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It seems to me that us geeks are constantly in search of some clever exercise program to get in shape with, but the simple and unavoidable truth is that all it takes to get in shape is going to the gym at least 3 times per week to lift weights and do some sort of cardio, and being consistent.

All these wacky techniques and programs we find are just distractions, and no better than the latest ab machine you see on infomercials at 3am, which by the way would work great but do nothing to help people with the one thing they actually need: motivation to be consistent.




the simple and unavoidable truth is that all it takes to get in shape is going to the gym at least 3 times per week to lift weights and do some sort of cardio, and being consistent.

It helps far more to eat less, since you can certainly eat enough to offset any reasonable amount of exercise. Also, I'm not sure if you've noticed, but lots of people do go to the gym a regularly and it doesn't help. There were some news stories recently around this ( http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nhis/earlyrelease/earlyrelease2... ), which has buried in it the interesting fact that Americans are exercising more, and also fatter. So, exercise not the silver bullet.

What we really need is just to eat less. We mostly do not have the option to be active all day nearly every day as our forebears did, even up until a few decades ago, because so many people have so much to do that requires being in a single spot for hour after hour every day.

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You need to eat less if you are fat and need to lose weight. If you aren't overweight, you don't need to eat less. Even if you are skinny you still need to exercise if you want to be "in shape."

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Yes, thanks for pointing this out. I'm an ex-skinny guy who got in shape by being consistent, and my challenge was always trying to put on weight, not burn it off. I will preface my original comment by saying "provided you are on a healthy diet."

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Sure, but someone who is skinny and wants to get in shape is 98% of the way there already -- they won't actually have any difficulty. Losing fat is the hard part of getting in shape, and not coincidentally, is needful for the vast majority of Americans.

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You don't understand how hard it is to gain weight when you're perpetually skinny. Nobody wants to be really skinny, just like nobody wants to be really fat. What we're all aiming for is that Men's Health magazine look where we have a muscled physique and very little fat. I actually think it's easier to get there from being fat than from being skinny, and don't think that just because us skinny guys get to eat whatever we want it makes it more enjoyable. When your trying to gain weight, eating becomes a chore and it gets expensive.

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You don't understand how hard it is to gain weight when you're perpetually skinny.

You're quite right, I don't understand how that could be hard. :)

When your trying to gain weight, eating becomes a chore and it gets expensive.

I can understand the "gets expensive" part. Also, I guess if you're not actually eating things you want to eat, I could understand the "chore" part, since there's only so much health food I'd want to eat in a day. If you were really just trying to gain weight, though, you could just eat those things that you can never get enough of (whatever they are for you), and easily pack away six or eight thousand calories a day, right? You'd have to do hard labor all day, like a farmer, to burn that much off.

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Gaining weight is indeed not very hard or expensive. Just drink a glass of olive oil every day. I doubt mark meant gaining fat with gaining weight, though.

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5BX isn't 'wacky'. It was designed by the RCAF to ensure airmen could remain in top physical condition without the need for fitness equipment.

Consistency is at the core of the program and it ramps up slowly to build good daily habits with deceptively easy exercises. Challenge comes quickly after those habits are in place.

I found it the perfect program while in the startup phase of my company. Taking an hour or two out mid-day to go to a gym was impossible during that time, but going into another room to exercise 11 minutes each day was no trouble at all.

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Well, I guess what I mean by wacky is unusual, unique, outside of the norm, etc. It just seems like instead of just working out regardless of what the program is, people often times get jazzed up about some new exciting approach they hear about on the internet like 5BX or P90X or 300's kettle-ball training only to stop doing it after a few weeks because in the end it's just hard work like any other routine.

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