Starting a new workout routine

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-10-2003
Starting a new workout routine
11
Fri, 04-11-2003 - 3:17pm
I took my first Yoga class at the gym last night and absolutely adored it. Now I'm all fired up and I want to try one of everything.

If I eventually want to take 3 Yoga classes a week (afternoons) and 2-5 Spinning classes (mornings), how should I start? I'm coming from a level of activity that is not too high - I have been taking ballet once a week but that's my only real exercise aside from walking. The Yoga class was hard but I only had to really rest once. The others said it was a difficult class.

Should I start with 3 Yoga classes and one Spinning class? Or should I do less Yoga and more Spinning? I don't want to totally kill myself but I'm 23 and I can stand sore muscles, it doesn't bother me. I just don't want to seriously injure myself.

Thanks!!

--jo.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Fri, 04-11-2003 - 4:10pm
classes are fun! that's cool that you want to take more.

yoga is very easy on the body, it isn't really going to tire your body out in a way that is going to interfere with your cardio workouts. but if you haven't really been exercising much, maybe it's best to start with spinning three times a week -- spinning is very intense. so my nonprofessional advice would be start with yoga 3x and spinning 3x a week. and work up to more spinning as you get in better shape. but if you are young and healthy, you might be able to do spinning 5x a week now - see how your body feels, if you've been spinning 3x that week and feel worn out, take a few days off. if you feel great and ready for more, take spinning 5x a week if you want. you might want to invest in a heart rate monitor to make sure you are working in your target heart rate. beginners often start out working at too high of a heart rate and i think the likelihood of that is increased in an intense class like spinning.

in general, if you listen to your body and rest when it's tired out you won't injure yourself. spinning is no impact and it's not like running where you might hurt yourself without realizing it if you start out too fast. if you pay attention you should be able to gauge when you've had enough. a little sore is ok, but if you are starting to feel very tired and worn out or if your legs start to feel "dead" like it's hard just drag yourself up stairs, it's time to take a break.

keep us updated!

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-10-2003
Fri, 04-11-2003 - 4:35pm
Oooh thank you for the quick reply! I will definitely follow your advice about listening to my body and I'm glad you didn't say "try one class this week and two classes next week and..." ... I don't want to work up to it gradually, I just want to jump in with both feet!

I do have two questions. One, where do I get a heart rate monitor, what does it look like, what does it cost. Yes that's all one question lol. Two, How do I know what my target heart rate is? I'm 23, 5'8", 185.

Thank you!

--jo.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-10-2003
Fri, 04-11-2003 - 4:39pm
Another thing I just thought of ...

My goal here is to take my size-14 overweight body and get it back in a 6/8 which is what I wore just before I got married (5 years ago). I'd love to be closer to a 6 but I think it's unlikely for my body type - I'm 5'8" and tend to be very muscular especially in the legs. Well, they're flabby right now but you know what I mean.

Anyway. I'm starting out with 3 days a week of power yoga, one day a week of ballet, and probably 2-3 days a week of spinning, along with 2 days of freeweights with my boyfriend. Plus he and I will probably do 30 minutes of cardio - bikes or treadmill or something. All the classes I listed are one hour long.

Do you think I'll get big and bulky? Or will I trim down so that I can fit back in my wedding dress? *grin*

--jo.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Fri, 04-11-2003 - 5:01pm
you can buy a heartrate monitor at places like target, or at sporting goods stores like sports authority, or online. places like best buy might have them too. i don't know much about them because i usually use the heartrate monitors that are on the cardio equipment like the treadmill, etc. so maybe someone else here know more. but my friend has a cool one that has a strap you strap on under your shirt (under your boobs) and a watch you wear on your wrist that gives the readout (no wires between the strap and the watch!) and she said it cost about $75. there might be cheaper ones that aren't so fancy, but i'm thinking about getting one like she has, it's really cool.

there are different ways to calculate your target heart rate, and the more accurate one requires you taking your resting heart rate and doing complicated math that i'd have to look up. but to get a general idea, you subtract your age from 220 to get your max heart rate - so 197 is your maximum heart rate. as a beginner, you want to exercise at about 65% of your max which is 128. once you are more fit, shoot for 65% - 80% of your max.

as far as bulking up and losing dress sizes, first, i just wanted to point you to this thread of posts... http://messageboards.ivillage.com/n/mb/message.asp?webtag=iv-fbgymrats&msg=1662.2

in which kiervin, jean and i (among others) posted about how losing fat requires 3 things, strength training, cardio, and eating healthily. it sounds like you have a good plan to do both strength training and cardio - just make sure you are lifting weights heavy enough that you can't do more than 8-15 reps so you can build muscle.

and don't worry that you will look bulky when you build muscle, rather you will fit into clothes better, lose fat, look more toned and trim, and probably lose dress sizes. you can read my opinion about fear of bulkiness here: http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-fbgymrats/?msg=1523.3

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Fri, 04-11-2003 - 8:16pm
Hi! I just wanted to say welcome to the board since Jen has covered all the basics (thanks, jen!). The program you're thinking about sounds good. Just make sure to listen to your body, not just during the workout, but afterward. You shouldn't feel super tired hours after, especially not the day after. It's okay to feel like you've worked your body, but not dragging like you have no energy. Have fun!





iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Sat, 04-12-2003 - 12:41pm
yeah, that's what i meant to say.... do you know what i mean? do you ever get that dead leg feeling when you've been exercising a lot? like when you are walking up the stairs to the bedroom and your legs feel like they weigh a thousand pounds? that's how i know when to take a little rest.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Sat, 04-12-2003 - 1:49pm
Yeah! I just went through that which is why I mentioned it. My daughter wanted me to run with her one afternoon after I worked out in the morning and my legs felt like they were in quicksand! I'm thinking...I don't have to work all hard five days a week--I can work hard a few and do more relaxed workouts the others (my normal complacent, lazy ones!).





iVillage Member
Registered: 04-10-2003
Thu, 04-17-2003 - 2:15pm
Okay gals give me your opinions if you will.

My goal right now is to drop a couple of dress sizes (from 14/16 to 6/8) before my brother's wedding in July. I'm a bridesmaid, and there is this really annoying dress shop guy who fitted me for the dress last month. He was really condescending, you could tell he preferred to dress size-2's ... anyway I really want to tick him off by making him re-fit me. *evil grin*

Anyway, I want to get to a healthy weight that I can maintain. Before I got married and moved to Boston I was a 6/8, 135 pounds. I'm 5'8" and that was a good healthy weight on my frame. My thighs were not the smallest but I've always had "ice skater legs" if you know what I mean. Thick but strong.

So I'm doing the Atkins diet, I love it, and have started ramping up with the exercise classes. I've met with a personal trainer twice this week, and he has me doing weight training four days a week (alternating upper and lower body work). I'm planning to wake up at 5:30am tomorrow morning and do this class called BodyPUMP which is supposed to be an awesome workout. If I like it I'm going to start doing that twice a week. I still haven't tried the spinning class, but that's an option too.

My question for you gals ... if I start doing all this, add another two to three days a week of aerobics classes, continue the four days a week of weight training, the one day a week of ballet, the three days a week of Yoga ... do you think it's conceivable that I could lose another 50 pounds and two dress sizes before the wedding at the end of July? I started the Atkins diet in March and have so far lost a little over 20 pounds with not very much exercising. So now I'm counting my calories carefully (according to Atkins you're not supposed to but common sense says I should ... I'm not starving myself, just choosing lower-calorie foods) and adding a lot more exercise.

What do you think? Thank you!

--jo.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Thu, 04-17-2003 - 3:11pm
i went from barely fitting in a size 10 to a size 6 (i'm 5'4) in about 3 months, but on the scale it was less than a 10lb loss. i did it with a combo of strength training, cardio, and eating mostly whole foods WHILE counting calories. however, a size six sounds very small for someone of your height, it will probably take more than 3 months to get there in a healthful manner. after the 2 dress size loss in three months, it's been another 6 months plus to get down just a few more pounds to where size 6s are getting kinda baggy on me. and i still want to lose another 4% body fat from where i am now.

i don't think you should do atkins because 1) it's unhealthy, 2) you won't be giving your body enough fuel to fuel your workouts, and 3) you will probably be losing as much lean muscle mass as you are fat.

finally, it's hard to say this online in a way that doesn't sound kind of obnoxious, but i don't mean it in an obnoxious way: i also suggest finding a more positive motivation for your weight loss, even if it is just looking good in your bridesmaid's dress. spite is such a negative emotion and i just can't help feeling that dwelling on it can't be good for bringing about any positive changes in your life.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Thu, 04-17-2003 - 3:14pm
If fitting into a smaller bridesmaid's gown is your only goal and that is your plan, I guess you could do it by July. It's not a plan for lasting, long-term results or a healthy lifestyle, but if that's not your focus, then I guess your plan will work. Good Luck!

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