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Old 09-27-2010, 12:50 PM   #1
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Default Running/calorie counting

So I'm in Maintenance now, and have been for a long time. I'm eating 1,850-1,900 calories a day, working out 5 days a week (cardio 5X, weights 3X). The cardio is primarily on an elliptical trainer, but it is getting tedious and I'm working in some time on a stationary bicycle and treadmill.

I HATE () running with a passion. But I love the way I feel after some time on the treadmill. I don't want to ever be a competitive runner and can't stand the effects that running on the track or street have on my body - no matter how much I warm up before hand or how little I run on hard surfaces, my hips, feet and legs KILL me for days.

But here's my problem - I don't want to start gaining. With the elliptical as my primary exercise, I'm burning around 2,400 calories a week according to my heart rate monitor. That seems to be fine with the amount of food I'm eating.

When I run, the calorie burn is nowhere NEAR that level.

If I start running more, and burning fewer calories as a result, should I also start eating less?
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Old 09-27-2010, 04:34 PM   #2
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Just my opinion, and I have nowhere NEAR your experience with maintenance, but I would simply try it & watch the scale to see what happens. Maybe give it 2-3 weeks before making any changes?

The amount of calories burned is just an estimate, so, since you have found success with what you've been doing, I'm not sure I would start by proactively eating less than you have been (unless your body is telling you otherwise). By incorporating a new form of exercise, you may find just the opposite is true (you can eat more!).

Wishing you continued success. I am so inspired by your story.
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Old 09-27-2010, 11:49 PM   #3
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You should give the running a little more time - the pain should stop with consistency. I used to be sore all the time but now I run 4xs a week and am rarely sore. I'm not convinced running burns less than the eliptical. Running burns 100 cals per mile roughly no matter what your speed. So if you run a 12 min mile which is relatively slow you'd burn 300 cals in 36 mins. The elliptical burns about the same assuming your doing a vigorous intensity.

All that aside, you just need to watch the scale, but my guess is you'll be fine at your current calorie level.
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Old 09-28-2010, 07:38 AM   #4
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How long is TOO long for the pain? Last time I tried with consistency on a hard, non-treadmill surface, it was 1 1/2 weeks. I finally quit because I couldn't take it anymore...

Maybe it's time for a new HRM...I wear it when running and when using the elliptical, and there's no comparison at all....
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Old 09-28-2010, 09:17 AM   #5
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Hmmmm...that might be too long. The next thing I'd investigate then is your shoes. I need inserts in mine because I have high arches. Have you been fitted for proper running shoes? The other thing would be your form. I recently read a great book called Running For Women (I think that was the title). Is the only reason you don't like running because of the pain? I'm asking because as I'm sure you know you need to enjoy your workout or you're not going to stick with it. Maybe just mixing it up a little would help. Like 15 mins elliptical, 15 mins on a bike, and 15 mins on the treadmill. What about a stair climber, do the have those at your gym? Or what kinda of card classes are available?

ETA: Also how fast and long are you running? I hard to work up pretty slowly, maybe you're doing too much too soon.

Another interesting thing, asphalt is actually the softest running surface. Just watch for cars and watch that the street isn't sloping too much for drainage. If it is run the same side same distance on the way back.
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Last edited by ncuneo : 09-28-2010 at 09:42 AM.
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Old 09-28-2010, 09:53 AM   #6
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I know if I'm gonna do any running over the long term I've got to get better shoes...but the ones I've got are ok for now I think.

The majority of my problem is most likely something I can't fix without painful surgery - I was born with a bunion on my left foot that just throws everything off - fit of shoes, particularly.

I've just found that running on the treadmill isn't anywhere near as painful for me. I also do mix it up some...I'm wanting to start running around every other day for now. I'm doing 10-15 minutes on the elliptical at home, then the second half on the treadmill at the little workout center I go to, or even on some "bad foot days" I'll do 10 or so on the treadmill and the other half on the bike. Some days it's all bike and treadmill, with weight training intermittently. Those days aren't so bad on my feet.

A lot of my problem with running IS the pain, but probably half of it is attitude. I just feel GOOD after I run...just hate the boredom of doing it. I can get a good amount of running in when I can clear my mind and just "DO" it rather than focusing on the fact that I "have" to do it...does that make sense?

As for speed, I'm doing ok at around 5.4-5.5 mph...the treadmill I'm using bounces around though because it's old. Sometimes I'll throw in a minute at the end a little faster, then wind down before stopping.

Oddly enough, the treadmill also makes me REALLY motion sick when I stop if I do it for less than about 15 minutes. Weird, huh?

Asphalt....I'll see if I can maybe come up with an early morning running route around my neighborhood. It was repaved not too long ago and still has a good surface....
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Old 09-28-2010, 10:52 AM   #7
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Yes, give the asphalt a try. It will help with the boredom for sure. Running on the treadmill is boring, period. I used to HATE it, but then I just feel so in love with running I don't mind it as much anymore, but I'll still take running outside over the treadmill any day. Road running would probably help with the motion sickness too. Good luck!
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PR 1/2 Marathon - Time 1:59:50 (November 11, 2012)
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Old 09-28-2010, 11:56 AM   #8
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I bet it WILL help with the motion sickness. I figure all that is is my brain/inner ear confused by the fact that I'm moving, yet NOT moving. The disconnect makes me sick. Gonna stake out a route today!
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Old 09-28-2010, 12:39 PM   #9
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personally i find running outside then in the gym so much harder, hills, obstacles is much more fun but i always come back sweating from an outside run and i have been running weekly for 3 years now.
i also find changing to a different sport always works new muscles in new ways, and although the calorie count may be different, your body will have to re-adjust to a new sport and so initially you will burn more as its more difficult. Numbers are tricky to rely on. if you enjoy running id say just keep doing it.
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