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Thread: when your "heavy things" aren't heavy any more page

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    kellyjean81's Avatar
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    when your "heavy things" aren't heavy any more

    Hi Mark, I'm not a fitness guru, so please forgive the newbie question. I'm a 33-year-old woman who is just slightly overweight (120lb at 5'3"). I currently lift heavy-for-me adjustable hand weights, but I'm quickly getting to a point where I will be using the weights with the heaviest plates (24lb). I use them for an hour-long session once per week, doing compound exercises like squat presses, simple exercises like bicep curls and weighed squats, deadlifts, flys, and more. I'm not at a place where I want to join a gym or invest in more equipment, so my concern is that the weights will become too light and I'll be doing sets of 20 reps and it will be become a cardio workout. What do you think? Is this a valid concern? How should I proceed?
    My other workouts every week are an hour of yoga, a few walks, and a bodyweight workout, sometimes tabata-style and sometimes longer, doing them to failure.
    Thanks so much!
    Kelly

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    RichMahogany's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kellyjean81 View Post
    Hi Mark, I'm not a fitness guru, so please forgive the newbie question. I'm a 33-year-old woman who is just slightly overweight (120lb at 5'3"). I currently lift heavy-for-me adjustable hand weights, but I'm quickly getting to a point where I will be using the weights with the heaviest plates (24lb). I use them for an hour-long session once per week, doing compound exercises like squat presses, simple exercises like bicep curls and weighed squats, deadlifts, flys, and more. I'm not at a place where I want to join a gym or invest in more equipment, so my concern is that the weights will become too light and I'll be doing sets of 20 reps and it will be become a cardio workout. What do you think? Is this a valid concern? How should I proceed?
    My other workouts every week are an hour of yoga, a few walks, and a bodyweight workout, sometimes tabata-style and sometimes longer, doing them to failure.
    Thanks so much!
    Kelly
    Hi, Kelly. I hate to break it to you, but it sounds like it's already a cardio workout.
    The Champagne of Beards

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    kellyjean81's Avatar
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    Because it's an hour long? I'm not lifting that whole time. It's more like sprinting- do a superset of 2 exercises, 8 or 10 reps, then wait until I catch my breath, then another set.

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    MuchLove's Avatar
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    At 120 pounds you are not overweight. You might want to exchange some fat for muscle (or maybe not - can't tell without seeing you) but you are definitely not overweight.

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    RichMahogany's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kellyjean81 View Post
    Because it's an hour long? I'm not lifting that whole time. It's more like sprinting- do a superset of 2 exercises, 8 or 10 reps, then wait until I catch my breath, then another set.
    Do you think sprinting is strength training or cardio?
    The Champagne of Beards

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    Wow, everyone around here is so helpful! I'm so happy that I'm getting such great advice! What a welcome this newbie has received!

    So... Let me rephrase. I'm 33 and, for my athletic/boyish body shape, I'm flabby, even if, at 5'3" and 120lb, the numbers put me at a healthy weight.

    I'm concerned that lifting weights that are too light will put me in a state of cortisol-raising chronic cardio, whereas right now, I'm seeing improvements in things like muscle definition and strength and I feel like I'm becoming more lean.

    So, is there anyone out there who can actually help, or should I just expect my post to be picked apart some more?

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    RichMahogany's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kellyjean81 View Post
    Wow, everyone around here is so helpful! I'm so happy that I'm getting such great advice! What a welcome this newbie has received!

    So... Let me rephrase. I'm 33 and, for my athletic/boyish body shape, I'm flabby, even if, at 5'3" and 120lb, the numbers put me at a healthy weight.

    I'm concerned that lifting weights that are too light will put me in a state of cortisol-raising chronic cardio, whereas right now, I'm seeing improvements in things like muscle definition and strength and I feel like I'm becoming more lean.

    So, is there anyone out there who can actually help, or should I just expect my post to be picked apart some more?
    I'm trying to help you see that some of the assumptions inherent in your question are flawed, not trying to be critical.

    If you want to get stronger, you need to lift more weight. For someone of your level of training advancement, a novice linear progression is the most efficient way. But you can't do that with the equipment you have, and you say you're not willing to obtain more.

    Here's an article about how wonderful it is to be a novice, if you'll actually do the strength training program:
    http://startingstrength.com/articles...t_rippetoe.pdf

    And here's an even more important one for you:
    T NATION | The Biggest Training Fallacy of All

    I truly hope this helps you.
    The Champagne of Beards

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    I think what's trying to be said in a confusing, obstreperous, and roundabout way is that not all cardio is cortisol raising chronic cardio. Unless you're pumping those light weights at such a speed and length of time that you're keeping your heart overworking for an hour or two each day, you're not in dangerous territory. You're just losing out on returns for time invested unless you increase the weight.

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    RichMahogany's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Abyss View Post
    obstreperous
    Is that a word?
    The Champagne of Beards

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    Quote Originally Posted by kellyjean81 View Post
    Wow, everyone around here is so helpful! I'm so happy that I'm getting such great advice! What a welcome this newbie has received!

    So... Let me rephrase. I'm 33 and, for my athletic/boyish body shape, I'm flabby, even if, at 5'3" and 120lb, the numbers put me at a healthy weight.

    I'm concerned that lifting weights that are too light will put me in a state of cortisol-raising chronic cardio, whereas right now, I'm seeing improvements in things like muscle definition and strength and I feel like I'm becoming more lean.

    So, is there anyone out there who can actually help, or should I just expect my post to be picked apart some more?
    I used to think that when I posted questions, but everyone does want to help.

    I say this out of experience, I've learnt so much about lifting and how to go about it as a fellow newb that I wouldn't even be in a gym if it weren't for the info people have provided (especially Rich).

    Sent from my GT-I9506 using Marks Daily Apple Forum mobile app

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