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Thread: Best ways to tone up and become healthier?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2013

    Best ways to tone up and become healthier?

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    I am 5'3" and about 98 pounds. According to all those BMI charts and calculators, I'm severely underweight and I should be at least 120 and blah blah blah. If you saw me, however, you would NEVER guess I'm under 100 pounds. In fact, I've had people tell me, "What??? You can't POSSIBLY weigh that little."

    I don't know why, but I only tend to lose weight in my stomach/midsection. My arms and legs (the parts people see the most) are big and flabby, while my stomach is completely emaciated. Visually, I don't look healthy.

    I don't want to lose weight. That would do nothing for me and would probably make me extremely ill. I want to gain lean muscle and become strong and be able to run for more than 10 minutes without getting tired.

    Right now eat around 1600 calories a day (yes, I know I need to be eating more, I'm working on it) and I always make sure to get enough fat/protein. I was a vegetarian for two years and just this past week I started eating wild salmon and organic turkey again. I eat 1-2 eggs a day, lots of coconut oil, nuts/nut butters, avocados, and steamed vegetables. Some other foods I eat a lot are sprouted grain Ezekiel bread, oatmeal, Larabars, chickpeas, jasmine rice, sweet potatoes, bananas, etc. I'm semi-constipated, so as of a few days ago I've been taking Miralax to help things move along. I take minocycline for my acne, and I make sure to take a probiotic as well.

    As far as exercise, I really don't get much. I walk maybe 20 minutes a day. No cardio/strength training. I believe this is where my real problem lies. I've focused on my diet so much that I've completely lost sight of the importance of being active.

    Because I'm so weak and don't have hardly any muscle, can anyone recommend a workout plan of some sort for a beginner? I need some good cardio and the parts of my body I'm most looking to tone up are my upper arms and thighs. I am dedicated and follow plans very well. I'm ready to make a change!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    British Columbia
    Why do you think you need to do cardio ?

    A brisk 20 walk a day sounds perfect to me, couple that with a couple of resistance workouts per week and you will be good to go.
    Do you have access to any workout equipment ?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Santa Barbara
    You might consider a program like new rules of weight lifting for women. Add a couple sessions of sprints on an exercise bike or rowing machine or other kind of contraption (so you can't fall and hurt yourself) each week, too. The sprints will give you the cardiovascular improvements (you know, for your heart and stamina and all that) plus help your metabolism. You don't need long periods of slogging it out with jogging or whatever. Walking is always good for you so keep that up.
    Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    NYC (and ATX)

    Best ways to tone up and become healthier?

    Cut the whole grains. Not doing anything for your constipation or acne.

    Increase protein (red meat, more eggs, more quality dairy, gelatin, etc) by a lot more. You are eating mostly fat and carbs. Of course you aren't going to have muscle.

    Lift weights 2-3x a week. No cardio because then you would just have to eat back those calories.

    Make sure you get carbs from fruits, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and white rice on the days you work out.

    Don't eat low nutrient density stuff like veggies as much since you need save room in your stomach to eat nutrient and calorically dense foods like meat eggs cheese.

    Drinking your calories from grassfed milk, organic juice, coconut milk etc might serve you well if you are struggling to get calories in.

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    HCLF: lean red meat, eggs, low-fat dairy, bone broth/gelatin, fruits, seafood, liver, small amount of starch (oatmeal, white rice, potatoes, carrots), small amount of saturated fat (butter/ghee/coconut/dark chocolate/cheese).

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Vancouver B.C
    Because you've been a vegetarian for a few years I would definitely recommend a good quality BCAA powder. My sister inlaw is a vegetarian and was complaining of general body soreness and lack of energy so I got her taking BCAA's and with in a week she was feeling like her old self again. Just make sure it's not stacked with a stimulant. That you don't need.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Minneapolis, MN United States
    65 has some awesome workout programs. I do Shaun T's Focus T25 which is a good 25 minute workout DVDs. Another good one is P90X.

    I also do running and biking, but I really getting into the workout videos.

  7. #7
    gergirl's Avatar
    gergirl Guest
    power yoga

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Looking toned up is the desire of many people and this is the reason they join gyms and take part in workout sessions. to tone up fast you should start eating food that will provide you enough calories. The food should be such that it will help in building your muscles. The calories that you are taking should be according to your Body Mass Index and you need to do workout to burn the calories that you are taking. Take protein rich products as lean meat and healthy carbohydrates.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    New Zealand
    blogilates has beginner workouts you can do at home.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Learn More
    yes,organic juice, coconut milk etc might serve you well if you are struggling to get calories in.

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