Learning to exercise/run?

@drasnian (548)
May 3, 2011 12:47pm CST
About a year ago, I lost almost 2 stone through healthy eating. Although I lost the weight I wanted, and was considered a healthy weight for my height, I never really exercised. Despite the weight loss, I was pretty much exactly the same shape, with flabby thighs and massively disproportioned hips/bum compared to everything else (not just down to bone structure). When I went to uni, I put all the weight back on. I've recently started eating healthily again but am determined to do some exercise this time. If I turned exercise into a habit (or maybe even something I enjoyed) last time around, maybe I wouldn't have put all the weight back on again so fast. But I hate running. I'm hopeless at it. I love the idea of being able to run, but I honestly can't run for more than about a minute. I'm hugely unfit, with a high heart rate. Does anyone have any suggestions for getting into exercise/running? I'd like to tone up this time, rather than be the same shape even after weight loss.
1 person likes this
7 responses
@petersum (4525)
• United States
3 May 11
Running isn't my cup of tea at all. I just think it makes you look silly - I certainly feel silly. You don't enjoy it, do you? Swimming is better and much more enjoyable. Hugely unfit people can feel assured that their excess flab is well supported by the water so there is less chance of over doing the heart rate stuff! OK, you may not look good in a bathing suit but does running look good?
@drasnian (548)
3 May 11
I certainly don't enjoy it no! My only concern with swimming is that it almost doesn't feel like cardio. I find I can swim for a very long time, but not fast, so when I get out of the pool I have aching muscles but I don't have the whole "massively out of breath, heart rate of 212" (honestly!) that I associate with gym exercise. I almost worry that it feels too good to be true and I won't end up actually changing my shape :S
@petersum (4525)
• United States
3 May 11
The flab changes to muscle and you actually get heavier but look slimmer. Aching muscles are better than an early heart attack, aren't they? You don't actually have well developed muscles in your bum! How are you going to change your shape in a gym?
@drasnian (548)
4 May 11
Honestly, I have no idea, but I'm much more concerned with clothes fitting properly than the number on the scale, and I found that when I lost weight before, I still had trouble finding clothes that fit flatteringly, since I was just the same shape but smaller. I'd like to be toned, so I'm not worried about getting heavier - that's not a problem :)
@zeloguy (4913)
• United States
4 May 11
The most important thing -- and I didn't want to hear this and I know you don't either... but the most important thing is to be healthy. People come in all shapes and sizes. Now with that said here are some tips. 1. You want to find your target heart-rate. If you don't know this then there is really no use working out. You are getting almost no benefit. -- Resting Heart Rate - as soon as you wake up take your pulse. This is your resting heart rate. I would recommend doing this over a three-day period to get an average. For example: Day 1: 62 Day 2: 65 Day 3: 63 Divide these by three and you get a resting heart rate of 63 (yours is probably higher and mine is as well these are just numbers to show how to do it) Resting heart rate: 63 -- Maximum Heart Rate - take the number 220 and subtract by your age (we are going to use 40 years old). 220-40 = 180 Maximum Heart Rate: 180 -- Target Heart Rate (THR) - your target heart rate is a range you ALWAYS want to stay in for at least 30 minutes at a time for maximum weight loss.... To find this range you want to do this Maximum Heart Rate - Resting Heart Rate = Heart Rate Reserve Max (don't worry about this funny sounding name). It's the Max Heart Rate - Resting Heart Rate HRR Max = 180 - 63 = 117 Now for the numbers you need Lower Target Heart Rate (60% of your HRRMax + Resting Heart Rate) (117 * .6) + 67 = 133 Upper Target Heart Rate (60% of your HRRMax + Resting Heart Rate) (117 ( .8) + 67 = 157 Your range of working out is 133 - 157. You MUST stay within these parameters to get the most effective weight loss. And you must keep it there for at least 30 minutes steadily at a time. Now what I do (I HATE to run) is to put the treadmill on a high incline (10 or higher) and WALK at a 3.2 - 4.0. You can change these according to where your THR is... if it is not enough increase the incline NOT the speed. Believe me you will get to your THR and you need to do ZERO running. Remember to not go too high (if you do decrease the incline) and not too low (increase the incline). Moderate weight training (circuit training is great) is also needed but the diet and cardio (done in the right way is the way to go). Just for those figures again RHH - heart rate when you wake up MHR - 220-age HRRM - MHR-RHR Target Heart Rate Low - (HRRM * .6) + RHH Target Heart Rate High - (HRRM * .8) + RHH I am sure there are calculators on the internet to figure this out if you don't want to do the math but you need to do it once. I recommend checking monthly as your body will be changing and these numbers will change. Here's the irony... the more in shape you are... the less you have to work to get to your THR. It is VITAL you work no less than 30 minutes a day in your THR and no more than one hour a day in your THR. And at least three times a day. Hope that helps. Questions let me know... or if you have your numbers I will give you your High/Low THR for you. Thanks Zelo
@drasnian (548)
5 May 11
This is a great answer, thank you so much :)
1 person likes this
@zeloguy (4913)
• United States
6 May 11
Thanks for the BR... hope this helps you out... people think they have to kill themselves to lose weight... not true. You need to sweat and that is excercising in your THR zone. A literal walk will get you there. Try it out and let me know if it works for you! Thanks again. Zelo
• Philippines
4 May 11
hello... if you want cardio and don't want to run, why don't you try brisk walking paired with healthy diet. they say that it is one of the most effective way to loose weight. Eat plenty of fibers and less fat.
@drasnian (548)
4 May 11
We've changed our diet quite a lot - lots less chocolate and crisps, more fruit and vegetables, lean, grilled meats and we very rarely have foods like chips. I think walking is going to have to be my exercise of choice - it'll certainly make my dog happy :) Thanks for the comments.
• United States
4 May 11
I can't run a block without getting exhausted so I think swimming is a really good, enjoyable way to exercise. That's why senior citizens have swimming classes, to do some simple exercises and do it in an easy setting. If you don't like swimming you can do some push ups or sit ups.
@drasnian (548)
4 May 11
I'm exactly the same. I think I'm going to try swimming, a lot of people have suggested it, and it certainly can't hurt right? I find swimming quite relaxing as well - I always feel good after a long swim. I'm quite good at sit ups, and that ab plank thing, but I'm hopeless at press ups - I can do about 5 now. I think I'll start adding to them slowly and see how many I can do by the end of summer.
3 May 11
maybe joining a gym where they have a gym and swimming pool so you can do both. Another option is joining a running club if you enjoy that.
@drasnian (548)
4 May 11
I'm a member of the gym at uni,was just looking for ideas for whilst I'm at home for the next few months over summer really. I think I'm going to try swimming and walking. Definitely not at the stage of a running club yet since I can't run for more than a minute!
• United States
3 May 11
How about starting out with walking. Try doing so a little at a time on a daily basis, but consistently. Walk let's say 20 minutes a day, then increase it gradually for 30. Perhaps with time you can begin to speed walk and then move up to jogging. This should help a bit and certainly good as cardio. Good luck to you.
@drasnian (548)
4 May 11
Thanks for this. I walk quite a lot but because it's not planned it doesn't feel like exercise if you see what I mean? I think I'll try and get into a routine of walking the dog (everyone takes turns at the minute) in the mornings, and slowly build up how far we go. And perhaps eventually we'll even try jogging! Thank you very much :)
@Mickie30 (2633)
4 May 11
I wish that I could lose some weight. I am starting Slimming World tomorrow. Healthy eating is definitely the way forward for me. I really want to exercise as well because this can help with the weight loss. I want to get back into the same shape I was when I was younger not with a flabby stomach and everything else.