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Help! My Six Pack's become a 3 Litre container!

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Every ski season I lose inches around the middle from all the lateral movement. At the start of the season I have to loosen my belt to the maximum and then find I gradually tighten it as the season progresses.

In spite of over 30 days skiing this winter I find that while the inches have disappeared from around the waist, I have a nasty little protuberance higher up. (looks really bad in a cycling top right now!)

Can anyone (Lisamarie?)suggest some low impact exercises that could help? Certainly need help before we get to Canada or I'll have to buy new gear.

With the Australian winter over (well in our part of Australia at least) we spent the weekend waxing skis for storage, cleaning 3 months of road grime off the AWD Subaru, washing, reproofing and storing ski clothes and all of those other end of season chores. Quite nice to see the spring weather and to get out in the garden again, but that will pall quickly.

We're now into our summer exercise regime of walking, and in my case, cycling and rollerblading, and this is made more relevant by our upcoming trip to Canada in January/February. All suggestions welcome.
post #2 of 14
Sounds to me like you better be riding that bike 5 days a week.

I'd do 3, 1 1/4 hour rides at 75 to 90%. 1, 2 hour ride at 60 to 65%, and 1 optional ride of 45 minutes at your choice. Take your pulse each morning before you get out of bed. If it's low, go hard that day. If it's high, take it easier.

Compliment the riding with some weights and swimming - do you swim? If not, some other aerobic activity.

The only way you're going to stay fit and stay trim is to exercise. Not 3 days a week either - 5 or 6. Anybody who tells you 3 days a week will keep you fit is full of crapola.

I'm 42. I have to exercise 5 days a week just to stay 5 lbs heavy! I try to hit 6 days and when I do I drop the 5 lbs.

You know, up till 30, you can cheat your body. After 30, your body cheats you.

I've exercised for 20 years now and it's paid so many dividends. Really made a difference in my life.

For one, it's fun when your body is better than most guys half your age and all the guys your own age. Like, I just went for a bike ride with a guy who's 32. He said he was tough. I pounded him. He looks at me and says, "Man. You're in great shape for a guy your age". Sure it's vain, but it's neato.

My rule is that I refuse to buy bigger clothes. If my pants are getting tight, I don't buy bigger ones. I get my ass out there and work it off - the pool, the bike. I'm a 36" waist and I'm never changing. Boundaries. Got to have boundaries.

Don't you dare by bigger clothes. You get you ass out there and ride.
post #3 of 14
Your outdoor routine sounds good. You can add some indoor slide board training, or Urban Rebounding, http://www.urbanrebounding.com

The sad news is that as we get older, our metabolic rate slows a bit, and sometimes wew become immune to our regular workout routine. You are then faced with the choice of changing your routine to "shock" the system, or making a dreaded dietary change.

If you are seeing a weight gain only around your abdominal area, there are some theories that some people have a systemic allergy to certain foods such as wheat or dairy. The bloating around the stomach is then considered an edema, in same way your eyes can swell up during an allergic attack.

Keep in mind that this theory has not been proven, and some recent lawsuits have set a
precedent against fitness instructors giving specific nutritional advice. So use your judgement.
post #4 of 14
As Scsa says, don't forget weight training. It will rev up your metabolic rate.
post #5 of 14
As a former competitive cyclist who used to train 5 hrs a day and do, at least, one race per week (tried to take it pro; knees decided that was silly ) I can tell you that cycling is not the best way to lose weight. In order to keep my weight under control I used to swim and run on the side, but I still was at about 220# at age 20 (as you can imagine time trials and sprints were my things, mountains something I would climb during vacations, not races : ).
I now am at about 250# and jog 5 miles a day to stay that way. I guess it's just a question of genes... I am like SCSA though, I refuse to buy my pants larger than a 36" waist, leading to more and more excercize as time goes on.
post #6 of 14
When I do bodybuilding shows I do not change my exercise program-but really watch my nutritional intake. I exercise plenty but if my diet is lousy or my calories to high I gain fat. You cannot spot reduce the midsection.To lose fat you must diet and exercise!!
maybe you just ate a bit more than usual this ski season. As we age we lose some of that youthful muscle-so hit the gym!!! Terry
post #7 of 14
Just to elaborate on what people are saying: There are some people who do so much cardio that they actually burn off muscle. Since muscle in its sedentary state burns more calories than fat, their metabolic rate drops, and they gain weight.
Paul Chek very rudely calls this the "chunky aerobics instructor syndrome".

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I recommend that anyone who skis do at least some of their weight training on the Stability ball. As I've said, working on the ball will engage your transverse abdominals, which support your internal organs and aid in digestion. This can be an important issue for someone who is accumulating weight around their stomach.

Although it is correct that the spot reduction myth has been disproven many times, abdominal dissention is sometimes a problem of postural alignment. We see it as we get older, since we have held the faulty postural patterns for a longer period of time, and they begin to compound themselves.

Good luck! Please feel free to ask more questions!
post #8 of 14
I went to the Boulder Center for Sports Medicine and with their help have lost 32 lbs in six months. I have eight pounds to go. Anyone who wants specifics send me a private message and I'll give more details. It was fairly easy and I just did the Boulder Backroads half marathon at a 9:10 mile pace. I had never really done any jogging prior to this.
post #9 of 14
Another thing to consider when talking about abdominals is hydration. This may sound contrary, but when you are dehydrated the body stores fluid, basically to keep you alive.
Sometimes things like beer or coffee are the culprits.

When I was at a fitness conference in Toronto this summer, some of the Canadian presenters, many of whom were physical therapists, had an interesting concept.

It is not the rectus abdominus, the superficial layer that you work when you do crunches, that flattens the abs. Its the deeper layer, the transverse, which is activated when you exhale, or when you isometrically contract your abs.

Although it is impossible, and not exactly healthy, to walk around all day with your abs 100% contracted, most of us are at 0%, which involves virtually no significant use of the transverse.

I learned this very simple exercise, which my students are having some good results from.

You can do this anywhere, any time. Take a deep breath in, filling the belly with air. Now, exhale fully, drawing the navel towards the spine. But its not enough to just pull in. Think of pulling up and in, as if someone is giving you a Heimlich maneuver. Hold the contraction for 10 counts. When you relax your abs, to hold on to about 10% of the contraction, as opposed to completely relaxing them.

Do this for 10 seconds, 10 times a day. The theory is that eventually you train your transverse to stay more active throughout the day. Like I said, I've seen some good things from this.

Integrate this with some of the other things people have suggested, and you should see some results.
post #10 of 14
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>I have a nasty little protuberance higher up.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
Is that protuberance fat? If it is, then when working out make sure your heart rate is in your fat burning zone. That zone is 50% to 60% of your max heart rate. Your max heart rate is different for any given exercise activity so you gotta figure it out by going full tilt to find your max heart rate. Also, if you never work out in your fat burning zone, then it'll take about a week of 20+ minutes each day in that zone for your body to really learn how to burn fat instead of carbos.
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Appreciate all the comments and suggestions. The issue isn't about losing weight
(although some of that would be OK) but about losing inches. Not sure how cycling will help, it never has in the past. Will investigate some of the other suggestions as well.
post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 
Rusty Guy. Jogging will lose inches and some weight. I ran marathons for 10 years before I took up skiing and decided to save my knees for that. Long runs are good for abdominals but are pretty tough on the lower back, knees and feet. I'm looking for lower impact exercises.

First time I bought ski boots the bootfitter looked at my toes which were damaged form years of running and couldn't believe that I wasn't a long time skier.
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
PinHed. Good advice thanks. looks like I'll have to resurrect the heart rate monitor, replace the battery (is that as difficult to do in the US as it is here where they have to be reurned to dealer?) and get going.

LisaMarie. Thanks for the suggestion re exercises for the transverse abs. very good isea and the sort of thing I'm after. I skied in Masters Classes this year with a woman who was a gym rat and who always used the time on the surface lifts on our mountain ( there a lot of T-bars) doing abdominal exercises.

SCSA. Appreciate the suggestion re training regime but I find it difficult to fit that sort of a program in to my working day. previously when I ran a consulting business form home and could make my own hours, it was OK, but now I am in an office environment it is more difficult. having said that, I managed marathon training for 10 years, so I guess I can recommence.

I appreciate your passion for losing weight and competing with younger people. I felt the same way at your age which was over 20 years ago.
post #14 of 14
All I know is this.

Rich Abrahams is 53. He holds the long course world record for the 50 free - 24 and change. He'll tell you himself he's swimming faster now than in college.

Harald Harb is 53. I've never seen a better skier - on film, on the slopes, from the chairlift, in magazines, anywhere - anytime, than Harald. He's also one of the best cyclists in his age group.

Jim Brown is 53. Rides faster than Harald.

Bruno Weber is 70 something. Still swims laps faster than most at any given lap swim.

My mom is 71. She still works in the yard every day and goes to the gym a few days a week to lift weights.

Age? It's all a state of mind, bro.
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