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A Win in the Gym

Lot's of people go to the gym and... fail hard.


It's complicated. There's all sorts of machines, techniques, theories, philosophies, and just plain wrong. Even if you spend the bucks on a personal trainer, does he have the smarts to craft a program that's right for you?


It took me a while to figure out what I wanted to do. At my age, it would be pretty stupid to try to make myself into Conan the Barbarian. 




We've all seen this guy at the gym. I wonder what he does for fun. I mean, besides steroids.


I have discovered something that's working pretty good for me.


While I absolutely detest classical aerobics, it's one of the best methods to strengthen your heart, burn fat and improve your endurance. With my knees, it would be a short dance to reconstructive surgery which is probably in my future but, I'm not looking to rush it.


I started thinking how can I get the best out of a blend of aerobic and resistance training?


This is what I've come up with.


I start with twenty minutes on the exercise bike. Not a leisurely 20 minutes, a hard twenty minutes. This serves to get my heart rate up and warm me up.


Every session I decide where I'm going to focus and its: core, legs, arms, chest. Sometimes I do specific stuff for my back but usually I focus on one of the four.


Next I decide which machines or routines I'm going to do. Crunches, leg presses, bench, curls, pull ups, rowing- pick a few of them and do three sets.


When you do your sets, go with lower resistance and many, many reps. This combines the action of the aerobic and resistance training. 


When you finish your three sets, do 20 more minutes on the bike and repeat. Go as long as you can stand it or for as much times as you have.


This has worked for me. I lost forty pounds and I'm shaping up nicely. I also like what it has done for my stamina. My doc was shocked at the change the last time he saw me. I feel and look much younger than my calendar age.


There are a LOT of people thinking about how to do this. This is just how I've implemented it. 


Yes- I do work out with heavier weights at times. This is what I've been focused on for some months and I can see fast progress.



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Wow, way to go! It doesn't have to be overly complicated to be effective. A good thing for everyone to remember.

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Great blog, James !  I like that you've sorted out what works for you. You may have even motivated me to get off my ass. I'm slim, but exercise does more than just help you lose weight. Thanks for sharing. You show that it's okay to figure it out for yourself. 

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The gyms pretty deserted at 4 a.m. so we pretty much have it to ourselves. I have rheumatoid arthritis , so I need more time , once the pain meds kick in, on all the apparatus . It’s all about Routine , 30 minutes cardio every day then Monday: legs and core, Tuesday : arms and core , Wednesday chest and core , Thursday back and core ,   Friday shoulders and core . Set your goal , I’m small and thin and like it that way , also like to keep my body fat just below 10%. Well and then there’s the endorphins.... mmmmm! Oh , yes... and I smoke, the best cigarette is the one right after gym.... there’s got to be some fun , you know!

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Your routine sounds like a good variation with emphasis on cardio. It's great to find the sweet spot that works for you. My workout of choice is running, no gym membership anymore. Supplemented with weights, and elliptical/ treadmill at home when weather's bad for a run. 

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