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Do hour long run in off days from lifting?


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I'm currently doing SL 5X5 with sprints at the end as my workout M,W,F.

My main goal is to lose body fat %, but I also want to be strong and not lose muscle.

I just want to lose my lovehandles haha.

Would it be smart to add a 40-60 minute run on my off days during the week? Like on Tues and Thurs?

Or would that do more bad than good for strength?

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I second bprime on this. Steady-state cardio doesn't do as much as we think for fat loss. If you want to do some sort of endurance cardio, the author of New Rules of Lifting for Women (Lou Schuler) recommends doing intervals for about 20 minutes, then doing NOTHING for 5 minutes, THEN starting your steady-state exercise. His reasoning is that the intervals will release your muscles' glycogen stores, and then you will have a higher fat % burn during your steady-state (since your glycogen stores have already been used). Sounds reasonable to me.

And yes. 80% of weight loss is diet. :)

Level ? Half-Dwarf/Half-Amazon Warrior

STR:21.25 STA:15 DEX: 10.95 CON: 14 WIS:15.5 CHA:17

SWOLE BUCKS: 1

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Mirgss, I'm not sure that is completely true about sprinting before and running steady after. If the author says it is due to sprints opening up glycogen stores (fat) I really question the accuracy of the claim. During anaerobic activity glycogen isn't used, ATP (adenosine triphosphate) is. I would be interested to see what he means though.

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Okay, I just happened to bring the book with me to work today. I don't want to quote the entire page here, but here's what he says (in a chapter where he recommends AGAINST pure steady-state cardio) to make it more effective:

"You'll do intervals first, to work off some of the glycogen in your muscles. Then you'll step off the track....That is, you'll stop altogether for five minutes. And then you'll get back on...and do some steady-pace exercise at an easy pace.

Why bother? Because after you stop exercising, your body will immediately flood your bloodstream with triglycerides....When you start exercising again, you'll have more fat readily available for energy, which means you'll burn more of it than you would if you'd done nothing but steady-pace work."

-New Rules of Lifting for Women, p 27

Thoughts? I'm always up for a good learning session :D

Level ? Half-Dwarf/Half-Amazon Warrior

STR:21.25 STA:15 DEX: 10.95 CON: 14 WIS:15.5 CHA:17

SWOLE BUCKS: 1

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

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That sounds very interesting and seems very logical.

Though I still think pure steady state cardio still has its place since it is better than nothing (for example walks during a lunch break where you want to get some fresh air, burn some calories, but not break a sweat in your work clothes).

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In order for the glucose to be burned instead of just stored ATP, each interval would have to be 30-50 seconds long (thats how long glycosis burns for) then rest and repeat. It'll build up a lot of lactic acid making the run afterwards quite hard. As for increasing the amount burned after, sprints can be categorized similarly with resistance training in that it heightens your metabolism for hours afterwards (sometimes days). I don't think I've read anything about if doing an exercise while in the increased metabolic phase will increase the amount burned significantly.

Sprints should most definitely be used, but I just wonder if they really do increase the efficiency of steady paced running (it already must burn glucose and fat stores for energy as is). But, it may be that 5 min break that I've never heard of that changes the game like he says. Who knows, but I thought I'd give my 2 cents on it. Hope no one minds

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In the book, he recommends intervals of 60 seconds hard followed by 2 minutes easy.

I don't mind your input at all. I love learning new things. Now I'm going to have to research this ATP you're talking about :)

Level ? Half-Dwarf/Half-Amazon Warrior

STR:21.25 STA:15 DEX: 10.95 CON: 14 WIS:15.5 CHA:17

SWOLE BUCKS: 1

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

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Mirgss, I'm not sure that is completely true about sprinting before and running steady after. If the author says it is due to sprints opening up glycogen stores (fat) I really question the accuracy of the claim. During anaerobic activity glycogen isn't used, ATP (adenosine triphosphate) is. I would be interested to see what he means though.

O_o. Glycogen is the way the body stores glucose in muscles and the liver. It is absolutely used in anaerobic activity. Where does the energy to make all that fine ATP come from when aerobic pathways can't keep up with energy demands?

In order for the glucose to be burned instead of just stored ATP, each interval would have to be 30-50 seconds long (thats how long glycosis burns for) then rest and repeat. It'll build up a lot of lactic acid making the run afterwards quite hard. As for increasing the amount burned after, sprints can be categorized similarly with resistance training in that it heightens your metabolism for hours afterwards (sometimes days). I don't think I've read anything about if doing an exercise while in the increased metabolic phase will increase the amount burned significantly.

Sprints should most definitely be used, but I just wonder if they really do increase the efficiency of steady paced running (it already must burn glucose and fat stores for energy as is). But, it may be that 5 min break that I've never heard of that changes the game like he says. Who knows, but I thought I'd give my 2 cents on it. Hope no one minds

ATP is the basis for pretty much all action, what changes is how its made/what its made from. Theres ATP-CP, Glycosis, and Oxidative. Each is dependent on how long force is being exerted for and has different byproducts.

These are more accurate representations of what's going on. Though the intervals can be much shorter. Not sure if the first post was just a fluke or what.

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You're going to lose your love handles through diet. Not running.

Running/walking your way to an extra 1000 calories a day sure makes that diet thing easier though....

All this steady state is no good nonsense that is going around must come from people who don't track calories. An hour of running burns a crap-ton of calories. Try burning that much regularly through HIIT and you are going to beat the snot out of your lower body. And face it, HIIT has the thing that many special diet plans do....my plan is so great I only have to do x to get the same benefit as y, which is significantly more work.

Anybody trying to lose weight should be walking, walkig more, and walking some more. Those that aren't aren't trying very hard or have been seduced by silly nonsense. To lose weight you need to create a calorie deficit. Spending less time sitting on your ass is much easier for most people than starving themselves, do both and you can kiss your fat ass goodbye fast.

Changing what is burning at any given moment (as per the new rules thing) is a useless idea. If your body is going to burn 2500 calories, it is going to burn 2500 calories. Preserving glycogen to burn fat when working out just means that it is going to burn more glycogen when at rest than fat and the overall sum total of the system will end up at a net of zero, you will still burn the exact same amount of each over a longer time span; the amount of each burned is dependant on your diet. Every form of exercise burns gycogen to start and switches over to fat. You get the same effect from running too. So what if the switch takes 15 minutes to happen instead of 8. Great, you burned just as many caloires in 8 minutes of HIIT as you would have in 15 minutes of steady state. Somehting tells me you would be able to run a whole lot more productively after 15 minutes of stead state than 8 minutes of HIIT.

To make the pro HIIT explanation work you have to ignore the fat that you can perform steady state WAY longer. Great, HIIT burns a lot more calories in a given time scale. Great it has a little more after burn. Steady state blows it out of the water when it comes to maximum calorie burn per sesssion since you can do so much more of it.

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O_o. Glycogen is the way the body stores glucose in muscles and the liver. It is absolutely used in anaerobic activity. Where does the energy to make all that fine ATP come from when aerobic pathways can't keep up with energy demands?

Creatine-Phosphate and Glycogen. Real short duration stuff like sprints and low rep lifts tend to use the CP system more.

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Interesting points, Waldo. Note, however, that the OP wants to not lose muscle. So if he's burning an extra 1000 calories, some of that will inevitably be muscle, right? If he's got a lower bf%, won't strength training help him reach his goals better than running his @ss off?

Level ? Half-Dwarf/Half-Amazon Warrior

STR:21.25 STA:15 DEX: 10.95 CON: 14 WIS:15.5 CHA:17

SWOLE BUCKS: 1

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

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I also think it needs delineation that running or other exercise affecting your strength in a signifcant way only applies to lifters well past the noob stage that are trying to push past their bodies natural tendencies.

Football players are pretty strong. Last time I checked they run a fair amount too, most keep up on it year round.

Will running stunt the speed of maximal strength gain? Sure. Is there any need to gain strength at maximal speed? No. If you are a noob still experiencing noob gains (IE, it is still your first year of lifting and you haven't yet run in to significant plateaus) running will not have a noticable negative impact.

In other words, if you need to ask the question if it is OK to run on off days, it is OK to run on off days. If it is not OK to run on off days, you are WAY past the point of needing to ask the question in the first place.

currently maintaning

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Okay, so what about someone who is trying to gain mass? Steady state cardio makes your muscles more efficient = smaller = no gains, right?

OP, I'd say it's safe to say yes. Or no. Definitely one of the two.

Level ? Half-Dwarf/Half-Amazon Warrior

STR:21.25 STA:15 DEX: 10.95 CON: 14 WIS:15.5 CHA:17

SWOLE BUCKS: 1

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

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Interesting points, Waldo. Note, however, that the OP wants to not lose muscle. So if he's burning an extra 1000 calories, some of that will inevitably be muscle, right? If he's got a lower bf%, won't strength training help him reach his goals better than running his @ss off?

Lifting regularly and keeping your protein up every day will protect your muscles, what you do other days should not imact it signficantly. Whether your 500 cal/day deficit is created by sitting around eating nothing or eating lots and running your butt off, it is still a 500 cal/day deficit, your body will treat it as such and try to eat both yoru fat and your muscles. By weight training and eating a lot of protein you couteract the trying to eat your muscles affect. I've never seen it suggested that your body will try harder to eat your muscles than your fat if you run. Anyone suggesting that probably doesn't care too much for running and wants to justify it.

I realize my results aren't totally typical, but I am surely gaining muscle and losing fat simulataneously (as shown by strength gains, LBM gains from BF% estimates, photo evidence, and muscle measurements) and am now under 15% BF. I at least walk 2.5 miles a day and run >10 miles a week on top of that.

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Minutia of energy metabolism aside I agree. Moderate running on off days won't really interfere with strength or muscle gain in most individuals provided they are structurally adapted to it and eat to support their goals.

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Okay, so what about someone who is trying to gain mass? Steady state cardio makes your muscles more efficient = smaller = no gains, right?

OP, I'd say it's safe to say yes. Or no. Definitely one of the two.

Steady state cardio and lifting heavy utilizes different fibers within the same muscle. Outside of energy availabliliy (calories) and infrastructure availability (protein) there should be very little crossover between the two. Even significant muscle DOMS from lifting barely affects my running at all. It is an annoyance, which is psychologically limiting, but not a significant performance inhibitor.

currently maintaning

battle log challenges: 16,15,14,13,12,11,10,9,8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1
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If OP wants to lose fat, but gain strength thru SL5X5, I would absolutely NOT recommend HIIT or interval training centered on running. Between the deads, squats, and high-impact running, it's jsut too much stress on the legs. You'll get a tear or simply overtrain your legs.

Instead, maybe swimming, or some sort of full body plyometric system could help. High intensity circuits. Barring that, simple LISS, as we've all discussed before, can help you burn lotsa extra calories. LISS intensity is more like a fast walk/slow jog pace though, and in order to burn an appreciable amount, you need to spend a great amount of time doing it.

But yeah, overtraining for a newb would be a bigger concern for me. Also, it's fine if you want to run your butt off like a football player IFFFFF you also EAT like a football player, which, if you're trying to lose fat, you almost certainly are not doing.

Why must I put a name on the foods I choose to eat and how I choose to eat them? Rather than tell people that I eat according to someone else's arbitrary rules, I'd rather just tell them, I eat healthy. And no, my diet does not have a name.My daily battle log!

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Also, it's fine if you want to run your butt off like a football player IFFFFF you also EAT like a football player, which, if you're trying to lose fat, you almost certainly are not doing.

But you could if you liked. Whether you are doing nothing with a average daily burn of 2000 calories, and are starving yourself with 1500 caloires, or you are killing yourself with exercise, burning 5000 calories a day, but gorging on 4500 calories a day, you still have a 500 calorie per day deficit and will lose 1 lb a week.

Obviously there is a happy medium between the two. If you don't want to be hungry all the time, exercise more. If you don't want to exercise all the time, eat less.

...but this goes back to a quote that has been oft repeated. Appearance is a byproduct of fitness. If you want to look like an athlete, training like one and eating like one is the logical way to get there. Removing (x) from your diet is not the magic pill that will make you look like an athlete.

currently maintaning

battle log challenges: 16,15,14,13,12,11,10,9,8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1
follow me: myfitnesspal
don't panic!

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