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constant variety vs. routine workouts

I have been exercising regularly for the last 2 months, trying new things every two or three days. I have a thyroid problem that makes losing weight much harder than if it functioned normally. So, I'm not sure if the constant variety in exercises (dance, tennis, treadmill, yoga, pilates, stability ball, kickboxing, cardio videos, etc....) causes me to lose weight slower because my body doesn't have a chance to reap the benefits or if exercise is exercise...and the slow weight loss is because of the thyroid problem.

My muscles are sore all the time (for the last 2 months) because I work so many different parts of the body in all of the various exercises. I am beginning to wonder if I should focus on one type of exercise at a time, then adjust to something different every few weeks or so. Please chime in with your experiences/input. Any guidance I can get is greatly appreciated!

Thu. Mar 30, 3:25pm

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instead of changing every so many days try changing every month. PIck a routine for the month and stick to it until the next month. If you get bored with that months routine, then try to do the routine backwords or out of wack.

Good luck!

Thursday, March 30, 2006, 3:55 PM

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The variety seems fine to me. But... Make sure you're giving your body rest once or twice a week. Your muscles need to recover in order to build themselves up so they could metabolize fat and so you could effectively lose weight.

If you're worried about idling, you could take yoga and pilates on those days or take leisurely walks.

Also, I hope you don't start one thing and then leave it for good or for few weeks after a class or two - mastering a proper technique will make your exercises more efficient.

Thursday, March 30, 2006, 4:31 PM

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Definitely, I hope you are giving your body a break or working out different muscle groups on different days. The muscles need rest to actually re-build and make yourself stronger. :-)

Hope this helps!

Thursday, March 30, 2006, 10:45 PM

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I would like to address your thyroid problem. I was diagnosed with hypothyroid 15 year ago so I've been on synthroid ever since. As long as you are on the proper prescription strength, your hypothyroid is not causing you aches or slow weight loss because the medication is correcting the thyroid problem. I've lost weight many times in the lost 15 years. Now if your thyroid is untreated, then yes you will probably put on weight, but I know from your activity level that you are on medication b/c nobody with hypothyroidism would have the energy to keep up your activity.

So the good news here is that this is all within your control.I recommend keeping a food diary and tracking the calories you consume every day. I think most people suffer from calorie amnesia, or they eat a little more when they are working out so they just keep the same net calories and therefore don't lose.

Friday, March 31, 2006, 1:46 AM

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Thanks for the comments! I actually work out 5 days a week, early morning (before i do anything else). I have tons of videos that I've collected over the last 15 years in efforts to tame my weight gain, which gives me the opportunity to try a variety of exercises. In addition, I tune into FIT tv for other options.

Growing up, I had an eating disorder (exercised 3.50 to 5 hours a day...eating only an apple and/or salad...then bindging every so many weeks...going to 3 or 4 fast food places in one trip and eating myself sick). Once I was able to control my disorder, I ended up with hyperthyroid. The medication made me gain weight (which was ok for a while) and then I became hypothyroid. After having kids, my bindging started to occur more frequently and I went off the medication to avoid gaining weight. My thyroid shut down and then is now hypothyroid again...although now, I have a single nodule on my thyroid and all tests indicate a biopsy is needed. That's where I am now.

I am tired all the time, but I exercise first thing in the morning to make sure I do not run out of steam by the end of the day and end up not getting in the exercise I need. I just weighed and measured this morning, and there has been no change since last end-of-the-month check in. I started PT in February, have been exercising regularly and ate sensibly (my husband is amazed at the food choices I make, and that I always leave food on my plate when we eat out...which was always a no no for me), but have only lost 10 pounds (lost 2 inches in my chest, 1 inch in my waist and 2 inches in my hips).

Thanks for listening! I guess all I can do is keep on keeping on.

Friday, March 31, 2006, 10:03 AM

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if you've been exercising vigorously for a month or two, sometimes it helps (i know sound contrary) but it helps to take a week off. you can still do yoga, pilates and gentle walks and watch your eating, you'll be amazed in a week how much strength and energy you'll have and even you'll see your scale move!

Friday, March 31, 2006, 10:20 AM

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My personal trainer says that a routine is only good for about a month, then you need to change it.

Also, according to her (and she draws a lot on real world experience), if you've got a fair amount of weight to lose, you'll benefit most by doing almost all cardio. Of course, she's working from my stated goal: to get that number on the scale down, screw the body composition numbers until I'm a size 14, at which point we'll add more muscle-building activities. To prevent losing what muscle you already have, I do light-weight circuit training 2-3x a week and try to throw an interval training kick into my cardio 1-2x a week (I hate this).

Oh, another sidebar: women tend to have overdeveloped quad strength in relation to their other muscles, so don't focus on them much during your weight workouts.

Friday, March 31, 2006, 1:50 PM

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