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I am soon turning 27 and am in bitter realization that the years are working against me, physically speaking. I have a very compact body, at 177 cm.s I weigh around 94 kg.s even though I do not have a large gut (but instead wide shoulders and a big chest). Can't say I have ever been perfectly fit, but I've always been sportive and played any kind of ball sports I could through-out my youth up until a year ago or so...

Over the years I have had a couple of nasty injuries (such as shoulder dislocations) which essentially limit my options in training. The latest injury being some peculiar chronic pain in the lower back region just above the hip. The physios and chiropractors I have seen could not really find a reason for the problem, but the reality of the matter is; I work in front of a PC and the more I sit the weaker I get. I need to train to increase/recover my stamina, condition and strength however when I do my usual sports I just get serious cramps in my lower back.

I have never managed to like pure cardio training as in spinning (indoor cardio biking), or jogging. I find it incredibly boring as nothing really happens, in comparison to a football game where you have to follow up the events, read the game and other players and act accordingly. Besides it's a very individual-based type of training, meaning that there is no team interaction like I'm used to.

I guess the majority of the people here are somehow fitness buffs, so the description I gave above might sound alien to some, but if there is anyone out there with a similar mindset or if anyone can relate to my situation, I'd really appreciate some advice on:

  1. Is there a kind of cardio training I could do that is more suitable for someone like me?

  2. How can I make jogging/running more fun? (Where I live it's rainy or worse the majority of the year)

  3. How can I improve my self discipline, pushing myself through the annoyance when it's needed? (I'm a very competitive-minded person so I was excited when products like Nike Fuelband and Jawbone UP came out, unfortunately the Fuelband is still not sold in Europe and the UP is retracted from the market without a word on when it will be available again)

Thanks in advance,

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Is your goal getting in shape (you'd also need to define that for us)? Or doing a lot of cardio? –  user3085 May 31 '12 at 23:41
    
Have you tried biking outdoors? Or swimming? Try everything and try to find something you like. –  amcnabb Jun 1 '12 at 2:01
    
@Sancho: My goals is to get healthier, that is partially getting stronger, partially increasing my stamina, and partially getting rid of extra fat. –  posdef Jun 1 '12 at 5:02
    
@amcnabb: Tried both, and some more. Most often I get bored after a while, because it's a monotonous type of training (in my eyes at least) and eventually I end up having difficulties motivating myself to continue with the training. –  posdef Jun 1 '12 at 5:04

2 Answers 2

Powerlifting is a sport that is very individually focussed, yet yields some of the best improvements in terms of functional strength, appearance, bodyfat %, blood pressure... there are probably more. It would also address the weaknesses and injuries you describe (shoulders, back, etc.)

You're only 27! The years are not working against you.

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do you mean squat + deadlift + bench? Btw what I meant with my age is that I am not getting any younger, and the professional lifestyle is taking it's toll. I certainly have a couple of years until I get gray hair but still you get the point.. –  posdef Jun 1 '12 at 5:51
    
Yeah, squat/deadlift/bench is what I'm talking about. Programs often include a couple of other main lifts, but the sport focuses on those three. –  user3085 Jun 1 '12 at 6:06
    
+1, I took up powerlifting around the age of 33 –  J. Winchester Jun 1 '12 at 23:53

I think off-road running is much less boring, since you have much more variety in running surface, elevation, obstacles, curves, etc. However that is often not enough for me, and when alone I will often find myself walking rather than pushing as hard as I should. Fortunately I have found two "games" or sport settings that make running a good workout for me.

  • hash run: a group of people meet and at a predetermined time take off following a trail laid by "hares" (usually chalk marks or piles of flour). you dont know where the trail goes and often the hares lay bad or tricky trails to keep it interesting. often beer is consumed before, during and/or after the run.

  • orienteering: a group of people meet, receive a map with points marked on it, then each takes off to find as many points as possible within a time limit. this one is actually recognized as an international sport.

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