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Question
Posted by: Charles kim | 2010/09/21

re-building cardio and muscle mass, after quitting cigarettes

I have quit smoking for a few weeks now, and i am trying to get back into shape to play rugby. However, it has been a year since I have kept up with training and cardio, and i have been smoking 4~6 a day for four months. What is the most appropriate plan I should follow to be back into playing shape - about 3~5kg more muscle mass and much better cardio?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageFitnessDoc

HI Charles

The same plan you'd follow without having been a smoker. The only difference would be that you'd have to keep a close eye on how you're going and maybe back off once in a while if you're feeling a bit of "withdrawal". but given that it's a few weeks, I don't even see that as an issue.

In terms of a programme, the best thing you can do is consult with a trainer in the gym. First priority is probably getting stronger and starting to work on muscle gain. Fitness is crucial, of course, but you can work towards that by actually playing the sport and doing one or two fitness sessions per week. It's hard to prescribe, because I don't know what you've been doing up to now. 20 minutes jogging twice a week, and some interval type training (sprints, with walk recoveries) would be an example, but that might be excessive unless you're reasonably fit. That's why it's important to get assessed and then take it from there.

Good luck

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Our users say:
Posted by: fitnessdoc | 2010/09/28

HI Charles

The same plan you'd follow without having been a smoker. The only difference would be that you'd have to keep a close eye on how you're going and maybe back off once in a while if you're feeling a bit of "withdrawal". but given that it's a few weeks, I don't even see that as an issue.

In terms of a programme, the best thing you can do is consult with a trainer in the gym. First priority is probably getting stronger and starting to work on muscle gain. Fitness is crucial, of course, but you can work towards that by actually playing the sport and doing one or two fitness sessions per week. It's hard to prescribe, because I don't know what you've been doing up to now. 20 minutes jogging twice a week, and some interval type training (sprints, with walk recoveries) would be an example, but that might be excessive unless you're reasonably fit. That's why it's important to get assessed and then take it from there.

Good luck

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