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Old 12-09-05, 09:42 PM   #1
InfamousG
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Getting the gut down?

I've never really been able to keep a consistent exercise schedule, even when the rest of my schedule is consistent. I keep it up for a week, 2, maybe 3 weeks, then miss a day or two of my routine and just fall right off the wagon of getting into shape.

Well, at my current job, I do a lot of heavy lifting (what I consider heavy anyways, ~50lb chunks of steel, carrying at funny angles and positions for about 4 hours of the 10 hour days I have a piece in my hands.) Because of this, my arms and legs have both bulked up considerably (legs because I havn't been able to bike due to the Winter weather).

Well, nothing in what I do at my job really stresses my abs or does anything to get the Muffin Top to go away. I know part of it is from not eating right, but I really don't have the means to have a proper healthy diet and still eat enough to not be starving. I eat a lot of fruit, but I also eat a lot of junk (pizza and the like).

Is there any relatively easy way to work on getting the gut down? I can't do sit ups/crunches for any more than 50 or so in a day because of an old injury that flares up and makes me feel like I'm going to pass out from the pain.

Any advice is appreciated.
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Old 12-09-05, 10:14 PM   #2
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Lay off the pizza and the like.
Eat a salad instead.
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Old 12-10-05, 12:15 AM   #3
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Sit ups/crunches will define the ab muscles, but if you have a gut you'll never see them.

More cardio will drop the fat, then you can see what you've got and go from there. Diet is also important, and doing both cardio and diet together is the best way to see results.

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Old 12-10-05, 02:45 AM   #4
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Some tips . . .

* eat more means a day but smaller meals
* drink lots of water
* lay back on the portions
* lay off the saturated fat; there is 'good' fat though
* eat whole grains and lay off the white breads, also eat fruits and veggies
* eat a snack or light meal with carbs and protein after workouts
* ride your bike!!
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Old 12-10-05, 07:53 AM   #5
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My wife found me this article a couple of months ago. How to lose the last few pounds of ab flab. They seem to stress doing plenty of cardio and cutting the excess calories from your diet.
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Old 12-13-05, 12:31 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InfamousG
I've never really been able to keep a consistent exercise schedule, even when the rest of my schedule is consistent. I keep it up for a week, 2, maybe 3 weeks, then miss a day or two of my routine and just fall right off the wagon of getting into shape.


You've answered your own question. Weight loss (adipose tissue) is EXTREMELY simple....

Energy out MUST be more than energy in.

Either ramp up the exercise, or decrease your calorific intake.

Simple, but often not easy!
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Old 12-21-05, 01:18 PM   #7
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if you can't excersise more, then eat less and eat better. Rice and veggies are cheaper than pizza and are almost as easy.
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Old 12-21-05, 01:56 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InfamousG
... Is there any relatively easy way to work on getting the gut down? ...
Short answer: no.

Long answer: I've got rid of my gut by simply counting calories and following some inflexible rules about eating and exercise. I think that it takes a certain amount of discipline and peace of mind to get it right. I had a couple of failed (or half-assed) attempts before I discovered that I had to fully integrate exercise into my life in a permanent way without any room for excuses.

A strict aerobic exercise program is what will flatten your gut more than anything else. Sit-ups are nice for building muscle and tone, but the gut is made of fat-- fat must be burned off.
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Old 12-21-05, 02:07 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InfamousG
Any advice is appreciated.
What has worked for me is to make a deal with myself to exercise a certain number of hours per week. Right now, I've decided to do 10 hours. I log the time spent and try to make sure I reach 10. I'm usually pretty close.

As far as calorie burning goes, I probably average about 650/hour. So that's 6500 calories per week, or pretty close to 2 lbs of fat.

Hope that helps.
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Old 12-22-05, 02:51 PM   #10
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ed073 speaks the truth. Weight loss = Calories Burned > Calories Consumed.

There's really no easier explanation. Go to a bookstore and buy a food calorie chart. Count your calories over the course of a few days to determine your average caloric intake. A normal male generally burns between 1,000-1,200 per day without any noticeable exercise...just walking around, working, sleeping and staying alive. If you have a 2,000 calorie per day diet, you're just piling on 800 calories. If you bike at a moderate pace for an hour, you can estimate that you're burning about 700 calories. It really is simple math. It's those damn hawaiian pizzas that screw it all up for me.
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Old 12-22-05, 03:06 PM   #11
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when i have lost weight in the past, i've never changed my diet. Pizza and beer is a staple of the male college student's diet. i'd eat the same crap as usual, but excersise as much as i could. Calories burned > Calories consumed = Weight loss. Even when you eat junk.
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Old 12-22-05, 04:55 PM   #12
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I think adding exercise alone worked for me to get in shape when I was in college, but now it takes exercise AND counting portions and calories

My suggestions:

strength training 30 minutes 2-3 days a week, do this consistently for several months and then you will change your body's metabolism. Starting and stopping just confuses the body and increases the appetite (without burning it off). And, you will never see the muscle underneath unless you also add . . .

Cardio 5-6 days a week with intense intervals (sprints, etc.)

Dieting . . . fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low fat (beans and rice are very affordable). Cut the junk and you will be amazed at how much quicker your body responds during exercise.

That's it. Eventually it comes down to diet -- what fuel are you putting into your body. That's the one people want to avoid, but it's the only way.
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Old 12-22-05, 10:18 PM   #13
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Heh, heh... yep, calories-in vs. calories-out. Just hard to quantify and compare unless you keep good records.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SandySwimmer
That's it. Eventually it comes down to diet -- what fuel are you putting into your body. That's the one people want to avoid, but it's the only way.
Yeah, I think that's the hardest part, managing the food. A big plate of fruits and veggies will fill you up and be only about 600-1000 calories max. Or you can go hog-wild and start with all these ingredients:



and build a 30,000 calorie sandwich (6.5 lbs!) that can be consumed in one sitting!


Last edited by DannoXYZ; 12-23-05 at 12:51 AM.
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Old 12-23-05, 07:19 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InfamousG
I've never really been able to keep a consistent exercise schedule, even when the rest of my schedule is consistent. I keep it up for a week, 2, maybe 3 weeks, then miss a day or two of my routine and just fall right off the wagon of getting into shape.

Well, at my current job, I do a lot of heavy lifting (what I consider heavy anyways, ~50lb chunks of steel, carrying at funny angles and positions for about 4 hours of the 10 hour days I have a piece in my hands.) Because of this, my arms and legs have both bulked up considerably (legs because I havn't been able to bike due to the Winter weather).

Well, nothing in what I do at my job really stresses my abs or does anything to get the Muffin Top to go away. I know part of it is from not eating right, but I really don't have the means to have a proper healthy diet and still eat enough to not be starving. I eat a lot of fruit, but I also eat a lot of junk (pizza and the like).

Is there any relatively easy way to work on getting the gut down? I can't do sit ups/crunches for any more than 50 or so in a day because of an old injury that flares up and makes me feel like I'm going to pass out from the pain.

Any advice is appreciated.
I am going to be frank.

First of all, you don't exercise, nor do you seem serious about losing the weight. Until you really get serious and commit to a consistent exercise regime that includes cardiovascular and resistance training, you are not going to see any good benefits. So think about it, and when you're really ready for a fitness routine, let us know, and then we can help you with some ideas on what you can do for your routine to trim excess fat.

Second, you're not going to see any real benefits gained from an exercise program if you're eating like crap. It doesn't seem like you're willing to evaluate your eating and make the necessary life long changes in your nutrition, so there's another strike against you. Everyone has the means and potential to eat right. You may not make a ton of money, but that doesn't mean you can't make smart, affordable eating choices. And the other part of eating right is to be resourceful- grocery shop smart, buy stuff on sale, buy in bulk when it is on sale, etc.

Finally, there is NO easy way for weight loss. I tell clients when they come in and say "I want to lose weight quick!" that I sure can have them lose weight real quick- let's cut off a leg. That'll take off 20 pounds or so. Now THAT'S an easy way for weight loss. But if people are serious about reducing body fat and becoming more healthy through diet and exercise, I'm all for giving them routines and as much encouragement as possible. I just don't feel you're at that stage right now.

For everyone else, nutrition for weight loss is MUCH more than just calories consumed< calorie output. I can show you a diet of 2700 calories that's low in saturated fat and will result in bodyfat loss, and I can also contrast that to a diet of 1300 calories that's high in saturated fat, high in sugar, and low in fiber. When you construct your diet plan, there's a lot more to take into account than calories, which is probably why so many people fail with their diets. If you need a good starting point, I recommend going to the mypyramid.com website- you can personalize a diet plan and track your eating on their website.

Post again when you've gotten serious about fat loss and are ready to make changes in your diet and exercise program.

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Old 12-24-05, 02:06 AM   #15
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Personally, I think it mostly boils down to lifestyle choices brought on by the fast pace and requisite convenience of modern life - choices we don't necessarily have to accept. Earlier generations, at least in my family, certainly didn't obsess over calories, aerobic exercise, or lifting weights, much less driving to a place to bike or exercise. Or all this fancy clothing and equipment! For the most part, they weren't overweight, and they would have thought all of that to be quite a bother, in fact my parents, now in their 80's, think it is all quite silly and obsessive.

Instead of all this commotion, they just lived a lifestyle of moderation in eating and drinking, combined with fairly regular activity, especially on weekends. There was a lot more walking for errands, and most certainly to get to school! They cleaned their own homes and did their own yardwork, they walked around the block after dinner and visited with the neighbors, the kids played outside and biked everywhere, most meals were prepared and rarely eaten out, the cars had crank-type windows, the recreation was physical but not as competitive, bikes weighed 35 lbs and had only 3 speeds... the list goes on and on.

We have come to such extremes now. Everybody is short on time. The physical tasks that my parents still do themselves every day, are for many people now done for them. Child care, housecleaning, yardwork, car repairs, even meal preparation. People work 10-12 hours/day so they can pay for all these services. The family sits at the TV or computer all night. Parents drive their kids to and from school. They DRIVE to Starbucks. They DRIVE to a gym, or to a bike path and ram their heart rate up to lactic threshold for an hour, and wonder why they hurt themselves, have massive carb cravings, blood sugar issues, whatever. Then they go out to eat.

We wonder why we have health issues and can't lose weight. It just seems so ridiclous when you put it all into perspective. My point is simply this - we don't have to accept this way of life. We can all make a change in our lives, as many on the commuting and car-free forums certainly have done. We can benefit from slowing down certain aspects of our lifestyle, expecting a little less, but enjoying it more, being more physical throughout the day, doing things in moderation, and certainly eating better is a big and enjoyable part of it!

Last edited by mtnroads; 12-24-05 at 02:28 AM.
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Old 12-24-05, 02:48 AM   #16
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Way too much wisdom... isn't there a pill I can just take?
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Old 12-24-05, 04:07 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
Heh, heh... yep, calories-in vs. calories-out. Just hard to quantify and compare unless you keep good records.


Yeah, I think that's the hardest part, managing the food. A big plate of fruits and veggies will fill you up and be only about 600-1000 calories max. Or you can go hog-wild and start with all these ingredients:



and build a 30,000 calorie sandwich (6.5 lbs!) that can be consumed in one sitting!

I think I just gained 5 pounds after just looking at that obscene sandwich
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Old 12-24-05, 05:42 AM   #18
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Ok, he cheated! I calculated out the ingredients and it came up to only about 19000-20000 calories. The extra 10000 calories was in the oil used to deep-fry everything, it didn't soak all into the food cooked. That's still an obscene amount of calories in one sitting though. What's scary is that there really are people who eat like that! "It's got lettuce in it right? That's healthy!"
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Old 12-27-05, 08:17 AM   #19
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It's the 'thumbs up' that just makes the picture soar.
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Old 12-27-05, 09:56 AM   #20
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A few thoughts on your post.

In my lifetime, I've been around professional bodybuilders who would down several McDonald's Big Macs on a regular basis. I've also been around Olympic cyclists that would have a few bowls of Lucky Charms first thing in the morning before heading out to train. The great Eddy Merckx smoked cigarettes like a chimney.

Good ideas? No one would say yes.

Would you read about these things in magazines? Not likely.

Does it happen? Yes it does.

You'll find a greater percentage of "everyday" people who are involved with sports maintaining a strict dietary regimen than you will in the professional realm. Yet those involved with the professional side of sports will outperform in all areas of strength and endurance. So obviously, as mentioned above in another post, there is more to the performance and body-image equation than placing emphasis on dietary habits ALONE.

As for pizza. Pizza is not junk food. Pizza is one of the greatest, complete foods on Earth. Learn to make one yourself and stop eating the crap that gets delivered to your door. Use whole wheat for your crust, fresh tomatoes, veggies and fresh cheeses. Try a few without cheese entirely.

There is no need to work abs any differently than any other muscle group. You wouldn't do 50 or more reps per set for lats, quads, chest, arms or shoulders. You're waisting your time doing 50 or more for abs. Use weighted crunches, hit 'em and move on.

You already have great abs to begin with. Everyone reading this post does as well. Having great abs to display is a matter of body fat %, plain and simple. You will not get your "gut down" by doing sit ups.

And, lastly and with all due respect to this forum: If you want excellent advice on putting a great bike together, riding it properly along with training for that ride, you're in the right place.

If you want excellent advice on having a great body to go along with it, you need to go where people with great bodies exchange information. I'd recommend the forums at bodybuilding.com. You do not need to be interested in bodybuilding (in the classic sense) to take advantage of, and benefit by, the information.

Learn about every muscle in the body and how it functions. Learn about fast twitch and slow twitch muscle fibers and how to work each when training. Learn how to drop body fat while maintaining lean tissue. Bodybuilders know how to "cut" better than any athlete out there. It takes long, hard work and proper nutrition to put on even 1 pound of muscle. While you do not have to go to the extreme of what is needed for competition, the advice and proper techniques remain the same.

Educated yourself. Never before has so much information been available. But you DO need to find the CORRECT information -- as incorrect information is even more prevelant now.
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Old 12-27-05, 01:34 PM   #21
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A simple trick that helped me lose many pounds was to prep food for the week before like a restraunt does. I cook a few lbs of pasta and coat in olive oil. I store it in a plastic container in the fridge. I also cut up and cook a few chicken breasts and put in a container. You can get some chicken canned too. Rice, brown or white, works well too (although brown is better for you). As the week goes on, I mix these with red sauce, Hawian, sweet and sour, or any other marinade or sauce to make an easy good for you meal. Since I always have time to cook a big breakfast after a Saturday or Sunday ride, I cook these "base" ingredients at the same time. I have a rule, that every month, I try something completely new so as to keep some variety in there. Vegetable stir fry was great. The tuna composition sucked!

With the above items ready to go, I can make a dinner or lunch in 5 minutes or less.

I also have a collection of bowls that have different colors for each size. I have played around with using "only" the blue bowl to control portions. That part works great, provided I don't eat out at all for the week.

There are websites that help you determine calories of your favorite foods and ingredients. Some are better than others. Best of all, they are all free! Good luck!
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