28

Ok... for your situation, unless you're good at doing things cold turkey, read on... Forget weight training (and definitely squats) for the moment. At 400lbs, your body weight is doing plenty for your legs and body as you move around. First thing is changing what you eat. It's easy to say eat veggies, oatmeal, etc., but that's a difficult change for ...


25

Although swimming alone in the middle of Lake Michigan sounds wonderful and has its benefits to you, swimming alone has life altering/ending risks. The chances may be minimal that something dangerous could happen, but see my story below for an example that bad things can happen. If something did happen you don't seem to have left yourself any communication ...


18

Diet - Unless you get your diet under control, exercise alone will not make enough of a difference on its own. Craig Ballantyne does a great diet versus exercise video that will stick in your mind when you are considering calories going in and just how hard it is to work them off with exercise. The best resource for a specific diet for you is to meet with ...


12

This article has links to actual studies showing no significant benefit to doing cardio with hand or ankle weights: ...if you are walking at a 3.5 mph pace and burning 5 calories per minute--adding a hand or ankle weight may make it feel harder, but you aren't actually burning more calories. A 2002 study in the Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical ...


11

First of all, you must change your diet. Eating fast food all the time is bad for you in multiple ways, including your pocketbook. Switch to unprocessed food as much as possible. Regular oatmeal in the morning as opposed to quick oatmeal or cold cereal is much better for you and doesn't take more than a few minutes to prepare. Add some cinnamon, nutmeg ...


11

I've asked this implicitly of two qualified personal trainers. (One of the two usually trains Olympic athletes, so I trust his judgement.) Each time I said that I was interested in weight training to balance out the extra workout that my quads get (not just in the lower body, but to bring up my upper body strength too). Both of them said it was a reasonable ...


11

I've done a lot of offshore sailing and sometimes you'll get totally becalmed. Hot muggy conditions and the water is so flat you can literally shave in the reflection. It's hard not to jump in with conditions like that. Soap up, jump in, swim around the boat a few times, etc. A very famous and accomplished sailor named Bernard Moitessier would (solo) have ...


10

The answer to "what should a beginner do to physically prepare for X activity" doesn't change very much whether you're training for chainsaw-wielding, tennis, or martial arts: first get strong while doing your chosen activity, then add power and slightly sport-specific tasks, and add conditioning if your sport doesn't do enough to tire you out. If you're ...


10

No, explosive movements do not necessarily lead to injury. Performed correctly after a period of acclimatization, explosive movements are quite safe. The recommendation to be slow, deliberate, and under control at all times is meant for the general population. Most people are weak, prone to injury, and unlikely to seek capable instruction in explosive ...


9

I think what's missing in the discussion area is a bit more context. Taking all sets to failure would include the barbell sets. Taking your barbell sets to failure is not part of starting strength. Why take body weight exercises to failure? Body weight exercises don't cause near the stress on your body as the barbell work. Essentially, you can recover ...


9

5km or 7km mileage once a week is nowhere close to proper preparation for a marathon. You greatly increase risk of injury by running a marathon unprepared. Go see a doctor about your knee pain from the 20km race and forget about a marathon anytime soon. Many marathon plans have a long run of over 20km once a week for several months (and often with a run or ...


8

Heavy barbell squats. A lot of people are very wary of squats, thinking that they will damage their knees. The truth is, properly performed squats do the opposite - they strengthen the muscles around the knee, providing more strength and stability. Bonus: proper heavy squatting will help you build muscle all over your body, even your arms! The dangerous ...


8

The "bandages" that "real boxers" wear (whether on TV or not) are called handwraps, and are worn underneath the glove to add stability to the bones of the hand and wrist, as well as to prevent chafing with the inside of the glove. (They are not for soaking up blood inside the gloves, though I guess they do that job too.) I would add three things to your ...


8

If you are holding the medicine ball in front of you, what you are doing is a form of goblet squat. A goblet squat is very good for your body, and provides a good core component to the squat as well. The important components of any squat are: Make sure the crease of your hip goes below the patella (knee cap). This is going below parallel. Make sure that ...


8

Until elevators and steel girder construction around the turn of the 19th century, the tallest buildings were usually five stories. People worked in those fifth stories for years. Also, plenty of jobs have people walking up and down hills all day for decades, starting as small children. It's actually sort of sad that people consider eight flights of steps ...


7

Probably this: russian twists (that exercises obliques as well as the abs) Twisting your lower back is one of the most dangerous things you can do to it. From Mike Boyle's article: This is how I feel about rotational stretches for the low back. They're like scratching a scab. I believe that most if not all of the many rotary exercises done for ...


7

Few things: Stay hydrated, but don't over hydrate. Staying hydrated will reduce muscle tightness (a little), which will help reduce the risk of injury. STRETCH. You don't have to go crazy and different methods work for different people. Some people get away with no stretching but I've never seen anyone from getting hurt as a result of stretching (...


7

Weight training best effect comes from the training of large muscle groups using a high range of motion. (Moving a weight over a distance = doing "work"). Ideally you wat to do as much work as possible in smaller amounts of time do that you expend energy without building up tons of fatigue. For example. Shoulder-shrugging 110-lb dumbbells is HARD, but the ...


7

For a majority of your life, like many people, you've probably worn shoes, especially when doing anything that involves physical exertion or significant use of the feet. You say you've only been barefoot running for a month. So the most likely scenario is that you've unwittingly overdone it. From Naturally Engineered - Pain and Swelling in Foot From Running ...


7

I'm assuming the chafing is where your thighs are rubbing. Longer shorts, long underwear and bodyglide will help cut the chafing.


7

In my opinion, the dumbbell bent over row is a superior exercise for the following reasons: Your body is better supported--making this more desirable if you have chronic back problems It builds your grip much better than the barbell variation It keeps the shoulders, elbows, etc. in a more natural position. Now, in order to perform the dumbbell row without ...


7

It doesn't sound bad. I recommend going above five reps for at least some sets, since I find the upper body responds well to higher volume and it's not the worst thing in the world to train some endurance. I expect you'll actually see better strength results that way anyway. The more common method of loading pull-ups is to use a dip belt, but the backpack ...


7

If you were to decide to attempt a marathon given the training level you've described, there's an interesting academic article that may be helpful in estimating your likelihood of finishing without injury. The paper is by Yeung, Yeung, and Wong, "Marathon finishers and non-finishers characteristics: A preamble to success," Journal of Sports Medicine and ...


7

No, it should not be avoided. Like any machine, it's a tool, and it has a purpose. The article seems to refer to the fact that during a seated leg press, the weight presses down on your feet, and cascades through your legs and into your lower back, which is pressed against the seat. They neglect to mention that all weightlifting exercises has this problem, ...


6

I hope that your knee issues have gotten better. However, there are a few things that can cause knee pains on a bike. Seat height - Having a seat that is way too high or low can place odd stresses on the knees, and if it is too high, can also cause hip issues because you have to "rock" back and forth on the seat to stay on the pedals. A good bike fit can ...


6

There can be any number of causes for pain in and near the joints. There is a lot of connective tissue (tendons and ligaments) in major joints, as well as the cartilage and synovial fluid that lubricates the joints. These general rules of thumb will help you diagnose what's going on: No pain, but the sound of "cracking". This is usually a harmless ...


6

Even if you don't plan on counting calories consistently, just doing it for a week or so will increase your awareness of how many calories foods contain. For example, one whole walnut contains 28 calories - so eating a handful results in quite a calorie intake! I use FitDay for counting calories - it's free and easy to use. A good alternative to fast food ...


6

Neuromuscular Activation and Dynamic Stretching Here is an excellent video on a dynamic stretching routine for running. It demonstrates 9 dynamic stretches. I've been using this routine several times a week for months now. It is a great way to get warmed up before hitting the road/treadmill/trails. It includes: Walking Deadlifts (Drinking Bird) Knee ...


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