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Old 01-20-2013, 05:42 AM   #1
Fayd
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Default heart rate and eilliptical

Hi... I know i say something to this effect every time I make a thread here, but i'm planning on losing weight....

anyways... it's been awhile since i've been to the gym (i couldn't find the time last semester... i'm making an effort this semester to hit the gym for 1-2 hours after every class this semester. so 5 days a week. of course it's only been 2 days so far.

I'm quite overweight. I was 275 lbs at the beginning of last semester...i weighed myself a week ago, 285. I am now tied again with the fattest i've ever been. i'm 5'11"...so yeah.

my concern is this.

my gym recently replaced all their machines...so ellipticals that didn't have heart monitors on them now do. and that means they can now do specific programs... like "fat burning" and so on. i don't know how effective those are, i never used them before.

anyways, i tried the fat burning one my first day. Throughout the whole exercise (30 mins, then i got frustrated with it) it was telling me to slow down, bring my heartbeat down. given my age, it was recommending a target hbm of 135 or so for that profile. trouble is, i reach that level really easy. so i didn't feel i was really accomplishing anything as far as calorie burning goes. it didn't give an intensity number, but i was limited by my heart rate to a 'speed' of ~4.2ish (in whatever units they're using)

on friday, i tried what I had been doing before, manually adjusting the intensity (level 12-14, on their system...much higher resistance than the fat burning profile was giving me) and a speed of ~5.5ish. after about 10 mins working out at this, I had a heart rate of 170ish. i had to give up after about 30 minutes (feet hurt 0.o) but, this is the intensity and speed at which i would exercise for an hour 4 months ago. I'm intending to get back there and keep it...

anyways, is there anything wrong with me maintaining a heart rate at 90% of my max heart rate (220-27) for an hour? admittedly I wouldn't have even thought of this sillyness and would have done what I had been doing before had they not changed the machines...
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Old 01-20-2013, 09:27 AM   #2
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The only issue is at 90% you are going to be burning more muscle than fat(unless that info has changed?). If your HR is at 135 you are burning plenty of calories dude.

In a month or two of steady use you might not be able to get it that high so easily. I have to get on a treadmill at 6mph to get my heart up to 140 anymore. And same stats almost, 5'11 270ish atm.
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Old 01-22-2013, 01:37 AM   #3
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alright... then another question.

how am I best off structuring my workout?

right now i'm doing cardio before resistance. IE, current target is 5 days a week, 1 hour cardio before up to 1 hour resistance. (probably more like 30-40 mins resistance), then 20+ mins stretching. should I change that? resistance before cardio?
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Old 01-22-2013, 07:06 AM   #4
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Quote:
anyways, is there anything wrong with me maintaining a heart rate at 90% of my max heart rate (220-27) for an hour?
I'd say no as long as you can do it. Assuming no other health issues (heart..), your body will make you stop at some point.

Your heart rate should drop as you get in better shape. Stay hydrated.

The "fat burning" zone is stupid, imo. But it's better than sitting on the couch. Higher intensity will keep you burning calories longer after you stop.

Yes, you could certainly lose more muscle. Muscle burns calories by having it...fat, not so much. People mess up by dieting/cardio and losing muscle. At the end of their "cycle", they burn less calories/day because of the loss and they put the weight back on faster and it's harder to lose. Vicious cycle.

Read a small study that took 2 groups of sedentary people. Group 1 did just cardio. Group 2, 1/3 cardio 2/3 weights. Both lost weight but group 2 lost ~50% more over the period (7lbs vs 12lbs). It's hard to build muscle while trying to lose the fat but doable.

Lift heavier if you're not already.

Read the fat loss stickey? Episodic lost a lot of weight, iirc. May want to look at his posts.

I personally find it harder to do cardio after lifting. Not that I'm lifting much any more.

Last edited by highland145; 01-22-2013 at 07:18 AM.
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Old 01-22-2013, 08:10 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Fayd View Post
alright... then another question.

how am I best off structuring my workout?

right now i'm doing cardio before resistance. IE, current target is 5 days a week, 1 hour cardio before up to 1 hour resistance. (probably more like 30-40 mins resistance), then 20+ mins stretching. should I change that? resistance before cardio?
always lift before doing cardio. use the simple sugars to help you move the weight.

try HIIT cardio rather than spending an hr on a machine.
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Old 01-22-2013, 01:09 PM   #6
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always lift before doing cardio. use the simple sugars to help you move the weight.

try HIIT cardio rather than spending an hr on a machine.
This. Not a good idea to be lifting heavy when you're already tired from cardio. Spend 5-10 minutes warming up with cardio, lift, then finish with real cardio.
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Old 01-22-2013, 01:51 PM   #7
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At 5'11" 285, your problem is how eat. Whether you do cardio before or after weights, HIIT vs steady state cardio isn't the real problem here. Your workout is just 1 hour out of your day, what you stuff in your face the other 23 hours is putting and maintaining all that weight on you. Fix your diet and the weight will start coming off just from changing your eating habits alone.
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Old 01-22-2013, 04:02 PM   #8
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At 5'11" 285, your problem is how eat. Whether you do cardio before or after weights, HIIT vs steady state cardio isn't the real problem here. Your workout is just 1 hour out of your day, what you stuff in your face the other 23 hours is putting and maintaining all that weight on you. Fix your diet and the weight will start coming off just from changing your eating habits alone.
the exercise plan is along with a diet change.

I eat breakfast, i eat a small lunch (maybe 200-500 calories), i drink a protein shake when i get home after the gym, and i eat a smaller dinner than i used to (700-800 calories)

on weekdays, according to the myfitnesspal calorie counter, i'm limiting my net calorie intake per day to around 1800 calories.
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Old 01-22-2013, 05:30 PM   #9
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The fatburning "zone" is deceptive in that what it really mean is that you're at an intensity at a target heartrate that result in a greater % of your energy being expended by burning fat as opposed to glycogen(your energy stores). But you actually burn more fat at higher intensities due to the greater amount of overall energy exertion.

Just throwing out random numbers here:

If you burn 100% of your energy as fat doing low intensity that burns 300kcal/hr then after an hour you expended 300kcal in fat.

If you burn 80% of your energy at a higher intensity that burns 500kcal/hr for example you actually burned 400kcal of fat after an hour which actually net you 100 more calories of fat burned in the same amount of time. This does not take into account the additional 100 you burned in glycogen stores which your body will replenish when you eat to recover which means 100 less calories that get stored back as fat(assuming you'd have eaten the same meal whether you did the 300 or 500/hr workout).

As a beginner, you should just go at an intensity just slightly above your comfort level for a set time and aim to either increase the duration or the intensity(preferable) as you improve.
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:59 PM   #10
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I am not a a pro at this - but I think changing up your routine and Intensity will help.

Find the program called "hill climb" on the machine. It does a good job of varying your intensity by adjusting the incline and resistance for you.

30-minutes will get you a full cycle.

And yes - you should throw in weights - but do them cardio style, less weight, more reps, less of a break in between sets and look for super sets of any one group -

Shoulders super set -
Sitting dumb bell shoulder press - start at 20lbs
shoulder shrugs - start at 25lbs
side lifts alternating - start at 8lbs
front lifts alternating - start at 8lbs

Then rest for 2-minutes and do the set again, rest, and do another set - so 3 sets total of 8-reps for each exercise.

Jefit is a great app that teaches you the exercises for each muscle group.
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:26 PM   #11
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"fat burning" zone is crapola. Sure if you maintain that level for say 3-4 hours you might deplete your glycogen stores and then your body will call upon your fat reserves to replenish the low levels of glycogen.

Going at that low rate for 30 minutes to an hour is not burning fat. It's burning sugar. So

So going at a high intensity for half an hour is going to burn more calories overall than putting around for an hour.

Don't worry about it "burning muscle". Not gonna happen in half an hour or hour.

Just work at a level as hard as you're comfortable with and as your fitness improves you'll be able to go to a higher level for a longer period of time helping to maintain the same level of calories burned as you lose weight.
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Old 02-15-2013, 09:04 PM   #12
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feeling somewhat proud of myself. finally finished a "full" workout. been doing mostly cardio since i made this thread with a few forays into the weights section. made some progress there... manage to average 5~mph over the course of the workout where I was averaging 3.8 before. which is good, cause i severely lack for endurance.

so anyways

4x5 full weighted squats.. 90+bar lbs
4x5 full weighted benchpress 90+bar lbs
3x5 full weighted deadlift 110+bar lbs
+some other stuff
+30 mins on elliptical averaging 5 mph.

i'm worried about my form on deadlift and squat.. so when i say full weight, it's not exactly all i think i can do. it's all i'm comfortable doing without someone watching me for me doing something wrong. there is of course some warmup sets at lower weights to get my form in order.

I'm trying to figure out what to do now. for squats, i'm using the captive barbell machine (because i'm worried i'm gonna hurt myself). I need to have someone watch me to get the form right, but i don't know anyone who goes to the gym. my parents said something about our account having a backlog of appointments with a trainer...so i should probably look into that.

aside from 2 weeks where my brother was in town with a friend, i've stuck to the change in eating habits as best i can. i weighed myself monday, i was down to 280 (from 285) not sure how much of that is just fluctuation, but it is encouraging.

anyways, that's what's happened thus far.
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Last edited by Fayd; 02-15-2013 at 09:08 PM.
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Old 02-16-2013, 01:50 PM   #13
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Calculate max heart rate. Do cardio in the 60-70% range of your max for 45 minutes for fat burn. After every 2 sessions, throw in a HIIT or a sustained monderate cardio routine (~75%+ of max) to increase stamina (Couch to 5k is a nicely paced program for this). Lather, rinse, repeat.

Also, if you are serious, invest in a quality heart rate monitor because the ones of the machines aren't very accurate.
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Old 02-16-2013, 01:53 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fayd View Post
feeling somewhat proud of myself. finally finished a "full" workout. been doing mostly cardio since i made this thread with a few forays into the weights section. made some progress there... manage to average 5~mph over the course of the workout where I was averaging 3.8 before. which is good, cause i severely lack for endurance.

so anyways

4x5 full weighted squats.. 90+bar lbs
4x5 full weighted benchpress 90+bar lbs
3x5 full weighted deadlift 110+bar lbs
+some other stuff
+30 mins on elliptical averaging 5 mph.

i'm worried about my form on deadlift and squat.. so when i say full weight, it's not exactly all i think i can do. it's all i'm comfortable doing without someone watching me for me doing something wrong. there is of course some warmup sets at lower weights to get my form in order.

I'm trying to figure out what to do now. for squats, i'm using the captive barbell machine (because i'm worried i'm gonna hurt myself). I need to have someone watch me to get the form right, but i don't know anyone who goes to the gym. my parents said something about our account having a backlog of appointments with a trainer...so i should probably look into that.

aside from 2 weeks where my brother was in town with a friend, i've stuck to the change in eating habits as best i can. i weighed myself monday, i was down to 280 (from 285) not sure how much of that is just fluctuation, but it is encouraging.

anyways, that's what's happened thus far.
Get a trainer for a session or two and learn how to squat free weights. The Smith machine is no good.

http://stronglifts.com/smith-machine...-free-weights/
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Old 02-17-2013, 07:50 AM   #15
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Sorry to jump a little off topic, but I figured since heart rate is in the title I could ask here.

What kind of heart rate monitors are good for cardio and weight lifting? I have a hand grip sensor on my eliptical at home, but I don't think it works correctly. I don't know anything about these devices, and looking on amazon confuses me since there are a few different styles. I really just want one so I can tell if I'm burning fat or not.

Any suggestions, or good experiences with a specific brand/model?
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Old 02-18-2013, 07:20 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Corporate Thug View Post

Also, if you are serious, invest in a quality heart rate monitor because the ones of the machines aren't very accurate.
QFT The $$ 'Life' something elliptical can range from 70 to 160 at any given time.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wyndru View Post
What kind of heart rate monitors are good for cardio and weight lifting? I have a hand grip sensor on my eliptical at home, but I don't think it works correctly. I don't know anything about these devices, and looking on amazon confuses me since there are a few different styles. I really just want one so I can tell if I'm burning fat or not.

Any suggestions, or good experiences with a specific brand/model?
http://www.amazon.com/Omron-HR-100C-...ron+heart+rate

Had it for about a year. Is it "quality" like corporate suggested? It works for me. Have had a couple of instances where some other electronic gym equipment messed with it but that's quite rare and I couldn't repeat it. If I'm still wearing it when I get in the truck, it goes haywire. I wet the back of the contacts because it doesn't pick up until you start sweating and if you're hairy, may have to shave the spots for the chest strap.
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Old 02-18-2013, 07:45 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by highland145 View Post
http://www.amazon.com/Omron-HR-100C-...ron+heart+rate

Had it for about a year. Is it "quality" like corporate suggested? It works for me.
i also use this exact same thing and recommend it.

also, since you mentioned MFP, i would recommend that you find out your bmr numbers from a different place and then manually adjust your daily calories as well as your ratios. i found their numbers to be a bit off for me. its a great place to track calories, but whatever bmr calculation they use seems to be way off from every other one i have checked. i use the site suggested in weight loss sticky. i also adjusted my ratios according to the sticky. my weight loss seemed to go a lot better after that.
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:38 AM   #18
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Huh, I was working out on a matrix elliptical trying to do the same thing you are (fat burning) but I kept getting a BPM of 160-170. I maintained that for 25 min out of the 30 min program. Basically the program was like this

_----'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''----_

Is this burning muscle or fat?

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