First I will say your trainer was behind the times recommending X amount of cardio as the place to begin. In the trifecta for fat loss cardio ranks last in importance, the ranking is nutrition (diet), strength training and lastly cardio.If you have a long history of being sedentary then your muscles have atrophied and lost strength and tone. These are contributing factors to your difficulty with the cardio.Begin some form of resistance training to get your muscles restored to some level of function before you worry too much about cardio. Resistance bands are a good place to start your resistance training as is bodyweight exercise. Fifteen minutes per workout is a good starting time frame.
Start with a simple strength programme three alternate days a week and walk at your own pace on the non strength training days. Train 5 or 6 days a week never 7 and watch your nutrition.Make haste slowly, this is a journey not a destination.
The reference to resistance training by a previous poster referred to strength training as I read it and the resist training was intended as a play on words.
Fitness Minutes: (101,512)
988 5/20/13 4:13 P
Any movement is better than no movement. Just as 30 minutes at 2.5 miles an hour is too much for you now, in 6 months it may not be enough. The personal trainer seems to forget that they should be a: personal, as in tailoring a plan to fit each individual and b: a trainer, as in showing you how over time your performance will improve and helping to create new challenges and goals for you. Do what you can now and increase the speed/distance or time as it gets easier for you.
A little over a year ago I was where you are now. The same height, and my weight had just reached about 204 after losing 12 pounds without any exercise. I bought a treadmill and could only manage 15 minutes at 2.5 miles/hour. Today I did (I have a head cold, so I took it easy on myself) 2 30 minute sessions on the treadmill topping out at 3.5 miles/hour with a max 4.5% incline. Normally I do 45-50 minutes at a max speed of 4.2 mph with the same max incline. The point is to show you that where you start out is the beginning. You will get better with time if you continue, even if you start small.
When I first started out, that would have been too much for me too! I remember my first day trying the elliptical, which was supposed to be low impact and I figured "easy enough" - I couldn't do 5 minutes on it before feeling like I was going to collapse. I knew I should aim for 30 minutes of cardio, but if you had told me "ok hop on the elliptical and do 30 minutes" - I couldn't. No way. Couldn't happen.
So the next day, I aimed to do 5 and a half minutes. And then the visit after that, 6. I slowly added just a little time until I was able to hit that 30 minute mark, and it was hard work but I was proud of how much progress I made!
So yes, you should absolutely listen to your body and set goals that are appropriate for your fitness level (no matter what speed and length of time that is), and slowly push a little harder as you go to challenge yourself. You'll be surprised in 1 or 2 months how far you've come. :)
5/20/13 8:46 A
"I notice that many people want the most for least amount of effort. It doesn't work that way. There are those of us that use resistance training and those that resist to training."
Can you clarify what you mean as it pertains to my personal situation? I may be interpreting your comment wrong but it sounds like you're saying that an obese person who has not done more than sit at a desk for years can suddenly get up and do 30 mins of hard cardio every day and then some. Or if you can't, you're just "resisting" and expecting something for nothing.
There's a difference I would think between someone who sits and is content to keep sitting, and someone who is making that huge first step before a new habit has been established. There's all the creaky joints and the lack of stamina, and for some there are medical issues (joint issues, arthritis, etc.) that have caused them to not exercise.
"Beside that point, it's the hard work that gets results. Work hard to be where you want to be then after that things fall into place and you wont have to work as hard."
I'm not sure what you're exactly telling me here and I don't want to misinterpret. Can you clarify what you mean specifically for ME and not just in general?
I don't think there is any one recommendation for exercise that is appropriate for everyone, always. As your fitness increases what was initially challenging becomes easy, and no longer offers as many benefits.
So if you need to start out with something slightly easier, and ramp up over time, then that is what you should do. The key is just to make sure you are doing it regularly. You should see noticeable increases in your fitness in just a week or two.
I do like that the trainer has put the emphasis on long term commitment, and a lifestyle change, rather than just 'lose weight', or 'get fit quick'. Although once you can handle the 2.5 mph 30 mins comfortable, you may want to continue to increase the degree of challenge to see further improvements.
Fitness Minutes: (0)
5/19/13 10:24 P
I notice that many people want the most for least amount of effort. It doesn't work that way. There are those of us that use resistance training and those that resist to training. Watching the Biggest Loser it's hard to believe the amount of weight lost in just a week. I talked with one of the contestants and he said the weeks are not always 7 days. Beside that point, it's the hard work that gets results. Work hard to be where you want to be then after that things fall into place and you wont have to work as hard. Besides exercising and using the treadmill I do a lot of bike riding, take the dog for walks every day, and swimming at the wave pool during the summer
5/19/13 2:13 P
Thank you:) Esp Supermodus -- it's silly to feel I need that "permission" but I guess I've never been an athletic person so I always wonder if what I'm doing is "worth it" if it's not high intensity. What you said makes tons of sense and gives me a sense of relief. This is only my second week getting up and walking consistently at any pace faster than a snail lumbering;)
I have been using the treadmill only, but today I signed up for a membership for a year's access to an indoor track (comes with other stuff as well but that's what I'm going to be using it for for the next few months). I used the CardioTrainer app thingy on my phone and it said I was walking between 4.5 and 5 km ( a touch over 3 mph) an hour (I was walking briskly but because I wasn't on a treadmill I can't tell how accurate the numbers were, though I think I walk faster without the pacing of a treadmill.)
I only did ten minutes but I hadn't planned on a walk today at all, so that's at least something:) I have to feel good about the little victories.
I'm thinking of getting a FitBit or something like that for when I walk the track. (Those things are more accurate than a phone app, I'm sure.)
It's nice to know that you aren't even doing the 30 mins all at once. It does give me a sense that I can still accumulate the activity through the day and not turn it into this mad dash to jump out of bed and onto a treadmill for 30 mins of grueling intensity in order to be achieving something.
I know I will increase my intensity as I get fitter, but it's hard because a lot of the messages in articles and such online and in books is to start at a pace that's good for someone who isn't obese and has not been sedentary for years. There's a whole mindset there that's not being addressed, too. I have to think of myself as an active person.
5/19/13 12:33 P
Supermodus has given you some great advice. I don't really recommend exercise 7 days a week for anyone- especially those just starting out. If 15 minutes, 3-4 days per week is challenging and a good start for you, then that's what you should do. The worst thing you can do is too much too soon, which can burn you out both physically and mentally.
Hope that helps,
5/19/13 12:26 P
take one day at a time, and see if you can accomplish what the trainer suggests
Fitness Minutes: (12,062)
5/19/13 11:34 A
Of course you can take it easy! The fact that you're moving at all is the most important thing. There's no certain speed you have to go at, or even a specific time interval. You SHOULD be aiming for 30 minutes, but never feel bad if you have to take it slower than what somebody else told you to do, especially since you're just starting out.
Personally, I've been exercising consistently (around 5 - 6 days a week) for about two months, and even during times when I walk, I never go for 30 minutes at a time. That hasn't stopped me from losing weight.
Are you using the treadmill just at the gym? If so, there are a number of things you might want to try. One, you may want to slowly adapt your speed as you start out -- start at a speed you feel comfortable with, and raise it in increments so you're not flat-out beginning on 2.5 mph. Two, you don't even have to do your exercise purely on the treadmill. Have you considered doing, say, 20 minutes on the treadmill, then making up for the last 10 minutes at home? Calories burnt are calories burnt, and if you break up your exercise throughout the day, you may find you get even more minutes in than you expected.
I do my exercise in chunks throughout the day - 15 minutes here, 15 minutes there - and so far, it's worked great for me. Don't feel intimidated or even forced to conform to someone else's advise. Go with what works for you. Pushing yourself and exercising at all are the most important things.
5/19/13 10:42 A
I talked with a personal trainer at the gym I have been going to for the past week (I am a total newbie to getting back in shape!) and he has me on the treadmill for 30 mins and walking at 2.5 mph. He told me to do this every day for the rest of my life (geez, no pressure, eh?) I found that walking 30 mins while "doable" felt like more of a strain and I wanted to know since I have been sedentary for years if doing 15 mins a day or every other day for the first week or two is ok or modifying it somehow (breaking it up into smaller bits) or less intense or something.
I mean just while I'm in that adjustment phase because I have an online job and the lbs just packed on and I'd spend all my work AND leisure time online. Now I'm 205 lbs and only 5 foot 2. So I want to get my body moving (it's not just weight loss but just used to moving around, getting some stamina back) but I feel like plodding along at 2.5 mph is a lot for me.
Most fitness books don't even talk about walking less or slower than that, and it puts me off because I don't want to start at a fast level (that's fast for me when I normally walk probably 2mph or less). My weight makes me feel like I'm stomping on the treadmill with each step, and my legs start to hurt.
My doc has said I'm ok to walk and get my heart rate to 130-135 for cardio fitness and all so I know I can do it, but I just wanted some kind of "permission" to take the first couple of weeks just getting used to doing it. (Like there's some kind of fitness police who will come up and say "You're not going fast enough, Ma'am. you better just stop all together if you're not serious about this." And then I give up on myself.
And I don't want to do that this time. I just felt like 7 days a week, 30 mins a day at 2.5 mph was too much too soon.
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