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girlgirl
06-30-2004, 08:37 PM
Myself.
I started to work out sometime in January but I was not very consistent in going to the gym until March. Since then I have been working out 4-5 days a week. With the help of my boyfriend, my work out in the beginning consisted of only running and cross training for 45 minutes. After two months I added weight training for 15-20 minutes and running for 20-30 minutes. My diet consist of rice, chicken breast, fish, fruits, veggies, 1% milk, and some non-greasy vietnamese food my mother makes. I am 19 years old, 5'2, and weigh 118 lbs. Yesterday I had a free scanning at the gym that told me I have lean body mass of 91 lbs.

Question.
1. It came to my attention that my body needs around 100 grams of protein a day. My calorie intake a day is 1200 cal. I concluded that in order to have that amount of protein and stay within my calorie intake, that I should start taking a meal replacement. Is this a good idea? And if so, which one should I get?

2. Also to the females, I was wondering if birth control causes a significant increase in weight or fat?

ImpossibleOfMe
06-30-2004, 09:56 PM
When I started taking BC it had no weight gain at all, but that is because I chose one that is designed to prevent weight gain, and may cause slight weight loss. It's called Yasmin

Emma-Leigh
07-01-2004, 03:21 AM
Originally posted by girlgirl
Myself.
I started to work out sometime in January but I was not very consistent in going to the gym until March. Since then I have been working out 4-5 days a week. With the help of my boyfriend, my work out in the beginning consisted of only running and cross training for 45 minutes. After two months I added weight training for 15-20 minutes and running for 20-30 minutes. My diet consist of rice, chicken breast, fish, fruits, veggies, 1% milk, and some non-greasy vietnamese food my mother makes. I am 19 years old, 5'2, and weigh 118 lbs. Yesterday I had a free scanning at the gym that told me I have lean body mass of 91 lbs.

Welcome :)

What are your goals? Are you trying to increase lean mass and decrease your body fat?

At 118lb an 5'2 you are by no means overweight! And with 91 pounds lean mass your BF% is about 22 - which is not too bad for the average female (although I am not sure how accurate this would be... very few 'scans' are acutally accurrate - you would be better off getting calipers done).

Anyway - no matter what your goals are I feel your boyfriend's schedule is now in need of a little tweaking.

What do you do when you say you do 'weights'? What exercises?

4 to 5 times/week at the gym is probably good - but you have your weights:cardio ratio all wrong. 15 - 20 minutes of weights is not enough time to help you stimulate and develop a strong muscle base - and this is what will get you lean and keep you healthy.

I would probably try to aim for 40 minutes of weights each time you hit the gym floor. This will give you adequate time to work up a good sweat.

You might want to look into spliting your body into 3 'parts'. So for one day you train your legs, for another you train shoulders, chest and triceps and for the third day you train your back and your biceps.

For each area you want to concentrate on large compound movements - those that will stimulate large complexes of muscles. This is proven to be the most metabolically stimulating and the most productive in terms of muscle activation, co-ordination and growth. And at the end of the day, the more muscle you have and the more active it is, the better off you are in terms of your metabolism and weight control.

So, for legs try to go for things like squates, lunges, leg press, hack-squats and stiff-legged dead lifts. Don't be scared to squat - walk proudly past those useless 'innie-outie thigh thingimies' that most females swarm to and walk straight to the squat cage! :) It is only with training that you will get results.

For your shoulders, chest and triceps you can not go past things like bench-press, incline bench press, dumbell flyes, chest dips, push-ups, milatry press, lateral raises, reverse dumbell flyes, tricep pull-downs and overhead tricep extensions...

For back and biceps try things like bent over rows, seated rows, pull-ups/pull-downs, one-arm DB rows and (when you are confident) dead-lifts for your back and BB bicep curls, incline curls, concentration curls and hammer curls for your biceps.

Your abs only need to be trained 2 a week... three times at the most... But I would hit them hard and make sure you target all of the different groups (the external front ones that give you the six pack - which are the rectus abdominus, the side ones which are the obliques, and the deep muscles known as the transverse abdominals).

Don't do your cardio before your weights - a 5 minute warm is all you need to get the blood pumping to your body. But, after your 40 minutes of weight training you could then do your 20 - 30 minutes of cardio or you could do your cardio on different days.

I try to keep my cardio sessions intense and short - 20 to 30 minutes of above 75% my maximal heart rate (or working at at least 75% maximal level of intensity)... I think 3 days of this type of cardio would be fine... you could add another day of cardio if you felt it was nessesary.

Anyway - to get to your questions:

1. It came to my attention that my body needs around 100 grams of protein a day. My calorie intake a day is 1200 cal. I concluded that in order to have that amount of protein and stay within my calorie intake, that I should start taking a meal replacement. Is this a good idea? And if so, which one should I get?
Why are you eating so little? That is not nearly enough food for you. For your weight and height you should be eating about 1500 cals. You should never decrease your calories to really low levels, especially for long durations of time...

Although it seems the reverse of what you want to achieve, I would work on slowly increasing your calories to 1500/day. Without proper nutrition your body will never give up it's fat stores - it will think it is 'starving' and will hold onto them for dear life.

Also, I would aim for ~1.2g of protein/pound - so something like 130 - 140g/day (which is about 25g for each meal if you are eating 5 meals/day).

I would also stick to real food - it is far more nutritionally benificial. Real food has all those vitamins, minerals, fibre, water and phytochemicals that are so important to your body. They also are more thermogenic- meaning your body has to use energy to process them... so they have that advantage over meal replacements.

A good whey protein (for after your workouts) is the only thing I would suggest.


2. Also to the females, I was wondering if birth control causes a significant increase in weight or fat?
Birth control does not make you gain weight - but the progesterone in the tablets does have an impact on your appitite - making you feel hungry. This may then cause you to over-eat (which is the cause of weight gain)... Progesterone can also cause you to retain some water - which can also give you the allusion of weight gain.

fitgirlinidaho
07-07-2004, 07:05 PM
I was on birthcontrol a long time ago and i gained 10 pounds right away. As soon as i went off, i lost it all....strange.
I would say that you are definately not eating enuff!
I am 5'2" and 100 pounds and i eat 2200 cals a day which still isnt enuff for me.
Eat more!

girlgirl
07-07-2004, 08:46 PM
"4 to 5 times/week at the gym is probably good - but you have your weights:cardio ratio all wrong. 15 - 20 minutes of weights is not enough time to help you stimulate and develop a strong muscle base - and this is what will get you lean and keep you healthy.

I would probably try to aim for 40 minutes of weights each time you hit the gym floor. This will give you adequate time to work up a good sweat."

Yes, I've been working out certain parts of my body each day but Wow, 40 minutes of weights?? My next questions would have been what kind of exercises would I do to take up 40 minutes. But you answered that question throughly,thank you. :)
Except what kind of exercises could I do specifically to work out my stomach and abs besides crunches and sit ups? I really feel like I haven't worked out my stomach/abs hard enough. Thanks Emma-Leigh for taking the time to reply to my post completely and answering all my questions. ^^;; It is really helpful.

Emma-Leigh
07-08-2004, 03:11 AM
Originally posted by girlgirl
Yes, I've been working out certain parts of my body each day but Wow, 40 minutes of weights??

What type of split do you do at the moment? How hard are you working?

You would be surprised how long a good weights training routine can take you if you do it correctly - going slowly to get the best out of each exercise. If you are doing 3 to 4 exercises for large muscle groups and 2 for smaller muscle groups and you will usually end up with 6 exercises/day and if you give each exercise 5 - 10 minutes (few minutes organising, adequate rest between sets etc) that is easily 40 minutes!!

You should be lifting heavy enough that it takes you time between sets to recover your strength (and breath) so you can do another set without failing halfway through your desired reps...

For example -

Legs/calves:
5 min. warm up on treadmill (walking)
Squats
Hack Squat
Stiff-legged dead lifts
Leg extensions

Seated calf raises
Standing calf raises


Back/biceps -
Warm up (5 mins)
Deadlifts
Wide grip pull downs (or pull-ups)
Bent-over rows

Barbell curls
Seated incline curls


Shoulders/chest/tri's -
Warm up
Bench Press
Milatry Press
Lateral cable raises
Reverse Flyes

Tricep push-downs
Overhead tricep extensions


Except what kind of exercises could I do specifically to work out my stomach and abs besides crunches and sit ups? I really feel like I haven't worked out my stomach/abs hard enough.
What are you doing at the moment?

There are always things like weighted crunches to add intensity... You can also do hanging leg raises, v-ups, fit-ball exercises, cable crunches and incline crunches... Pilates may also be a good thing to try...

Just pick a range of exercises that target all the different muscles of the abdomen (rectus abdominus - the front 'six pack', your obliques - the sides, and the transverce abdominals - which are the deep muscles which 'hold everything in' and give you flat abs).

Of course, dead-lifts, squats, bent-over rows and stiff-legged dead lifts are also great for targeting your stomach.


Check out this link for more idea's:
http://www.exrx.net/Lists/ExList/WaistWt.html


Thanks Emma-Leigh for taking the time to reply to my post completely and answering all my questions. ^^;; It is really helpful. You are welcome :)