Author Topic: I can't keep up with her...  (Read 8178 times)

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Reason

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I can't keep up with her...
« on: December 08, 2011, 11:32:27 AM »
<BG> I've been working out my whole life. When I first met my wife she was not too interested in exercise regimens. She was active (rode her bike a lot, climbed mountains, walked everywhere etc) but didn't really go to the gym or follow a program.  I spend at least an hour at the gym every day. A few years ago, my wife expressed an interest in joining me. I agreed, although at first I thought that it would just be a passing fancy and she would quit in a few weeks. But she didn't. I wrote a plan for her back then to improve her conditioning and strength and she followed it enthusiastically and without complaining. Mind you, when she started she could not do a single push up. Now she is more than strong enough that she does not need her own program and just does everything I do side by side. (with lower weight when weights are involved, because she does not walk to bulk up.) </BG>

She now finishes the program I have created for myself easily. For the record, I am not weak. It's a challenging program that involves hanging toe touches, pull ups, 5 minute plank etc  Mostly it's bodyweight only stuff so we do the exact same exercise. I write out a new set of exercises every day to maximize muscle confusion. I have refined it it be harder and harder to try to keep her challenge level appropriate to her fitness level and her goals. Of course that means that I also had to do the same exercises. Here is my problem. I can't keep up anymore.

By the end of the workout, I am usually sweating bullets and can barely stand. She is totally fine. I have stood there and watched her technique to make sure she is not somehow making it easier than it should be, but she is not. Her technique is as good as I know how to teach it. She breathes right and has excellent form. So, I crawl off to the locker room and spend the next few minutes trying not to throw up, shower and walk out on shaking legs and repeat the process the next day. She seems to pretend not to notice how tired I get, because she knows it would embarrass me.

I don't want to slow her progress because I can't operate at her level. But if I write her a program that is more challenging than mine is it will make me feel pretty pathetic. Also the close connection from doing the same exercises will be lost. Does it make sense for me to find her a personal trainer that will be able to take her to the next level, even though it will mean we will no longer work out together?

Surianne

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #1 on: December 08, 2011, 11:44:05 AM »
Why not just ask her what she prefers?  Maybe the closeness of doing the shared workout is important to her, and she's okay with making less progress if it means doing the same thing you are.  Maybe she's completely fine with doing a different workout and would love to use a personal trainer.  Don't know until you ask!

Either way I think it's great you're trying to be considerate and make sure she enjoys herself and gets her best workout. 

alkira6

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2011, 11:48:40 AM »
I am confused - at what point are you working to maintain rather than gain progress? Is she at a point that she might not need a harder regimine?
 
Other than that (maybe not so helpful advise) kudos for being realistic about where you are. I am currently benched from working out because I wasn't.

Judah

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2011, 12:06:59 PM »
Let her decide whether it's more important to her to work out with you or to challenge herself with a trainer.

As an aside, I would encourage her to use heavier weights to challenge herself.  It's a myth that women will "bulk up" from using heavy weights.  Women don't have the hormones necessary for bulking up.
Ask for what you want. Let's be clear on this one:
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Strong hints don't work.
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Ruelz

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #4 on: December 08, 2011, 12:10:09 PM »
I agree...talk to her.  Her goal might be to work out with you.  If she has another fitness goal, that can also be addressed.  But I imagine you can still work out together.

And if she's 'better' than you?  I can see it bothering you, but I hope you don't let that become a big issue.  Just appreciate that she's that fit! :D
"The only difference between a rut and a grave is their dimensions." Ellen Glasgow

O'Dell

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #5 on: December 08, 2011, 12:14:31 PM »
Let her decide whether it's more important to her to work out with you or to challenge herself with a trainer.

As an aside, I would encourage her to use heavier weights to challenge herself.  It's a myth that women will "bulk up" from using heavy weights.  Women don't have the hormones necessary for bulking up.

Why can't she do both? Can she continue to work out with you doing the same exercises *and* take on some additional sessions with a trainer? Or maybe a trainer would have some tips on making the workouts you do together more challenging for her while keeping the spirit of the exercise the same.
Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes.
Walt Whitman

Virg

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2011, 10:43:01 AM »
Reason wrote:

"I don't want to slow her progress because I can't operate at her level. But if I write her a program that is more challenging than mine is it will make me feel pretty pathetic. Also the close connection from doing the same exercises will be lost. Does it make sense for me to find her a personal trainer that will be able to take her to the next level, even though it will mean we will no longer work out together?"

It would make the most sense to discuss it with her directly to find out what she wants to do about it.  What doesn't make sense is letting your worry about being "pathetic" drive you to overdo it or embarass you.  She's your wife, so I presume you can talk to her about very personal things, and there's no shame in not keeping up with another person as long as you're meeting your own goals (feeling pathetic because you're having trouble keeping up with her is a perfect example of letting machismo interfere with your workout).  Heck, you might very well find out that the close connection she gets from the exercise routine is worth more to her than taking it to the next level.  The best way to fidn out what she wants it to ask her.

Virg

Reason

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2011, 12:25:48 PM »
So.. after I talked to her it turns out that she would not even go to the gym without me. Despite her great progress, she is really just there to spend time with me. She also thinks that I am joking when I said I am struggling to keep up. I was unable to dissuade her of the notion. She said that she does not really care about getting to the next level and would not benefit from a personal trainer if I wasn't also there.

If it was me, I would probably get bored of a workout very quickly if there was no progress and all that I was doing is maintain a certain level of fitness. I suspect that may be the case for her, but I will just have to take her at her word and see. Hopefully she doesn't get bored.

As far as women being unable to bulk up even if they use weights, that is only partially true. Men certainly have higher levels of testosterone and can build large bulky muscles more quickly and easily, but that does not mean women can't. When women use weights for toning and sculpting muscle the program they likely adapt is very different from my weightlifting program, which is designed specifically to increase muscle size. Since my wife does the same exercises as I do, she will generally use far lighter weights, and if she did otherwise her body would change, which she doesn't want.

O'Dell

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2011, 12:47:55 PM »
If it was me, I would probably get bored of a workout very quickly if there was no progress and all that I was doing is maintain a certain level of fitness. I suspect that may be the case for her, but I will just have to take her at her word and see.

I think you are doing the right thing by taking her at her word. Different people have different motivations. I have no trouble believing her. One of my husband's hobbies is one that I wouldn't pick up for myself, but enjoy enough that I'll tag along to a convention occasionally to spend time with him and to see what's going on in that world.
Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes.
Walt Whitman

bopper

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2011, 12:50:57 PM »

If it was me, I would probably get bored of a workout very quickly if there was no progress and all that I was doing is maintain a certain level of fitness. I suspect that may be the case for her, but I will just have to take her at her word and see. Hopefully she doesn't get bored.


Your wife is a smart woman. She gets to spend time with you and work out and you work out as well!  It is very important that you spend recreational time together and you are lucky that she  enjoys spending time with you doing something that you like.

tiff019

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #10 on: December 09, 2011, 02:20:16 PM »
For the non-weighted exercises/body weight exercises, perhaps have her do more reps? I know you said she's not particularly interested in 'getting to the next level' but that may help her get a better workout in while still being able to spend time with you and allow you to still do the same workout. Just different reps.

Or perhaps do similar sets/rotations so you are still together, but she can do toning type exercises rather than body building ones. Her going up 3-5lbs for reps shouldn't build up muscle too big either.

=) tif

Calypso

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2011, 05:01:14 PM »
It sounds like she's in fantastic shape, so "just working out to maintain" her current level would be a very worthy goal.

I'm betting she loves having the time with you. I don't quite see why you can't be working out in the same place at the same time but  not necessarily doing the exact same routine---if you want to do something less or different, that's nothing to be embarrassed about.

And I'm a bit worried about you working out to the level of feeling sick every day. A hard work out is great, but remember you can compromise your immune system if you OVER-work your body. (Are you weight training every day? Don't muscles need recovery/repair time to be increased?)

Reason

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2011, 05:25:47 PM »
It sounds like she's in fantastic shape, so "just working out to maintain" her current level would be a very worthy goal.

I'm betting she loves having the time with you. I don't quite see why you can't be working out in the same place at the same time but  not necessarily doing the exact same routine---if you want to do something less or different, that's nothing to be embarrassed about.

And I'm a bit worried about you working out to the level of feeling sick every day. A hard work out is great, but remember you can compromise your immune system if you OVER-work your body. (Are you weight training every day? Don't muscles need recovery/repair time to be increased?)

A valid concern. In addition to basic whole body exercises, I rotate major muscle groups so that they each have a chance to recover while I exercise something else. I also rest fully on Sundays. I've been training since I was 6 years old so my recovery time is actually pretty good and I am not above using fighter tricks like jumping in a tub of ice to increase healing speed. Basically, my workout plan is not random, even if it is getting to be above my capacity.

Unfortunately I am not yet able to work out without feeling sick. A month ago I was diagnosed with asthma and diabetes (hereditary) all at once so it's quite difficult for me to complete workout routines that were at one point quite easy. I was very fit my whole life so stopping really feels like throwing in the towel. Obviously I checked with my doctors as to what is safe for me to do and I take glucose tablets before a workout to have some excess sugar to burn off but it's still not the greatest feeling in the world. But that's neither here nor there.

The point is I can't keep up with my wife:( I think without the forum I would never really talk to her about my problem. Machismo would get in the way.. I was really glad to find out she doesn't even care. So thanks for that.

VorFemme

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #13 on: December 09, 2011, 10:15:52 PM »
Remind yourself that you have medical problems - diabetes and asthma will impact your healing, your energy, your breathing, and your stamina.  She wants to spend time with you - enjoy that time together. 

See your doctor to see if there are any adjustments that YOU need to make to your exercise routine while you adjust to your NEW medical issues................

Ignoring things doesn't make them go away...........learning how to handle them will keep you healthier longer - and a good exercise program is never wrong (according to every doctor I've ever had).
Let sleeping dragons be.......morning breath......need I say more?

blueberry.muffin

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Re: I can't keep up with her...
« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2011, 04:08:00 PM »
Dude... she's your wife.

With this post and the last few threads you've started, you seem to be coming to the forum for advice on how to approach your wife with various questions, concerns, problems... in short, how to talk to her.

But she's your wife.

No one should know you better than her. I can't even wrap my mind around the idea that you'd rather speak with a bunch of strangers than your wife over not just one, but several issues that concern no one other than you and your wife.

Quite frankly, I'd be horrified if I discovered my husband didn't know how to approach me over multiple topics that troubled him. Out of anyone else in the world he knows me best; he loves me best. There would be serious issues with our marriage if he felt he couldn't talk to me about problems that are as benign as yours.

I'm not going to comment on anything beyond this; I recognize it's a harsh post, and likely an unwelcome opinion. But I do think it's something that needed to be said.