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If I want to say farewell to my ample mid-section, do I walk a lot or C25k?

(8 Posts)
workatemylife Tue 16-Apr-13 22:54:54

I've been reading some of the recent threads here with interest. It sounds like I'm not the only one to have had a post-Easter blush moment when it comes to health and weight. Having lost the baby weight (before the kids hit their teens!), I felt good about my shape for the first time in years, and healthier into the bargain. But I've let things slide, and realise that I've put on a stone since Christmas shock. Why and how? Much less exercise , too much indulgence, a refusal to own up to the direction that things were heading, and munching and nibbling my way through stress at work.

I want to fix this NOW, and certainly for the summer, so my plan is to get off the junk food and back to exercise. Stepping on the scales this morning has given me back a bit of willpower as far as diet goes, but I need some advice about the exercise. I could ditch the car to start with. Walking to and from school takes about 25 minutes for the return trip - a good start? Walking to work would be about 45 minutes each way. Can I walk off the weight this way? Or would it be better to take a more high-intensity form of exercise for a shorter time period, perhaps by doing the c25k plan? I like the idea of being able to run a 5K at the end of it, but I'm not the most natural runner, and walking might be less disheartening to start with. Is it the amount of time spent exercising that makes the difference, or the vigourousness of the activity?

Off to find some more motivational advice further down the page. Without wine in my hand.

Beamur Tue 16-Apr-13 23:00:28

Congrats for finding your willpower - the rest should be easy! wink
Running or walking - well, running burns calories faster but personally I find it far too high impact (after a rash bout of running on a treadmill yesterday I've been limping today!) walking is a nice, easy low impact but weight bearing exercise, so good for your bones.
I have been on a similar kick since January and have lost a stone without too much difficulty, but still have another 2 to go.
Personally I prefer a mix of activities and have been doing swimming, keep fit classes, a bit of zumba and going to the gym - I aim for a minimum of 3 sessions a week, 4 if I can fit it in.

It depends how overweight you are, how fit and whether you have any existing problems (joints or weak pelvic floor for example) that could suffer with running.

I'm doing a combination of more walking, swimming and jogging (it is just the bare minimum in terms of speed and impact but gets my heartrate up and makes my leg muscles work) because I have a prolapse and need to avoid high impact but at the same time walking just doesn't get me out of breath because everywhere I need to walk to is on the level.

I did C25k a couple of years ago (before the prolapse problem) and it was great, I was so proud of myself, it is a really good way to start your running career.

MrsPoglesWood Tue 16-Apr-13 23:09:42

As a start I would recommend brisk walking and perhaps build up from that. I started on the C25K and ended up with achilles bursitis. Don't know how as I did proper warm ups, stretches and everything but I ended up limping for 6 months, which severely limited my exercise options. The Dr has told me I have to avoid running and high impact stuff from now on. As much as I think I might have another go I occasionally get a familiar twinge in the back of my heel and common sense prevails!

But I got an exercise bike on Dr's recommendation which has been flipping marvellous! I love it! I average 10K every other day with mid level tension. On the other days I do Jillian Michaels's 30 Day Shred but I leave out the star jumps, running on the spot and high impact stuff. It works for me! And you can set the exercise bike up in front of the telly! grin

workatemylife Tue 16-Apr-13 23:22:09

Thank you for the sound advice. The exercise bike idea sounds attractive, but I worry that it might end up being used as a clothes rack after a month! I like walking because the scenery changes and there is always stuff to look at - exercise can (to me at least) get a bit dull. I could get the 'real' bike out and use it to mix things up a little though. In light of your comments and my own uncertainty I might leave off the running for a bit. I love the idea of the C25K but agree that it might be sensible to get a bit fitter by walking first. Also, blush my pelvic floor may not be at its best. Thank you for that thought, WKWTTG!

MrsPoglesWood Tue 16-Apr-13 23:33:38

I would definitely build up to a level of fitness before starting running. That sounds sensible. And as for the exercise bike as long as you are semi-disciplined that won't happen. I decided that when a particular tv show was on that that was when I would do my 10k. One Show or Hairy Bikers type thing so I was in a routine. It became second nature. DP and DS also started to use it cos it was out and there. We do move it though when we have company!

I love my exercise bike. I do find exercising in the privacy of one's home so much more preferable to doing it in public grin Best of luck work you'll find what's best for you!

BIWI Tue 16-Apr-13 23:52:53

If you want to lose weight then it's more important to address your diet. 80% of weight loss will come from diet, the other 20% from exercise. You have to do a lot of exercise to lose weight. You are talking about an hour's worth of strenuous exercise every day if you really want to lose weight. To give you an idea - my 30 minute run yesterday burnt 345 calories.

STIDW Wed 17-Apr-13 00:38:39

I find the key is get the balance between diet and exercise right. Diet is the most important thing but exercise can help tone the muscles, distract you from eating and sometimes it helps to suppress the appetite. Remember though if you rely on exercise to lose weight you will need to keep up the level of exercise or increase it to maintain the weight loss or the weight will creep back on.

At the moment I'm in the gym half an hour and swim for 20 min or do aqua aerobics every day. I alternate between aerobic exercise and weights. If I do more than this I need to eat more to replace the calories burned and I find it difficult to focus on the exercise so it is self defeating. So short vigourous spells works for me, although I have mobility problems so the vigourousness is limited.

As I lose weight and burn less calories doing exercise my plan is to increase the exercise time to a maximum of one manageable hour a day and work more intensely.

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