Workout Questions! Help!


Katelyn

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Hey guys!

I'm on day 17 of my first Whole30 (yay!) and am going to start working out consistently.

I've worked out in the past and have worked with a personal trainer, but I've NEVER been consistent at it. Now that I have energy and feel great, I'm ready to commit!

Here's my plan (5-6 days a week):

Wake up and enjoy a 30 minute brisk walk; nothing intense or difficult, but enough to get my heart rate up a bit. (around 6:30-7am)

Go to the gym after work (between 2pm and 4pm) -

- Elliptical 10 minutes

- Weights 10 minutes (legs on day 1, arms day 2, legs day 3, ect.)

- Elliptical (or bike/treadmill) 10 minutes

- Weights 10 minutes

- Elliptical 10 minutes

- Stretch

My typical meals are as follows:

Breakfast:

3 eggs cooked in fat, 1/2 avocado, cup of strawberries and blueberries, sometimes a piece of bacon or two

Lunch:

Normal serving of protein, usually chicken breast, fish, ground beef, tuna

Baby carrots or asparagus

1/2 avocado

Serving of greens (spinach, mixed greens, ect)

Dinner:

Normal serving of protein again

Cooked veggies, such as sweet potato, butternut squash, carrots, parsnips (with clarified butter or oive oil)

Serving of greens

Handful of nuts, 1/2 avocado, or serving of olives

Is this enough food for how active I am going to be? I'm not sure how to split up my meals for pre/post workout, if I should add more food, what I need more/less of, if my workouts are sufficient and good...Help! Any advice is totally welcome, I need all the help I can get in this area!

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A brisk walk for 30 minutes first thing in the morning is a great idea. If you want to do that every day, go for it! Going to the gym for strength training 2 or 3 times per week is a great idea. Go for it. Stretching, doing yoga or Pilates frequently is a great idea. Go for it. But 30 minutes per day of exercise is a bold plan. 45 minutes per day is even bolder. Planning to go for it 60 minutes or more per day is probably stretching yourself too thin. The plan you have posted is 80 minutes per day. Don't go there. :)

I think you would get great results from walking 30 minutes every day and hitting the gym no more than 3 times per week to do strength work for 30-45 minutes. Add some stretching or yoga to the mix when you can and you will thrive. If you are tired one day, rest. The fastest progress requires consistency and rest. You can walk every day, but you should not strength train or do cardio work in the gym every day.

I am a world class expert in exercise injuries and burnout caused by feeling good and doing too much. I've been hurting myself as a response to feeling strong and excited about my progress for almost 40 years. I wish I could say I have learned my lesson, but the last time I did it was this past Friday when I came back from hernia surgery too aggressively and fried my quadriceps by doing too many squats after a 5 week break.

Your food plan looks good. You should probably add some lean protein as a post-workout meal immediately after any strength training you do. If you feel hungry, you can add a fourth meal or snack. With practice, you can eat more at each meal and be comfortable eating 3 meals per day.

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Three day in the weight room is plenty to start.... I am a big fan of hitting your whole body with functional complex moves in one workout. Exercises like burpees,mountain climbers,box jumps,kettlebells ( must be preformed properly ) push ups, pull-ups , farmers walk,hanging leg lifts, etc will get you I far better shape and faster then doing basic single muscle group movements.

Also... Do your walk as a warm up... Skip the elliptical and hit your routine hard with minimum rest for 20-25 min then done! You can always add in some HIIT cardio once in a while to change things up, or instead of the gym once a week, run sprints,line drills,stadium stairs....you know...real life activities. This keeps your mind fresh and interested and your body guessing....

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Wait, do you mean do my 30 minute walk and then do the strength training for 20-25 right after, instead of walking in the morning?

I've never tried any of those exercises! Except push-ups. I'll look them up and see how to do them! If I'm doing exercises such as burpees, push-ups, mountain climbers, ect, does that replace my time lifting weights at the gym, or should I do both?

I'm trying to layout a weekly plan as best as possible :)

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Wait, do you mean do my 30 minute walk and then do the strength training for 20-25 right after, instead of walking in the morning?

I've never tried any of those exercises! Except push-ups. I'll look them up and see how to do them! If I'm doing exercises such as burpees, push-ups, mountain climbers, ect, does that replace my time lifting weights at the gym, or should I do both?

I'm trying to layout a weekly plan as best as possible :)

My mistake... I thought you were walking then going to the gym to do your Wieghts in the same session

The exercises I mentioned were only a suggestion and you probably shouldn't Try them with out a knowledgable person to show you how to keep good form...

Many " boot camps", crossfit, etc utilize body weight and whole body complex movements ..... That's what gets you " functional" as they simulate real life movements.... If your gym offers a bootcamp or functional body weight class, it would be well worth it to check it out and learn some of the moves to incorporate into your workouts

Personally I periodize and only train with heavy weight every so often... Most of the time it is either metabolic conditioning, or functional body weight .... Not to say I don't use weights I will make a workout grouping 4-5 exercises into one large set, hitting all major muscle groups... Example: squat jumps/ push-ups on unstable surface/ pull-ups/ curls with barbells/ walking lunges with a medicine ball twist.....

Anyway, my main point being.....Less is sometimes more.... Short, high intensity workouts 3 days a week can give you better results and health, than six day a week multiple times a day workouts....

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Okay, I understand now! I'll stick to weight lifting only 3 times a week. Should I still do (ie) legs on day 1, arms on day 2, and legs on day 3? Or can I just do full-body on all 3 days?

I found a crossfit gym in my area, which I didn't even know existed! I'm not ready to start something like crossfit (especially considering the financial commitment, it's pretty expensive here) but maybe someday! I'd like to be slightly more in shape before I commit to something like that. I can barely stay on the elliptical for 10 minutes! Haha.

Thank you for your advice!

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Expense is one thing but know this - you do NOT have to be even remotely fit to start Crossfit. I started at 210 lbs, very out of shape, and jumped right in. They scale for you and to be honest, nothing will get you fit for Crossfit except Crossfit. Within a couple of months my fitness has jumped leaps and bounds though Crossfit. I couldn't love it more.

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This may sound weird, but Self magazine always has really great workouts. Some of which are all body weight and don't even require a trip to the gym. I used to do one of those 3 times a week and walk outside the other days (sometimes I combined them). It was working great for me while I was on Whole30! I like that you're walking outside. Getting out in the air and sunshine is SO GOOD for us!

I agree with Kim, though, you do NOT have to be in shape to start CrossFit. I've been doing it for 5 weeks and was not in the best shape of my life when we started. I could barely run 200 meters or do push ups!! Now my husband and I are doing CrossFit and training for a Spartan Race (14 miles, 30+ obstacles) in December. I'm a craaaazy person!!! CrossFit is great though if you didn't have much confidence in yourself or didn't think you could ever be an 'athlete' but have enjoyed working out as you say you do.

It sounds like you're doing awesome though and that's exciting to hear (read?)!!!

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Well that's good to know! Crossfit definitely seems intense and intimidating to someone who doesn't work out much like me. Maybe I'll look into it! I've only been working out consistently for about a week, so I'd like to make sure that I'm going to stay consistent for a least a month or two before I commit to something like crossfit. Does that make sense? It's really good to know that I don't have to be "athletic" or super in-shape to do something like crossfit, though! I've checked out the workouts and have definitely thought how cool it would be if I could do all that stuff!

So, I'll give it another month or so of consistently working out, and maybe crossfit will be my reward for being dedicated in the gym! :) What a good reward! Haha. I'm used to rewards like "if you workout, you can have a bowl of ice cream..." and now I'm like "if you work out, you can sign up for crossfit and workout more..." Who am I?! Whole30 is changing my life. I guess they warned me about that ;)

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And THANK YOU guys for your advice and encouragement and support. I've never had a community like this that has been so incredibly helpful when it comes to health and lifestyle. I definitely would not be on Day 22 if it wasn't for this site and the daily emails. You guys are so great!!!

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I'm a big fan of whole body workouts

Nothing will get your heart rate up and fit like alternating upper/ lower in a single superset

You can grab 5 lbs dumbells at shoulder height and preform a strick squat and at the top press the dumbells over head .... Perform 20 reps then do 20 walking lunges while curling the dumbells that's one set..... See where im going

Your heart has to work hard to pump blood to all extremities and your fitness will quickly improve

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I used to do the same thing with CrossFit workouts. I thought they looked SO COOL and I wanted to do it, too. CrossFit was our 'reward' for completing a Whole30. WAY BETTER than cake or ice cream! Today I accomplished a goal: jumping on a 20" box!

Trying to be consistent on your own before signing up for CrossFit is a great idea. It can get pretty expensive, depending on where you are in the country. I have worked out pretty consistently for a couple years and four-five days a week before starting CrossFit, so I knew we could do it, especially if my husband and I held each other accountable, like we did during our Whole30.

You're on a roll-- keep it up!

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Oh and I really like FenderBender's workout suggestion. That's a great start.

I see way to many people just doing a traditional 3 set of eight reps for chest.....and the weight they lift will go up and it's a start but it has nothing to do with real world activities..... I say your better off going in your back yard and throwing a heavy rock around for 15 min.... Lol

Crossfit and programs like it are awesome....

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Tom is so very right (as usual.)

I used to be an overtraining junkie doing step, body pump, pilates, the elliptical and training diferent muscles on different days. None of it made sense to me but I did it because I thought I had to. Then I found kettlebells. Basically the key to getting lean (the workout portion because you're obviously dialed in with nutrition) is using your whole body to pick up heavy things. I went from 12 hours a week in a big commercial gym to 3 times a week for 45 minutes of kettlebell classes and the results were even better in 1/3 of the time. I'm obviously not saying that kettlebells are the ONLY way to go, but please don't fall victim to gimmicky fitness fads or think you have to go to the gym every day.

Here is a blog post I wrote a couple of months ago: http://allaboutkettlebells.com/the-little-known-secret-to-getting-strong-and-lean/

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I recently discovered the community park across the street from my apartment has a gym and only costs $290 a year for two people. I take a 30 minute walk in the park every morning but never really noticed the the building with the pool also houses a gym. They have kettle bells, which I have been dying to try, so thanks for the link Delaine. They also have CrossFit every Thursday, but for now I will stick to treadmill, bench press and add kettle bells into the rotation. We only go three times a week, but we walk every day and the park also has tennis, racket ball, basket ball and bocci ball courts free to the public, so once a week we play bocci ball or feeble attempts at tennis.

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