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AZULVIOLETA6 SparkPoints: (66,733)
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Posts: 3,293
1/13/14 2:46 P

So you are not a runner or a kick-boxer and the intervals class is not your cup of tea. Try something else. I think that I remember that you have also tried and "failed" with Zumba. What about yoga? Swimming? Nia? How about just going to the gym and doing a couple of weight circuits plus 10-15 minutes each on a couple of different cardio machines?

Are you a perfectionist? I wonder if your expectations for doing well in a class are just too high for the amount of effort that you are willing to put into it.

I do not run well either even though I am very fit. I have some musculoskeletal issues that make it painful and I also cannot run more than about 12 miles an hour. Having a very large frame size probably does not help. So I don't run for more than a few minutes here and there. You do not have to run if it does not work for you.

Going to the gym 4 times a week is not that great. I suspect that you expect to get visible results without investing very much time or effort. It just does not work that way. Adjust your expectations and your attitude and you may see better results. Nobody FAILS at exercise--you either choose to show up and make it work or you choose not to do it.

NANLEYKW SparkPoints: (76,157)
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Posts: 867
1/13/14 1:59 P

You should never push through pain, but I do push through soreness. If you can increase your distance a little each time, do that. It doesn't have to be a lot. If you run 2 miles today, try 2.25 on Wednesday. What sort of intervals are you doing?

FIELDWORKING SparkPoints: (29,946)
Fitness Minutes: (64,745)
Posts: 748
1/13/14 1:32 P

Do you get enough iron in your diet or by taking multivitamins? I felt tired and was struggling to get through my workouts (and was also having trouble keeping my iron level up to donate platelets). When I talked with my doctor, she did some tests and found told me I had diet induced anemia.

Are you getting enough to eat in general (enough protein)?

Like some of the others have said, it's about knowing your limits. If your workouts are really intense and you're doing them everyday, that may be part of the problem. If you workout 5 days/week, and do 3 intense workouts each week, then on the other 2 days, do something a little less intense. That way you can still get in a workout but still give your body a break from the intense workouts.

1/13/14 1:22 P

I find in classes it is difficult to accurately measure your improvement. I do kickboxing three times a week. I still feel exhausted after class (been doing it for 5 months). However, if I stop and actually take stock I can now punch harder, kick better, do more things faster. I can only run so fast, mostly because I don't love running. I still have bad days at the gym where I want to give up and usually it is because the rest of life has taken more energy that day.

Something else to double check is if you are getting enough rest (muscle rest and sleep).

SPARK_COACH_JEN Posts: 64,430
1/13/14 1:19 P

Do you take rest days each week from exercise? Do you vary your workouts, making some higher intensity and some lower intensity? Overtraining can definitely cause a lack of progress, so it's important to make sure you're not trying to go all-out every time and you're giving your body the rest that it needs.

As far as running speed goes, I have never been someone who can go much faster than I currently do. Even when I'm in top shape, I can definitely run further but speed just isn't my thing. So as long as you're challenging yourself, that's what matters most.

Coach Jen

LEC358 SparkPoints: (11,135)
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Posts: 2,744
1/13/14 12:07 P

As with all things in life, sometimes progress slows down for a while. Just like with weight loss, you can't expect to see uniform progress every week when you exercise.

BITHOO SparkPoints: (12,132)
Fitness Minutes: (3,359)
Posts: 422
1/13/14 11:50 A

Nanly -- when I run on the treadmill, I can increase speed/endurance a bit, but not a lot... and am not sure how to maintain that. I do "intervals" based on articles on this and other sites, but find that I get up to a certain level and then it's just plain painful to move forward. Do you "push through the pain?" If so, what makes you do it? I mean... let's be honest... pain hurts! And while I can psych myself up to "feel the burn" for a few weeks, it's very hard to stay motivated for the longer term.

NANLEYKW SparkPoints: (76,157)
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Posts: 867
1/13/14 11:46 A

I just posted about running on your other thread, so I wanted to reply to that part of your post here, too. I started running about a year and a half ago, and for a good long while, my personal best speed was also somewhere in the vicinity of a 12-minute mile. I seriously couldn't imagine getting any faster, because I just seemed to be stuck there for so long. I kept with the sport, though, because I really enjoy it, and at some point, I had a breakthrough and was able to bring it down to an 11-minute mile...and then a 10-minute mile. I can now run a 5k at a bit under a 9-minute mile, which I know will never break any speed records, but feels pretty darn terrific for me!

Greg McMillan (a noted running coach guy) splits runners into two types--speedsters and endurance runners. Some people can just naturally handle speed better, and some naturally handle distance. I am definitely an endurance runner, and maybe you are, too. So even if you never get faster than a 12-minute mile, maybe you can make your goal to run farther instead of faster.

LEC358 SparkPoints: (11,135)
Fitness Minutes: (6,555)
Posts: 2,744
1/13/14 10:29 A

How long are you giving yourself to see results? I can speak from personal experience that it takes me at least a month of a particular training program before I start actually noticing gains, especially in things like endurance and speed. I also noticed that the harder I pushed myself initally, the faster I would burn out and get discouraged. Getting fit, in many respects, is like losing weight: you make progress sometimes, you lose progress sometimes, and sometimes you get stuck.

I'll probably get yelled at for saying this next part but it's been true for me: exercise is really about finding your limits and then finding the the confidence/will/stupidity to push past them. For example, I was stuck at a 115# deadlift *forever* until one day I just said "screw it" and added another 10# to the bar. Did I do as many reps that time? Not even close. Did I manage to do one rep? Yep. And that gave me the confidence to try for 2 reps the next time.

It sounds like you've hit a bit of a wall and just need to take sometime to gather up the gumption to knock it down. Good luck!

BITHOO SparkPoints: (12,132)
Fitness Minutes: (3,359)
Posts: 422
1/13/14 10:03 A

I have always done some form of exercise, sometimes more, sometimes less, but have NEVER found myself feeling stronger, more flexible, or more energetic. I like walking, I enjoy some fitness classes, but overall they don't seem to have any particular impact on me pro or con. At one point I tried running; a 12 minute mile seemed to be my absolute personal best. At another point I went to the gym 4 times a week, but could never seem to increase my weights or improve my aerobic performance.

Recently (last few months) I decided to up the ante, and started taking some relatively intensive kickboxing and intervals classes. Each time I go, it feels more and more difficult -- and instead of feeling energized for the day, I feel tired. Today, I was almost unable to keep up after 20 minutes, and then fell OFF the damned "step!"

I just went to the doc and have a clean bill of health. I'm a relatively energetic 54 year old woman who is raising 2 teens, running a busy freelance writing business, keeping house, singing in a choir, acting, directing plays...

What the heck is the matter with me?! Am I just genetically incapable of getting into shape or improving my stamina?

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