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  1. #1
    Registered User zurbs's Avatar
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    Elliptical Training for weight loss

    Hi all!

    I'm 34, 5'11" and overweight at 212 lbs. I started elliptical training 2 weeks ago @ 218 Lbs. I used to run cross country and track, but that was 15 years ago when I weighed 130Lbs! Amazing how weight creeps up. The first 2 weeks I quickly lost 6 pounds, but now its coming off slower. I work out 6 days a week, 1 hour in the morning, 1 hour in the evening before dinner. Each workout session I burn between 600 - 700+ calories according to the counter. I take a vega sports pre-workout drink, followed by a Mike's mix whey protein shake for post workout. I am refraining from weight lifting until I drop down to about 185. As a complete novice to supplements and gym training, I'd like to know if I'm on the right track. I feel great, my energy is way up, I feel better about myself, but I do have some trouble sleeping at night since starting the cardio. My diet has also improved, although I never ate bad to begin with, I quit smoking and cut my alcohol intake drastically. These are lifestyle changes I've committed to, not just a temporary weight fix. Any advice on my workout plan would be greatly appreciated as I'd like to continue the cardio at the current clip and lose weight, but want to make sure I'm not sacrificing health.
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  2. #2
    iTrain UFC ScaleAndSteel's Avatar
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    Are you counting your calories and tracking your macros? If not get a free account with myfitnesspal.com and read the stickies to get down your macros and nutritional needs. It will make a big difference. I really don't think you need to refrain from weight lifting. Personally I think the best plans have a mix of HIIT, running, and lifting in them.

    Also careful not to fall into the supplements trap. It is a big money market. Don't waste a ton of money on crap you don't need. Grats on everything else though. Sounds like you are doing very well and are close to where I was/what I was doing.

    Edit: also I think "lifestyle changes" is key. You definately are on the right track grats and keep it up. Make it a life change bro. I am right there with you. I have lost 38 pounds so far and at age 30 and in way better shape then I ever was before in my life.
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  3. #3
    Tony Horton Fanboy TheSauce9's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by zurbs View Post
    Hi all!

    I'm 34, 5'11" and overweight at 212 lbs. I started elliptical training 2 weeks ago @ 218 Lbs. I used to run cross country and track, but that was 15 years ago when I weighed 130Lbs! Amazing how weight creeps up. The first 2 weeks I quickly lost 6 pounds, but now its coming off slower. I work out 6 days a week, 1 hour in the morning, 1 hour in the evening before dinner. Each workout session I burn between 600 - 700+ calories according to the counter. I take a vega sports pre-workout drink, followed by a Mike's mix whey protein shake for post workout. I am refraining from weight lifting until I drop down to about 185. As a complete novice to supplements and gym training, I'd like to know if I'm on the right track. I feel great, my energy is way up, I feel better about myself, but I do have some trouble sleeping at night since starting the cardio. My diet has also improved, although I never ate bad to begin with, I quit smoking and cut my alcohol intake drastically. These are lifestyle changes I've committed to, not just a temporary weight fix. Any advice on my workout plan would be greatly appreciated as I'd like to continue the cardio at the current clip and lose weight, but want to make sure I'm not sacrificing health.
    First of all, congratulations so far.
    But now for the bad news:

    1. You should definitely, definitely, definitely (do you need 100 more of them?) lift. Also, lift heavy, there are numerous benefits to lifting that cardio cannot provide, from everything to retaining LBM to correcting some chemical imbalances when cutting.

    2. Elliptical lie. I'm sorry to say it but I found out the hard way about that. I would take the number that it spits out at you and count 2/3 of that number as the real calorie burn. And even that is just an estimate.

    3. Calorie deficit is what makes for a successful cut. Supplements are meant to, and can, help, but don't really too much on them. Also, the quick weight loss at the beginning was likely water weight. It is a bummer to hear that, but its usually true.

    4. Good luck, and keep working hard! You're on your way!
    Newbie to team IF

    Down 120 since May 2010. Never thought I'd see the day.

    We need to start an anti-broscience brigade. Bros need not apply.

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  4. #4
    Registered User gpo613's Avatar
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    Don't take this the wrong way. You say you never ate bad to being with. Really, then the fat on your body just magically appeared? Well, you could have eaten healthy and clean, but if you eat too much you will gain fat. So you ate too many calories. Now to cut weight you need to read the stickies in this section. Figure out your calorie amount to neither gain nor lose weight then eat less than that so cut weight. It is just that simple.

    You might as well start lifting some now. You will look better quicker if you lift now.

    I have done more elliptical work than most in the last 10 months. I never even once paid attention to the calorie number on my workouts. It is useless and wrong. Just eat at a deficit for calories and adjust when need be.
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  5. #5
    Registered User GoUSAguy's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by gpo613 View Post
    I never even once paid attention to the calorie number on my workouts. It is useless and wrong.
    I agree. I used to believe this number, now I see it and say to myself, "ya, I wish." As In I wish I burned as many calories as it says. I also cut it about in 1/2 or 2/3 or what it says. Heart rate monitors rarely work on those things either.
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  6. #6
    Registered User zurbs's Avatar
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    Thanks all for the great advice! Yep, my diet consisted of healthy eating, but a combination of midnight snacking, no exercise, smoking and binge drinking on weekends gifted me an awesome beer gut!
    I'm definitely not putting a lot of stock into supplements, but I can tell what I'm taking is working. The whey protein seems to keep my muscles fresh for the next workout and probably most important, it is cutting my cravings. As for my pre-workout, i'll probably stop taking it once it runs out, not sure yet. My only concern with weights is building muscle on top of too much visceral fat? Again, I don't really know what I'm talking about, I'm probably completely wrong, that's why I'm here! It sounds like from the advice given here I should talk to a trainer and start getting into a weight program to supplement the cardio? I look at weight lifting equipment like a foreign language... I managed to avoid it when I ran track and cross-country. My goal is to be fit, lean and healthy, not to look like The Hulk, although my wife seems to want the latter... ha
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  7. #7
    iTrain UFC ScaleAndSteel's Avatar
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    You are very much like where I was when I started. With that said I only give advice based on what has or hasn't worked for me. So everything I am about to say comes from the fact that it has worked extremely well for me. I have lost 38 pounds and likely (guessing) 7%+ body fat since Christmas. I stopped smoking, chewing, drinking nearly as much (I now only have a drink or two every couple weeks or once a month...before it was every Red Wings hockey game or Lions football game I would be downing beer like water.) I just this past week have had blood work done, a physical stress test and heart monitoring. Doctors cleared me on all counts for being in top physical shape and health. I doubt I have been this healthy since I was a kid.

    As far as supplements: (again because we have some online experts here I will say that I am basing this off of what has worked for me. And it has worked very well.)

    I take Whey Protein shake with a banana, water, multivit and fish oil caps right after waking up. I do this because it breaks the over night fast/catabalism cycle. Apparently that means I am a moron but a moron I am happy to be because it works.

    I take a whey protein shake within a half hour of working out. I do that because the label says to do it and every REAL nutritionist or fitness trainer I have worked with advised it.

    Other than that I only take a multi and fish caps. I do have one guilty pleasure. A preworkout. I won't name it here so the arseclowns don't come around accusing me of being a supplement pumper but I do occasionally take a PW. I would say I do it maybe once or twice a week when I am doing a 4 or 5 day a week workout routine. It is a guilty pleasure of mine. I don't think they are necessary or maybe not even healthy. But I like it, it really helps me on hard-lazy days and whatever...I like it.

    That is is. I don't take creatine or any other supplements. I think it is a waste of money personally. I think my PW is a waste of money except that I really like taking it so it is worth it for me.

    Working out:

    I firmly believe in a strong mix. I do lifting, HIIT and cardio. I even toss in a nice long walk once in a while. I personally workout 4/5 days a week and have at least 2 rest days a week. I rotate my schedules constantly. But for myself, I get better gains and results by taking 2 rest days and rotate it with 3 rest day weeks. I think I would end up quiting working out if I tried a 6 day a week workout schedule.

    As far as lifting...I think you are over estimating how hard it is to gain muscle. You should look into lifting, especially compound lifting. It is good for you. I personally recommend doing it with your workout plan. You will not look like Arnold anytime soon so don't worry about it. Look through threads on lifting and you will see that it takes a long time of lifting to look like a body builder.

    That is basically what I have done and I am in the best shape of my life. My goal is the same, UFC fighter style fit, lean and healthy although when I say UFC style...that is more a long term dream type goal more than reality. Kinda my picture on the wall. I am just happy to be so fit, lean and healthy now and still going strong.
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