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Question
Posted by: Jess | 2007/04/20

Am i doing enough?

I have just started an excercise and eating programme, im not overweight but have noticed a slight increase in the hip and thigh area and want to tone the rest. Please tell me if what im doing is beneficial: i wake up early in the morning and do 20-30 mins of cardio (dancing, skipping, star jumps etc as well as a bit of toning, such as leg lifts, lunges), then at lunchtime i go to gym where i start off with 15 mins cardio (treadmill) then move on to weights where i do a different area every day - one day legs, another arms, another pilates with a ball, one toning and one just cardio. in total i do 45 mins at lunchtime. What i want to know, is the 20 mins in the morning and the 15 mins at lunchtime enough cardio for the day, does it add up or do i need to it in a straight 35-40 mins without stoppin? Am i doing the correct execrcises to see some weight loss and toning?
ps i am eating very healthy and drinking lots of water

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Our expert says:
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Hi Jess

It's a good start, but there's no yes or no answer to your question of whether you are doing enough. There are too many factors involved and also, as you get fitter, you'll be able to do more. But trying to do more now would be very dangerous and risk injury. So I woudl stick with this, and maybe over the next few months, look at the following changes:

I think for one thing, you may be trying to do too much - you are basically hedging your bets and while that's good for overall fitness, it may be a little too much in the early phases. So perhaps you should look at splitting your training. If you can train twice a day, then that's great, but maybe you should do only cardio in the morning and only weights in the afternoon. or the other way around. But for now, I think it's better to leave it as is, because the fact that you are splitting it up means that you only have to do 20 minutes of cardio and trying to do 40 minutes, when you are starting out, may prove tough. But when you are fitter, then it could pay to do a straight 40 minutes.

Then looking ahead, I think that what will certainly help you is to get more specific in the training. At the moment, it's a mixture of everything, which is good to start off with, I would recommend it. But later on, you might want to consider making those weight sessions and the cardio a lot more specific. In otherwords, don't just go for everything available - take a week where you are going to focus on running and then run at least 3 or 4 times that week. Perhaps the next week, you can do skipping and star jumps. But if the training is too fragmented, then it starts to become less effective once you reach a level of fitness that would allow you to be more specific.

So that would be my advice.

Good luck
Ross

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