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Exercise/Fitness Thread

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From age four to 18, I used soccer, basketball, track, cross country, and Irish football as my year-round workouts. I got back into it last year for about 9 months, then I got injured on a run, and I haven't run regularly since. I play soccer on Tuesday nights in SF now, and I am trying to get myself back into running. I ran a few races last year, and I really enjoyed myself, and got fairly healthy doing so.

I like trail running mostly, especially during races. In the height of my past year, I was running 30+ mile weeks. I run a mixture of long runs, medium runs, recovery runs, and speed workouts, with one rest day per week. I would substitute soccer for one of my days, or just add a short run in the morning and soccer in the evening or vice versa. Variety of terrain is also important: hills, flats, track, etc. I also did yoga once or twice a week for a while; it's much harder than it looks, and it helped my running until I pushed myself too far and got injured.

I want to create the same kind of training schedule this time around, but I'm definitely going to start off slow to build a muscle base and deter injury. I will probably start with three days per week and gradually move that to five and then start building mileage.

I like that there are some dedicated people in this thread. @dcostello Have you run any races in the Bay Area recently? I've been getting emails from Active.com about race registration, but I am in no shape to race right now.

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Less than a year ago I was a passionate, immobile foodie who weighted almost 240 # and who never exercised. I took a great amount of pride in my belly. Still don't think there was anything wrong with that, but once the fitness bug bit me... it bit hard.

My base caloric intake for the day is 1700.

I usually average between 2500-2700 depending on how much exercise I do.

I start every day with a bike ride. Rain, snow, heat... doesn't matter. I usually do 10-20 miles as a warmup before the gym.

At the gym I do stretching for a little bit, then 30m-1hr on the elliptical. Depends on the day. That's mainly to tone not so much for aggressive cardio. After that I run a 3k on the treadmill.

I alternate between arms and abs/core ever other day, with a free weight/machine workout depending on the day. I cool down (metaphorically) in the sauna, sweating it all out.

Once a week I add a spinning class on top of all that, and twice a week I work back/chest.

I take a men's multi vitamin, 1000mg of Vit C, garlic and fish oil capsules and a B complex every day. One of my bartenders has a boyfriend who teaches yoga, so I might take his beginners class soon.

And I still occasionally have foie gras!

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@MadeIndelible I have ran a few over the last year around this area. The best site to visit for running info around the bay is Brazenracing.com They offer a lot of runs from 5K's to 50K trail races. They are well organized and do not price gouge you. Also, I recommend that you at least sign up for one and train for it. It may just be me, but when I spend money on something you tend to train harder/more seriously than you would otherwise.

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Oh. Im at 183# now. My low was 178, but building muscle has added weight.

I eat mostly lean proteins and a LOT of cruciferous greens, peanut butter or spinach as treats. Lots of eggs, sardines, low sodium jerky.

Once a week I treat myself to a sprite (gave up caffeine) and popcorn at the movies.

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i only do it if i'm at the gym; because i hate most people and it helps me block them out like white noise.

My gym is a primarily gay gym in a primarily gay neighborhood, and they play intolerable dance remixes. I love the gym, some of the staff also work for me at the bar, love the people etc... but the music is horrid. I have to listen to music on my headphones to escape

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I basically grew up in a dance studio, and spent the majority of my life as a "bunhead" using my 20+ hours a week of ballet, jazz, tap, etc. as my primary way of staying in shape, accompanied by some yoga, pilates and running. Unfortunately I had to give that up once I started med school, as my schedule is way too hectic and my body is way too damaged at this point. I'm in the process of training for a half marathon, so I have a 5 day schedule for my running and I also try to get to at least 3 yoga classes per week.

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My gym is a primarily gay gym in a primarily gay neighborhood, and they play intolerable dance remixes. I love the gym, some of the staff also work for me at the bar, love the people etc... but the music is horrid. I have to listen to music on my headphones to escape

Ahahaha. Which gym is that? 12th street? I go to City Fitness on South. They play top forty nonsense. Headphones are a must.

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Ahahaha. Which gym is that? 12th street? I go to City Fitness on South. They play top forty nonsense. Headphones are a must.

Thats the one. Its about 100 yards from my bar, so I get a great discount, and they have a lot of equipment.... but the music...

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On workout 16 or so of Dan John's 40 day programme.

Loving it so far, gradually adding weight and hopefully by the end I will had added a reasonable amount to my 5RM. That in turn should let me squeeze more good out of doing a hypertrophy cycle.

Not sure what hypertrophy programme I will tackle. Thought of trying GVT again but I actually think you need to be pretty damn strong to get the most out of those two workouts per week. I felt like I was too weak to be able to actually do decent work across ten sets with such short rest periods.

I think maybe something more conventional. Been reading about DeLorme based programmes ... Using clusters of lifts. Or maybe something based on ladders or drop sets.

Still got a way to go on the current programme though. If anyone is looking for something quite structured and long term, I think I would recommend it... So far, at least.

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So, used to lift about every day, do a different area each day, and work out around two hours a day at the dojang, besides. Never went for bulk, I'm 6'2 and never got over 205 when I was seriously into it. Mostly free-weights, but used a VersaClimber as well for aerobic conditioning...nasty machine! I do some lifting yet, but not anything serious, some upper-body stuff to keep my hand in.

I know there are a few posters here that are doing some form of martial arts, and I gots to say, I believe that to be the absolute best all-around workout there is. ALL-AROUND. I realize that for those who are into body-sculpting and such, the arts just won't get it, but for flexibility, speed, strength, and cardio, you can't beat 'em.

Plus, you get to kick people in the head, and that's a HUGE stress-reliever.

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I got back in the gym in September, I was sidelined with a serious back injury from a car accident for almost a year... did nothin' but go to PT, acupuncture, chiropractor, pain management, etc.

Been stickin' with machines right now since I have less chance of hurting myself worse. Got a 5-day split going and I'm about 90% back to where I was. Doing a high-fat low-carb diet, cut back on the beers <gasp!>, throwing in some cardio too. My weight was 256, I'm down to 241 and expect to lose more. I feel a lot better in general and regained some muscle.

Taking a test booster (T-Bomb II), Cissus for joints, fish oil, creatine, a men's multi vitamin and a few other things. Of course whey protein shakes.

Rob

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@Dan S The old Stairmaster machines used to fill me with dread , you don't see em much any more and if you do they're always covered in dust . I believe they were a popular device for training the millitary elite forces .

Yeah, oldies but baddies!

If you never saw a VersaClimber, it's a real trip...you can set it on "wuss" and hardly break a sweat, or you can dial it up to "ironman"...not fun, but you do a good, hard, half-hour on one, you definintely get the burn.

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On workout 16 or so of Dan John's 40 day programme.

Dan John is great! So much wisdom, all of it road tested, too. He keeps things simple, but simple doesn't always mean easy.

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I couldnt make it to the gym today, so I ran for 45 minutes on the wiiFit and then did 100 situps holding a 20lb kettle bell to my chest.

@ShawnPorter Have you tried the Ab Wheel/ Roller ? Not trying to be a dick, and I know you have a trainer but I'm not a proponent of using weighted ab exercises for the simple reason that the abs like any other muscle will tend to grow with weighted exercises . I would make the exception with people involved with specific strength sports as they are looking for performance over aesthetics .

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Abs n sit-ups. Hotline to a smoked back.

Just my little opinion, I'm not a personal trainer, but have been training fighters for a few decades; stick with crunchy's. You'll see more results, faster, and really, the only thing that last few inches of a sit-up accomplishes is to stress the hell out of your lower back. Take it from one who pays daily for the 300-500 situps he used to do daily!

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This kind of feeds into what Dan is alluding to above...

I used to use a mixture of dynamic and static exercises for my core. For the dynamic things like GHD sit-ups, weighted sit-ups, hanging leg raises, dumbell side bends and russian twists. For the static I did lots of weighted planks, regular and lateral.

When I hurt my neck I ended up, in the course of figuring out how the spine works, reading anything I could find by Stuart McGill and ended up ordering his book 'Ultimate Back Fitness and Performance'. McGill is a back expert who has consulted with the NFL and basically his work has revolved around figuring out how to put together a core that will support an injured spine and allow people to continue competing and training. He didn't really have a lot to say about my neck issues in the end, but his take on core training was fascinating, because for him it is both a cause of low back injuries as commonly performed, but also potentially the answer.

(This old McGill interview is good - there are more recent ones on T-nation too. This isn't a work / family safe site

T NATION | Meet Mister Spine Stuart McGill - Part 1 )

Without getting to far into it, he argues that if you've got a hint of low back problems (or want to avoid them) then any high rep flexion of the spine, as results from the way many people perform dynamic abdominal exercises, is a contributing factor to future back injuries. There's other stuff on his list (like compression of the spine under heavy loads, or early morning flexion) but essentially he promotes a take on core training revolving around 'super stiffness' of the area surrounding the spine.

He has a few key exercises he promotes, but the ones I mainly use are plank variations and, interestingly, many farmer's walk variations. I think Dan John and McGill are on the same page in regarding the farmer's walk as a 'moving plank' if you are performing something asymmetric like a one-sided walk.

I also try and do one-handed overhead pressing and one-arm benching from time to time - another good way to work the core.

I probably neglect my core according to the standards of McGill, but I also can't help but feel that people are obsessed with core training at the expense of other fundamental strength standards. I see people who want to perform hundreds of sit-ups or spend 20 minutes in the gym doing a 'core circuit', and yet they don't seem to be as worried about being able to do a decent amount of strict pull-ups, or bench / deadlift decent for their weight. I think it is all interlinked and when one thing becomes trendy or thought to be especially 'healthy' the overall picture stuffers.

(Not a trainer either, btw, just a ranter!)

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