How I Incorporated Exercise

A turning point; early in December, 2016, a parishioner friend from our church, asked me if I’d like to come out and play Pickle Ball. To that point, without a shred of sustained exercise; I had lost 20-25 lbs; just through diet. I said Pickle-what; and he went on to explain the game and its inner-workings. So; the second week of December, I went out to give Pickle Ball a shot. I figured that since I hadn’t actively exercised regularly in probably 20 years, that it might be a good idea to warm-up, flex a little bit before I played. So I stopped in at the local rec center, paid my $2, and started my own personal, far-from-professional workout routine; prior to PB. My routine began with 30 minutes on the treadmill with a 5 minute cool-down period (you can certainly start out for less time), at a steady 2 ½ – 3 mph pace; heart rate below 120. After a month or so; I started adding a light jogging speed of 5 mph every few minutes; raising my heart rate from a starting 70-80 BPM to between 125-140; prior to cool-down. Weeks into my pre-PB loosening program, I added lifting to the ritual, post treadmill; which included the Chest Press, the Leg Extension and the Lateral Pull-down. I extended my routine over a couple of months as seemed fit, and worked from 30-40 lbs, up to 60-120 for the later two lifts.

  • Note: It’s vitally important to consult your physician along with an exercise specialist before you excessively increase your heart rate or lifting weight. I went into the exercise with a limited range of motion issue in my shoulders; diagnosed by my doc; previously. Seven months later; my left shoulder feels better, however; my right shoulder’s noticeably worse. Maintaining a sustainable amount of lifting weight to avoid injury; even though you may feel you can lift more; is important.

One of my goals included trying to build back muscle I’d lost during the couch-potato days between 35 & 55. So my routine included 20-40 gms of protein prior to my workout; and a similar amount post-workout. If you look on-line; there are varying degrees of opinion as to the proper protein input; dependent upon your goals, health status, age, etc. Also; throughout the exercise routine, during Pickle Ball and for my daily diet; I drank lots of water. I’ve seen various recommendations, such as 1/2 an ounce for every lb that you weigh, however, for me; 130-140 ozs of water per day wasn’t going to happen. I worked consciously, to consume enough water to keep hydrated and reduce some of the effects hunger will cause while consuming less in your diet; usually 6-9, 8 oz bottles of water/day. This meant for me; carrying a water bottle or two; everywhere.

After ‘loosening-up’; I’d join the Pickle Ball crew a few times a week for some rousing doubles competition; most of the sessions were two hours. This was as good a cardio boost as the warm-up exercise, sometimes better; depending on the competition!

Next post I will begin detailing more about my diet; and little ‘tricks’ I used to keep focused on my goals.

– Bill   7-12-17

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