Gym Workouts to lose Size


Hi ladies,

I hired a personal trainer for 6 sessions (6 session package) and now that I think about it, I really feel ripped off :(   She was a SUPER NICE girl, so I would never 'complain' about her, so although the managers of the gym are excellent and really know their stuff, I don't want to ask them my questions 'cuz I don't want them to think my trainer didn't do a good job of answering them.  All she did in the 6 sessions is make me do 10mins treadmill or elliptical, do all the weight training machines Once (so 1 set, and from 8 - 12 reps of the goodlife 20mins strength training) and 10mins treadmill or elliptical again as a cool down.  And then some stretches.  We did that for 6 days.  Everyday she upped the weight of each machine by 5lbs.  That's about it.  This lasted approx for 45mins, and the two days (3rd day and 6th day) when she said "we'll go over your routine and think of nutrition/exercise strategies to expedite your weightloss" what we really did is she briefly showed me a workout plan she made (same thing as we did for the 6 days with just higher reps and sets) and tried VERY HARD to sell me into purchasing 1yrs worth of training with her which would cost close to $9000. 

So I've been doing a lot of strength training (as you saw above) but I've actually gone up in weight, and gone up in size too!!  my arms and legs are harder, but it's almost like my fat has congealed and hardened! It sounds funny, but it isn't really... :(   Logically speaking I think what's happening is I'm building muscle which is what's causing my weight to increase, but because the layers upon layers of fat I have isn't going away, the increased muscles (cocooned by my fat) is making me look bigger.  Every book and article I've read on exercise tells me to combine strength training with cardio for the most effective weightloss.  I thought I was doing that but it's not working very well for me.  I used to like going to the classes, but I have a very hard time making the classes because of my work.  I also enjoy working out on my own too. 

I asked my trainer many times if she recommends me continuing the workout we've been doing for the 6 days, if this is the most effective way to lose weight and drop sizes, but she was very vague about it.  She would say that not really if I was training with her she would show me different stuff...  It's like, if someone asks me for advise on which PC to buy and instead of telling them a good standard to go by, I tell them "if you pay me to make you a PC it'll be the best", uh yea but what will I make it with? You know?  Sigh.... I don't know what I paid for exactly since I already knew how to use the treadmill, elliptical and the strength training machines that we used.  I told my gym manager that what I specifically want to get out of the 6 sessions is a weekly workout schedule.  You know like:
Day 1: Machines X, Y, Z
Day 2: Machines W, Z, A

And he said that I will definitely get that and more... sigh I'm such a sucker for good talkers :(

So, that's my long story, and here are my questions:

What's the most efficient / fastest way to drop dress sizes at the gym? 

Please please help...I have something huge happening in a month (less than really) and I desperately want to lose at least some weight before then.  I started going to the gym regularly since beginning of April but ...

I really appreciate your help with this ladies!! <3
If someone could alert Trainer George to give me a few pointers I'd really love that too!   :-)
May 09, 2011 @ 12:34 pm

31 Replies



I go to the gym 5 days a week, but if you recommend more then I can definitely try for more.

This is so frustrating I feel to cry :( This whole weekend I spent putting myself down, my mom's like you're going to insult yourself into losing weight lol ...

As for my nutrition: I'm consciously eating less calories, nothing fried, no simple carbs, healthy complex carbs (broccoli, etc), good fats (egg, fish). I don't know what else to do! :(
May 09, 2011 @ 12:44 pm

hang in there!

What little I know (and that's very little!) is that you want a sustained increased heart rate for 30ish mins to get the best results from a cardio or fat-burning workout (for fat, you want approx 65% of your max heartrate and cardio approx 80%). I have heard that if you push it too long and hard it's not only too intense on your system but benefits start to decrease.

What I like to do is a class (I love Zumba or TurboKick - I may have mentioned ;)), then weights, and occasionally one more 20-30 minute session on the elliptical/rowing machine/treadmill if I have time. I'm lucky that my gym (the YMCA) has classes almost all day long from 6am to 6:30 pm, so chances are I can usually find something to do. People are always playing basketball in the gymnasium too if I ever had the hankering to join in.

The main thing is to switch things up. I try different machines, different equipment (balance ball, medicine ball, jumprope, StairMaster, swimming pool, speed bag, etc) and different classes to keep different muscles engaged and challenged. I also love long hikes and rollerblading.

I have only lost 2 lbs, but have gained a lot of stamina, muscle definition, and trimmed my waist. I've also lost 30 pts off my total cholesterol (which is what I'm most excited about!). Overall, I'd call it a success, though not an extreme makeover. However, I only manage to get to the gym 2-3 times/week. I do "Just Dance" and "Wii Fit" at home when I can boot my kids off MarioKart for long enough.

Kudos to you for sticking with that trainer for as long as you did. I would have been very tempted to tell HER what to do with such vague instructions. I would only pay to learn something NEW, not regurgitate info I already know.

Just stay positive and keep up with your healthy diet. I know it must be so very frustrating! Keep us posted on your progress and hopefully someone with a lot more know-how will come on here and give you some really useful tips :)
May 09, 2011 @ 01:01 pm

I'm no work-out genius either but...

Mamluv made some great points and I've heard the same thing about keeping your heart rate 65% above normal, etc. My husband use to work at World Health and also is a competitive squash player so he has taught me a thing or two about getting in shape, toning, and also losing a few pounds.

For the past few months I've been doing alot of aquafit and I've actually put ON 3 more pounds. But I think this is muscle. So this is my new plan since I want to lose 10 pounds.

I found this routine last week on the Fitness Magazine website.
This is where my weird organizaiton comes in. I printed off the whole shebang. Then I made a chart that I labelled "Rebekah's Fitness Plan". On this chart, I have the date and then each "group" of exercises from this workout (like Shape Cleavage, Stop Muffin Top, etc). My plan is to write the date then pick 5 areas I want to work on for that day such as abs, quads, butt, etc and pick a corresponding exercise. For example, let's say on May 10th I want to focus on abs and butt. Then I'd pick a couple of the exercises that say they target abs and butt and record that on my chart as the exercise I'm doing for that day. Then I can keep track of how often I'm doing certain exercises and make sure I'm getting a balance of everything.
Hope that made sense! Oh, and i nbetween each exercise, I skip rope for 30 sec. Then it's a never ending workout!

I'm also switching it up with aquafit, running the track, and getting outside to walk around at lunch time even for 20 minutes. So let's say Monday I do my fitness plan, Tuesday aquafit, Wednesday weights and track, Thursday fitness plan again, etc. Mamaluv mentioned to do different things and I have heard this is one of the best ways to lose weight. This way your body cannot "adjust" to a workout and you'll continue to LOSE instead of only maintain your weight, or build muscle!

You do need a mix of cardio and weights but you don't have to make the weights overly heavy, especially for a woman since we usually do not want to "bulk up". My husband has told me that for a girl, as long as you can feel you're working your muscles and there is resistance, you're doing enough. Increase it maybe by a few pounds once it gets a little easy but if you're always switching up your routine, you may not have to increase by very much at all.

It seems like your "trainer" was trying to make you pretty buff! lol That's alot of weights and like I said, most girls don't want to bulk up. Sorry it was such a bad experience but hopefully you can find something that'll work for you! Good luck!

May 09, 2011 @ 01:34 pm

No argument here...

I went through the same phase, where I ran for 30 minutes everyday, and saw no results, only to find myself gaining more weight, despite it being muscle!

Then I started noticing that I was losing weight when I did incredibly hard training one day, and relax the other day.

For exercise, I joined a tae kwon do gym, and made friends who motivated me to push myself to the limit. With tae kwon do, many of the gym goers inspired me to start doing 10 km runs once a week as well!

sometimes it's great to have other people who will support you and motivate you while you lose weight. It's reassuring to have others who understand what you are going through!

Besides tae kwon do, my most effective weight losses were by limiting my food intake. It became part of my daily life to choose lighter, more wholesome foods, and to know when to stop (if i feel 80% full, that usually means I've eaten enough).

These are just my experiences, but I hope they help!
I think you are doing an amazing job though :) Please don't worry!
May 09, 2011 @ 01:49 pm

Don't give up!

Doing cardio is really effective in losing your calories but you have to do A LOT of cardio to be effective. Weight lifting can increase muscles but that also makes you gain weight.

Since you have something big coming up within the next month, you should maybe focus on toning your body instead of losing it. I find it helpful to do cardio for about 30 minutes and then get on the weight lifting machines at the gym and do many repetition with less weight. This will help tone different areas of your body and can make you look more slim and fit!
May 09, 2011 @ 02:03 pm

thank you & please keep 'em coming :)

thanks so much for all your advise!! @mamaluv I loved the classes but I can never make them. I really have to push myself hard to make it :( @beachbabe thanks so much for the routine!! :) I love how all it uses is the stretch bands, I can do this at home!! Which sort of sucks too after having spent so much on a downtown gym membership :) @jskim07 do you suppose I might be over training? Maybe take a day off in between? I really wish my trainer had given me this info!! The 6 sessions wasn't cheap either.. @tammyk I will up my cardio this whole week and see if I feel any difference this time next week :) I will def' keep you guys posted.
May 09, 2011 @ 02:12 pm

what he said

Trainer George came on another forum topic a few months back and said something very interesting - that losing 1 pound means you have to sweat off 3500 calories.

3500 calories.


When I do a 5K on the treadmill, I can maybe knock off 400 calories.

Anyhoo, the point is that we cannot expect to lose weight like we're sweating it off with Bob & Jillian on the Biggest Loser, also because most of us don't have as much excess as the contestants on that show. That's why we can't be discouraged when it takes months to lose 10 pounds :)

Check out that thread because he has some good pointers for exercise between cardio, weights, and even everyday chores at home!
May 09, 2011 @ 02:16 pm

What about this?

I just came across this article on cardio vs weight training. Reading the article I'm thinking of doing this, please let me know if it sounds good:

Monday: 1hr Cardio (I'll switch it up with elliptical, treadmill, bike and rowing)
Tuesday: strength training (what I described in my original post)
Wednesday: 1hr Cardio
Thursday: 1hr Cardio
Friday: strength training

Saturday & Sunday: At home ab exercises, and mostly rest.

What do you ladies think?
May 09, 2011 @ 02:17 pm


thanks mamaluv! I think you posted right when I was posting so I didn't see your post .. I'll def' read the thread you posted thoroughly! thank you! :)
May 09, 2011 @ 02:18 pm

taking breaks

one more thing - I agree with jskim07. I've heard that from others too that days off in between can actually help. If you think about it, doing it every single day is a quick way to get your body to that "used to it" stage where you'll plateau with your results. It's also unsustainable for most people. I'm way too busy to commit to more than 2-3 days at the gym, so I do whatever I can at home and on errands to add activity to my day. Usually that's mowing the lawn with a push mower (not that we own a riding mower, but still!), taking the stairs whenever possible, and parking at the back of the parking lot so I have to walk farther. Every little bit has to add up, right?
May 09, 2011 @ 02:18 pm

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