A few posts ago, i blogged about how K and I are going to the gym these days. We slacked off for a whole week but are back on track now. By slacking off i do not mean bingeing as well. Cos that would be like suicide. (except one meal....my friend's mom who is a fab cook is in town and we got invited to dinner...traditional indian food is very carb rich and the food was great and it would have been rude to not eat appreciatively, so i think i downed a lot of calories that night) its pretty tough to overeat or eat stuff that's positively fattening once you know how long you will have to be on the damned treadmill to pay for that!
with all of this, i think the weighing scale hates me, cos i cant see much of a change there....but i can tell that my face is losing flab, little by little. and of course i famously declared that i am wearing one size smaller clothes... so that's incentive enough!
so from a measely beginning of 10 minutes on the treadmill with a speed level of 4, i can now do a full hour at speeds between 6-7. which is pretty good... but am soon tired of the walk to go nowhere routine and cant watch tv minus the volume and so i have taken to browsing through a magazine...the pictures is all that i am interested in anyways in a film periodical. i find that it takes my mind away from the ticking (very slowly) timer and the calorie counter. K does the elliptical cross trainer. he is on it for an hour and kept telling me to read up and that it burns more calories per minute compared to the treadmill.
the elliptical is a strangely scary machine. for one, climbing onto it is like getting on to a ledge of an awkward height. and the handle bars make me feel like i am going to keel over and fall. also its all about rhythm and timing. if you dont get that right, it can be a very awkward stance...i know since i watch the ones who use it. K is a little over 6 ft tall, i am a foot shorter, so the logistics just scared me....
Since the last few days, i have begun to exercise on the elliptical. i was right about the rhythm and timing thing. It is essential to work out on this. i began with a very laborious 10 mins at a resistence of 2. then i realised that a resistence of 6 or 7 (may differ from person to person) makes it easier to get the timing right. on the elliptical it isnt about how fast you can go anyway. it definitely helps burn more calories. i find that i am burning 50% more than the treadmill in the same amount of time. today i did 30 mins. Here too the trick is to visually divert your attention away from the ticking timer and calorie counter. the machines in my gym have a narrow niche to hold a newspaper or a mag and i am making full use of it. Today was all about the most powerful people in bollywood. i am ready for my pop quiz now!
K keeps telling me he is very bored of the gym...the close confines, the stale air (no matter how much room freshner is sprayed) and the boredom that eventually sets in once you are in a routine. So he's signed up for badminton with a guy friend in addition to the gym. 3 times a week for an hour. there's a world class badminton court near home and he's going there. I am not a very sporty person, so will stick to the gym till i can possibly start swimming or something. i need to find a good pool closer home.
Some sharing and encouragement for all those wanting to hit the gym or begin any kind of exercise.
the first 3-4 days are the toughest. but you will get over it and you will begin to like it once you can see the progress. i am actually more motivated than ever and if i can be a convert, anyone can! i was scared to lower myself onto the pot for the first 3 days. once i sat, i didnt want to get up. a hot shower helps, as does good sleep and moderate speeds and time spent working out.
wear comfortable shoes and clothes. i see women in cotton churidar pants which are uncomfortable to even sit cross legged in. the knitted ones are better, if you dont want to wear track pants. find the most comfortable way to lace your shoes, allow room for the toes, tighter around the middle and not very tight where you lace them up. wrong lacing up can leave you feeling very uncomfortable and give you sprains and injuries.
for a woman - wear a sports bra. its important even if you arent very busty. not only is it unhealthy for you to not wear a proper supportive one, but its embarrassing to see women bouncing around when they are exercising. Remember that your breast tissues are one of the most delicate, you will be losing weight (will affect the size of your boobs very soon) and hence they need all the support you can give. Puma has good ones, so does reebok. get a proper fitting one and do yourself a favour.
body odour alert. Everyone will sweat in the gym, just ensure you dont add to the stink. use deodorant liberally. there are products available for sport or active lifestyle...these are a good choice. if you can manage, bathe both before and after. i go to the gym in the morning and find that showering the previous night, before bedtime helps keep me fresh. i was on the treadmill today next to a guy who was stinking from a mile. i had to get off and use another machine at the farthest end from him. he also gave me an awful headache.
dont be intimidated by all the hunks and babes that come to the gym...if its taken you a few years to put on weight, give yourself atleast a few months to see it go.
respect your body and so do not over exercise. start with a pace and time that suits you. do not aim to do as much as a guy who has been working out for months or years. start small, but your aim each day should be to progress a little more than the previous day. be firm when the over enthu coach or fitness instructor tells you to do more if you are tired. rest when you are tired and out of breath and sip water slowly.
watch what you are eating. once you begin to count everything in terms of time spent chained to the treadmill, you will soon realise how much to eat for need and how much for greed!
ok, i think this post has turned out longer than i wanted it to be. so long then.