Hack my resistance to weight training

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created May 15, 2012 at 10:29 PM

I am female, 40, with PCOS and insulin resistance.

Several years ago I lost 100 pounds by eating lower carb. I could have stood to lose another 50+ more, but at the time I was having trouble embracing meat so I just focused on maintaining. Which I have done for years.

I'm now working on losing the rest.

I'm not having trouble with food now. Some days I happily eat only meat/fish/eggs and green veggies, plus a couple of tablespoons of heavy cream in my coffee. Other days I add a little cheese or peanut butter, or occasionally berries or dark chocolate. Once a week or so I will eat a meal that is more carby (this past weekend was sushi), but I am well aware of what type & amount will feel ok, and what will have me feeling like crap. I stay away from the latter.

I walk a lot. I do HIIT 2 - 3 times per week.

I'm having trouble getting started on weight training. At the moment I'm just focusing on body weight exercises, and exercises that I can do at home. In the fall I will be more able to go to the gym. My plan for now is to do squats, planks, push ups, and inverted rows.

But I just keep slacking. I'm not sure why. I don't mind the interval training, despite the muscle fatigue and sweating. The weight training, though, perhaps it is the muscle pain/discomfort that bothers me. I get irritated, even angry, when I do them. Has anyone else had this? Is there a way to change my mindset, or do I just need to suck it up?

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8 Answers


on May 15, 2012
at 10:47 PM

You are probably struggling because at the start it is actually hard to get into, particularly body weight exercises because you can't adjust this like you could with a machine/free weights

I think you just have to persist and maybe look at what you're eating before you lift. I find a boiled egg first thing in the morning then lifting 30 mins later helps me do a decent workout, then eat some protein/carbs/fat after a shower to recover

But yea I think it's a case of it's hard, that's why you're finding it hard



on May 16, 2012
at 10:11 PM

I feel for you. Whenever I try to exercise just to exercise, other than the two years I did pilates (which I still love, but lying down on the floor alone only lasts for a few seconds before a certain 3 year old jumps on me and insists on wrestling). I get annoyed and feel like I'm wasting time if there isn't more of an end product than just feeling stronger. I'm not competitive at all so a gym isn't much motivation and is a turnoff. I need to exercise with a constructive goal like riding my bike to work, walking to the store, doing yard work, cleaning the house, building something. Craigslist often has free bricks, do you need any pathways in your yard or know anyone who wants a free brick pathway because moving and laying bricks is a good weight lifting workout? Building a stone wall is good too. Pushing a wheel barrow and shoveling sand or dirt is also excellent.

If you need to feel accountable and don't have the drive to push yourself you could volunteer with your local parks department and help rehabilitate trails, or carry buckets of gravel for building box stairs on hills, or pull weeds. Or work with Habitat for Humanity or Americore building and renovating houses.

I think there is a certain hurdle of inertia to get over too because it does hurt and is annoying learning how to use new muscles, but once acclimated I feel like I'm missing something and don't feel quite right if I don't use my muscles enough.



on May 16, 2012
at 08:38 AM

When I started, I just fixed two days a week and did it. And I still do it this way. No discussion, no excuses, vacations excepted.



on May 16, 2012
at 07:51 PM

How about a training partner to hold you accountable? How about committing to do it twice a week for a month, no excuses? Don't wait to get "in the mood". Make a short term commitment and stick to it. Reevaluate after a month. Physiologically, there's good evidence that women weight training 2-3 times a week can hold onto LBM while dieting and consuming a moderate amount of protein. IF you're IR you probably don't want to consume large amounts of protein. I've found Zyflamend is a good herbal anti-inflammatory. It helps if your often sore.



on May 16, 2012
at 01:15 PM

Do you warm up before a session? Going in cold is really hard. You need to get your blood pumping first. I find it helps a lot. I just do five minutes of light cardio as a warm-up. If you are at home and you don't have any equipment, you could maybe go for a brisk walk.

Working out at home is indeed hard. At a gym the setting provides motivation. At home you don't have that. You will have to find some motivation from within.

(Are you sure you want to be eating peanut butter? Don't you know it is full of lectins?)



on May 16, 2012
at 12:09 PM

I can tell you it's a lot easier to get motivated to lift weights if you have people to lift with. This could be a trainer, a local group of meatheads that you know, or just a gym buddy. Either way, if you want to lift weights and find the motivation lacking, it's a good plan to find other people that can help you get, and stay motivated.


on May 16, 2012
at 11:54 AM

Not everybody enjoys weight training, no point in forcing yourself to do something that you don't enjoy. Find another athletic activity that you do enjoy, and do that instead.


on May 16, 2012
at 11:05 AM

You don't want to make sure you're making things easy for yourself, as easy as necessary so that you can do the whole movement properly. It doesn't have to hurt, although there will likely be discomfort for muscles unused to it - however it hurts more when using the wrong muscles from bad form. So try and minimize the load, concentrate on it as a technical exercise (there's plenty of info out there about both modifications and technique - not all of it helpful) and just add an extra rep or increase the difficulty each time. By the time it gets difficult you should already have developed a habit and a degree of confidence that should help. Not to mention stengthened and balanced out all those little stabilizing muscles that make life easier.

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