Getting into (a better) shape
Hey there bullshido, I need some help!
I'm 18, 5'9 and weighing in in the light 180's. My dilemma is that I've got a bit of a belly, years of sitting on my butt playing video games for hours have left me with the consequences. I went from a diet consisting of soda and junk food, with the biggest form of excersize being the walk to school (120 feet or so), I was around the 260 range at one point.
I've definitely come a ways to the point in which I'm running almost every day (about an hours worth of running/jogging/walking 3 1/2 - 4 miles.) I've had maybe 2 glasses of soda in the past 3 months, everything else has strictly been water. My key thing now is to try and lose the belly and be able to run longer/harder.
I definitely plan on participating in a marathon early spring of '08. In the mean time I start Muay Thai tuesday, I plan on going 2 times a week + the day they have conditioning. Does anyone have any recommendations on a) foods that would be a wiser choice towards the caloric intake, and b) effective ways to increase my running ability?
I also have a weight set at my house (circa 1980's orbatron), but it gets the job done I just need to get the motivation to keep at it.
All helpful thoughts, flames, tips and that jazz are totally welcome.
Getting in shape to do a marathon is a LOT of work, and may take longer than the six-ish months between now and then. But if you can pull it off, that makes it even more of a feat.
Look around the Physical Training forum for the cardio/weights stuff, there's a wealth of info in there. Intervals are great way to build up cardio fast.
Diet... oh man where to start?
The most important points:
- Only eat as much as you need, no more (your body will store this as fat) and no less (you'll lose energy and your level of physical fitness will actually go down, despite fat and weight loss). If you're sedentary, eat very little. If you're very active, eat like a beast.
- Make sure your carb calories come from complex carbohydrates (starches in potatoes and whole wheat), and avoid high-glycemic carbs (simple sugars like fructose in soda and glucose in white bread)
- Fats are absolutely vital, but carbs should constitute the majority of your caloric intake
- VITAMINS. Eat dark leafy green vegetables, carrots, tomatoes... anything red or green is a good bet. as a rule of thumb, deeper colors and less cooking is better. for example, cooked broccoli is less nutritious than raw broccoli. iceberg lettuce is less nutritious than baby spinach. steamed string beans are less nutritious than sauteÚd string beans (the water leaches out the nutrients, but its okay in soup because you eat the broth).
- Multiple small meals are better than one big one. It keeps your metabolism up and keeps you at a constant energy level, as opposed to the up-and-down 2-3 big meal cycle we're accustomed to have
- Saturated fats are bad, trans fats are positively evil. The former is necessary in small quantities, the latter has no biological function and cannot be processed effectively by your body
I have a related question that I didn't feel like it was worth starting a new thread for.
I have gone, in the last 4-5 months from doing no excersize and eating like a pig to doing san shou/sanda 4 times a week and eating like a pig.
I'm getting in much better shape, but if I want to see continued results, am I going to have to actually start eating right?
Or can I just continue to work out and eat whatever the **** I feel like?
Well, it all depends on what "continued results" mean to you? A leaner, more toned you? More muscle? More stamina? Better performance in Sanda?
Also, what do you mean by "eating like a pig"? Eating junk crap, or eating a lot? If it's good food, eat like a pig, man.
You should certainly do better by switching to a better diet. People may be in better shape than they were 6 months ago, but they may still have high levels of bad cholesterol, for example.
On another note, people tend to radically switch from one diet (.ie. junk food) to a squeaky clean one overnight, and as a result, they set themselves to failure. Change should be gradual. See the sticky threads in these forums for recommendations on diet and nutrition.
Also, one word of caution to anyone interested: having a six-pack is not necesarily an indication of a good health, specially if you play sports (combat sports in particular). A lot of people show these nice six packs, and good for them. But the price they pay is that they can't run/grapple/hit/explode for **** in an explosive sport.
If that's not their goal, then that's fine. But if that's their goal (and yours), then proceed with caution. Some people can have a six pack easely. Others cannot perform in sports well unless they have a bit of fatty padding in their bellies. That's just how it is.
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The street argument is retarded. BJJ is so much overkill for the street that its ridiculous. Unless you're the idiot that picks a fight with the high school wrestling team, barring knife or gun play, the opponent shouldn't make it past double leg + ground and pound - Osiris
To follow up, thanks again for your insightful information, I guess my main issue now is that I'm stuck at 180! I can't seem to go down anymore, I've heard mention of hitting a brick wall, but this is starting to get frustrating.
I'm hesistant to cut down even more so my caloric intake due to the fact that I'm eating only what I need, (most of the time, I do cheat, who doesn't?) but I know I'm not completely satisfied with my current look/feel.
Here's what my current diet concludes:
-Cornflakes/Sweetened raspberry + cornflakes cereal. Skim milk is all that I drink.
-Regularly drinking water, soda free for months.
- Lunch for the past couple of weeks has been turkey (cold lean cut) with lettuce on a whole wheat/grain bread. + granola bar (100 calorie, kind of high in sugars though)
- Dinner has been generally before 8 pm (not sure if it matters), compromised of really whatever lebanese cuisine my mother has concocted for the evening. Besides that chicken, salmon, sometimes tuna. Generally nothing super saturated in fat.
I do Muay Thai 2x a week, followed by running/walking/jogging at least every other day, a good 3-5 miles per run.
I'm really looking for some simple meals that other people eat that's worked for them rather well. I've noticed that my metabolism has peaked a bit and I find myself hungrier quicker, today I splurged a bit and definitely ate more then my fair share.
I have access to a lot of various super markets, of different blends and food types. So as obscure as it is, I think my odds of finding certain foods are fairly good. What do you all recommend?
Marathon training is somewhat at odds with training to fight. However, since you are 18 and a relative beginner, it really won't make that much difference for quite some time.
I know three people who run marathons regularly. One is older and still a bit heavyset, but does it for fun (best time 4:25). Another went from never having run a race in his life to the top 2% of the world inside of 5 years (best time: 2:31). He was never heavy, but still eats like a horse while having dropped an additional 30 lbs. He's also about a foot taller than just about everyone at that level - which is kind of an amusing sight because there are usually 2 or more short people running and "drafting" directly behind him during a race.
The last person I know started in similar physical shape as you describe. He bought this book and swears by it: 4 Months to a 4-Hour Marathon.
Thanks for your response Tom!
On a side note, I most likely will need to change my diet to lean towards more of a combat oriented change in my life style, as MT becomes more of a bigger event in my life. Do you have any suggestions?
Some good info in this thread :thumbsup:
Originally Posted by Teh El Macho
Just out of interest, why is that? Is it that they are not eating enough to properly fuel their bodies in order to get the six pack or something? Obviously Fedor doesn't have anything close to a six pack, and he's bad ass, but I'm just wondering why it could be detrimental. I've always thought it would be cool to impress chicks.
You wanna shed fat? You should know your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate). It's the number of calories burned daily from essential bodily functions, discounting physical exertion. I believe it includes brain/nerve activity, maintaining body heat, liver/kidney, skeletal muscle, other organs, and the beating of the heart. I could be wrong, so just check the wiki article. Anyway, the equation to calculate your BMR for men is as follows:
BMR= 66.4630 + (13.7516 x weight) + (5.0033 x height) - (6.7550 x age)
Weight is in kilograms, height is in centimeters, age is in years, and BMR is in kilocalories (calories). I'm sure you can find some online BMR calculators if you're too lazy to whip out a calculator and do it on your own. Adding this number to your exercise for the day will produce a conservative estimate of the day's calories expended. I say conservative because there's also trivial exertion and a few other things that can expend maybe 50 calories per day. Just make sure that your calories expended are always higher than your calories consumed, and you'll start to shed fat.
As far as running training goes, I don't know much. But that's my little token of wisdom.
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