Exercise! - Which is better?




View Full Version : Which is better?


Kashi
04-11-2006, 05:28 PM
The situation is this: I live at home, and exercise is a four letter word in my household. I come from a fat family, and any hint that my parents have that I'm trying to improve myself is going to be seen as, essentially, an attack on how they raised me ("You think there's something wrong with you? You're perfect! You don't have to change! We raised you well!") At this point, it's a battle I'm not willing to fight. I know I need to get healthy, and although they did raise me well, they also raised me fat. But it's not something I'm really up for discussing with my parents, all the same.

I was doing the WAtP DVDs for awhile, but only when my parents were out. However, a situation has come up where one of them is now always home. We don't have a huge house, and if I do it upstairs, they can hear me, and there's no privacy downstairs. I was thinking of maybe just starting an outdoor walking regimen, now that the weather is nicer. Walking doesn't really get my heart rate up, though, no matter how fast I go. I'm too ashamed to be seen outside jogging (I know, I know, I need to get over that, but still). I know there's a lot of walkers here... is that all you do for exercise? I also do strength training, but I'm wondering if walking five days a week + strenght training three times a week would be an adequate workout. If so, how many miles a day is a good place to start out, and how many a day is a good goal?

But my question essentially boils down to this: Which is better, brisk walking outdoors done longer and more often, or intense cardio that gets my heartrate way up? Am I sacrificing weight loss progress if I can't do the latter?


Margarita
04-11-2006, 06:18 PM
I'm not an expert so I can't give you a definitive answer, but I can tell you about my own experience. I've found that long, brisk walks definitely help me lose weight. I don't think you can go wrong with the regimin you've described (walking five days a week + strength training three times a week). As for how much to start out with, that's hard to say without knowing what sort of shape you're in. I started out with slow one-mile walks in January, and I was huffing and puffing by the time I finished my mile. These days, a brisk 2 miles is usually not enough of a challenge, so I'm ready to increase to 3 miles next week. Just remember to start out slowly if you're new to this; as you become fitter, you'll be able to go faster and further.

Mrs SmartyPants
04-11-2006, 08:56 PM
I would say walk outside with leg weights :)


Jayde
04-11-2006, 11:47 PM
Kashi, rather than worrying initially about which methods will result in expected weight loss, I recommend that you choose your exercise by how much you enjoy it. If working out at home is stressful to you because of your family, go out.. take walks, breathe some fresh air, ..

I seriously believe that the best exercise is exercise that you enjoy.. there are so many benefits to exercise beyond what it does for us physically.

Good luck.

*.. oh, about the leg weights mentioned by another poster.. just my opinion but I would not recommend it. Leg weights are not only unnecessary they are dangerous.

kykaree
04-12-2006, 01:33 AM
The only other time I lost weight, all I did was walk. Have you got a swimming pool nearby? What about community classes like yoga and pilates that are just done on a drop in basis, that your not committed to?

I think it's great your looking for solutions to this. Families and weight loss make me :dizzy:

AmberM
04-12-2006, 09:57 AM
I'm sorry for the position you are in. I say go for walks because I love the fresh air. Can you go early in the morning where no one will see you jog? You don't want to get totally out of breath when you walk...just so you're breathing harder....maybe try swinging your arms for a power walk? I think you could even mix it up and tell your parents you are just trying to get a little healthier maybe?? and ask if you could do one workout a week inside or something? They are eventually going to notice you are losing weight anyway and then they may be upset you were sneaking around behind their backs. I'm sorry it's so hard for you. Just try to keep it up!

Oh, and I agree that leg weights are a bad idea. They can cause injuries. I've been told to keep weights out of my cardio.

Good luck! We're all pulling for you!

AmberM

Tani
04-12-2006, 11:34 AM
Do you have a bike? Biking will get your heart rate up nicely if you're looking for something more strenuous than walking. If you don't have a bike, you can probably pick up one cheap through the newspaper or craigslist. (Although I agree that brisk walking is great exercise and will do loads for you)

Also keep an eye out for classes or activities that sound interesting to you. Maybe something you can join with a friend? I also second the recommendation for swimming if you have access to a pool.

Sorry this is such a sore subject with your family. Hopefully they'll get used to you being more active and will find it less threatening after a while.

midwife
04-12-2006, 12:01 PM
Or consider joining a martial arts studio. Working toward a black belt in something is very admirable, and you would be amazed at how much exercise you get. You could even tell your parents you are doing it for self defense (what parent could say no to that?).

taekwondo midwife!

Kashi
04-13-2006, 08:04 AM
You know, I was planning to just focus on my eating habits for a few weeks until I could figure out a quieter workout, but apparently if I don't exercise (that is, I have no plans to exercise), I like to eat a lot more. I thought that I'd eat more on the days I exercised, since I was expending more energy, but the past few days that I haven't exercised, I've wanted to gorge myself!

I do have a bicycle, but I see it more as a method of transportation than a workout. I've always heard that biking (either stationary or otherwise) is pretty much useless for a workout. I'm wrong?

Hmm... would an hour 3-4x a week or a half hour 5-6x a week be better for weight loss?

Tani
04-13-2006, 11:02 AM
Anything that gets your heart rate up is a good work out (as long as you're not injuring yourself of course ;) ) I've gotten in shape enough now that I can't really get my heart rate up walking any more (unless I'm climbing hills) but it's easy to ride my bike fast enough to get my heart rate into an aerobic zone.

As for the how often/long to work out. I'd suggest doing whatever works best for your schedule. If it's convenient you'll keep it up :)

fikustrees
04-13-2006, 05:17 PM
You might want to get a heart rate monitor. I have one and it really helps me stay on track with outdoor walking. There are also some really good CDs like Kathy Smith's Steady Strides and cardio coach that teach you how to stay at a higher level. The Kathy CD is especially good because she gives you all sorts of form pointers that increase your burn.

Biking can be really great to, I wouldn't call it useless at all, especially if you live somewhere hilly.

And don't think of it as jogging but as running and training. You could try the couch to 5K plan http://www.coolrunning.com/engine/2/2_3/181.shtml
which has really helped a lot of people.

If you are really overweight maybe you can get your doctor to tell your parents that you need to lose weight or you can run into all sorts of problems down the line.

Good luck. If you are movin that is what matter the most.

Oh, and Leslie Sansone from the WATP videos has a book called the walk diet that is really good sensible plan for who to lose walking.

Misti in Seattle
04-15-2006, 07:47 PM
I love walking too and do lots of it! I have a question though... why and how are leg weights dangerous? I do have a pair of them but have never worn them since I don't feel I am "up" to that level yet since I still have so much weight of my own to lug around? But... what is wrong with using them?

Jayde
04-15-2006, 08:15 PM
..why and how are leg weights dangerous?

Ankle weights do not distribute weight fairly evenly like the weight of your body so using them can strain tendons and ligaments in your body and is also not good for your knees and ankles.

Walking with them also tends to give people more of a shuffle walk than the normal stride you would want for cardio. They really are a bad idea.

Misti in Seattle
04-15-2006, 08:26 PM
Oh wow, thanks for telling me that! I have a weak knee anyway from an old injury. (I fell in the sewer in Manila, Philippines, and that is NOT a lie LOL.) So sounds as if the ankle weights were a waste of $$$ for me. Glad for the info.

Jayde
04-15-2006, 08:31 PM
Oh wow, thanks for telling me that! I have a weak knee anyway from an old injury. (I fell in the sewer in Manila, Philippines, and that is NOT a lie LOL.) So sounds as if the ankle weights were a waste of $$$ for me. Glad for the info.

You are welcome.. You can always use them as fishing weights. :D

You fell in the sewer... yikes!

Ilene
04-15-2006, 10:32 PM
Misti here is a good article (http://walking.about.com/cs/safety/a/notrecommended.htmon) weights and walking....

Kashi -- Biking is a GREAT workout, don't know where you heard it wasn't :shrug: ... Look at Lance Armstrong :love: ... and walking is great too, sure beats staying home and eating. I totally agree with you :yes: that when I don't exercise I eat... Maybe all that free time doing nothing is boring us and we are eating out of boredom? I don't know but what I do know is that when I exercise I am much less hungry :yes: ... Walking and biking also beat staying idle and not burning calories... Have you ever tried explaining to your parents why you want to lose weight? That it isn't a reflection on how they brought you up, but on you wanting to be healthy and fit. You don't have to be fat to workout you just have to want to be healthy everyone is doing it ( well alsmost ) no matter what size they are for health reasons...... Just a thought.

Jennifer 3FC
04-15-2006, 10:57 PM
Can you join a gym? You can exercise and shower and come back home without them even knowing. However, you are eventually going to show your hard work with a smaller figure, and they will figure this out. Stick to your guns. They might be upset at first, but if they see you honestly happy when you start reaching your goals, they will probably be happy for you because they love you. I'm betting that as you lose more weight you will become more confident in having this discussion with them.

CLCSC145
04-15-2006, 11:07 PM
Hi Kashi! I lost 120+ pounds several years ago and did it through sensible eating and a lot of walking. I walked about 4-5 miles a day. I aimed for a walking speed where it felt like it might feel easier to jog so I knew I was working hard. I'd take a radio/iPod with me and I found it a great workout and very relaxing at the same time (ME time). I agree, though, do whatever you enjoy and whatever makes you want to do it regularly!

I gained the weight back by resuming my bad eating habits and stopping the walking. Grrrr..... I'm walking again this time around.

BrunetteChic_2000
04-15-2006, 11:44 PM
Can you join a gym? You can exercise and shower and come back home without them even knowing. However, you are eventually going to show your hard work with a smaller figure, and they will figure this out. Stick to your guns. They might be upset at first, but if they see you honestly happy when you start reaching your goals, they will probably be happy for you because they love you. I'm betting that as you lose more weight you will become more confident in having this discussion with them.

I was thinking the same thing. Your local YMCA, or if you are in school, the school's facilites would be good, too.
I know how tough it can be when you don't get the support you need at home when it comes to weight loss. :hug:
Good luck!

Misti in Seattle
04-15-2006, 11:49 PM
Thanks for the link to the good article, Ilene. LOL I guess I will stop wishing I was strong enough to start wearing my ankle weights!! :) One more good thing in a long line which 3FC has done for me! :yes:

Jayde
04-16-2006, 08:37 AM
Ilene, thanks for the link. I knew about the ankle weights but did not know it applies to carrying weights in your arms also. ..something I recently started doing. The fact that it adversely affects posture makes sense. Maybe I should save the weights for my strength training and keep it out of cardio.

Firmgirl
04-16-2006, 02:02 PM
I don't really think one is better than the other- just different, but they will both contribute to fitness.
Since the weather is warmer, I would recommend walking outdorrs and if possible, take different routes so your body does not get used to the terrain. You can also do walkin lunges, or i fyou have a park nearby, why not try some circut training? Walk, lunges, squats, pushups, if there is an elevation (even a sidewalk is good for this) do calf raises and then stretch them at the bottom, jumprope (you can do the movement without the rope too)
At home, you could do pilates or yoga poses, table (moves done for legs/gluets when on the knees and forearms or hands)/bridge (moves done when on the back such as hip lift with a glute squeeze)/lying side legs and core training and since the movements are not base on momentum or need additional equipment (at least initially - you may want to add resistance bands/tubing or dumbbells as you get stronger) you won't be making so much noise that they can come up and fuss about the efforts you are making to better yourself.