Exercise! - Cardio...

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02-23-2008, 11:08 PM
I hate it.

I don't want to hate it but I do.

I began exercise regularly about 6 weeks ago and have been hitting the gym regularly during that time. I started out on the bike (really not much cardio) and have advanced to the elliptical. I am very proud of the fact that I can complete 15 minutes (at level 1...). But, I don't enjoy it. I am not sure if I can do longer but don't as it seems like pure torture going for 15 minutes or if I really cannot do more....:?:

The treadmill is out right now - I need some good shoes and have to wait until I can get some. I really enjoy weight training, though, - it makes me feel so strong!!!

I really do hope this gets better/easier. I appreciate your advice/thoughts!

02-23-2008, 11:11 PM
What about classes? I have a terrible time motivating myself to use the treadmill or other equipment for cardio. But I love Tae Bo, aerobic dance, even WATP. Anything that has a beginning and ending point where I follow along.

02-24-2008, 12:35 AM
Definitely find a cardio that you ENJOY otherwise you won't do it...But for the moment until you find the right cardio for you keep doing what you're doing and intensify the weight training if you enjoy it more...

02-24-2008, 10:31 AM
Thanks for the advice, ladies.

Classes are really out right now...if I don't work out in the morning then I won't work out and the gym doesn't offer any classes as early as I need them. I will keep searching, though!

02-24-2008, 05:17 PM
Just keep at it. I hated cardio when I first started out too. I dreaded it, referred to it as my daily torture sessions. But as I got better at it, I started to like it more.

I think limiting yourself to 15 minutes at a time is a good strategy. I still do that after two years. After 15 minutes on one machine, I switch to a different machine.

A couple of things that really helped me get over my hatred of cardio:

Buying an Ipod. This has a made a huge difference in my cardio workouts. I have a special playlist of favorite songs that I only listen to when I do cardio. I have to do my cardio to hear those songs. It really changes the way I feel about my cardio. Also listening to music makes the time past much faster. You can get an iPod Shuffle for just $49!
Change things up. Does your elliptical have an incline setting--if so change it every couple of minutes. Or change the resistance every couple of minutes. Or go fast for a minute than slow for a minute. Same thing if you are riding the bicycle--do a hill setting for a couple minutes then a relatively flat setting, or sprint for a minute then go slow for a minute. Constantly changing what you are doing will make the time pass faster and it's a better workout.
Change machines. Don't do the same machines every day; it gets to be drudgery. Do the bicycle one day, the elliptical the next. Even without great shoes, you could walk on the treadmill. To make it harder, set the treadmill at an incline--as high as you can manage. You'll be surprised what a good workout it is. Does your gym have a stair machine? A rowing machine? Try them all. Or forget the machines and try jumping rope (you could do a great workout that alternates short spurts of jumping rope with weights/strength training--here is a sample jump rope routine (http://www.self.com/fitness/workouts/2006/12/25/1226tonedin20) from Self.com). The more machines you use, the better your workouts and the more interesting they will be.

Since you like doing weights, another thought for you might be to do some high intensity cardio in between sets with the weights, rather than trying to do all your cardio in one long boring 15 minute stretch. Going back and forth between weights and cardio is a great workout, better than just doing weights alone because it keeps your heart rate up the whole time. Some cardio moves you could try are jumping jacks, long jumps, jump squats, split jumps, step-ups onto a weight bench or step, push-ups, tuck jumps, running in place with high knees, mountain climbers, skiers, bear crawls, crab walks, or running short sprints (if you google these terms, I'm sure you'll come up with websites that demonstrate how to do them). I have a personal trainer and he is definitely partial to combined cardio/weight lifting workouts (which is why I have such a long list of possible cardio moves--those are all his favs).

02-24-2008, 07:37 PM
If you do get an ipod/mp3 player some people have made podcast workouts for the treadmill / bike etc. There is a lot to listen to with mp3s.. you can even watch videos..on the newer nanos even though its a tiny screen.

02-24-2008, 08:10 PM
Barbara, what you said makes since and thanks for the input. How long did it take you to stop calling it your daily torture sessions? lol, btw

Giggles, how does a podcast workout for your ipod work? I am not exactly in the dark here but it is definately dim...!

02-24-2008, 10:50 PM
You go onto Itunes, and find a podcast you like and choose subscribe and they will download it for you.

cdn carebear
02-24-2008, 11:09 PM
The thing that keeps me motivated with my cardio is setting goals. "Yesterday I went this far, today I need to go farther in the same time"....things like that. I make it a constant competition with myself, like a game, and I always like to win.

02-25-2008, 04:13 PM
Another thing that can help you is taking a dance class..(not in the gym) or another hobby you enjoy. There are plenty of centers around that offer a large number of different activities you can participate in. I personally am a fan of Badmitten league! It is a great time and 90% of people who attend are there to have a good time and not be so competitive. That may help break it up a bit as well.

02-25-2008, 07:50 PM
I don't know if this helps at all ... but it helps me ... and it is one way that I motivate myself.

I used to HATE exercising and going to the gym. I've gotten better and now that I feel like I have some stamina and strength (and I look better) I like it more, but it's still not my favorite thing in the world and I still dread going (although I'm ok when I get there).

Here's what I told myself: There are several things in life that I really HATE. I am not a morning person and I HATE getting up in the morning to go to work (seriously - I have a level of hatred of mornings that is simply not describable). But I have to. I have to earn a living so I can pay my bills and not live in a cardboard box under a bridge somewhere. It's part of the responsibility of being an adult, so I do it.

I hate going to the dentist. Hate it worse than anything. Until she died, my mom was my dentist and I got spoiled and now the thought of letting anyone else mess with my teeth terrifies me. Seriously. But I go because I want to have all my own teeth when I"m 80. :) And because it's the responsible adult thing to do.

I look at the gym and exercising the same way. No matter how much I hate it, it's a responsible, adult thing to do, to make myself healthy and make sure I"ll be around for a nice long while.

I don't know if that helps you, but it's one of the things that helps me. I don't have to like it. I just have to do it. Cause I"m a grown up and being responsible and doing the right thing is what grown ups do.



02-25-2008, 10:37 PM
In Jillian Michael's book 'Winning by Losing' she teaches you to strength train while incorporating cardio exercise to keep your heart rate up...kinda like a two for one workout session. I think this just might be right up your alley.

02-28-2008, 06:57 PM

I really, really appreciate all of your advice. I took your advice and am still working it out. And, while I have been very good about going to the gym this week has not been so great (I have been sick). But, I have learned - through you, no doubt - that the treadmill is not torture. In the 3-4 workouts since I first posted this thread I have tried the treadmill with going slower and at a higher intensity. That was NOT torture and it got my heart rate up where I need it to be. So, for now I am happy. I will be happier when I feel better.

Again, thanks for your input!