The workout encouragement topic

So I thought a workout topic for us to drop in on and share what we’re doing, what’s working, what we’ve read, and so on, might be a nice topic. If not, it will fall off the charts.

I have been to the gym 10 of the last 11 days, the only day I missed was the -4 degree day. All I am doing so far is an exercise bike, though I have done a bit of the weight machines. I did an hour and ten minutes this evening on the bike and that burned about 400 calories. I am going to increase the resistance and pedal a bit harder, but I don’t feel a bit need to push it. It’s about building stamina now. It’s not about weight loss. Weight loss may come later, but I don’t even want to think about it now.

One of the things I’m doing is taking a calendar (old-fashioned, paper) and drawing a line through each day I work out. The incentive is to keep the line going without a break. So far it’s motivating to me. (I’m also doing this for writing, setting a goal to write a paucity of 300 words a day – hey, I didn’t want to set myself up for failure. It’s about creating a habit. I am counting these words towards that goal. Because why not!)

What’s really working for me is I bring my iPad to the gym and prop it up on the exercise bike and watch streaming video. At first I watched The Expanse to the end of season two, and now I’ve switched to GLOW and I’m about done with season one. It really helps to pass the time as I pedal. I think with season three of The Expanse due on 2/8 on Prime and season two of GLOW I have about 21 more gym days of workouts until I need to find something else.

Anyway, let’s hear how you are doing with your exercise program, what helps you get that exercise done, what tips you might have, or just a progress report. We can’t meet to workout but we can work out and talk about it!

Having a season on my phone definitely makes it easier to stay on the treadmill for longer. Although I’ve read it’s better to totally max out for 10 minutes than jog comfortably for 1 hour. The minimalist in me likes to believe that, but not sure if it’s true (or even knowable).

Run year round outside, with the occasional weights thrown in.

I just hate treadmills. It’s like running in a bubble.

To help with the monotony issue on stationary bike / elliptical / treadmill, I’ve been using interval training. It helps to have a heart rate monitor.

Podcasts keep me entertained during boring workouts. I’ve tried watching stuff or reading but have a hard time keeping the media in a good place to see it while I’m bouncing around. Podcasts work whether I’m outside running, stuck inside during bad weather, or doing weights.

I play badminton twice a week (Tuesday and Thursday). Not the campground way (passing shuttles in slow lobs, no running involved), but the real way: two hours of intensive training exercises, followed by half an hour of match play (if I have the stamina for it, after training).
Depending on the way my legs are holding up, I’ll try to do a spinning course at the weekend (I have a spinning bike at home). However, whereas I absolutely love to play badminton (no encouragement needed there, I simply can’t wait to go), I do have some trouble firing myself up to go spinning. It’s fine while I’m doing it, just getting myself to do it can be hard.

Annoyingly, despite all that exercise, and despite dry January, I’m not losing a lot of weight at the moment, even though I’m not overeating. Not sure what causes this, it might be added weight from muscle building? Still frustrating…

Anyway: best advise I can give anyone is: find a sport you really, truly love. But I do realise that’s easier said than done…

Almost impossible to lose weight by exercising. You pretty much have to alter your diet. I am pretty active, but if I want to lose weight, I have to fast. That said, if you have to choose one, your overall health is better if you exercise than if you lose weight.

Yeah, I am aware of that. I just expected not drinking any alcohol would help, but so far it doesn’t. On the other hand, not drinking alcohol does come easy, so I’ll stick with that for a while. Might be my body needs more time to adjust, and if not, it’s still healthier!

I like to hit up a treadmill or an elliptical while I read a good book, and ever 5 minutes I hop off and work biceps, triceps, core, what have you depending on the day. Rinse and repeat a few times for about 30 minutes, and then if I’ve still got the wind I’ll switch up the cardio machine (or if I’m in a great part of the book I’m reading). It works great, but I can only pull it off early in the morning. If I have to save my work out for the afternoon (like I do this morning due to all the kids cars being frozen over and blocking me in my garage) I tend to have a much worse workout, but I’ll still try and get in at least 4 times a week, and that means going in today, so that’s my plan as of now.

That’s really interesting. I’ve seen that before but I don’t know of anywhere near me where stuff like that is played.

There’s a bit of an aging problem with sports. For example, I’m a good tennis player but I can’t cover the court as well now. I could sign up for some of these tennis workouts at the local clubs – they run you through drills and wear you out. That can get expensive, though. The gym I’m using now is $10/month plus an annual fee.

I’m 60 in two months. As much as I loved playing basketball, that’s out. I fear tearing up a knee or ankle. I haven’t done more than take a few jump shots in 15 years or more.

I will play tennis again when it warms up and I can play for free outside, but now it’s doubles and you just don’t get the same workout that way.

I salute you. I stay in bed as long as I can in these cold weather months. I work out in the evening.

I’ve read my Kindle on a treadmill and the exercise bike, but the elliptical has me going up and down too much for reading. I’m surprised you can do it.

Was just listening to this week’s Only a Game and thought it was appropriate for this thread - check out the first story about Jared Wells. The man has cystic fibrosis, was literally readying himself to die, but then discovered through a friend that he really loved bodybuilding. He can’t do everything that those without the disease can, of course, but he can do plenty, and it’s given him a reason to continue with his treatments and fight the disease. If that’s not a motivational story, I don’t know what is.

I used to be pretty regular at the gym, but after moving a little farther away my travel time to both gym and work have taken time away from workouts. Plus I’m older and just not as motivated though I still enjoy working out when it’s convenient.

To adjust, i have a compact elliptical I use that is great because I can do it while watching tv. That has helped me to stay somewhat active.

But really the best thing to help with weight control has been dietary. I’m giving the keto thing a try and in 6 weeks I’ve lost about 13 pounds. I was wary of it at first (concerns about fad diets, cholesterol) but it has really worked and also had positive effects on my blood pressure. I’ll know more after seeing the doctor and getting blood results.

Yeah, everything I’ve read says diet is the only effective way to lose weight. If you don’t change your eating habits but start working out a lot you may lose some weight but I bet you plateau pretty fast.

I was going to the gym every day for about three weeks but I hurt my ankle enough this week that it hurts to walk so I’ve missed the last three days at the gym.

I have not had much luck with diet only approaches to weight loss. I have to eat healthy, but if I don’t work out, I don’t lose weight. I have just increased my workouts to an hour a day. It’s going pretty good. I am lucky because there is a gym at my work and one not too far from my house. I have been pretty regular at the gym, but I’ve always gone for half an hour, so this is big increase.

I originally did an hour a few years back, and I lost a fair amount of weight (like 10 or 20 lbs). I was also counting calories etc, but I’m not doing all that anymore. Half an hour has helped me to mostly hold the line, but I’ve gradually put some of the weight back, so now I’m going to try to lose 10 lbs. It’s hard. I lose a few pounds, but then the gym closes because of snow or something or I eat out or eat too much and it messes up my routine. If I don’t get too goal orientated or fixated on any particular outcome, I do alright. The trick is to not get discouraged, so this thread is a good idea.

Good luck everyone. Keep trying!

That sucks, especially after such a good run. I hope you have a speedy recovery, and that you will be able to pick up the routine again afterwards!

I realized I need to be a sloth for a bit and stay away from the gym and let my ankle and foot calm down. It’s inflamed from what is probably gout. What a terrible word, gout. It’s an old man disease! Ugh.

Anyway, it’s inflammation of the joints, typically in the big toe though it can affect other joints. It’s a kind of arthritis. And when it flares up it hurts. So much. One of the worst pains I’ve had. I’ve had two flare-ups in five years. First was my big toe and it was like someone was taking a hammer to it every 30 minutes. I couldn’t bear the weight of a sheet on it in bed.

This time its my ankle. For a couple of days it was so bad I could barely walk. I still worked out on the exercise bike at the gym because it kept my foot flat and I could pedal, and it actually made me feel better to get my heart rate up and work up a sweat, but I think it’s retarded the healing. My foot is still a bit swollen and very tender. I have to work one of our cruises in a couple of weeks and there’s a lot of walking on those ships. I really need it to be pain free. So no gym until after the cruise. It’s too bad. I went something like 19 out of 21 days. I was into a rhythm.

It’s true that diet is more effective than exercise in a vacuum, but exercise shouldn’t be discounted. Muscle cells require a lot of energy, so if you’re building muscle, you’ll have a higher metabolism, meaning you’ll burn more of the calories you take in as a baseline.

I have been away from the gym for too long. It used to fit into my schedule before work (we have a gym at the office). But since we’ve had a baby, it’s too hard to fit it in anywhere. I can’t go before work because baby needs to get ready for daycare. I can’t go after work because baby needs to be picked up. I can’t go after she goes to bed because I’m exhausted and need to sleep my own self. I’d like some at-home stuff to do, but nothing has really jumped out at me as something I could see myself using.

My weight is in an okay place (and I’ve been able to maintain it pretty well), so now my goal has turned toward living as long as possible.

This is true, but from what I’ve read the difference in calorie burn is small. What I read is that if you replace a pound of fat with a pound of muscle, you increase calorie burn by about 6 calories a day.

You reduce volume, though. Fat takes a lot of space.

Once I got my metabolism chugging, the weight just pretty much dropped off steadily. With just diet changes, it’s not like that at all.