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TheMud: I'm trying to think through my workout routine and figure out what's working/not working for me. Here's my rundown:

1. Gym membership is expensive and we're trying to cut back.
2. I have some health issues impacting my workout routine. Some are mental...such as some ramping up of my panic attacks/panic disorder. Some are physical such as an achilles tendon that I injured about 2 years ago and which, despite PT, has not been quite right since. I have to baby it.
3. Time. Finding time in my schedule to drive TO the gym, work out AT the gym and drive HOME from the gym...well too many excuses in there to just say the heck with it!
4. I love my trainer and work out with her one hour/week. I'd like to increase that. She incorporates a lot of the crossfit routines in her sessions. She also does large group classes and small group trainings so I could possibly increase my time with her if I gave up my gym membership.
5. I have no workout equipment in the house. I do have a place I could turn into a workout area now that we have reclaimed my son's room as a den. We've got a 40" TV in there mounted on the wall. If I have to watch a video of some routine, that's a plus because I don't wear my glasses or contacts when I work out and I'm blind as a bat.
6. I have access to a workout facility and pool in the next town over, at their HS...the cost per month (individual or family) to belong is very reasonable and there's an added bonus of my son (who does not belong to our gym) could use the facilities. I might even get a discount since my older son lifeguards there (when he's home).

Anyway...

I am wondering how I can make all this work for me. I admit I'm not really familiar with the crossfit program...I looked at the website briefly. Will it help me increase my aerobic conditioning as well?

I'm sure I will have more questions. I wanted to get this out there so we can start a discussion...others can hopefully jump in as well.

My goal is to be as fit as possible in the least amount of time possible. LOL Hey, I'm a working wife/mom of 3. Life is busy.

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OH

I'm glad u put a fitness thread out there. I was thinking about this the other day.

Do you happen to have a wii. I am using the EA active and oh my good ness it is a workout. The 30 day challenge is what I am working on and it is working out to fit it in to my schedule. I just started recently to not sure about the results however I like it better than the gym as no one can see me exercise. And somehow it senses when I am doing it wrong cause it makes me do it over and over again.

Hang in there maybe we can both get there together.

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I can only say that gyms are a waste of money, unless you like the social thing and feel that you cannot workout alone. It is a lifestyle for me and is part of my life just like brushing my teeth. When you can get that far with it, it's a breeze and is just becomes something you do everyday instead of "crap, I gotta go workout". I enjoy it and 90% of the time look forward to it, even if it requires some motivation (just like cleaning).

I listen to music or news and xfit does not give you time to watch tv (unless it's a pure strength day).

Many people don't like the xfit because it looks like some form of combat training. It isn't, however it is so effective that SEALS and SF use it and the trickle down occured with firemen/women, police etc.

The workouts have been around since the sixties (right on man) and is now called HIIT or High Intensity Interval Training.

I am also not against a trainer, many have incorporated xfit because it is so effective people see results within days or weeks and it's a thumbs up for the trainer.

Bring on the pain though with HIIT. I don't rec. just jumping right in with full on xfit, scaling is a must. For all tense and purposes anyone who knew me would say I was in great shape (I think just good). When I started xfit I found out how weak I was and it really irritated me. Running 50 miles I could do, squating my body weight was way too much for me.

I really think a pull up bar, jump rope and a 10lb kettle ball will suffice. Many SEALS and SF do the bodyweight when deployed and some prefer it because they can work on speed and power. Most of those guys are not huge muscle men, they are usually sleek like a triathlete and well porportioned.

I have a good friend who is a trainer, I can go to the HS (both less than 1 m), but I can have my workout done by the time it would take to get ready etc.

Yes it will help you increase your cardiovascular system a lot. I started about last Feb. and had to scale and could only do 2 workouts/wk. I didn't run as much as the previous year, and droped 1 hour and 10 min. from my 50k (that's 32 miles) and give credit to xfit.

There will be run days from 400 meter runs to 10k (6 miles). They put the workouts up in cycles that hit the 4 energy path ways in the body (can you say Krebs cycle for you who took phys, or biochemistry, I still have "wake up in sweat nightmares"). Hitting those energy pathways will increase your aerobic levels tremendously. One guy was challenged to do a 100 mile run. He had never done one before, and never ran, just did xfit. He ONLY made it to mile 60.

Now for the achilles (been there, got the medal). Have you tried the Strausburg Sock? Also after heating it up with a hot pack doing light stretching then doing reverse heel lifts? Get on the stairs and with both feet lift up on balls of feet with heels hanging off, and slowly lower. After 10, lift up again, but now slowly lower while without the aid of the good leg, lower with bad leg only. This is what worked for me. Achilles is one of the only tendons I will recommend heat over ice and absolutely no hard stretching, ultrasound is a joke for it and a heat pad will give it deep heat before the exercises.

I was doing the above exercises when I had achilles tendonitis and now do them at times when I feel a little nag in it. I've had ankle surgery on that side too. When I did it once I heard a huge "pop" and thought 'ought oh' and waited for pain, but found the exact opposite, my achilles pain was instantly gon and my ankle had more rom. I truly think I had some joints not aligned and my tendon was straining.

Hope that helps. Ask away.

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Wow, thanks Mud!

I want to do some research on CF and how to incorporate the program. I'd love to do it with H...but he's not real keen on working out with me. He also enjoys the gym...not for the social aspects (neither of us go for the social aspect of it)...he likes all the weight equipment and the sauna and steam room.

I'm starting to find that the repetitive motion of the elliptical or moving stairs does something to my inner ear (have recurring bouts of labrynthitis) and sometimes I get really dizzy--which then kicks my panic issue into higher gear. Yes, I know, I'm a nutcase.

Running has become difficult since the tendon issue. Biking is great in the nicer weather; swimming is good. I spin 1-2x/week in the winter to take the place of when I'd normally be on my bike. And I love training with my trainer. She has a great attitude...she says her job is to teach so that I am NOT reliant on a trainer. Most trainers want the guarantee of repeat business so they don't give away 'trade secrets'. But if you're good (like my trainer) and deliver as much or more than you promise each and every time, your customers will come back. So I can even have her take me through some xfit stuff and help me work out a routine.

Where do I start though? Just go onto the website? I was on there yesterday and it looked a bit intimidating. Then I saw CWMI's post about the P90X and thought maybe that would be simpler, which is when I asked you that question.

I've had ultrasound done on my tendon and you're right, it was worthless. I have some exercises from my last PT sessions. The stair thing was one . Also, "writing" the alphabet using your foot motion.


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Alphabet writing is worthless too IMO. They've found eccentric contraction is best and of course that will help strength and that is ultimately what will keep the "itis" at bay.

The site is a little intimidating. You can click on start here and then find the drop that says BrandX. This will take you to a forum like here and one of the first posts should have a scaled version. They usually call them puppies or little dawgys. If you don't know what the exercise is, you can look it up by going to the main page and seeing exercise demos. Like a double under (whipping the jump rope 2x under for every hop, which I can't do yet so I just do 2x the required double unders).

They have a forum on there as well. They have a testimonial page and you can see body pics of people who it's worked for within weeks, it really is incredible.

If you use the heat as a warm up on the tendon, and then do the stair drops until it burns, then heat you might start seeing some results. Also the strausburg sock (google it) worked for my achilles and my plantar fascitis (same leg, every problem I've had is on my left side, I have no idea what my mom did to me while I was in the woom- JK).

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OH, I have a gym up in my gameroom, but I have been doing a new weight lifting routine that is just AWESOME that takes only a few dumbbells and very little time. I work out 30 minutes every other day, and I am getting more out of this quickie workout than I did with my more intense workout schedule.

And that is probably because I have upped my weights and slowed down my reps. [this is akin to Super Slow] That seems to make a HUGE difference and I have been doing weightlifting for about 12 years now.

My friend, marriedforever, sent me this message and I have had awesome results:

"Sticking with fairly heavy lifting works best for me. Here is the best full-body WO I have found. I was shocked when I read it was only 7 exercises ~ but they are all compound exercises meaning they work at least 2 muscle groups each. If you want a fast WO that will kick your butt, do this:

click here

You can click on the links and get a great example of how to perform each exercise. These are MUCH better than machines (though I use those sometimes just for a change of pace) because your BODY must do all of the work rather than using a machine as a stabilizer."

I am using the following weights, and doing 3 sets of 8:

goblet squat 40 #
Romanian dead lifts: 2 x 25
chest press: 2 x 25
military press: 2 x 15 [sometimes I will do one set with 2 x 20]
one armed dumbbell rows using 25#
negative self assisted chins with one of those hangy things that hang over the top door door jamb
bosu ball crunches

I added just one exercise, which are static lunges. I do them with 2 x 20# at 2 down and 8 up with 3 sets. I did the first set Sunday and I can hardly walk!

I have stopped all cardio because it makes me too hungry and makes me GAIN weight. The thing I love about this routine is that it is short, sweet and to the point. And I have made some major gains in the 3 weeks I have been doing it.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Originally Posted by themud
I can only say that gyms are a waste of money, unless you like the social thing and feel that you cannot workout alone. It is a lifestyle for me and is part of my life just like brushing my teeth. When you can get that far with it, it's a breeze and is just becomes something you do everyday instead of "crap, I gotta go workout". I enjoy it and 90% of the time look forward to it, even if it requires some motivation (just like cleaning).I can only say that gyms are a waste of money, unless you like the social thing and feel that you cannot workout alone. It is a lifestyle for me and is part of my life just like brushing my teeth. When you can get that far with it, it's a breeze and is just becomes something you do everyday instead of "crap, I gotta go workout". I enjoy it and 90% of the time look forward to it, even if it requires some motivation (just like cleaning).

So true! themud, I worked at home for years using The Firm and Cathe Friedrich tapes and then I joined a gym in 2005 and signed up with a personal trainer. Ohmigosh! It was downright wimpy. So I asked him to guide me through a SUPER SLOW routine and just check my form [which is the big disadvantage of being a home exerciser] he did help me with some form problems, but other than that, there was no added benefit to paying a trainer and a gym to do what I could do better at home. So I quit.

I am in the habit of working out now and I just so enjoy it. But I am now dubious of the benefits of cardio and have been reading that much of what we know about cardio is not very compellling. Have you kept up on some of this stuff? The Scientist and the Stairmaster


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Mel,

Yes, that is excellent! The multi joint compound movements are what will tax the muscles and the cardio and burn tons of calories. Like I said, the more muscle used in a short period of time will consume more calories for longer periods than the slow, long easy only a few muscle movements.

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I need to invest in some dumbbells. I've got a kettle bell and elastic bands.

Jump rope...my tendon aches just thinking about that one, Mud! I will try the stair exercises and look up the link on the sock.

And to think I grew up jumping Double Dutch. I'll bet most of you couldn't even do that as kids!

Mel: My trainer is not affiliated with the gym. And she's worth her weight in gold to me in spiritual and mental motivation as well as nutrition counseling. Sure I could do what she teaches me as far as the physical workout...but it's the other stuff she does that keep me going back.

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Mel,

I think to an extent that might be true, but are they looking at what people's goals are.

If I wanted to get bigger I would train and eat different. If I want to loose body fat, I have to watch what I eat more closely. I could not finish a 50 mile race by bed rest either. By comparrison, yes you do increase your calories w/exercise, but if it is your goal to loose weight and get lean your discipline to eat less and burn more will get you there. The problem is when people "get there" they get back into their old habits and thus gain the weight back. Instead they can maintain and of course fluctuate by 5 pounds any given month, but overall be fitter and look/feel better.

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Originally Posted by OurHouse
Mel: My trainer is not affiliated with the gym. And she's worth her weight in gold to me in spiritual and mental motivation as well as nutrition counseling. Sure I could do what she teaches me as far as the physical workout...but it's the other stuff she does that keep me going back.

That is great! I am firm believer we each have to find what works for us as individuals. I usually fail if my exercise is contingent on going to a gym, but I know people who just will not work out unless they go to a gym. I did get alot from my personal trainer in that he corrected some form issues that I had developed while working out at home. He was very valuable in that regard.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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I've been posting back and forth with her on FB tonight. Asked her about xfit and P90X. She told me that she uses routines from both..mixes them up into her own workouts. She offered to lend me the P90X dvds. I told her that I wanted to maximize fitness gain over current while minimizing both time and money.

LOL

Sure, I don't want much, do I?

She is really wonderful though. Any time I hit a wall, get discouraged, etc., I send her an email and she shoots one right back at me, full of motivation. Not just empty words but real support and motivation!

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It's about recovery too. I don't know how old you are, but I'm almost 38. I don't recover as fast from workouts, but I can push through in a race more than the younger kids because I know I won't die (tongue in cheek).

Compound movements will not let you gain weight unless you eat to gain weight. You are just pushing too much to gain weight and that is what Mel is seeing. I only go heavy about 1x/mo and most of my routines now are scaled b/c racing season is quickly approaching and I want my muscles use to extended anaerobic threshold periods ie. only enough wt. to allow me to do up to 30 reps w/only 1 set.

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Can you slow down a bit and speak in English for a minute, Mud? laugh

Compound movements. What are they and how do they differ from other types of workout routines?

Almost 38? I will withhold comment. laugh laugh laugh

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OH, I hope you love P90X as much as I do. It's tough, but ohboy, is it effective! (small bit of advice: hold off on plyometrics until you have a couple of days where you don't have to actually walk, lol)


Marriage is the triumph of imagination over intelligence. Second marriage is the triumph of hope over experience.
(Oscar Wilde)
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I'm not going to purchase the P90X. My trainer and TheMud told me not save the money...it's basically the crossfit routine in a box. My trainer has the DVDs (she incorporates both P90X and Xfit in her routines) and will lend them to me.

I'm going to start the xfit program, quit the gym and use that monthly money to meet with the trainer in one of her group class 2x/week (she has her own place..she's not affiliated w/ a gym), work xfit with a group of 3 other women 1-2x week and the rest of the time I'll work my own routine. I can still purchase a monthly day pass to the gym if I want to get there for a spin or pilates class. Or I can simply go to the HS weight room and pool.

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If you can get the p90x for free/borrow it, that will work.

Compound movements are multi joint movements ie. squat, deadlift, pull up, push up, lunge.

Doing say a one arm dumbell curl to target bicep m. is a single joint movement, however a pull up will target both heads of the biceps, shoulders, upperback, latissimus, forearm, abdominals, neck etc. All these muscles working together burns more calories, and since you are stressing your energy pathway so much you end up sculpting what you want w/out the bulk of muscle.

If you look at bodybuilders, they eat a ton, and they lift mostly single or double joint movements like leg extension. Oh, don't get me wrong they squat huge amounts of weight, but they take tons of rest and coordinate it with single joint movements and another energy pathway that stress 1-3 muscles for optimum growth.

Xfit by definition is mulit/compound movement that targets muscles in a way that can be used for REAL use, hence the reason why SEALS/SF uses them, they have to use the muscle not make it look good with a tan and bikini. There's a story of this guy that who ran 2 hours at night with other SF with packs and guns and demolitions to a bridge. He spent 2 hours hanging under the bridge to place explosives. He hung from his legs and arms, but when he had to hand and set the charge, he hung from his chin. Then when they were done they ran the 2 hours back before day light. If he had all this bulk and useless muscle it wouldn't serve him.

If you jump on youtube and see the SEAL training, they do the running etc., but the workouts in the gym are xfit routines.

Oh Yeah! I'm a cheater. I ate a whole box of frozen waffles this morning! I feel lousy for it, but man they were good, and a 1/2 stick of butter on them with honey, yum... I mean yuck!

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Thanks for explaining that Mud.

My trainer obviously uses compound movements. Rarely do we ever do a single bicep curl.

I just took a pilates class this AM. I have come to realize that just sweating it out on the elliptical is not getting me where I want to go. I want to feel like I do after a session w/ my trainer...I want to feel that I worked out to that degree every day. And she doesn't do long bouts of cardio. We might do suicide runs, or hurdles, or chair climbs, interspersed with other routines. A lot of partner work in her group class, more using static equipment as a 'partner' in my solo session.

For instance in her last class, we had a partner for two different cardio routines during her class. We used a resistance band and looped it around our partners hips. For the first, the partner would run forward while I pulled back with a rowing motion. Then we'd switch. We did that 2-3 times I think.

For the second, we used a step board and risers. Same deal. Resistance band around partner's hips. Pull back and "row" while she ran the board for 30 seconds. Rinse and repeat 3 times, switching partners.

Also, partner dips, etc. Partner does wall squat. You put your hands on their thighs and do dips. Switch. Rinse and repeat.

Partner does pilates plank. You put your palms on shoulders and do push ups. Switch, rinse and repeat.

So, the cardio is short burst and it's interspersed with a lot of different types of resistance, weight, etc., routines.

She killed me last week. Had me loop a resistance band under the step board/riser. Put foot through one end and hold the other end taught. Stretch out leg and run through the lift/lower routine and then the fire hydrant thing and then knee into chest/entend. I could feel that in my hams/glutes/and quads the next day!

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BTW, I felt great after Pilates. Broke a light sweat but every part of my body feels like it got a workout. Does xfit incorporate pilates moves? I used to do Pilates about 2x/week but fell off the wagon mostly last year.

And..can you maintain a level of cardio fitness by doing interval training like this, or do you still need to plan an cardio intensive day a few times a week?

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No, you'll get enough cardio doing xfit, p90x I really don't know if they rest etc. but believe me when I say I am an endurance junky and xfit has increased my cardio enough that I am now running as faster than when I was 15, all thanks to xfit.

Lets say you do "Fran" (which is a workout of the day), it is:
For time:
21 thrusters (barbell in front resting on upper chest/collar bones, you go into a full squat and as you come up you do a shoulder press with the bar)
21 pull ups
15 thrusters
15 pull ups
9 thrusters
9 pull ups

This is all for time and I can tell you that if you can do it as prescribed for women (65# bar) without rest and under 10 minutes, you are fast.

This will tax your neuromuscular system like nothing I've experienced. Fran is a bench mark work out in xfit. It takes me less than 7 minutes, but it's an entire workout.

We are too use to hearing, "you need to do 20 or 30+minutes of cardio to help that system". I'm telling you, that unless you are training to become an elite endurance athlete, you don't need all that cardio.

Many of the W.O.D. are timed and it will stress your cardio. Most people are pushing it and can't get the WOD under 30 min. so it's a complete cardio muscle workout. I promise

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