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If you're more a 2hrs a day, than a 30mins, 2/3 times a week exerciser...(26 Posts)
What do you do? How do you spend your exercising time?
Im entering a period where I will have a couple of hours a day to myself, most days of the week. I'm looking at my fitness as a bit of a personal project for the next few months - hoping to inspire some longer term good habits.
So, I'd love to hear what everyone's up to!
Old days: 50 minutes of cycling (commuting in 2 legs each way) plus something like a 50 minute swim + maybe a 25 minute walk at lunchtime (workplace is near a park)
Nowadays: 3 days/week, volunteering requires mix of cycling/walking for 1.5-2 hrs plus I might cycle with DS (his commute to his work) for 70 minutes in evening, or 35 minute swim or 50 minute run.
Mixed up with occasional 30 minute walk RT to town centre for shopping errands.
Once upon a time I might go kayaking for 2 hours, too, but am currently boatless. Gardening, diy, housework count in my mind, too.
I love skipping and can easily spend hours doing it. So many different tricks to learn and there is quite a big community on Instagram so there are always new challenges or routines to try! I also do weights in the house too!
If you don't mind indoor, Les Mills on line (LMOD) do some great programmes that mix up cardio, core and strength classes.30 min Anything from
Stupid phone! I meant to say anything from 30 mins 3 x a week to 60 mins 6 x a week. They do a free month I think so you can see if you like it. I tend to add in running, walks, hikes, tennis and yoga - depends on weather/how achy my legs are, but the programmes are really good and keep me on track.
What you need are Caroline Girvan and Growingannanas on YouTube
These 2 ladies will change your life and make exercising sooooo much more effective and enjoyable.
I shall look all those up thank you - a programme to keep me on the right track and progressing, and then adding some walking / swimming and yoga sounds like a good plan. I've just started back at reformer pilates too, which I've missed for the last 5/6 months.
Most of my moving around is done at toddler speed these days, I need to do some moving at adult speed!
Last week I did: Monday - 5km very fast walk, 1 hour pool swim. Tuesday - run, 1 hour open water swim. Wednesday - 1 hour fast walk. Thursday - 1 hour fast walk, 1 hour open water swim. Friday - run. Saturday - 1 hour open water swim, 2 hour walk. Sunday - 1 hour fast walk, 1 hour cycle.
This week there will be more running and cycling as I have a week off work, and hopefully an extra OW swim on Friday though that is less exercise than a social swim.
Caroline Girvan's workouts are great but evil! I'd advise easing into them...(or start with the Epic beginner!)
I train 6 days a week, normally something like this:
Monday: 6-8km run - either steady pace or intervals
Tuesday: HIIT session + abs
Wednesday: crosstrainer intervals, something like 90s on/60s off
Thursday: Kettlebells, more strength based
Friday: HIIT session + abs
Saturday: long, easy crosstrainer session
I'll either go for a brisk 45 minute walk or ride my horse (dressage) every day too. It tends to add up to about 12 hours a week total. Garmin is forever telling me I'm overtraining but it keeps me sane. Ideally I'd add in some pilates or yoga but I just find it SO boring.
Most days I start off (after 10 minutes warming up and stretching) with a Growingannanas HIIT workout, followed by one from Caroline Girvan’s EPIC series. The latter can be pretty challenging, but the Beginners series is a useful introduction and she also has a variety of shorter workouts targeting specific areas. Most days I also do a 3-4 minute plank.
May I add that I’m 67 and I’m now fitter than I’ve ever been. I work out for 1.5-2 hours 5 or 6 days a week, and I am so enjoying it. I’m getting stronger all the time, able to push-ups and pull-ups, and working out with 8, 15 and 25 lb weights. I like Caroline’s workouts because she uses real rather than ‘girly’ weights (twice as heavy as mine LOL...), explains all the moves really well at the beginning but doesn’t chatter during the actual workout, and her videos are really professional. And she is just lovely! As is Anna, whose HIIT sessions complement CG perfectly.
I also walk a lot, cycle, swim and ski. And eat a healthy diet - mostly vegetables plus a fair bit of protein.
Before discovering Caroline and Anna, I worked out with Popsugar Fitness (especially Jake Dupree and Rainier Pollard), Rebecca-Louise and Lucy Wyndham-Reed - all of them useful for beginners and intermediates, and I still go to them on days when I don’t feel up to an EPIC workout. I particularly like RL’s ‘best exercises for lower abs’ and LWR’s ‘10 minute thighs & glutes’.
I used to find exercising so boring, but not anymore!
I run for an hour four to five times a week and walk the dog for 1-1.5 hour 1-2 times a day.
I do a 6km hill run 2x per week, 5 1 hr pilates sessions on the other days plus a 30-45 min walk a day, with a 3hr walk if we get round to it at weekends.
When we’re a bit less busy we go rock climbing once a week too.
Bit of a variety of stuff which I think is the key to interest.
I mainly run (4-5 times a week) but do a yoga session twice a week, climb twice a week, swim outdoors every couple of weeks with a friend, long hike every couple of weeks, and try and do ten minutes a day of 'prehab' exercise for my dodgy knee.
Just to add:
I find wearing ankle and wrist weights extremely useful. After a while you’ll barely notice them, but they’ll strengthen your muscles and your bones. Add a couple of shopping bags and a 20-minute walk home from Lidl and you’ve done a proper workout!! 😎
Variety definitely seems to be key - everyone commenting seems to have a variety of "go to" exercises. I got stuck in a bit of a "PE with Joe" rut over lockdown. And now I'm desperate to do something a bit different!
Thanks for all your posts!
I’m a cyclist and returning to racing after a few years off. I train 5-6 days a week.
I have a fairly specific programme I work to geared towards helping me achieve my racing goals... which you’d expect with someone who races! What I would advise is you pick something you enjoy, pick a goal - eg it might be riding a particular sportive or doing a half marathon or a sprint triathlon, then draw up a plan to work towards it. There’s a lot of help online with websites offering programmes for free. It doesn’t have to be an event, like I mentioned above it could be riding a century or running a 10k in a particular time. Or just cycling x amount of hours a week and enjoying it. Likewise it could be go to gym for three one hour slots a week.
One thing I’ve found (even when I didn’t race) is that having a plan and a goal is really important (over the past few years it was literally just: ride bike 10 hours per week, ride 500 hours over a year). Otherwise you get bored, can’t measure your progress and there’s nothing to pull you through those low/ no motivation days. Even when I really can’t be bloody bothered and my motivation has got up and gone, I do what I’ve planned, because I know it’s part of a bigger picture and I’m working toward something.
I track everything I do via a Garmin it all gets uploaded to Training Peaks and Strava. It’s so easy/ cheap nowadays with wearable devices like Fitbit and apps like Strava to track. Whatever you pick I’d really advise you to record it. Even if it’s just a paper diary where you write what you did. Eg cycled 20 miles, 2,000 foot climbing in 2 hours. Average speed. Average heart rate. That way you can look back and see your progress. That can be so motivating.
I also think nowadays it’s quite important to be adaptable or pick a sport that isn’t reliant on others or a facility. By ‘others’ I mean taking up a team sport like football. By facility I mean a gym or a pool. IF there was ever another lockdown, or restrictions, or you even just have to self isolate for 2 weeks - you don’t want it to cause you to jack it all in! I’ve seen so many threads on mumsnet where people have just given up as they can’t go to the gym or park run was off. So if you pick ‘gym’ attendance as your thing, maybe ensure you have equipment at home to replicate (you can buy stuff like resistance bands really cheap). I know in the winter, it’ll often be too icy for me to ride when I have a ‘window’ so I have a turbo trainer (so I can ride indoors) or I’ll ride off road on my MTB. Consequently I don’t miss out! If racing gets withdrawn again, I’ll race on Zwift (online platform). Anyway. Just think about a workable plan b so you don’t undo your hard work. Part of being a successful, committed, lifelong exerciser is about being adaptable. Weather it’s working back from injury or dealing with change.
Maybe your first few weeks should be about trying different sports/ activities and see how they work for you. Try a gym. Try a pool. Go for a long walk. Try a bike ride. Try a class. Then pick something you loved most. Or even a variety. I ‘swim’ (literally just a 10 minute dunk in a river) several times a week. I’m not a swimmer I get no training benefit, but I love it, it’s great for my mental health and immune system. I also run occasionally, again because I enjoy it. I mix up my cycling although I’m a roadie, I’ll mountain bike. I think that’s the other important thing about exercise (apart from the enjoyment) is that it benefits you, it’s not just about physical fitness - but the immune system boost, or that mental health boost or that time out to yourself. I love racing for many reasons, but I particularly love how it gives me something worth while to do. It’s doing something for me. The fitness is a bonus, likewise Health improvement.
Some great advice above. Similar but different to others I use the Sweat app (paid for) to follow a weight based training plan at home without too much equipment and complement that with running that I track with Nike Run Club app (free).
I like Sweat to follow a structured programme, there's different styles of training plans and a supportive online community for motivation.
I like Nike Run Club for the guided runs with Coach Bennett that are about running and motivating yourself, and there's also meditation runs. They're much more than just running!
So far at my finger tips I have:
Running is tricky as I have a couple of prolapses. Most other stuff I can adapt to suit me (no jumping in HIIT etc).
I think a weights plan at the gym might be useful as well. And a good old fashioned walk now the weather is improving. But I can see how a programme will help me improve rather than doing the same old stuff again and again. And a variety to stop the rut!
I run 5 k 3 times a week and follow one of the les Mills programmes, just finished one so I mixed up a new one for me with my faves, so many ti choose from online
I would recommend following a programme. I am currently using Morsia following a 12 week Fatloss bodybuilding programme. I am progressively overloading weekly and making great, trackable progress. I do a 3 day split but you can do up to 6 days. On my other days I do Les Mills classes and occasional runs. But I work out 6x a week.
I am off this week so putting more time into the gym whereas I usually get just over an hour as I workout before work, today I went to the gym for 2 hours. I did my programme and some additional exercises and cardio. Will do the same tomorrow.
Not everyday but a couple of days/week I run to the gym, do the class and run back- takes 2 hours round trip with a bit of faffing but I save the driving time.
gym class then swim or gym then swim
i can easily spend 2 hours in the gym if I do a 20min cardio warm up, decent weights session, 20min cardio and then stretch.
Mon-Fri 10k/45 min run, walk during my hour lunch break and then an hours spinning in the evening. Sat long run of 2+ hours and swim with the kids. Sun 10k run and then family walk/cycle.