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A Clyde goes to the gym

Old 11-28-10, 04:30 PM
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A Clyde goes to the gym

With the advent of cold weather and the limited daylight that accompanies it, I decided to take a shot at joining a gym. My insane, young, athletic co-worker who insists I join him in a relay triathlon next summer even offered to put $20 a month toward the membership so I could do spin classes and keep up some saddle time and minimum aerobic base over the winter.

So I shopped around at the ones closest to home and found one that was reasonable, had no long-term contracts and offered a couple of different spin classes, each one given a couple of times a week. I sat in on one of them before joining and it seemed like a good thing, so between that, and the fact that the membership came with a gift card to use toward 3 sessions with a personal trainer, I decided to join. Last week was my first week of membership, though actual usage was limited by the holiday. Still I managed to do a spin class, an initial resistance routine on the basic machines, and today was an introduction to the cardio equipment, core conditioning and balance/agility drills.

We'll see how it goes. With any luck I'll come out of the winter ready to go after Sayre's record in the Clyde 20.

BTW, I'm still a little sore (though it's getting better) from the first weight-lifting session, which was done Thanksgiving morning. And some of the stuff I was doing today will be felt tomorrow, for sure. Even so, for now it actually seems fun, and I haven't felt nearly as self-conscious in the place as I thought I would. Fat thinking, I know.
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Old 11-28-10, 04:42 PM
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Originally Posted by CraigB
With the advent of cold weather and the limited daylight that accompanies it, I decided to take a shot at joining a gym. My insane, young, athletic co-worker who insists I join him in a relay triathlon next summer even offered to put $20 a month toward the membership so I could do spin classes and keep up some saddle time and minimum aerobic base over the winter.

So I shopped around at the ones closest to home and found one that was reasonable, had no long-term contracts and offered a couple of different spin classes, each one given a couple of times a week. I sat in on one of them before joining and it seemed like a good thing, so between that, and the fact that the membership came with a gift card to use toward 3 sessions with a personal trainer, I decided to join. Last week was my first week of membership, though actual usage was limited by the holiday. Still I managed to do a spin class, an initial resistance routine on the basic machines, and today was an introduction to the cardio equipment, core conditioning and balance/agility drills.

We'll see how it goes. With any luck I'll come out of the winter ready to go after Sayre's record in the Clyde 20.

BTW, I'm still a little sore (though it's getting better) from the first weight-lifting session, which was done Thanksgiving morning. And some of the stuff I was doing today will be felt tomorrow, for sure. Even so, for now it actually seems fun, and I haven't felt nearly as self-conscious in the place as I thought I would.
"Even so, for now it actually seems fun, and I haven't felt nearly as self-conscious in the place as I thought I would."

Fat person mentality, CraigB. :-) Drop it.

"With any luck I'll come out of the winter ready to go after Sayre's record in the Clyde 20."

Hmm, Craig the Cutter racing the Bulky Bullet of Berks. Where is Phil Liggett when we need him?
 
Old 11-28-10, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by The Historian
"Even so, for now it actually seems fun, and I haven't felt nearly as self-conscious in the place as I thought I would."

Fat person mentality, CraigB. :-) Drop it.
I already called myself on it in an edit, but not before you saw it first.
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Old 11-28-10, 04:53 PM
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An interesting side note - I've never spent any time at all on a treadmill until today. I couldn't believe how uncomfortable I was on it. I felt off-balance and uncoordinated like you wouldn't believe. And even just walking, my head was bobbing enough that I was positive the whole machine was teetering on the brink of self-destruction, though the trainer assured me it was not, and it was moving/shuddering under me no more than it was under any of the other folks actually running on theirs.

I remember thinking, "man, if I'm this bad on a treadmill, I'd better never get on a set of rollers."

I'm sure it'll get better (assuming I actually spend time on them), but what an eye-opener.
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Old 11-28-10, 05:23 PM
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Originally Posted by CraigB
An interesting side note - I've never spent any time at all on a treadmill until today. I couldn't believe how uncomfortable I was on it. I felt off-balance and uncoordinated like you wouldn't believe. And even just walking, my head was bobbing enough that I was positive the whole machine was teetering on the brink of self-destruction, though the trainer assured me it was not, and it was moving/shuddering under me no more than it was under any of the other folks actually running on theirs.

I remember thinking, "man, if I'm this bad on a treadmill, I'd better never get on a set of rollers."

I'm sure it'll get better (assuming I actually spend time on them), but what an eye-opener.
I still don't like a treadmill but I've found if I take shorter steps at a higher cadence I have less issues with pain afterward. Keep the reports coming. Hearing your pain is somehow comforting.
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Old 11-28-10, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by jethro56
Keep the reports coming. Hearing your pain is somehow comforting.
Sure thing, Mr. Schadenfreude.
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Old 11-28-10, 05:44 PM
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I bought a road bike because I was tired of the gym I was going to. Then I had trouble with the bike and thought "well, probably need to be in a gym anyway," so I joined another one in town. Yes, I'm technically a member of two gyms right now. My membership runs out at one gym in about 10 days, so it's not so bad.

The gym I joined is perfectly fine and now has me excited about going to the gym again. I considered quitting it and sinking my money into a trainer for the road bike, but I'm not that fond of being at the house SO much and I'd have to shut out my curious cats lest they lose a tail in a quickly spinning back wheel.

I thought it was gyms in general, but it was just my old gym. I've been doing spin classes and pilates, it's been great. That standing up jazz during spin class will kill you.

Hey, people have been wearing bicycle shoes into spin class and using them on the bikes. I brought mine in today and couldn't figure it out. I take it it's some kind of two-cleat shoe or a mountain bike no-clip setup or something instead of what's used on a road bike? They've got the clip pedals on the other side, so I'm cool, but I was just curious.

I'm itching for another run on the recumbent bikes at the gym - used to ride one at my old gym and lose gallons of sweat. Probably not the best way to gain road bike skills, but ...

Do any of you set the trainers at the gym to approximate the road bike experience, as far as handlebars? I've been trying to get used to being bent like on a road bike on the spin bikes by setting the handlebars crazy low (lowest setting)
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Old 11-28-10, 05:52 PM
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spinning classes are fun and helps a lot with riding.
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Old 11-28-10, 06:03 PM
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The pedals on most spinning bikes are two-sided - one side has a standard clip and strap, and the other an attachment for "clipless" cleats. But to the best of my knowledge they're only SPD-compatible, and not the Look "delta" type, so a lot of road shoes won't work with them. I wear my mountain bike shoes for my class.

I set my bike up as close as I can to my regular bike geometry - same saddle height, same fore-aft saddle adjustment, and same bar height. Bar reach is completely non-adjustable, so I have to live with that, but like I posted in another thread, I snuck in with a couple of adjustable wrenches today to raise the nose of the saddle on one of the bikes so I don't feel like I'm slipping off the front. Let's hope I can get there early enough tomorrow night to "claim" that bike as my own.
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Old 11-28-10, 07:35 PM
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I was at the gym 5 or 6 days a week for a year and did not drop any weight. I thought I was eating correctly and my routine was always the same, 1hr on the treadmill walking on an incline at about 3.5 mph. Then I would do a series of lifts using the machines. It was not until the weather got nicer and I decided to finally get serious that I started walking outside at a local park. I walked 5 to 6 days a week, initially 3 then 5 mile walks. The pounds melted off. I know it was due in part because it was Africa Hot this year but the pace was the same 3.5 to 3.7 mph. I have not been to the gym since May. I am however, going to inquire about spinning classes. I plan on riding all winter since the temps normally stay somewhere above the freezing mark here in lower Alabama. I have no excuse since I am retired Navy and the gym is on an Army post and free. I think they do charge for the spinning class, but it is nominal. I did not realize they most likely have bikes I can use my mtb shoes with.

Just a side note. Right after I started reading about The Historian's now complete 5k, my daughter informed me on Thanksgiving she had entered myself and my two daughters in a 10k the weekend I visit her in California next month. I was like huh? I told her she had better supply the bike because at 54 I have actually forgotten how to run.
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Old 11-28-10, 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by jethro56
I still don't like a treadmill but I've found if I take shorter steps at a higher cadence I have less issues with pain afterward.
My wife (not an Athena) runs a lot and does at least one marathon per year.

She has just switched to the Vibram 'Five Fingers' running shoes - the ones that look like wetsuit/deck shoes and have no cushioning. It has changed her running style hugely - it is now very similar to what you describe. The 'experts' say that the modern cushioned running shoe has enabled us to run with more heel strike than our body is designed for - like running with pain killers was one description - and this is not good. Since she made the swap she has had less soreness and has not slowed down.

Clydes often don't like running because our weight can make it very stressful on our knees, ankles and feet. Perhaps we need to start running like cavemen (ie no modern cushioned shoes) to help reduce this?
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Old 11-28-10, 08:30 PM
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Originally Posted by JonnyHK
Clydes often don't like running because our weight can make it very stressful on our knees, ankles and feet. Perhaps we need to start running like cavemen (ie no modern cushioned shoes) to help reduce this?
Some Clydes might do well, and some won't. I won't, since my arches collapse with each step.
 
Old 11-28-10, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by The Historian
Some Clydes might do well, and some won't. I won't, since my arches collapse with each step.
Wife has also ditched her orthotics!

A lot of arch issues can be traced back to how the calves and other nearby muscles are working. Completely changing your walking/running style and re-activating muscles that have been under-used or miss-used because of modern shoes may help your arches. YMMV
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Old 11-28-10, 08:37 PM
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Originally Posted by JonnyHK
Wife has also ditched her orthotics!

A lot of arch issues can be traced back to how the calves and other nearby muscles are working. Completely changing your walking/running style and re-activating muscles that have been under-used or miss-used because of modern shoes may help your arches. YMMV
Well, it's a structural problem in my case, but your point is taken.
 
Old 11-28-10, 10:37 PM
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Originally Posted by JonnyHK
My wife (not an Athena) runs a lot and does at least one marathon per year.

She has just switched to the Vibram 'Five Fingers' running shoes - the ones that look like wetsuit/deck shoes and have no cushioning. It has changed her running style hugely - it is now very similar to what you describe. The 'experts' say that the modern cushioned running shoe has enabled us to run with more heel strike than our body is designed for - like running with pain killers was one description - and this is not good. Since she made the swap she has had less soreness and has not slowed down.

Clydes often don't like running because our weight can make it very stressful on our knees, ankles and feet. Perhaps we need to start running like cavemen (ie no modern cushioned shoes) to help reduce this?
I have to attest to the running 'barefoot' thing. I'm an Athena and just walking is unpleasant with bad knees and ankles. I only ran if something was chasing me. My husband found some info on barefoot running and I looked it over and decided to try it. I run a little bit on the treadmill at my gym and the running without shoes is easier by FAR than even walking with or without the shoes. At least on my knees and ankles. I avoided running at all costs in shoes because it just killed me so I was stunned at the barefoot difference.

I'm trying to get my hands on a pair of the Five Fingers that fit. It's not looking good though.
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