recovered my health by weight training

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Luke
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recovered my health by weight training

Post by Luke » Sun Aug 28, 2016 1:28 pm

I know that in most Buddhist/yoga/eastern religion or culture groups, there seems to be a negative perception of weight training: that it's only for very vain, self-centered people who are constantly flexing their muscles in the mirror, but this is not always the case.

Last spring, I had high blood pressure and basically pre-diabetes as a result of not exercising much and eating less protein and more carbohydrates. My doctor advised me to exercise more and to eat less carbohydrates.

Over the summer, I lifted weights about 4 times a week and did a little cardio here and there, as well. Recently, I had my blood pressure checked and the doctor said that it was "Super"! :D I haven't had my blood glucose checked again yet, but I feel 100 times better and totally different than when I felt badly, so this is already a very good sign.

My point is that lifting weights can have dramatic health benefits, even though typical Buddhists/westerners who love eastern culture may find it extremely unappealing aesthetically because it's not some mysterious type of Asian energy exercise (but you COULD wear a headband with a dragon or a Chinese character on it to the gym if you want to... hehe).

Lifting weights doesn't have to be something that one is obsessed with. You can just do it 3 times a week for 45 minutes and then forget about it during the rest of the week when you are not doing it. It is also possible to build positive relationships with the people at the gym. All types of people go there. Some of my students, former students, and their parents go to the same gym as I do, so in many ways, going to the gym is also a kind of meditation on compassion for me.

Anyway, if some of you could improve your health dramatically by lifting weights a few times a week, I would strongly encourage you to do it, even though it won't gain you any points in the western Buddhist community.

It's also possible to gain some benefits from body weight exercises and a few pairs of dumbbells at home.
You could even make your own dumbbells or other kinds of weights.
At one point, I tried to make my own weights by filling 1.5 liter water bottles with sand and water, but they weren't heavy enough. You probably need to fill containers with metal or rocks to make them heavy enough to give some benefit.

Good luck to everyone with improving your health and improving your lives! :namaste:

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Losal Samten
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Losal Samten » Sun Aug 28, 2016 1:37 pm

Yes lad.


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Last edited by Losal Samten on Sun Aug 28, 2016 1:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Lacking mindfulness, we commit every wrong. - Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔
ཨོཾ་ཧ་ནུ་པྷ་ཤ་བྷ་ར་ཧེ་ཡེ་སྭཱ་ཧཱ།།
ཨཱོཾ་མ་ཏྲི་མུ་ཡེ་སལེ་འདུ།།

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Luke
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Luke » Sun Aug 28, 2016 1:39 pm

and here's a short article about the benefits of weight training:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/01/1 ... 32632.html

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Luke
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Luke » Sun Aug 28, 2016 1:43 pm

Losal Samten wrote:Yes lad.
You just posted very extreme examples of Olympic weightlifting and of power lifting. They have little to do with the average person who lifts medium-heavy weights a few times a week at the gym.

However, one thing that both the recreational lifter and the profession weight lifters and power lifters you posted have in common is that they all have much stronger bones as a result of lifting weights.
Last edited by Luke on Sun Aug 28, 2016 1:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

MiphamFan
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by MiphamFan » Sun Aug 28, 2016 1:45 pm

I train Olympic lifting regularly. People who don't know about the different kinds of lifting have a very skewed interpretation of it -- Olympic lifters and powerlifters don't train to look good, we train to be strong.

This is how an Olympic gold medallist looks before he cuts down for a competition:

Image

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Luke
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Luke » Sun Aug 28, 2016 1:53 pm

MiphamFan wrote:I train Olympic lifting regularly.
That's cool. Do you have incredible jumping ability as a result? :D

I once tried some Olympic-style movements on my own, but then I realized that I was just going to hurt myself without a coach to show me how to do it properly.

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Losal Samten
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Losal Samten » Sun Aug 28, 2016 1:59 pm

Luke wrote:You just posted very extreme examples of Olympic weightlifting and of power lifting. They have little to do with the average person who lifts medium-heavy weights a few times a week at the gym.
It's extreme only in terms on weight, but that doesn't disqualify weightlifting, strongman, and powerlifting from one's training. The average person in a gym doesn't know what the hell they're doing, in terms of exercises, routine, and diet. Doing things in a qualified and systematic way is key to being injury free, making progress, and maintaining interest. Half-arsedly going into a gym, using machines over free weights, not using correct form etc. leads to injury, no progression, and a bottoming out in motivation.
Lacking mindfulness, we commit every wrong. - Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔
ཨོཾ་ཧ་ནུ་པྷ་ཤ་བྷ་ར་ཧེ་ཡེ་སྭཱ་ཧཱ།།
ཨཱོཾ་མ་ཏྲི་མུ་ཡེ་སལེ་འདུ།།

MiphamFan
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by MiphamFan » Sun Aug 28, 2016 2:03 pm

Luke wrote:
MiphamFan wrote:I train Olympic lifting regularly.
That's cool. Do you have incredible jumping ability as a result? :D

I once tried some Olympic-style movements on my own, but then I realized that I was just going to hurt myself without a coach to show me how to do it properly.
I have good mobility in certain movements, my hip external rotation is very good for example, on the other hand I have weaknesses in what I don't train -- my hip internal rotation is not that good and has caused some mild injuries which I am working on. Overall as I read and practised more and more, I became more aware of my body and its movements; I usedto be quite bad at ball games in PE class but I think lifting has helped me improved my coordination when I occasionally play games for leisure with my friends. I still train primarily solo, so I have to learn more about different mobility exercises to help me. I think this helps with yoga actually -- abdominal bracing is quite similar to uddiyana bandha in yoga IMO.

But you are right about the coaching. It's quite similar to Dharma in that if you don't have a qualified teacher, you are very likely to hurt yourself. Technique for Olympic lifts s much harder to learn without a coach compared to squats, deadlifts etc.

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Losal Samten
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Losal Samten » Sun Aug 28, 2016 2:08 pm

MiphamFan wrote:...
You've said before that you want to keep training as you age, how does your Oly training fit into that? Do you plan on making the move back into powerlifting, or going with your kettlebell idea?
Lacking mindfulness, we commit every wrong. - Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔
ཨོཾ་ཧ་ནུ་པྷ་ཤ་བྷ་ར་ཧེ་ཡེ་སྭཱ་ཧཱ།།
ཨཱོཾ་མ་ཏྲི་མུ་ཡེ་སལེ་འདུ།།

MiphamFan
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by MiphamFan » Sun Aug 28, 2016 2:11 pm

Losal Samten wrote:
MiphamFan wrote:...
You've said before that you want to keep training as you age, how does your Oly training fit into that? Do you plan on making the move back into powerlifting, or going with your kettlebell idea?
Depends on what job I get and how many days I can afford to train. At a minimum I think you need four days a week to maintain technique for Oly lifts, if I really can't manage that I will go back to powerlifting. If even less then kettlebells.

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Losal Samten
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Losal Samten » Sun Aug 28, 2016 2:13 pm

MiphamFan wrote:Depends on what job I get and how many days I can afford to train. At a minimum I think you need four days a week to maintain technique for Oly lifts, if I really can't manage that I will go back to powerlifting. If even less then kettlebells.
Reckon you'll miss the Oly if you have to transition?
Lacking mindfulness, we commit every wrong. - Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔
ཨོཾ་ཧ་ནུ་པྷ་ཤ་བྷ་ར་ཧེ་ཡེ་སྭཱ་ཧཱ།།
ཨཱོཾ་མ་ཏྲི་མུ་ཡེ་སལེ་འདུ།།

MiphamFan
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by MiphamFan » Sun Aug 28, 2016 2:15 pm

Losal Samten wrote:
MiphamFan wrote:Depends on what job I get and how many days I can afford to train. At a minimum I think you need four days a week to maintain technique for Oly lifts, if I really can't manage that I will go back to powerlifting. If even less then kettlebells.
Reckon you'll miss the Oly if you have to transition?
Yeah probably, although I can still do cleans. Actually even if I transition I think I will mainly do cleans rather than deadlifts. My proportions are not great for deadlifts anyway and they take a while to recover from for me.

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Luke
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Luke » Sun Aug 28, 2016 2:46 pm

Losal Samten wrote: It's extreme only in terms on weight, but that doesn't disqualify weightlifting, strongman, and powerlifting from one's training. The average person in a gym doesn't know what the hell they're doing, in terms of exercises, routine, and diet. Doing things in a qualified and systematic way is key to being injury free, making progress, and maintaining interest. Half-arsedly going into a gym, using machines over free weights, not using correct form etc. leads to injury, no progression, and a bottoming out in motivation.
Ah, okay, I understand where you are coming from now. I thought you were posting extreme examples to try to discourage ordinary people from taking up regular weight training.

I agree that people will get much more out of weight training if they know what they are doing. But as long as they follow some very basic guidelines, such as "Pick 2 or 3 of the best exercises for each body part, do 6 to 12 reps per set, and 3 to 4 sets per exercise, use correct exercise form", I don't think they can really go too far wrong... (Here by "best exercises" I mean the classic exercises, many of which are compound movements)

Training in the 6 to 12 rep range means that the weights are light enough that it isn't really critical what percentage of your one-rep max you are using. So regular bodybuilding training doesn't require the precise planning of training weights that power lifting or olympic weightlifting training does.

I ike to train half of my body each workout and I keep alternating the two workouts, which works whether I train 3 or 4 times a week.

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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by boda » Sun Aug 28, 2016 5:58 pm

Cardio is important to do a few times a week also.

Incidentally, I used machines at the gym for years, because they were more convenient I guess, and then switched to free weights several years ago. Huge difference. I think that I was starting to get weaker with the machines, and getting more prone to injury.

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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Sun Aug 28, 2016 6:05 pm

Some kind of strength training is great for everyone, congrats on lowering the blood pressure.

It's becoming a thing they recommend for seniors too, a great way to fight/deal with arthritis.

I do mainly clubs and bodyweight exercises.

I stay away from lifting heavy anything these days, unless it's practicing throwing someone, as I have a back injury that is put at risk by the more hard core forms of weightlifting.
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by DNS » Sun Aug 28, 2016 6:26 pm

I like weightlifting, always have since very young days. It is a great exercise.

I like the clean and jerk, but mostly do leg presses and bench press. The squat, dead-lift and some other techniques are too hard on the back, at least for me.

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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by AlexMcLeod » Mon Aug 29, 2016 1:33 am

I used to lift back in the day, but now I mostly just do Golden Bridge and Horse Stance. I lift enough stuff at work to not need additional exercise.

If you like that kind of stuff though, I highly recommend The 4-Hour Body by Tim Ferriss. He did massive self-experimentation before writing the book.
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Rakz » Mon Aug 29, 2016 3:31 am

Interesting results, I think I should try it out myself. I'm not one of those weird western Buddhists with yellow fever that you talk about.

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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Anders » Mon Aug 29, 2016 6:58 am

David N. Snyder wrote:I like weightlifting, always have since very young days. It is a great exercise.

I like the clean and jerk, but mostly do leg presses and bench press. The squat, dead-lift and some other techniques are too hard on the back, at least for me.
Have you tried with a belt? Also, if you can do a full 'asian' squat, it should be better for the back (also the fact you can lift much less in full squat means less pressure on the spine of).

They are dangerous exercises when not done correctly, but I think also a primary tool for strengthening back, hips and glutes to actually cure weaknesses and problems there.
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Luke
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Re: recovered my health by weight training

Post by Luke » Tue Aug 30, 2016 10:09 pm

Rakz wrote:Interesting results, I think I should try it out myself. I'm not one of those weird western Buddhists with yellow fever that you talk about.
In that case, I will describe my simple little weight routine which helped me improve my health, in case anyone else can benefit from it. I will write a routine with specifice exercises to give a more clear example, but in reality, I will just do the exercises I feel like doing for the body parts I am training that day, although I try to make sure that at least the first exercise I do for a larger body part (quads, back, chest) is a mult-joint movement (these generally have a bigger effect on the body). I do 6 to 12 reps for most exercises, although for abs I will do higher reps (up to 20 or so). There is no need to push yourself to total muscular failure each set. Just push until you feel it's getting quite difficult and you are feeling the lactic acid burn quite a bit.

Workout 1 (Chest, Delts, Triceps, Quads, Calves, Abs)
4 sets incline barbell bench press
4 sets flat bench dumbbell presses
4 sets lying dumbbell tricep extensions
4 sets cable triceps pushdowns
4 sets dumbbell side laterals
3 sets standing dumbbell presses
4 or 5 sets barbell squats
4 sets standing calf raise machine
1 sets ball crunches
1 set twisting ball crunches
1 set lying leg lifts
1 set flutterkicks

Workout 2 (Back, Biceps, Traps, Rear Delts, Lower Back, Hamstrings)
4 sets barbell bent-over rows
4 sets lat pull-downs (or pull ups if you are really strong... not me... lol)
4 sets standing dumbbell curls
3 sets cable curls
3 sets dumbbell shrugs
3 sets dumbell rear laterals
4 sets Romanian deadlifts
3 sets hamstring curl machine

Just alternate workout 1 and 2 every two or three days as you have time. Try to train at least 3 times a week. You can do a little cardio after your workout on cardio machines at the gym if you want to, but it's not necessary. If you go for a short run once or twice a week on other days that can be fine, too.

As I said, you don't need to do the same exercises every time. Do the exercises that excite you that day. If you want to do bench presses on a flat bench first, fine. If you want to use a machine bench press first, fine. If you want to do dumbbell flyes as your 2nd chest exercise, fine.
If an exercise is feeling really great and you want to do 5 or 6 sets, fine. If you are tired and just want to do 3 sets of an exercise that day, fine.
Whatever, just work hard and then move on to the next exercise!

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