I've just started going to the gym after approxmately 10 years of doing nothing at all. My aim is to get my fitness up and my weight down, in that order. I'm under no illusions I'm ever going to be a size 8 ever again (by healthy means anyway). I'd settle for a 12/14, currently an 18.
At the moment I'm doing 15 minutes walking ont he treadmill (igradually increasing speed and incline), then 10-15 minutes on the cross trainer, again gradully increasing my speed level and 15 minutes on the bike, doing the same.
I can't run or do anything too high impact on my v poorly knees, so my question is... Should I be be aiming to increase time spent on each machine to raise my heart rate and burn fat, or should I stick to 15 minutes on each but increase the difficulty?
I don't really have any longer than 45-60 minutes for the gym visit so may be a little stuck if you all say to increase my time!
The best way to get your heart rate up is to do some intervals. I usually do a warm up on the rower then do some intervals (30 secs flat out then 30 secs recovery) then do the rest of my cardiovascular work out after that.
Do you have any staff at the gym to ask about doing a personal training plan for you?
Sounds lie a good idea - one thing I'd suggest is do't ignore the weights machines, and don't just stick to light weights. You won't bulk up, but building up strength really helps to burn fat and will help with the cardio. If you're interested in more, then I can't recommend the book New Rules of Lifting for Women high enough.
Thank you both. I have been avoiding the weights because the room is always chock full of muscly no-necks being all masculine and grunty. I've nowt against masculine and grunty but will once a week (ladies night on a Sunday) be enough to make a difference with weights? Am conscious of putting on any bulk as I'm also v short and look quite bulky as it is! Thanks
I think a really good weights workout once a week would be really beneficial. Don't worry about bulking up - it's almost impossible for women to bulk up as we don't have enough testosterone. I am a size 8 and do the gym 3 times a week - I do 15 mins of interval training and then the rest free weights, press ups, swiss ball etc. It keeps my metabolism reving like mad!
The only person who mans the gym is an older gentleman who doesn't look particularly fit or healthy, but he assured me he knows how to use a defib machine should I need it ... do I look THAT unfit?! There are other staff milling about, but it's a council run gym so not sure how many of them are specifically trained for doing training pans. I will ask though, thanks.
Matt Roberts 'Fit for your Shape' book has a series of good workouts, including interval/circuit workouts at the gym using weights. Some of the workouts can be done at home as well, so you could do on a day when you couldn't make the gym.