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01 Oct 2006

Routine = bad/good?
Is it bad to basically follow the same exercise routine every week? I see a personal trainer 2/3 times a week for strength training (30minute sessions) and then I also exercise on my treadmill at home. My trainer obviously does different things with me every time but my cardio exercise is always the same. I can't run anymore due to some injuries (trust me very frustrating!!!) so I walk on the highest incline. I have changed the level at which I exercise for example started on a low incline and have worked my way up to the highest incline and now I'm slowly increasing my walking speed. I still don't feel like this is as good as running though...? I walk 5-7 times a week and it varies between an hour and 3 hours per session.

Some more questions:
1. Will the same exercise every week cause me to loose less weight than I might have if I change exercise types?
2. Is the walking sufficient for fitness and weight loss? Or does running stay the better option for burning calories?
3. What suggestions do you maybe have for me which will promote weight loss and fitness and a healthier body. (I only have 5kg's to loose - winter never good for the body)

Sorry for the confusing post, I'm not good at writing! Thank you in advance for your advice!
Answer 285 views

01 Jan 0001

Hi Runner

I don't think it's bad to keep the routine more or less the same. I think you are judging your sessions a little harshly -you are getting fitter as a walker because the incline is getting steeper, so it's not really the same all the time. Similar, perhaps, but not the same. Your weight training may be quite different, because of the trainer's influence. But there are definitely people out there who do a much more routine weekly training programme than you do. So the programme will work. The issue is whether people can stick with it when it's routine. Some people love it, others (including myself) need constant change, or we get bored and eventually stop training. So you need to decide which you are. If you are happy and enjoy doing similar training, then keep at it. It seems that you are not though, so maybe it is time for change. Even one day a week of totally different exercise could do the trick - what about cycling once a week? Or going to taebo, or rowing, or swimming? It sounds like you are a the gym, so you can choose from these activities. Neither will cause more or less weight loss, but the routine might get your motivation going a little more.

To answer the second question, walking is good, particularly if you do it on such a high incline and at quite a reasonable speed. It is true, however, that you burn more calories during running than walking, and so therefore you would, in theory, lose more running than walking. HOWEVER (AND THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT), if you are injured and can't run, then walking is obviously better. There is no comparison - a lot of people want to compare, but if you think about it, you can choose to run, and maybe in about a week you will be so injured that you can't walk. So the one week of running will have helped you to burn maybe a few more calories, and in return, you spend the next week on the couch, putting them all back! So if you can walk, then keep that going.

Finally, look at your diet, that is absolutely vital, and it's the one area that needs perhaps the closest attention, because all your good intentions and effort can be undone by a bad diet. So have a look at that, and just keep going. Oh, one last thing, have those injuries sorted out if you can, it can't be a case of never ever for your running.

Good luck
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