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Should I lose weight?

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Should I lose weight?

Postby bvbellomo » Thu Dec 02, 2010 2:28 pm

I am 6' tall, weigh 195lbs, and am climbing Chimborazo in 1 month. Last September, I weighed 175lbs and ran 2 marathons. I have since been eating like a horse, lifting lots weights, core work, and some aerobic (not as much, since it got cold and dark).

Now, I can cut way back on eating, and lift and run as much as I can. I will lose 15lbs of body fat, and not lose or gain much of anything else. Or I can keep eating, do more aerobics, lift more weight, and gain another 2lbs of muscle and be in better shape aerobically, but I won't lose fat. Which is better for my climb?

As far as lifts go, I do squats, deadlifts, bench and a variety of lighter work. Is there anything in particular I should focus on (or avoid)? I bench 190lbs, squat 230lbs, deadlift 275lbs.
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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby CBakwin » Thu Dec 02, 2010 3:05 pm

Sounds like you need to move into a more aerobic regimin. Keep the weights where they are, maybe a couple times a week, but rachet up the aerobic part, long runs if you can. It would be great if you could do a lon hike, with lots of vertical (not so easy in Ohio) at least once a week.
The weight issue depends on several things one of which is your age, which we do not have. If you are under 35 you should probably drop around 10 pounds (which should happen if you move into aerobic from lifting). If older I wouldn't so much worry about the weight thing, though eating like a horse is perhaps problematic in other areas..... fit and feeling good is what I would shoot for, wild weight swings are not really so good. Good Luck!
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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby ExcitableBoy » Thu Dec 02, 2010 3:06 pm

Being a little bit heavy for mountaineering is not necessarily a bad thing. Some folks lose appetite at altitude and traveling in certain parts of the world it is easy to pick up bugs that cause diarhea and nausea leading to weight loss. On one alpine climb I lost 15 pounds over three days of hard climbing (and two storm bound days), and I was lean to start with.

I would kick up the aerobic conditioning though. In my experience being very aerobically fit helps at altitude. YMMV. I found that the classic three running works outs a week serves me well in the mountains. That is one tempo run, one long slow distance run, and one interval workout. If you can, do your LSD on hilly terrain on trails and do your intervals on hills. Find a long, steep, steady hill and run up hill as hard as you can for 90 seconds then jog back down slowly for 3 1/2 minutes. Repeat for 6 - 9 intervals. IMHO, lifting heavy weights does not help climbing ability, especially if you are prone to bulk up. My suggestions would be to focus on doing more body weight type exercises such as:

pull ups (add weight with a vest or belt when you can do 20 easily)
push ups Grip large dumbells to raise your hands off the floor and elevate your feet when it becomes easy to do 40 or 50 regular push ups)
Dips
Hanging bent knee twisting leg rasises
Planks
Ball crunches
Wall sits for time (add hand held dumbells when it becomes easy to do two minutes)
Bending one legged squats with a light dumbell in none hand
Dumbell bench press using an exercise ball
Bent over dumbell row - don't lean on a bench or ball - this helps enage core muscles
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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby bvbellomo » Thu Dec 02, 2010 4:44 pm

I am 32 years old. I didn't mean to imply I don't exercise aerobically. In August, I was running 40-50 miles outside per week. I still probably get more aerobic exercise than anything else, it is hard run 20 hours each week when it is dark, cold and icy.

Most people eat light and do lots of aerobics to lose weight. That doesn't work for me, I am hungry, tired, my workouts are poor quality, and I don't lose weight. I can go 18-72 hours without eating at all and workout and feel just as good as if I am dieting, and lose weight much faster. Or I can eat a lot, and get a really good workout in.
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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby Ice9 » Thu Dec 02, 2010 4:58 pm

bvbellomo,

I was actually in a very similar situation as you about 5 years ago. I was quite into lifting and am 6 feet and at the time weighed 195 lbs. I was benching 285 and squatting 315. I decided to ditch the hard core lifting and focus on training for climbing and basically I switched to mostly body weight exercise (pull ups and push ups) and light weights (I bench my body weight and 1.25 times body weight for squats) and did lots of stair climbing. I dropped down to about 180 and I noticed a huge improvement in my rock climbing, mountaineering, and ice climbing.
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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby MoapaPk » Thu Dec 02, 2010 7:19 pm

No, but I personally think that you are too tall. Look at Sherpas; they are all short, and that's their secret.
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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby bvbellomo » Thu Dec 02, 2010 8:00 pm

I want to clarify the numbers for my lifts are not my 1 rep max. I don't think 1 rep max gives much benefit, the risk of injury is high, and I hate using a spotter I don't know. I don't do 1 rep max often. In most cases, I doing 5x5's (5 sets per day, 5 reps per set).
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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby CClaude » Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:02 pm

If you are trying to get firt for Chimbo, concentrate on the aerobic work in the last month (the trip down adn sitting around will be a taper in itself). If you have a good aerobic base I wouldn't worry about trying to loose weight in the last month, its really too late. When you are at altitude, you will probably loose a bit.

Just concentrate on fitness and eating properly and let the weight do what it will do.
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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby ScottyP » Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:32 pm

AS far as it Gets cold and dark early" I go out 2 or 3 nights a week to a local maountain and get in 2200' in just over 3 miles up, 6.6 mi roundtrip. Going by headlamp is fun, good workout and the mountains I am going to are cold anyway so I get to shake out some gear along the way. I went to Denali pretty fit and still lost over 16#s.
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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby lcarreau » Fri Dec 03, 2010 12:33 am

I need to lose weight! YOU need to lose weight! We ALL need to lose weight !!!

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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby Diver » Fri Dec 03, 2010 5:48 pm

Image

this is my weight graph. i went on 5-6k calorie diet first day of 2010 for my trip to North Col Everest in May 2010. i came back lighter then i was when i started. i'm 6'2". i usually struggle to gain weight. i was doing running, swimming and weight lifting the same time i was on my "diet". i ate till i was about to puke and i also felt like puking during the training. i'm glad i gained all that weight, otherwise i would probably not make it.
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Re: Should I lose weight?

Postby CClaude » Fri Dec 03, 2010 6:49 pm

As for being scared about loosing to much weight on a trip like that, I wouldn't be that worried. All of my trips have been self-supported (both in Peru and Nepal) and I am a scrawny-#$$ guy (5'11"/150lbs tops). Yes, I loose about the same weight as Diver showed, but it hasn't affected me that much (as I will sometimes carry double and triple loads). It does screw with my metabolism for a while when I get back but I figured if I gained 20lbs and lost 20lbs or stayed at my weight and lost 15lbs (and then gained it back when I got back home) it is what it is.
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