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cardio vs weights--help?

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Old 09-27-2005, 05:52 PM   #1
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Default cardio vs weights--help?

Ive been reading an excellent website about women's weight training and it got me to thinkin'...

Mainly, the website was trying to correct the faulty perception that women should do hours of cardio and lift only little tiny weights, if any, as their exercise routine.

Now, I hate cardio. I dont mind running once im doing it, but it really is a chore for me. What was stressed on the site was that cardio really isn't the most important or beneficial thing in improving your health and body. Cardio, she says, is effective at creating an overall calorie defecit, but that's about it.

Lately Ive been doing VERY well at keeping my calories down. I actually have had to make sure Im consuming enough calories total for each day (Ive lost my appetite a bit lately). So, this leads me to the question: instead of doing all of this pain-in-the-arse cardio, could I instead simply keep my calories on the low side, and ONLY do some very challenging weight training?
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Old 09-27-2005, 06:32 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lilith2x4
Ive been reading an excellent website about women's weight training and it got me to thinkin'...

Mainly, the website was trying to correct the faulty perception that women should do hours of cardio and lift only little tiny weights, if any, as their exercise routine.

Now, I hate cardio. I dont mind running once im doing it, but it really is a chore for me. What was stressed on the site was that cardio really isn't the most important or beneficial thing in improving your health and body. Cardio, she says, is effective at creating an overall calorie defecit, but that's about it.

Lately Ive been doing VERY well at keeping my calories down. I actually have had to make sure Im consuming enough calories total for each day (Ive lost my appetite a bit lately). So, this leads me to the question: instead of doing all of this pain-in-the-arse cardio, could I instead simply keep my calories on the low side, and ONLY do some very challenging weight training?
Was it Krista's Stumptous website? I doubt that it was, because in her "Kardio Kween" article she DOES state that cardio/aerobic activity and weight training go hand-in-hand. The book Body for Life for Women by Pamela Peeke, also makes this clear.

Perhaps the author of the website doesn't care for cardio personally?

I'll defer to Mel and Meg (our VERY wise trainers) on this, but IMO you need BOTH. IMO cardio doesn't "just create a caloric deficit" it's also essential for improving your entire cardiovascular system...
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Old 09-27-2005, 07:45 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrsJim
Was it Krista's Stumptous website? .........Perhaps the author of the website doesn't care for cardio personally?

I'll defer to Mel and Meg (our VERY wise trainers) on this, but IMO you need BOTH. IMO cardio doesn't "just create a caloric deficit" it's also essential for improving your entire cardiovascular system...
Actually, yes, it *was* that site, but there is soooo much info there that I don't doubt she may have said cardio was important, I must have simply missed it. It may have actually been something linked to her site, too, or even something I read while simultaneously reading her site (lol). And she wasn't saying cardio was bad, just that it's ineffective for "body sculpting".

I suppose I honed in on it because Ive been feeling guilty about not having done cardio for 3 days (today will be 4 if I dont get to it tonight) and having absolutely no desire to do it. I just am really feeling burned out by it. I guess I was looking for an easy out : /

thanks a lot for the input though, MrsJim, even if it isn't what Id like to hear.

lilith
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Old 09-27-2005, 08:51 PM   #4
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I'm a reformed Kardio Kween Years ago, I would spend grueling hours on my Nordic Track, stationary bike, or go for long (7-10 mile) runs. I actually enjoyed. Now I loathe cardio! But i do it. As little as I can get away with to maintain my weight and a healthy heart...but I do it. My teeeeny mp3 player, and some interesting "mixed cardio" routines have made a bit less boring, but I still would much rather lift for an hour than spend half an hour on a treadmill.

You really do need to do some. I think the minimum for heart health is 30 minutes three times a week, as long as you are really getting your heart rate up and not just taking a leisurely stroll.

I've added rollerblading as well to my cardio menu, but I don't think my heart rate is not going up so much from exertion as from fear

If you use a treadmill, try varying the workout. One of my favorites is to walk at 3.5mph for 2 minutes, then slow it to 2.0mph and do walking lunges on the treadmill, then bump the speed up to 7mph and run for 2 minutes. Repeat that sequence 5-6 times, but bump the incline up by 2% each time you repeat it. by the time you hit a 10% incline you may be backing off the speeds of shortening the intervals I call it the "Bust-a-Lung" Program. Another gym favorite if you have the space, is to do 2 minutes on a stairmaster, then 1 minute of jump squats. Repeat 10 times If you keep varying what you are doing and setting new challenges, it's not so loathesome!

(But I'd still rather lift!)


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Old 09-27-2005, 09:04 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mel
My teeeeny mp3 player, and some interesting "mixed cardio" routines have made a bit less boring,
Heh, my iPod shuffle (as teeny as they come, I think) has also made it less loathesome. And believe it or not, I was actually feeling good about it at first; I was crossing boundaries -- running a mile for the first time, then 2, and 3 -- but now Im burned out. I'm not really improving at the same fast pace I was before.

Anyway, I will try mixing it up some and see if that helps. Ive actually been trying to go for an hour every day but life gets in the way and I end up doing about an hour every other day, and this week.. well, ive fallen off the wagon completely. Im going to get on the treadmill in a minute, but this would be the 4th day without exercise if I were to skip. First time in awhile ive gone this long with no activity, so it seems like a real set-back.

thanks for the input, Mel, I appreciate it!

lilith

Last edited by lilith9 : 01-29-2006 at 09:56 PM.
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Old 09-27-2005, 10:40 PM   #6
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The treadmill CAN be boring, but I try and do at least a mile on it (usually averaging around 6-6.5 MPH) after lifting, then I move on to the elliptical for about 25-30 minutes. I enjoy the elliptical much more than the boring ol' treadmill!

If your gym offers Spinning (aka Group Cycling/Studio Cycling) classes, I would highly recommend checking them out - they are a LOT of fun and really chew up the calories!
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Old 09-27-2005, 11:13 PM   #7
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Lilith, get on your dreadmill and do that cardio, then you can read my post

Sounds like you're in a rut,...If you dislike doing cardio that much why don't you alternate doing one day of cardio, one day of weights because you really do need both. I'm not a Kardio Kween either, I'm like Mel I LOVE lifting, but cardio's got to be done so I run....lately had gotten into a rut a bit so I joined a running group, I think that will make all the difference for motivation... I've also started swimming laps to train for a try-a-tri I'd like to do next August...Maybe setting some goals would be motivating for you too...
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Old 09-28-2005, 03:38 AM   #8
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I HATE running. I HATE the dreadmill (nice Ilene ) but my cardio consists of Kickboxing and Lacrosse. Why not find some form of cardio that you would enjoy like rollerblading or a dance class or a video that's fun like Tae Bo or Salsasize or any of the many many weird and wonderful things out there.

Cardio does not have to equal running!
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Old 09-28-2005, 09:41 AM   #9
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I, too, HATE running. So I don't do it. I do, however, enjoy hiking in the mountains so I get on the treadmill, set it on the highest incline and "hike" while thinking about how I'm going to leave everyone in my dust the next time I go. I also play an adult pick up soccer game once a week (and don't even notice how much I'm running).
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Old 09-28-2005, 01:59 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ilene
Lilith, get on your dreadmill and do that cardio, then you can read my post
Ilene! I LOVE YOU FOR SAYING THAT! Seriously, that is the kind of accountability I need. I, uh, didnt actually run last night-- but today is a different story.

Everyone, thanks for the great ideas. I think adding some interval training (which for me will be repeated segments of sprinting for 30 seconds then going at my usual slower pace) will help me in finding something different.

As for tae bo classes, etc, the only reason I haven't done those is because I am working on a budget right now and can't spare the cash. I already own a treadmill, so I either run in my neighborhood or inside. When I do have financial means to do so, Im hoping to join a place with an indoor pool because I'd LOVE to start swimming laps. Maybe in the meantime instead of taking an aerobics class I can mix it up by buying some videos.

Thanks for all the input, folks, it really is appreciated!

lilith
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Old 09-28-2005, 02:10 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lilith2x4
Ilene! I LOVE YOU FOR SAYING THAT!
You're welcome!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lilith2x4
I, uh, didnt actually run last night-- but today is a different story.
AND why the heck not?? ....

When I'm stuck running on a dreadmill because of inclement weather I like to do hill intervals, I've also done some lunges on the dreadmill with and without an incline, I even saw a girl at the gym do some side lunges on the 'mill...
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Old 09-28-2005, 02:26 PM   #12
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I prefer to do my cardio in the form of a series of 500M sprints on the concept2 rowing machine. I am afraid that long low-intensity sessions of cardio are counter productive to putting on muscle mass (or in my case trying to hang onto it while I drop 50#).

The intensity of the sprints gives you enough resistance to actually develop some strength. I bet anyone could build a really good physique using a rower alone if the did it with sufficient intensity, doing plenty of sprints to build strength. Another nice thing about the rower is that there really isn't any handicap for being heavy: the stronger (and taller) you are the "faster" you go.

Of course circuit training is another nice way to get the heart going and train your muscles.
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Old 09-28-2005, 03:54 PM   #13
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My DH did all of his cardio training on a rowing machine when he was getting ready for a long canoe trip. And believe me he got a both a good workout - and great shoulder and chest muscles. Downside is that he had to buy all new shirts.

I'm another cardio hater, but I do it. I like the elliptical much better than the treadmill, and when I can get to them, I like some of the classes my gym offers. Spring through fall I like to ride my bike, and when I'm in shape to run, doing it outdoors (fallen off that wagon right now though). Since I live where it's cold, icy/snowy and dark most of the winter, I stay inside from Oct through March. I live in a tiny house, so doing cardio tapes at home is a real challenge (though I do them for weights and yoga). But for tapes, check your library, video rental, or thrift stores. THey get "old" fast, so a variety is good.
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Old 09-28-2005, 09:22 PM   #14
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Ahem, hi everyone Long time no post. I've been hanging around in Maintenance, but I've started lifting again, so here I am (albeit on an intermittent basis.)

All this talk about cardio leads me to ask: does anyone do water aerobics? I actually like cardio (clears out the bats in my belfrey, and makes me feel good all over), and I thought I'd try something different. I signed up for a deep-water class at the Y, which starts tomorrow. I'm just wondering what kind of a workout it will be.
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Old 09-28-2005, 10:05 PM   #15
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There's a "water workout" class at my gym but I've yet to check it out - mainly because 1) it begins at 8:30 am and I start work at 8:30 and 2) I don't own a swimsuit But I've known the instructor of the class for quite some time and gone to enough of her classes to know she prides herself on giving great workouts!

If I could, I definitely would check it out though.

Here's the description of the class at my digs:

Quote:
A combination of cardiovascular and muscle conditioning drills taught using water resistance. Pool closed while Pool classes are in session.
Why not check it out - and then give us a report...

P.S. I enjoy cardio too!
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