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Old 05-08-2014, 06:50 AM   #1
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Is there an "optimal exercise" for us ketoers?

I read a very descriptive article of a guy who lost ~100 lbs (from 240) in 1/2 year using some sort of lean protein, lots of veggies, low fat diet where he wasnt shy about carbs in general but about the caloric intake. Lets not talk about the food part since different diets can work for different people and i am enjoying keto too much now (but the 100 lbs in 1/2 year is tempting..) but he did mention that his exercise was running.

He said running is probably something overweight people dont want to do but he kept at it - 1000 meters, 2000 meters at his own pace while building stamina. I guess this goes back to my topic on whether there is an exercise that is "better" for weight loss in general than others. I also dont like running afraid it might be bad for joints even though i do zumba everyday and there's quite a bit of movement as well. He also got 6 pack abs from his diet so i am also curious about whether running helps with that too? I know from my reading it seems for ketoers some weight training is ideal to preserve muscle but it seems in terms of losing weight there isn't a focal point of exercise?
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Old 05-08-2014, 06:55 AM   #2
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I've come around to the common view here that while exercise is good it is not the key to weight loss. When younger, I did the cardio, strength and stretching routines, but at my age (60s) I can no longer keep weight at bay with cardio. Not enough hours in my day.
I am partial to walking now because it takes no special trip to the gym, good running shoes, etc. Yoga or stretching are good, too. I believe in strength training, but I am out of practice.
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Old 05-08-2014, 07:12 AM   #3
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Running and most steady cardio causes chronic stress to the body which can actually cause the opposite effect in some people (make them put on weight). Have you read "Why we get fat?" there was a study referenced in there where female marathon runners averaged a 0 lb weight loss after a year, they started out overweight and sedentary if I am remembering correctly (so they would have been able to lose some weight).

Running is also really hard on your body. I actually enjoy it from time to time, but for people who don't really love it it seems like a big shame to do that damage to your body for no reason.

High intensity workouts (short bursts -generally ranging from 20 sec to 1 min -of very high energy output with rests that allow your heart rate to come all the way down- usually as long or longer than the energy expenditure) perform well for weight-loss in most studies. Usually the total workout can be as little as 10 min (including rests) to be effective. This kind of workout may burn up some glycogen if the intensity is high, so it may be a little painful in keto.

Abel James discusses it on his podcast, and I have read several books about improving athletic performance that discuss it.
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Old 05-08-2014, 07:20 AM   #4
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It's really not movement that's bad for the joints, it's the impact of your foot hitting the ground. When you run it's very hard on your knees, hips, calves/shins, feet. In fact, I used to work for the Orthopedic division of J&J where they designed and sold knee and hip replacements. One of the designers told me that people who run for exercise when they're younger will eventually need one (or more) of those replacements when they're older. Not sure if that's true, but it's always stuck with me. I've exercised my entire life and I'm now in my 60's. What I've found is that, while exercise has kept me looking lean and "cut", it didn't do much for my weight loss (although I was never really terribly overweight...the most I've ever weighed is 125). When it came to weight loss and maintenance, diet made all the difference. However, what makes me look younger than my 60 years is the flat abs and shaped arms I've developed from doing weight and ab work. At this point, I exercise to maintain my muscle tone and not to lose weight (I now weigh 108), although I've developed some lose skin on my arms and abs that I guess is an age thing. It's all very individual, but I think you can't go wrong with a combination of cardio with strength training. You don't have to lift heavy; in fact the heaviest I lift is 25 lbs. which is maintaining my muscle tone pretty well. Even though you really don't burn a lot of calories with cardio, it's is very important as you age to maintain stamina and for heart health. And strength training not only makes you look better, it helps with day-to-day chores like lifting heavy grocery bags. In addition, the muscles you gain from lifting burns more fat throughout the day. Having said all that, I will add that it isn't easy keeping up the exercise as I get older, but the results do help keep me on the right track. By the way, for cardio I use a climber/stepper plus I have workout tapes that I've used for years that combine cardio with weights (Cathe Friedrich and The Firm). I also just acquired a manual treadmill that shakes things up a bit, which I found to be more challenging as your body gets used to the same exercises. Good luck to all!
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Old 05-08-2014, 07:28 AM   #5
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There is no optimal exercise level - it's very individual. Need to find something you like to do - and reap the benefits of movement, flexibility, enjoyment. If you don't like running, don't run. Enjoy your zumba, maybe consider some strength training for muscle tone.

100# in half a year is amazing weight loss - great for him (that's 4# per week - most people are lucky to lose that at the beginning of their weight loss journeys). I think if we had a distribution of the total pounds lost over the course of a year, there will be a few extreme examples like this man, but the majority will probably be in the 1-2 +/- per week range with fluctuations and plateaus.
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Old 05-08-2014, 08:22 AM   #6
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Yeah running is certainly not for everyone. It's very hard on your body in a lot of ways, not the least of which being elevated cortisol levels in distance runners...no thanks. I tried to run for years when I was younger and just wasn't cut out for it. I will say, however, it did help me lose weight more than any or exercise I tried before. Still not worth it.

I wouldn't trade keto for anything at this point, regardless of how tempting it might sound. Not only am I living proof that it works, I've also tried just about EVERYthing to lose weight up until now. Nothing is nearly as effective or maintainable for me. I can exercise at a pace that doesn't make me miserable and still lose weight.
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Old 05-08-2014, 08:43 AM   #7
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Swimming is probably a good exercise as it is no impact. It is what mr dr recommended for me with my hip and knee issues. I am a runner at heart, but those days are over for me. I'll probably join the Y this summer after our big trip so that I can swim some.
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Old 05-08-2014, 08:47 AM   #8
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The best thing about running (when I used to do it), was that it was made better use of time than walking. That is sort of a sad thing to say.
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Old 05-08-2014, 08:55 AM   #9
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Swimming is probably a good exercise as it is no impact. It is what mr dr recommended for me with my hip and knee issues. I am a runner at heart, but those days are over for me. I'll probably join the Y this summer after our big trip so that I can swim some.

Swimming is one of the best options for most people. I think it is so relaxing, and it is also easy on your body and great exercise for the whole body.
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Old 05-08-2014, 09:27 AM   #10
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in terms of toning and whatnot in trying to get abs is it something that I should be doing throughtout the weight loss journey or it is more towards the end when the ideal weight is in sight? I also read that HIIT training is very effective as well especailly in post exercise fat burning...
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Old 05-08-2014, 09:41 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shaselai View Post
in terms of toning and whatnot in trying to get abs is it something that I should be doing throughtout the weight loss journey or it is more towards the end when the ideal weight is in sight? I also read that HIIT training is very effective as well especailly in post exercise fat burning...
The only way to get abs is to have a very low body-fat percentage (it varies somewhat, but generally for women 8-13%) My husband has a 6 pack now that we are doing keto and he does very little exercise. It is more about bodyfat percentage than working your abs- but that helps when you get down low enough. My abs are super strong, so If I ever get there I will be ripped. I do planks daily and that is a good core workout.

High intensity training (that I mentioned earlier, sometimes called HIIT) again is a really good way to do that. I have an issue with some instructors not allowing your heart-rate to come down, that compromises the workout. There is a lot of information about it if you look into it- the science is impressive. It takes very little time and yields very high results.

I should add, I have not had any issue doing high intensity intervals in ketosis (I do a few in the morning before breakfast and some practices involve a lot of them), I can just imagine that it may be a problem.

I have read a ton about fitness and nutrition and listen to lots of lectures and pod-casts about it. Sometimes things that seem counter-intuitive are the best for us. A lot of it is not about eating less, or exercising more- but about doing these things smarter.

Someone you may find interesting to listen to (podcasts) is Jonathan Bailor... (I think I stole that last line from him).

In addition, any exercise you really enjoy (like zumba) is a good option.

Last edited by EricaHV; 05-08-2014 at 09:44 AM..
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Old 05-08-2014, 12:11 PM   #12
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I listened to Jonathan Bailor podcast and he mentioned HIIT a bit - i think i might try to incorporate that in maybe after weightlifting then into zumba.. For 5 servings of veggies i think i am not hitting it with the spinach i am eating... maybe add more watercress...

I think one thing that is intriguing is the 7 hours of sleep... i usually get 5-6 hours of sleep a day and i dont know if it is keto or whatnot i dont really feel tired at all....
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Old 05-08-2014, 12:23 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shaselai View Post
I listened to Jonathan Bailor podcast and he mentioned HIIT a bit - i think i might try to incorporate that in maybe after weightlifting then into zumba.. For 5 servings of veggies i think i am not hitting it with the spinach i am eating... maybe add more watercress...

I think one thing that is intriguing is the 7 hours of sleep... i usually get 5-6 hours of sleep a day and i dont know if it is keto or whatnot i dont really feel tired at all....

I seem to have trouble in keto even at fewer servings of veggies, so I do not take all his advice- I think it is a YMMV sort of thing. In general, I think lots of servings of veggies is a good place to start and then working with it until you find what works. I had been doing about 10-12 servings of veggies before keto and not losing... my guess at this point is that I was not getting enough food overall, veggies are very low calorie, so even with that many my calories were much too low and my fat was much too low, and my protein was much too low... all the micro- nutrients in the world cant make up for a glaring macro-nutrient shortage. I just had been so stuck on the "eat more veggies, eat low fat, eat low calorie" diet advice I had been fed for so long... and assuming that if I kept it up something would eventually have to give- but I just got sicker, and ended up putting on about 20 lbs last year.

Abel James has a great podcast too. Again, not all of his advice works for me, and it will probably be another YMMV thing for you, but I really think he has great things to say and I love his guests.

I do love my HIIT intervals, even though they are short I have noticed a lot more tone.

I hope to have nice ripped abs someday too, but right now I think my main focus really needs to be getting my body back to normal working order... but I do daydream about it!

Last edited by EricaHV; 05-08-2014 at 12:24 PM..
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Old 05-08-2014, 12:34 PM   #14
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This was very informative thread. THanks for sharing the information on exercise.
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Old 05-08-2014, 01:37 PM   #15
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i think i might try to incorporate that in maybe after weightlifting then into zumba...

I forgot to mention, HIIT should really kill your muscles, you may have trouble reaching the right intensity to get the full effect if you work it in to another workout/after another workout. One thing that is kind of nice to do is to go out for a walk, preferably somewhere beautiful and work in some hard, fast, short sprints while you are walking, then let your heart-rate come down, and when you feel like it do another one.

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Old 05-08-2014, 04:22 PM   #16
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The best thing about running (when I used to do it), was that it was made better use of time than walking. That is sort of a sad thing to say.
This made me laugh. I totslly agree!
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Old 05-08-2014, 04:32 PM   #17
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I recently read an article that I found very interesting. It's by a personal trainer who does the paleo lifestyle himself and with his clients.

It talks a lot about how weight lifting is important for paleo (and low carb in general), particularly for women. I think it's a good read and would supply a link but they tend to get removed.

Instead try googling for 'friends don't let friends do cardio'. It's on a site called Everyday Paleo.

I don't think you should never do cardio but I think our requirements are much less than most would think... or the fitness industry suggest. Lets face it, the more people they sucker into gym memberships, the more money they make.

I've also seen a documentary about an Irish Footballer's journey into low carbing. I really wish I could remember the name! It touched on fitness and interval training.
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Old 05-08-2014, 05:01 PM   #18
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Here's a quote from The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living by Phinney and Volek:

Quote:
Unfortunately, when heavy people exercise regularly, their resting metabolism slows -- this is not a typo! -- it SLOWS by 5 to 15% on average. Based on results of 4 tightly controlled human studies, instead of losing 10 pounds, the average person loses 7 pounds with this much exercise, and some people lose as little as 2 or 3 [130-133].
It was that way for me. My weight loss really slowed down with even mild cardio and light weight lifting last summer. I am closer to goal now (my final goal is 150-160) and I might try exercising again this summer, but for reasons of health, not weight loss.

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Old 05-08-2014, 06:00 PM   #19
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Here's a quote from The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living by Phinney and Volek:



It was that way for me. My weight loss really slowed down with even mild cardio and light weight lifting last summer. I am closer to goal now (my final goal is 150-160) and I might try exercising again this summer, but for reasons of health, not weight loss.


great book
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Old 05-08-2014, 09:01 PM   #20
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Yeah I exercise for muscle toning not weight loss.
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Old 05-09-2014, 12:19 AM   #21
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great book
I really need to re-read this...
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Old 05-09-2014, 05:46 AM   #22
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I recently read an article that I found very interesting. It's by a personal trainer who does the paleo lifestyle himself and with his clients.

It talks a lot about how weight lifting is important for paleo (and low carb in general), particularly for women. I think it's a good read and would supply a link but they tend to get removed.

Instead try googling for 'friends don't let friends do cardio'. It's on a site called Everyday Paleo.

I don't think you should never do cardio but I think our requirements are much less than most would think... or the fitness industry suggest. Lets face it, the more people they sucker into gym memberships, the more money they make.

I've also seen a documentary about an Irish Footballer's journey into low carbing. I really wish I could remember the name! It touched on fitness and interval training.
I would argue that women need resistance training (body weight and/or weights) regardless of what they eat, their size, weight, etc. From what I understand, it really helps preserve/strengthen our bones...always good.
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Old 05-09-2014, 06:30 AM   #23
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I would argue that women need resistance training (body weight and/or weights) regardless of what they eat, their size, weight, etc. From what I understand, it really helps preserve/strengthen our bones...always good.
Plus, it feels so good to be strong!
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Old 05-09-2014, 11:10 AM   #24
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I just listened to a Jimmy Moore interview with Mikki Reilly that hits on some information we discussed, you may find it interesting If you search those names you should find it.
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Old 05-12-2014, 08:50 AM   #25
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For the decreased metabolism, wouldn't there be a point where Calorie lost from exercise > decreased metabolism "retianed calories"?
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Old 05-12-2014, 09:28 AM   #26
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Decreased metabolism seems to add up for me personally- I eat very little and work out A LOT and am losing slowly. There really has not been a point when the increased activity has outweighed the slower resting metabolism. Most days my energy expenditure says I should be able to eat 4000 to 6000 calories and still lose 2-3 lbs a week-which obviously seems insane. I usually eat 1200-1400 calories and aim for 1600 calories and am losing slower, but have had more success closer to 1600 calories, which makes me think that is where I need to be to keep my body out of starvation mode.

I would work out less if I did not really love my sport

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Old 05-13-2014, 07:30 PM   #27
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in the past ,doing any exercise esp cardio had no impact on my weight loss.But i have realized that some sort of HIIT makes me lose more.I have read a blog about a NK woman who also stated the same.

I don't run,but the few times I did,I lost more weight too.Have you ever tried to learn Chi running,its really good in terms of less impact on joints.Also weight training in the long run does help with weight loss.The last time I did stick with it,I lost weight esp from tummy area which is a tough area for me to lose and I wasn't doing any abwork.
Hope this helps.
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Old 05-14-2014, 09:08 AM   #28
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I never run for cardio I'd rather bicycle or go on one of those elliptical machines. Much better for your knees.
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Old 05-14-2014, 11:36 AM   #29
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how does either of the following HIIT sound?
program 1:
20 minutes: 2 min "rest", 1 min hiit. the resistance nad incline changes as the time increases.

Program 2:
3 minute warm/cool
Round 1: 20sec HIIT with 10 sec rest X8
Rest 1 minute
Repeat above 2 more rounds with increasing resistance.
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