exercise - is this enough?

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LouLou92
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my circumstances have changed lately - I've moved, I'm on a stricter budget, and have less time on my hands. Because of this I'm a bit concerned about the impact on my fitness so would like some evaluation/constructive criticism.

First of all, I'm 22, female, and not trying to lose weight. I'm happy with my weight, size, etc..I just want to maintain a reasonable level of fitness and be healthy. I know I'm never going to be an Olympian, but I would like to be able to run down the street to make my bus without feeling out of breath, and just have more energy and be more active.

I've been a member of a gym for a year, but now it's just not practical for me to go anymore. The problem is that after seeing how much exercise I could do, anything else now feels inadequate! I would go around 5 hours per week, and although my body didn't change much my fitness definitely improved.

The problem is that for me high-intensity exercise just never seems sustainable long-term - however I love weights, and I love walking, so I'm going to try and make these my main activities because I know I'll actually do it instead of talking myself out of it!

Does this seem like enough exercise per week?

20 minutes of weights exercises every other day - I just have a small pair of weights at home, and use youtube videos for the routines

1 hour of walking everyday - in Winter when it's too cold/dark, I have a mini-stepper that I can use for the same amount of time. Sometimes the walking is with the dog at a moderate pace, other times at a low pace just getting around where I need to be (I can't drive)

1 kettlebells class every week


My diet is reasonably healthy - not perfect, but probably better than average. This post is already quite long but if it's necessary then I can detail my diet

The thing that concerns me is that I have a desk job now - at uni I was walking around campus, around the city, etc - now I walk quite regularly because I don't drive, but it still seems quite lazy that I'm sat down for the majority of the day - up to 20 hours! Any advice/tips?
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drewBusby
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Talk about aiming low.
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k9markiii
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(Original post by LouLou92)
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Your plan seems perfectly adequate to make you fit enough for general life and means you should remain a similar weight and be healthy assuming your diet is also good. If you want the psychological effects of taking part in activity I recommend doing something more intense a couple of times a week. Also by doing these walks and weight sessions alone you might get some me time but you could also become bored by the regime and lose interest as well as missing out the important social aspect of exercise.

Hope that helps.
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LouLou92
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(Original post by ROONEY-9-MUTD)
Talk about aiming low.
well given that I'm not trying to lose weight, my diet's healthy, and I only do exercise because I know I should rather than for the sheer love of it, I was pretty happy that I'm making time to do at least something every day that I know I can stick to. Like I said I'm not trying to be a fitness guru or anything, just maintain a reasonable level of fitness. But thanks for your helpful comment.


(Original post by k9markiii)
Your plan seems perfectly adequate to make you fit enough for general life and means you should remain a similar weight and be healthy assuming your diet is also good. If you want the psychological effects of taking part in activity I recommend doing something more intense a couple of times a week. Also by doing these walks and weight sessions alone you might get some me time but you could also become bored by the regime and lose interest as well as missing out the important social aspect of exercise.

Hope that helps.
It's funny you should say that because I really relish the alone time exercising! Long walks with the dog really do wonders for me psychologically - walking destresses me more than the gym, I find it quite therapeutic! The kettlebell class is obviously more social - I go with 2 of my friends - so I think that's a good balance? Thanks for your help
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doodle_333
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the more exercise the better really (up to a point obviously) so it just comes down to your priorities and what you're prepared to put up with to maintain fitness, I'm sure most people find it harder once they're out of uni and working as you'll just have less time and be more tired

what I mean really is that to me you don't seem like you're doing much, however my lifestyle is pretty active, compared to some people I know you'd be doing pretty well, asking in a fitness forum you're going to be asking a lot of people who do a lot of exercise so your answers will be biased

the only thing I would say is what weights do you have because 'I have a small set of weights at home' to me doesn't sound like weight training, it sounds like you've got those little 2kg things that women use so they don't get bulky and wont really do much more than moving your arm around with nothing in your hand... if you just want to do a bit of something at home doing a bunch of squats and stuff is still much better than nothing although I would suggest if it's fitness you're concerned with it might help to try and do a bit of cardio at some point?
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LouLou92
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(Original post by doodle_333)
the more exercise the better really (up to a point obviously) so it just comes down to your priorities and what you're prepared to put up with to maintain fitness, I'm sure most people find it harder once they're out of uni and working as you'll just have less time and be more tired
first of all thanks for your reply and your help! I think the thing is because I naturally don't put weight on easily it would be really easy for me to eat whatever and be sedentary but still look the same - because I'm just trying to be a bit healthier, rather than lose a certain amount of weight and have a goal weight it's harder to get motivated - especially as I loathe most exercise and would rather be curled up with a good book and a cup of tea haha. Like I said the only things I really love and can keep up with is walking and weights.

(Original post by doodle_333)
what I mean really is that to me you don't seem like you're doing much, however my lifestyle is pretty active, compared to some people I know you'd be doing pretty well, asking in a fitness forum you're going to be asking a lot of people who do a lot of exercise so your answers will be biased
you know it's funny because before I went to the gym I thought I was active because I walked everywhere. Now after having been a gym member I feel really inactive only doing low intensity stuff, I really think it's a matter of perspective. But I feel like I'm on my feet a bit more than the average person - I'll walk into town every day for my job, walk to the supermarket and back with my shopping bags, walk to the train station, etc.. so I'm probably walking for at least an hour just doing errands and going about my day.

So then what I'm trying to do is fit an extra hour in either walking just for exercise, or going on the stepper machine - usually the latter with our English weather - and then doing weights exercises too.

(Original post by doodle_333)
the only thing I would say is what weights do you have because 'I have a small set of weights at home' to me doesn't sound like weight training, it sounds like you've got those little 2kg things that women use so they don't get bulky and wont really do much more than moving your arm around with nothing in your hand... if you just want to do a bit of something at home doing a bunch of squats and stuff is still much better than nothing although I would suggest if it's fitness you're concerned with it might help to try and do a bit of cardio at some point?
ha - that's exactly what I do have, a pair of small 2kg 'women's weights'! But honestly, I had never done any type of weights before I started using them on a regular basis, and I found it really hard at first. Now I'm using them every other day, have been doing so for a few months, and despite hours of cardio at the gym not really making a difference, for the first time ever I have 'toned' (yes I know it's a fail word) arms and even my mother said she could notice a change! So they're clearly doing something.

The kettlercise class is pretty intensive - it is almost like circuit training but with kettle bells. You have to do short sprints, squats - I'm always out of breath afterwards and definitely out of my comfort zone, but I suppose that's the way to get fitter.
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JamesManc
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Instead of walking for one hour per day, walk 30 mins with your dog and just do 10 mins jogging which would give you a good level of fitness and take less time
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doodle_333
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(Original post by LouLou92)
first of all thanks for your reply and your help! I think the thing is because I naturally don't put weight on easily it would be really easy for me to eat whatever and be sedentary but still look the same - because I'm just trying to be a bit healthier, rather than lose a certain amount of weight and have a goal weight it's harder to get motivated - especially as I loathe most exercise and would rather be curled up with a good book and a cup of tea haha. Like I said the only things I really love and can keep up with is walking and weights.



you know it's funny because before I went to the gym I thought I was active because I walked everywhere. Now after having been a gym member I feel really inactive only doing low intensity stuff, I really think it's a matter of perspective. But I feel like I'm on my feet a bit more than the average person - I'll walk into town every day for my job, walk to the supermarket and back with my shopping bags, walk to the train station, etc.. so I'm probably walking for at least an hour just doing errands and going about my day.

So then what I'm trying to do is fit an extra hour in either walking just for exercise, or going on the stepper machine - usually the latter with our English weather - and then doing weights exercises too.



ha - that's exactly what I do have, a pair of small 2kg 'women's weights'! But honestly, I had never done any type of weights before I started using them on a regular basis, and I found it really hard at first. Now I'm using them every other day, have been doing so for a few months, and despite hours of cardio at the gym not really making a difference, for the first time ever I have 'toned' (yes I know it's a fail word) arms and even my mother said she could notice a change! So they're clearly doing something.

The kettlercise class is pretty intensive - it is almost like circuit training but with kettle bells. You have to do short sprints, squats - I'm always out of breath afterwards and definitely out of my comfort zone, but I suppose that's the way to get fitter.
well like people say the best exercise is one you will actually do! I think being generally active (i.e. walking/biking around rather than driving) probably makes a big difference in terms of health anyway - if you dont have any huge fitness goals I wouldn't stress about doing 'enough' there is always someone doing more than you!
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David-Nex
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You seem to be doing fine i think you can start kettleball exercises at your home itself you can buy them from amazon , nextonly.uk or even from ebay at really cheap price.Its best thing to do early in the morning, Since you already walk,eat proper food maintaining weight wont be an issue as long as you r not changing your diet.Kettleball exercises are really good & great thing for your body.Hope this helps you.
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DieselJR
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Bit late to the party here but hope I can help a little!

You seem to have exercising down pretty good, the only thing I could offer you really would be variations to the routines you're already doing as I don't imagine there's a need to increase the volume or frequency if you're not looking to slim down and are simply maintaining weight.

Touching on diet briefly, the main point I want to make without getting super detailed and boring you to death is to simply look at your energy balance equation- calories in vs calories out. To a degree, regardless of what you eat, if you obtain a calorie deficit you will lose weight, and vice versa for a calorie surplus. How you will actually look and feel is another matter entirely, but simply speaking if you take in more/less calories than your body needs to operate then you will lose/gain weight

So yeah, just try and match your calories in versus your calories out and that will prevent you from needing to increase or decrease the amount of exercise you do. Oh, and hat off to you maintaining a healthy lifestyle!
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LouLou92
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(Original post by DieselJR)
Bit late to the party here but hope I can help a little!

You seem to have exercising down pretty good, the only thing I could offer you really would be variations to the routines you're already doing as I don't imagine there's a need to increase the volume or frequency if you're not looking to slim down and are simply maintaining weight.

Touching on diet briefly, the main point I want to make without getting super detailed and boring you to death is to simply look at your energy balance equation- calories in vs calories out. To a degree, regardless of what you eat, if you obtain a calorie deficit you will lose weight, and vice versa for a calorie surplus. How you will actually look and feel is another matter entirely, but simply speaking if you take in more/less calories than your body needs to operate then you will lose/gain weight

So yeah, just try and match your calories in versus your calories out and that will prevent you from needing to increase or decrease the amount of exercise you do. Oh, and hat off to you maintaining a healthy lifestyle!
Thanks for the help! To be honest I have never counted calories.. I agree with the science of calories in vs calories out, but I think it's really easy to get too absorbed in numbers rather than health. I think as long as I'm eating proper food rather than processed stuff than calories aren't as important as decent nutrition - but maybe that's just my perspective because I'm not on a diet to lose weight.


(Original post by David-Nex)
You seem to be doing fine i think you can start kettleball exercises at your home itself you can buy them from amazon , nextonly.uk or even from ebay at really cheap price.Its best thing to do early in the morning, Since you already walk,eat proper food maintaining weight wont be an issue as long as you r not changing your diet.Kettleball exercises are really good & great thing for your body.Hope this helps you.
Yeah I'm actually thinking about investing in a kettlebell for at home - it'll work out so much cheaper than going to classes, plus I can do it in my own time at home for however long I want! I'm quite good at being disciplined with it so I could easily make the time. But I'd probably still go to the class every few weeks or so just to remind myself of the correct form and make sure I'm doing the exercises properly without injuring myself. Thanks for the help!
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chazwomaq
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(Original post by doodle_333)
the more exercise the better really (up to a point obviously)
That point might come sooner than you think. In terms of moderate exercise to lengthen you life, the first 20 minutes gives you an extra hour, but the next 20 minutes only gives you 20 minutes! See this talk starting at 13:45 (the whole talk is great).



There's growing evidence that HIIT exercise, even for just a few minutes a day, is as beneficial as long walks or runs. What's great is that many of these can be done in the home with little or no equipment.

You certainly don't need a gym to maintain good health and physique. They are generally a huge waste of money, unless you're seriously into bodybuilding or powerlifting.
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LavenderBlueSky88
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Just some advice, ditch the 2kg weights, honestly that's like holding a handbag or a bottle of milk. Maybe try and get some 5kg weights? You want something that's actually going to be slightly heavy.

Other than that it's a pretty normal amount of exercise. I know it's hard to fit stuff in if you're working or busy. Maybe you could try a HIIT jog/run once or twice a week? If you feel like you need more. However, in terms of cardio I do almost zilch so I can't really talk.
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