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  1. #1
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    Default Does exercise really work?

    Does it really help to get rid of flabby thighs and bat-wing arms? Can I, as a normal human being, really attain a flat stomach? I need some words of encouragement!

  2. #2
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    Yes, it works.

    But as with anything realted to diets, it doesn't work alone. Your diet has to be taken into consideration.

    And, as always, results depend on the effectiveness of your workout routine.

    Are you going to look like a Victoria's Secret model? No. But if you intent upon getting a flat stomach, you can do it.

  3. #3
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    Yes!

    I started working out, and believe me-it's night and day. I'm not perfect, but I am pretty proud .

    Everyone is right-diet has to do with it. You should also have the right balance of cardio and weight training. Cardio is so important! You can lift all the weights in the world, but you won't necessarily get the tone and weight loss you want. (And it doesn't have to be just weights...I do mixed martial arts, running, volleyball and my martial arts training incorporates weight training.)

    Check out the before/after thread. I think it's Weight Watcher's related, but there are some great pictures that can help inspire you.

    ~H.
    Last edited by HeatherFL; 10-19-2007 at 08:54 AM.

  4. #4
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  5. #5
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    It is very tough to have significant weight loss at a decent rate with just exercise. The average person burns about 100 calories to go 1 mile. So if you walk at a moderate pace for 1 hour, you'd go about 3 miles and burn about 300 calories. Let's say you work out 4x/week. It would take you about 3 weeks to lose 1 pound, assuming your calorie intake stayed about constant with whatever it was at your current weight.

    You can burn more bu increasing your speed (running for an hour will take you roughly 4.5 miles, increasing your caloric usage by about 150, meaning 1hr/day and 4days/week will get you a 1 pound loss in 2 weeks.) You can also increase the intensity by cranking up resistance. (Adding an moderate incline to that run might get you from up to 550 calories, which would take just under 2 weeks ( 7 workouts) to lose that pound.

    All that is to say that while exercise alone can do it, if you add even small decreases in calorie intake, that's going to help a lot. But yes, even with just the basic walking, it will take some time, but if you do it for long enough, it can make your bat wings smaller and your tummy more flat.
    'Thou shalt not' might reach the head, but it takes 'Once upon a time' to reach the heart.-Philip Pullman

  6. #6
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    Thanks everyone. I guess I probably should have mentioned that I have been on WW for quite a while and have lost about 30 lbs. While there are moments where the candy calls my name in a loud and commanding voice, I am overall pretty regimented about the daily calories. I'm not toned (never really have been) and although I'm pleased with my weight in numbers, I am mighty discouraged by the fact that I still wobble when I walk.

    I do go to the gym and try to do a good balance of cardio (walk or run for 30 minutes - I am doing a less than 15 minute mile now - or the eliptical when I'm feeling extra energetic) and then alternating arms/legs one day and abs the next. Most nights I also hop on the rowing machine and do 2000 meters, simply because I find it mentally soothing. I guess I just need reassurance that I'm not wasting my time and that eventually I will see something in the mirror besides wobble.

  7. #7
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    It takes a mix of diet and exercise. The question is, where are you weight wise and where do you want to be? I'll give you two suggestions for an at home workout depending upon weather you are alraedy at your target weight

    If you are at a slim weight but feel you have flabby thighs, tummy and arms, then targeted exercise WILL help. In 3-4 weeks you can see significant improvement in arms, and in 6-8 weeks in legs.

    Arms: 5-8 lb free weights for sets of curls, tricep work, and pushups (3 sets, 15-20 reps). Do this 3-4 days per week.

    Abs: No arm (hands should rest loosely at ears, not behind neck or in front of you), bent knee full situps. Start with 20 and add ten every few days until you get to 100 with no interruption or breaks. Do these every day.

    Thighs: 3 sets, 15-20 reps each squats and lunges. Increase to 8 sets over time. Additionally high intensity cardio such as elliptica trainer, recumbent bike or running is necessary to increase muscle tome without adding bulk. Use a moderate resistance but high speed. Do this 3-4 times per week.

    If you need to lose weight, then drop 200-300 cals from your daily diet and do all the above OR join a program like weight watchers and do teh above but don't eat the actvity points. Exercise alone will not help one to drop significant weight in a reasonable amount of time, nor will dieting alone produce toned and smooth arms, abs and legs. The key is to use both.

    In teh last year I lost about 35 lbs but was stil unhappy with my lack of tone. Even though I walk/run lots daily and had ru two half marathons during that weight loss time, I still felt flabby. I started doing the above routine about 2 months ago and it has made a HUGE difference, so much so that people are commenting (unsolicited). I know there are more elaborate programs but the above is what works for me.

    If you belong to a gym, you can also take advantage of the classes there. However, the once or twice a week abs class will not do it. You need to target muscle groups almost every other day to see improvement. I think gym glasses are great to show you what types of exercises you should do to target certain areas, but then you have to repeat the work on your own several more time sduring the week.

  8. #8
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    Anna - I cross posted with you. What you may want to do is to target certain areas. The rowing machine is GREAT cardio, but it might not be helping your abs. So maybe add some ab work and some bicep/tricep work as well with free weights.

  9. #9
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    I'm feeling a bit better. I know it takes time (lots of it), but this is much harder than dieting. Losing the weight was easy. Getting everything shifted into the right spots is the hard part.

  10. #10
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    Anna- I just recently received from my DH for my birthday, 10 sessions with a personal trainer (I asked for them) at the gym that I workout at. I have gone to 3 sessions so far and I am LOVING it!!! She has shown me how to do exercises with weights, how to do them properly, and is a great encourager. We do cirucuit training starting off with walking lunges, then several machines and dumbbells on the BOSU ball. I had seen all this equipment at the gym, but was intimidated by it, but not anymore! I do cardio on my own on the days that we don't have a session. And I'm already thinking about buying more sessions when I am done with my original 10.

    Good luck and stick with it! You can do it!! Congrats on the weight loss!

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