm starting to learn that everything I thought I knew about diet and exercise is wrong.

DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (61,313)
Fitness Minutes: (15,545)
Posts: 9,713
8/17/13 11:23 A

"Also, I read here on the Spark site that localized exercises (and I am NOT talking about so called, "spot reducing", that I know is not possible) do not firm or improve the area worked on?"

Would you mind sharing the article in question?

Working certain muscles in isolation is often not as effective as doing combination exercise, but you can definitely build strength and improve certain areas. What most people mean by "firm" is to reduce fat... which as you know, isn't possible. That may be where the misunderstanding lies.

You do need to listen to your physical therapist... working on certain areas at their direction is often a key component to recovery! You CAN strengthen certain areas... just not burn fat there.

Gazelles are just one way of getting low-impact cardio. They don't provide special benefits other forms of exercise don't (so don't listen to the infomercial claims) but they do provide low-impact workouts much like an elliptical. If you enjoy doing them, then it's fine! Just understand that cardio is not strength training. They provide different benefits. Cardio only can actually *reduce* strength if you're eating at a calorie deficit and not strength training to preserve lean muscle, since as much 25% of your weight loss can come from lean muscle and not fat!

MLAN613 Posts: 18,563
8/17/13 9:45 A

I agree that as long as you elevate you heart rate into the cardio zone (60%-85% mhr) for 10 minutes or more, it's cardio. Of course, you do want to mix it up or your body gets used to it and the effort would become null and void.

I think you could find many articles for and against just about anything on the Internet. As long as you don't expect it to be a miracle cure, I think it's a great exercise tool.

Edited by: MLAN613 at: 8/17/2013 (09:46)
KURS10B Posts: 5,106
8/16/13 5:44 P

My thoughts on most of those machines is that many are overpriced and don't do what they say...BUT... If it gets you off your butt and you actually use it for more than an overpriced clothing rack then it is worth it. Maybe it doesn't do everything they say, but if it gets your heart rate up, then it is cardio. At the very least it does work your hips and rear.

8/16/13 2:05 P

Thank you for your input! And even a bigger thank you for not making me feel stupid emoticon

RJANEWWAY Posts: 1,389
8/16/13 1:52 P

I also have a gazelle and started out only using it due to PT, lower back, and foot pain. There are various positions and routines you can do to work different muscle groups. The gazelle is listed under the SP fitness tracker. If it was not of value, it wouldn't be there. I can tell you from personal experience that it can leave you breathless, sweaty, and with an elevated heart rate. I now use other modes to work out, but still have my gazelle set up. Both my son and I still hop on it and add extra cardio to our day on a regular basis. In fact, I was impressed enough that I gave away my first one and "upgraded" after using it about a year.

All the best on your fitness and health journey! Personally, I think you've made a great choice. Any exercise you can complete without injury is a good thing!!!

Edited by: RJANEWWAY at: 8/16/2013 (13:53)
8/16/13 1:31 P

I have read so many articles that are not saying that what we thought was burning calories, strengthening muscles, etc are wrong. I have a Gazelle because I have to do low/no impact exercises. I read somewhere (I really should have bookmarked the page so I could reference it) that it really doesn't do anything for fitness. Also, I read here on the Spark site that localized exercises (and I am NOT talking about so called, "spot reducing", that I know is not possible) do not firm or improve the area worked on? (I'm hoping I read the article wrong) My reason for asking about that is I have lower body exercise I have to do daily for physical therapy, and my therapist said it was to strengthen my hip and lower back area. Am I wasting my time? (And yes, I am eating a balanced diet, 1200 to 1500 calories in order to lose weight) Please help?

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