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Unread 08-16-2012, 10:41 AM   #1
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Having trouble finding the right workout

So we have a local gym that my husband and I have memberships for.

I have to have a pre-set routine or I'm completely lost. Well, my hubby works out with his friends.

The issue is this: We're at the gym for generally an two to two and a half hours. I'm not sure which of us has the longer work out but I always finish my routine about forty five minutes to an hour before the husband and then find myself having to sit around for an hour bored out of my mind.

Here's what I've got to work with:

4 days of week to go to the gym. (mon, tue, thur, fri)
Two to two and a half hours
I don't like the idea of doing one thing for an extended amount of time for filler (treadmill, bike, etc)
I like a lot of variety in what I do.
Mostly just trying to tone. I'm 5'10 and 175. Trying to get rid of extra fluff all over.
No unusual physical limitations I'm aware of

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Unread 08-16-2012, 11:03 AM   #2
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Not sure how helpful this will be, but, what kind of exercises do you do already? Is there an exercise that you enjoy doing a lot? Maybe there's one that you can multitask with?

I don't have a gym membership anymore, the gym was too far away for me to use it properly, but I know if I was able to get there often enough and had a set amount of time to fill, I'd do a cardio and weights routine first, and then spend whatever time left over on my favorite exercise (which would be swimming. I LOVE swimming!) Or if I couldn't do that, then I might spend the remainder of the time on the bike so I could get some reading or sketching done. I can't be doing one thing at a time, so if I'm going to do something to fill up time I'd have to be able to multitask at it.

I know that's probably not the most efficient way to spend gym time, however, so I'm sure someone else probably has better advice. ^^
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Unread 11-12-2012, 02:40 PM   #3
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Dang 2.5 hour long workout!? Holy cow!

Some random things I can think of. (Without knowing how long your workout is)
Do a cardio rotation. You say you get bored doing the same thing, maybe do 15-20 minutes tread, then switch to a bike, elliptical, or the moving stair stepper, which my gym has, and keep switching for as long as you're waiting. That way you are still doing beneficial cardio, but breaking up the monotony.

Extended stretching pre and post workout

Can you add an extra set to the important exercises your doing?

Throw in something like drop sets, rest-pause into some exercises to eat up more time. This is especially easy with dumbbell and cable exercises. I sometimes do the "run the rack" system. I do it with dumbbell laterals frequently. Start with the weight you can do about 10 with (which for me is 25lbs) do 8-10 and set those down and immediately grab the next smaller weight do 8-10, then just work down the rack (I go all the way to 5 pounds). I actually then go back up to 25. It really, REALLY works your muscles, just like you are wanting to do anyway.

Maybe get your husband to do a superset or two to speed up his own darn workout

Just once or twice go over to the guys and ask if he(they) want you to spot him(them). If not for anything except being fun and funny.

Do you do warm up sets? If not, maybe warm up sets before your working sets before your main exercises. (Beneficial in more than just killing time).

Slow reps. Sometimes on arm exercises, I do the last set super slow. like 4-5 seconds on the contraction and the relaxation.


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Unread 11-13-2012, 09:51 AM   #4
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What on earth is he doing for 2-2.5 hours? And what does he expect you to be doing? My sister and I go for about an hour every other day for a mix of cardio (30-40 mins) and some weights for toning.

Our gym also offers a variety of group classes for all sorts of things. If your gym offers any classes included in the membership, try to time your visits with classes so that you can do a little of your own workout, and then while hubby's doing his thing, you can join in a class until he's done. The group classes were a big draw for my sis and me, because we also need variety and choice and the classes are all included no matter what membership people have. So if we just don't feel like doing the cardio/weights one day, we'll just go for a class instead.
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Unread 11-13-2012, 06:12 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Kesra View Post
Here's what I've got to work with:

4 days of week to go to the gym. (mon, tue, thur, fri)
Two to two and a half hours
I don't like the idea of doing one thing for an extended amount of time for filler (treadmill, bike, etc)
I like a lot of variety in what I do.
Mostly just trying to tone. I'm 5'10 and 175. Trying to get rid of extra fluff all over.
No unusual physical limitations I'm aware of
Among the rest of the people, I do agree that 2-2.5 hours a day in the gym is too long, and don't worry if your workouts are done before your partner's (unless you need to wait for him on the way out). You only need less than an hour in there to get a good 80%+ of the maximal results, which may be fine for an average individual. Like my professor tells me for any system, 20% of the effort gives you 80% of the results, while the remaining 20% requires 80% effort.

So let's say you do have 2-2.5 in the gym because both of you go in out of the gym at the same time, well, the first hour would actually be your "workout" where you do what you need to maintain/improve your fitness. Then the remainder can simply be a few recreational exercises that the gym may provide just to kill time. This way, if for some odd reason you were able to leave the gym earlier, you've already done your 80%, and the rest is just extra.

What kind of workout routine? well, there are many routines out there, but the best are the ones that allow you to track your progress as a function of strength rather than weight. Also, you don't need to spend all the extra time doing goofy workouts too. Perhaps I'm a minimalist myself, being as efficient with my time as possible, so I find that people who do long workouts either kinda have to because of their level of fitness, or they're people like you that are copycatting them. Hence, any workout routine will do, but the best routines are the ones that are the most time efficient (ie, "less is more")

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