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From couch potato to gym rat? Can I do that?

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Old 01-09-2009, 08:23 PM   #1
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Default From couch potato to gym rat? Can I do that?

I've been a total couch potato. I've been on and off the wagon diet-wise, but exercise wise is more like off the wagon, hoping on only for a few weeks at a time before giving up again for months and months.

Can I start going to LesMills classes at my gym everyday after being a couch potato or will I just crash and burn starting out that fast? On those tv shows, you see the people go from 250pound couch potatoes to having to workout hours each day, so they make it seem like it's okay to jsut go for it? I really want to go for it (my health is fine and had my checkup recently, no problem there).

Any reason why I should really start slow (and how slow is slow?) or can I jump right in??
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Old 01-09-2009, 08:46 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Itstime View Post
I've been a total couch potato. I've been on and off the wagon diet-wise, but exercise wise is more like off the wagon, hoping on only for a few weeks at a time before giving up again for months and months.

Can I start going to LesMills classes at my gym everyday after being a couch potato or will I just crash and burn starting out that fast? On those tv shows, you see the people go from 250pound couch potatoes to having to workout hours each day, so they make it seem like it's okay to jsut go for it? I really want to go for it (my health is fine and had my checkup recently, no problem there).

Any reason why I should really start slow (and how slow is slow?) or can I jump right in??
Well, you'll be sore....and very tired. Why don't you just try 3x weekly at first instead of every day?

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Old 01-09-2009, 08:58 PM   #3
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I started out last month with 3X/wk, 30 min at a time and am working my way up now.

You can do it - just take your time to get your body used to it.

Good luck!
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Old 01-12-2009, 08:41 AM   #4
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Yes you can -- but I wouldn't do it all at once. If you go from nothing to full-speed, you risk being sore (maybe even hurting yourself), getting discouraged, and dropping out. The best results are obtained through time and CONSISTENCY, starting and staying with a program over the long term is what you want, IMO.

I love the Biggest Loser, but their exercise regime is unrealistic for most people. They are medically supervised and professional coached. Yes they work REALLY hard, but they have a support team watching out for them too. We don't have that luxury.

Getting back to the gym is great, but I would just caution you against hitting things TOO hard, too fast (and only you know what that is, based on your current fitness level). One way is to alternate hard and easy days, or on your "off gym" days, take a nice walk or do some other kind of moderate cross training activity. You want to be able to ramp up the intensity over time, in a sustainable way.

Just my thoughts!!
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Old 01-12-2009, 09:38 AM   #5
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I agree with everyone. It is the rare person who is active their entire life. Most of us go through a period of inactivity but we can always change that. I've been on again and off with exercise for 7 years. My latest stint started in September of last year and I've been able to improve significantly overtime. I think it helps to ease into it I started out doing about 30-45 min at a time and have gone from there. I think this allows your body to adjust and reduces the likelihood of injuries.

The worst part in the beginning is the soreness. Just make sure you adequately stretch afterwards, get enough rest between workouts, and pace yourself during your workout. It helps to do something you like in the beginning or hate the least and to gradually incorporate some variety into your routine. Setting fitness goals helps keep me motivate. You might start by saying you want to workout at least 100 minutes a week or something like that and work toward hitting the target. There is plenty of info around, good luck to you.
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Old 01-12-2009, 09:42 AM   #6
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^^^ What they all said.

Not only potentially hurting yourself, but burning out again.

I believe that starting something slow, but doing it consistently (as mentioned) is much better than going full force and quitting within a week or two.

As an example: I started by walking for 10 minutes, just a measly 10 minutes, at a time. (This was well over a year ago) But I was consistent with it, and now I can treadmill between 35 minutes to an hour when I want.

It's also important that you find something you'll want to stick with. I like walking. I find it relaxing and it's my meditative-thought time. But if you call the treadmill the "dreadmill" then walking probably isn't what you want to do.
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