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Old 04-15-2013, 09:12 AM   #1
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Best exercise for fat burning?

I'm 5'4", 156 and I've been doing Atkins Induction for 4-6 weeks (I think? ha!). I've been working out 2-3x/week by doing a walk/run interval on my treadmill for 20-25 minutes and then crunches, push-ups, lunges. My primary goal is to burn fat; secondary to re-build lean muscle mass lost since having three kids in 5 years!

Is the best way to burn fat by running (higher heart rate), or by walking briskly at an incline? What else can/should I be doing to get the best bang for my buck? I have very limited time to work out.

thanks!
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:53 AM   #2
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Is the best way to burn fat by running (higher heart rate), or by walking briskly at an incline?
Current fitness wisdom seems to be that exercising a lot at a low-intensity level (such as a long walk) while also doing some sessions of very short duration but very high intensity (such as sprints) is best. But I would advise making sure that your joints are up to the task before jumping in to the high-intensity stuff. Muscles get built/strengthened faster than ligaments and tendons. Are you new to exercise? If so, don't rush.

Whatever you decide regarding cardio, keep doing the weights. Very important!

You might look into paleo resources for more specific exercise advice. I believe that Mark Sisson has an ebook about exercise that you can download from his blog (Mark's Daily Apple).
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:55 AM   #3
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I'm starting Mark Lauren's strength training plan, (today actually), from his book Body By You ($16 at barnes and noble). He designs the fitness programs that are used by Navy Seals, Green Berets etc, and he's very highly thought of in the body building community. He's also really against gyms, using equipment, weights and cardio workouts-especially running, arobics classes etc. He lays the reasoning out nicely in the beginning of his book and its solid information. His plan focuses on using your own body to do strength training and build muscle and burn fat The best part-you only do it three times a week for 30 minutes a time! Might be something that you'd be interested in

Eta: I also had three kids in 5 years-what were we thinking?! Lol.

Last edited by mom23kids; 04-15-2013 at 10:00 AM..
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Old 04-15-2013, 10:11 AM   #4
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Sara, do you have the "Bible of Bodyweight Exercises" one or the one specifically for women?
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Old 04-15-2013, 10:56 AM   #5
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Sara, do you have the "Bible of Bodyweight Exercises" one or the one specifically for women?
I borrowed his first book from the library, You are Your Own Gym, and read through the introduction, but then found out his new book, Body By You, was geared towards women so that's the one I bought Did the first day today and love it! Low impact, but wow do I feel it The only equipment I needed was a door, small towel to wrap around door handles, a half wall (counter, table etc), and then I also downloaded a free stop watch app for my phone and this really came in handy! I also bought a small journal to keep track of what I'm doing each time, though there is space in the book for this.
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Old 04-15-2013, 01:25 PM   #6
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I borrowed his first book from the library, You are Your Own Gym, and read through the introduction, but then found out his new book, Body By You, was geared towards women so that's the one I bought Did the first day today and love it! Low impact, but wow do I feel it The only equipment I needed was a door, small towel to wrap around door handles, a half wall (counter, table etc), and then I also downloaded a free stop watch app for my phone and this really came in handy! I also bought a small journal to keep track of what I'm doing each time, though there is space in the book for this.
Sounds great. Thanks for mentioning it! I love bodyweight exercises and things that I can do simply here at home. I like Slow Burn, but I need some variety. When I get bored, I quit working out. Not good. So it'll be fun to try something new!
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Old 04-18-2013, 06:28 AM   #7
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When you look at the different athletes there is one group that stands out as the thinnest. Long distance runners. Sprinters are muscular, but marathoners are very thin.
I don't know of any other sport where the players are as thin as long distance runners.
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Old 04-18-2013, 01:05 PM   #8
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It's kind of a catch 22. Some say your optimal fat burning heart rate is (220-age)*.70

But, you burn less overall calories per time exercised. As you increase your heartrate you burn more calories but the energy supply ratio shifts more to carbs. But, your overall cardio fitness improves.

Exercise is not the great weightloss tool we think it is. I spend over 6 hours per week in gym doing intense cardio and weights with a trainer. My fitness level has improved tremendously but I haven't seen huge weightloss numbers. Think of this way. One hour of intense cardio burns about 700 calories. Do that 5 days per week and you're lucky to lose 1 pound IF YOU DON'T EAT ANY EXTRA CALORIES TO MAKE UP FOR THE ADDED ENERGY REQUIREMENTS.

Here's another anectdote. My father completed a bike ride from Seattle to Boston. It was a 9 week ride, 60-80 miles per day, 6 days per week. At the end of this tremendous feat he had only loss 8 lbs. He usually carries around an extra 30lbs on him. Why? more exercise = more calorie intake.

So, if you can exercise and keep your caloric intake to non-exercise levels you will get added weightloss benefits. If you want to lose the kind of lbs they do on biggest loser you need to exercise 7 hours per day! I have a friend who went to the camp for 3 weeks and that was the regimen.
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Old 04-18-2013, 03:31 PM   #9
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When you look at the different athletes there is one group that stands out as the thinnest. Long distance runers. Sprinters are muscular, but marathoners are very thin.
I don't know of any other sport where the players are as thin as long distance runners.
But it is important to remember that there have been many studies lately coming out pointing that distance runners have cardiac issues, and that ideally, of cardio exercising- one should not exceed 4 miles a day.

When Exercise Is Too Much of a Good Thing - NYTimes.com

That's a look at why.

There's also the issue that as one becomes accustomed and conditioned to cardio, the amount has to be increased to maintain the benefits.

I am not arguing against running. I do some cardio - but I do it mostly for the endorphins, and not too much of it, because the research increasingly points to excessive cardio as being quite detrimental.
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Old 04-18-2013, 03:34 PM   #10
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I borrowed his first book from the library, You are Your Own Gym, and read through the introduction, but then found out his new book, Body By You, was geared towards women so that's the one I bought Did the first day today and love it! Low impact, but wow do I feel it The only equipment I needed was a door, small towel to wrap around door handles, a half wall (counter, table etc), and then I also downloaded a free stop watch app for my phone and this really came in handy! I also bought a small journal to keep track of what I'm doing each time, though there is space in the book for this.
He also has a three disc DVD set for those of us that suck at copying exercise directions from a book. LOL

He is awesome. And his science is spot on.
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Old 04-18-2013, 09:26 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by avid View Post
When you look at the different athletes there is one group that stands out as the thinnest. Long distance runners. Sprinters are muscular, but marathoners are very thin.
I don't know of any other sport where the players are as thin as long distance runners.
Elite runners, yes. Mid to back-of-the-pack runners, many are average to chunky.

Gary Taubes talks about this in one of his books. Are distance runners thin because they run? Or are thin people distance runners because being thin makes it easier?

Having said that, I believe interval running is the way to go for fat burning and long, slow distance for happiness (mine anyway ).

The NYT article is nonsense. Studying people who have run 100+ marathons has no bearing on average people.
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Old 04-19-2013, 04:43 AM   #12
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Elite runners, yes. Mid to back-of-the-pack runners, many are average to chunky.

Gary Taubes talks about this in one of his books. Are distance runners thin because they run? Or are thin people distance runners because being thin makes it easier?

Having said that, I believe interval running is the way to go for fat burning and long, slow distance for happiness (mine anyway ).

The NYT article is nonsense. Studying people who have run 100+ marathons has no bearing on average people.
Not nonsense at all.

There are multiple articles and research about it. Heart damage and shortened longevity is a result of distance running. I just posted a quick article as a jumping off spot. Research it for yourself. It's a fascinating subject, and conventional wisdom turns out not to be conventional at all. Knowledge is power. I brought it up because I used to believe distance and high endurance was the way to go. It's not.

Here's a much larger study:

http://todayhealth.today.com/_news/2...-kill-you?lite

http://www.outsideonline.com/fitness...-20120612.html

The second article is based on Mayo Clinic information, and explanation patchy myocardial fibrosis, stiffening of muscles, and elevated plasma CPK.

That's a piece that identifies a place you can go to look at the larger study. A dissenter calls it a blog- LOL- but it's based on far more than that. A fifteen year observational study of over 50,000 people showed that running 20 miles or less a week is optimal, in 3 or 4 days of running a week, at around 30-45 minutes of exercise per incident.

It's good for thought.

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Old 04-19-2013, 05:08 AM   #13
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Elite runners, yes. Mid to back-of-the-pack runners, many are average to chunky.

Gary Taubes talks about this in one of his books. Are distance runners thin because they run? Or are thin people distance runners because being thin makes it easier?

Having said that, I believe interval running is the way to go for fat burning and long, slow distance for happiness (mine anyway ).

The NYT article is nonsense. Studying people who have run 100+ marathons has no bearing on average people.
Unfortunately we see the people at the front of the pack in running events as being lean and thin, and think, it must be all the running they do that keeps them that lean. Which is partially true. But it is their genetic characteristics that make them lean, not the amount of running they do. They do not store body fat the same way the other two body types (mesomorph and endomorph) do. I can attest to running as not being an optimal weight loss/weight management tool. I am "dieted down" thin person, ie. genetically not lean. And when I took up running it turned me into a skinny fat person. Basically meaning that I lost weight but I also lost muscle mass, so I just looked emaciated, not fit from running. I will say to that I still had quite a bit of body fat on me which was noticeable.

So I decided to go down a different path and replaced a lot of the running time with weight training. I like my body a lot better now, I look more fit and athletic and also have less body fat.

I think there is a place for cardio, but I like the idea of short sprint training, with a weight training or strength regime. And then the rest of the time, just doing things that encourage fitness but that are things that people enjoy. Even if it is something like gardening which still burns calories but at a low intensity. Most of the studies indicate no more than an hour a day.
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Old 04-19-2013, 06:16 AM   #14
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Most of the studies indicate no more than an hour a day
an hour a day of what?
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Old 04-22-2013, 09:13 AM   #15
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an hour a day of what?
Cardio??
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Old 04-29-2013, 02:17 PM   #16
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how about rebounding? I've been doing it and the next day I seem to be look skinnier. and I don't even do it that long.

Been reading up on the benefits and so wanting to get a nice rebounder. the one I have is from academy and it's not great.
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Old 05-07-2013, 01:22 PM   #17
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how about rebounding? I've been doing it and the next day I seem to be look skinnier. and I don't even do it that long.

Been reading up on the benefits and so wanting to get a nice rebounder. the one I have is from academy and it's not great.
I've been reading lately that rebounding is good for stimulating the lymphatic system which supposedly helps reduce the appearance of cellulite -which would be a miracle to me! I'll be researching this more thoroughly. Apparently, using a rebounder in a horizontal position, such as in the way one is used on a pilates machine, produces better results than jumping up and down on one. Sorry for getting off-topic.
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Old 05-08-2013, 01:31 PM   #18
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To find your optimum fat burning heart rate you need to have a Vo2 Max test done. This test measures oxygen in and CO2 out at various levels of exertion.

Here is me getting my second VO2 Max test done after 12 weeks of exercise:



The data is analyzed to find out at what point your body stops burning fat and has to turn to carbs for energy. This is identified by the ratio of oxygen you take and and CO2 you expell.

Since everyone starts out at different levels of fitness, you can't just use a standard chart on the side of the treadmill. It could be way off thus forcing you to waste time.

Here is a recent "Fat Burner" workout for me. This is a 35 minute workout to be done before weightlifting. On days when there is no weightlifting the workout is 60 minutes.


This workout has me warm up for 10 minutes.
Then 2 min in zone 1 (141-151) beats per minute
Then 2 min in zone 2 (151-157) bpm
Then 30 sec in zone 3 (157-163) bpm
Then back down to zone 1 for 3 minutes...
Etc.... you get the point.

Remember, this is customized based on my testing. I have done this for 13 weeks straight now and have seen my calorie burn rate increase by 45%.

My trainer uploads a new workout plan everyday. I record my heart rate on a monitor then uploaded to the website where the data is analyized and viewed by my trainer. It's a great system.

This is the "Plan" I bring to the gym and follow religiously that day.


These are the results of my workout:

Last edited by CTH; 05-08-2013 at 01:39 PM..
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Old 05-08-2013, 05:55 PM   #19
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I've been reading lately that rebounding is good for stimulating the lymphatic system which supposedly helps reduce the appearance of cellulite -which would be a miracle to me! I'll be researching this more thoroughly. Apparently, using a rebounder in a horizontal position, such as in the way one is used on a pilates machine, produces better results than jumping up and down on one. Sorry for getting off-topic.
I know when I did ab work on it, it was easier on my back. but yeah read about reduction in celluilite. we'll see about that but I know for me, it makes ccardio so much easier.
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Old 05-10-2013, 06:17 AM   #20
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The data is analyzed to find out at what point your body stops burning fat and has to turn to carbs for energy. This is identified by the ratio of oxygen you take and and CO2 you expell.

Since everyone starts out at different levels of fitness, you can't just use a standard chart on the side of the treadmill. It could be way off thus forcing you to waste time.

The point where your body stops burning fat and turns to more carbs for energy with every point rise in heart rate, is your lactate threshold. Unfit people can have an LT in the 70's (eg76% of maximum heart rate), a fairly fit person can have one at 85%.

In something like marathon training, the most important factor for successful racing besides having. basic endurance, being able to run 26 miles, is developing a high lactate threshold. You can't do much about VO2max, that's set. All you can do is lose it but you can get it back with not much time in training, 3-5 weeks. Moving the LT point upward is something that can be done through training and moved upward over time, not just in one season. An elite or even a recreational marathoner can increase this to 91-92% of MHR.

To get there, runners don't spend that much time running at LT or higher. Most of the time is spent in the aerobic zone. Running at LT or higher is too acidic over time. In a years span, maybe 10-15% of the miles is spent in the LT or higher.
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Old 05-10-2013, 08:35 AM   #21
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that's very cool CTH!!!
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Old 05-10-2013, 01:44 PM   #22
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Unfit people can have an LT in the 70's (eg76% of maximum heart rate), a fairly fit person can have one at 85%.
When you say MHR, are you referring to 220-Age?
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Old 05-11-2013, 12:04 AM   #23
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MHR could be 220-age or you get tested for maximum heart rate. The 220-age formula can be 10% plus or minus. You can test yourself by running up a slight hill of 400-600 meters. You run up 2 times up and jog down. Don't rest and run back up On the third run, you give it your all and when you get to the top that's pretty close to your maximum heart rate.

For someone who is older, fit and stays fit over age, maximum heart rate might not decrease that much, at least not a beat with every year of age.

There's something known as heart rate reserve but I'm too tired to think about and explain it right now.

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Old 05-11-2013, 03:24 PM   #24
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MHR could be 220-age or you get tested for maximum heart rate. The 220-age formula can be 10% plus or minus. You can test yourself by running up a slight hill of 400-600 meters. You run up 2 times up and jog down. Don't rest and run back up On the third run, you give it your all and when you get to the top that's pretty close to your maximum heart rate.

For someone who is older, fit and stays fit over age, maximum heart rate might not decrease that much, at least not a beat with every year of age.

There's something known as heart rate reserve but I'm too tired to think about and explain it right now.
Thank you for your insight. I hate to "hijack" the thread but could one assume based on the results of the VO2 Max test I did a few weeks ago that the heart rate at which I start burning more carbs than fat is somewhere around 156BPM? And, if my calculated max heart rate is 220-41 = 179, then my Lactate Threshold would be 156/179 = 87%?

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Old 05-12-2013, 10:29 AM   #25
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I may have been a bit quick to say that was your lactate threshold. You might want to ask you trainer about the results. Did the test results indicate exercise zones for you?

Going to more carbs in place of fat for energy production does not mean you've reached lactate threshold. Lactate threshold means you're increasing you're leaving aerobic energy production and increasing anaerobic energy production. Both carbs and fat are used in aerobic energy production but only carbs can be used anaerobically. Crossing over the threshold means that blood lactate is building up faster than the body can clear it. When this happens, the means for aerobic energy production starts to decrease and anaerobic takes over. Once that happens, it's only a matter of time until exercise stops or you drop the intensity effort (heart rate) and recover.

My understanding that lactate in the blood is measured by pricking the ear while someone is on a treadmill and reading a measurement. Lactate leaves the blood fairly rapidly after exercise stops so the sample is usually taken during exercise. I'm not sure it can be measured by breathing into a tube.
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