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Getting Back Into Shape While At The Office? 1488

Posted by timothy
from the woody-allen-in-bananas dept.
rhuntley12 writes "Personally, I sit at a computer desk for 10 hours a day with very little actual work. I've also started to get a little belly and out of shape. I know it's real bad in my office, especially with all the beer I consume. What do you do to stay in shape? Any secrets? Recently I've started to do sit ups, push ups, and running up and down the stairs. I get a lot of odd looks, and would prefer something that doesn't make the whole office stare at me. I've looked through some websites with equipment, but it's all serious equipment I can't/won't lug into work. Any suggestions?"
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Getting Back Into Shape While At The Office?

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  • by krog (25663) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:11PM (#6502421) Homepage
    Eureka! I've got it.

    We can switch lives. I bike everywhere, including to work, so exercise is omnipresent. How about I take your job drinking beer ten hours a day, and you get some exercise. To keep it fair we can split our pay evenly. You can even fuck my girlfriend sometimes (again, good exercise).

    Now, does your workplace have taps, or is it all bottled beer? Domestic or imported? Is there a good bitter or porter there? I must know these things before we continue.

    You're welcome.
    • by chowdmouse (155597) <ed.murphy@sstar.com> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:17PM (#6502509)
      Shucks! Beats the hell out of Atkins. Send picture of girlfriend and bike. We'll talk.
    • by Illserve (56215) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:21PM (#6502615)
      He's got a good point. Bike ride to work.

      It works for me. Saves me money in car gas and parking and depending on how far you have to go, takes the same amount of time as driving.

      Also, you make the earth cleaner, or some crap like that, but who cares. This is about YOU.
    • by TerryAtWork (598364) <research@aceretail.com> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:23PM (#6502649)
      This is a great message, however, if you're actually getting laid you have no business on /. , so I'd like to respectfully ask you to leave.

  • by PantyChewer (557598) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:12PM (#6502425)
    Eat less, Shit more
    • by opti6600 (582782) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:20PM (#6502597)
      Something I discovered is replacing soda (or in your case beer), with bottled water. It's just as convenient, and is more filling and actually serves a purpose.

      Also, a high water intake (just as long as you don't start killing off your kidneys) will help to detox you a bit, always nice in cubeville.
      • by autechre (121980) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:51PM (#6503138) Homepage
        Most places in the U.S., you're perfectly fine drinking water from the tap. I heard ("conventional wisdom") that spring water loses any befirts after having been out of the ground for 2 hours. I haven't researched this, but it doesn't taste any different than good tap water to me.

        I bring a plastic cup to work and refill it from the water fountain. Much cheaper*, and has the added benefit of making you GET UP every so often.

        If you get bored of water all day (understandable), you can try fruit juice. But please, do REAL fruit juice and not colored hummingbird food. Juicy Juice and Ocean Spray 100% are my favorites. Also, don't spend all day drinking it or 1) you'll go broke, and 2) food will seem to pass straight through you without slowing down.

        High water intake, OTOH, is a very good idea, and most people don't drink nearly enough. It's something like 2 quarts per day for an adult. May sound strange, but if your urine is clear, you're set.

        * For those who haven't read YMOYL, it has the sensible notion of a "real hourly wage". Deduct the money you spend on work clothes, eating lunch out, transportation, everything, from your salary. See what you're really earning.
    • by gosand (234100) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:26PM (#6502716)
      Eat less, Shit more

      Simply removing a comma and a word gives more advice too...

      Eat less shit

    • by Axiom_1 (564687) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @05:43PM (#6504753)
      Beer has a lot of calories. Seriously - check your nutritional information labels.

      Hard liquor is much better for you. In fact, if you drink enough right after a meal, you can actually get negative calories from it...

  • Eh? (Score:3, Funny)

    by MisterFancypants (615129) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:12PM (#6502427)
    Your also started to get a little belly and out of shape

    I have? I haven't noticed. Do these pants make my ass look big?

  • Get up and walk. (Score:5, Informative)

    by doppleganger871 (303020) <nothanksNO@SPAMnocontact.org> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:12PM (#6502430) Homepage Journal
    Simple. Get up and walk around. Contrary to all the paid ads on tv... just burning calories will take weight off. You don't have to target yer stomach if you wanna lose a gut. Targeting exersize is for building/toning muscle groups.
    • by Jucius Maximus (229128) <zyrbmf5j4x@snRED ... com minus distro> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:19PM (#6502579) Homepage Journal
      "Contrary to all the paid ads on tv... just burning calories will take weight off. "

      And lay off the carbohydrates too. This might start a flame war (Atkins diet arguments and such.) You should lay of the bread, chips, orange juice, and other things that have a lot of carbs. This stuff gets absorbed by your body and makes you fat. Actual fat is more or less just passing through and makes it into the toilet with your centrum multivitamin.

      Cutting back on the carbohydrates and stepping up on the exercise is really what makes the difference.

      Now, would anyone with a better understanding of dietary values care to correct me?

      • Re:Get up and walk. (Score:4, Informative)

        by Toasty981 (43996) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:34PM (#6502873) Homepage
        I find the carbohydrates vs. fats arguments silly. It's all about calories. It's simple: If you take in more than you burn per day, no matter what the source, you gain weight.

        That being said, there's a big difference in carbohydrates. Avoid refined sugars (manufactured, like cake)if you need sweet foods and stay with the natural carbs found in sweet things like fruit and veggies.

        Also stick with complex carbohydrates/starches, found in cereals, grain, bread, pasta, etc. They're healthy, and if you keep your diet in check, you'll lose weight and be feeding good stuff to your body.

        Of course, a lot of the above doesn't apply if you go the weightlifting route, but that's an entirely different argument.
        • Re:Get up and walk. (Score:5, Informative)

          by cybermage (112274) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:15PM (#6503529) Homepage Journal
          I find the carbohydrates vs. fats arguments silly. It's all about calories. It's simple: If you take in more than you burn per day, no matter what the source, you gain weight.

          Not necessarily. Here's the rationale for low-carb diets in a nutshell:

          1. In order to store calories as fat, the body needs insulin to get the sugar from the blood into the cells.
          2. Most carbohydrates drive up the blood-sugar level causing the release of insulin.
          3. If you greatly reduce or eliminate carbs from your diet, you have a very hard time storing excess calories due to the short supply of insulin.

          So,

          4. If you eliminate or reduce carbs, you have a very hard time creating new fat storage.

          The trick, then, is to manage to burn existing stores. On a low/no-carb diet, any excersize that triggers the burning of fat should be permanent weight loss.

          You are correct in saying that you need to burn more than you consume to lose weight, but a low-carb diet gives you a net to work with. If you consume too many calories in a day, you won't lose weight, but you won't gain either (as long as the excess isn't carbs.)

          This advice comes to you from someone who's managed to lose 114 lbs dieting and has kept it off. I got BIG sitting at the computer. I can tell you that there's no substitute for excersize, but the right restrictions on intake can help a lot. Any Slashdotters who want some serious advice/support from someone who's been their, just drop me an email.
          • Re:Get up and walk. (Score:4, Informative)

            by AKAImBatman (238306) <akaimbatmanNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @05:15PM (#6504433) Homepage Journal
            Except for the fact that the "Insulin" thinking is false. See this article:

            http://venus.nildram.co.uk/veganmc/insulin.htm [nildram.co.uk]

            See, the problem is that insulin response doesn't actually correspond with Glucose levels as commonly thought. Instead, the body responds with how much insulin it *thinks* it will need. Thus, fish produces more insulin than white pasta! This of course leads back to the argument "What about the Eskimo's? They eat a heavy meat diet with very little carbs."

            The Eskimos are interesting because common thinking says that they should have rampant heart disease. Yet they don't. Doctors have been studying it and now believe that there are two factors:

            1. Eskimos get *lots* of exercise. Westerners are getting less and less exercise every year.
            2. Fish contains Omega-3, a substance that is believed to help break down and flush oils from the body. Thus the new research that says fish once or twice a month is good for you.

            What's really interesting is that these days we think of heart disease as clogging of arteries. Yet before 1910, this form of heart disease was practically unheard of! Between 1910 and 1930, the number of deaths from clogged arteries went from practically nothing to ~300,000 per year! So, what's the most obvious conclusion? It's the lifestyle stupid. Exercise more, eat fewer saturated fats/oils and simple sugars and you'll live a long and healthly life.
        • Re:Get up and walk. (Score:5, Informative)

          by bmajik (96670) <matt@mattevans.org> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @05:29PM (#6504605) Homepage Journal
          your first statement doesn't jive with the second. :)

          you rightly say to avoid refined sugars, and that different carbs do different things to you.

          but you first said that its all about calories.

          thats about as empty as saying "the key to scoring with women, is the _intercourse_"

          then the third thing you say - stick with starches - is a baaaaad idea.

          here's what i currently understand to be the case: (based on the book "The Sugar Busters Diet", recommended to me by my doctor to try and avoid the onset of Type2 diabeties)

          the majority of fat on our bodies comes from sugars. Eating any food with a high glycemic index will elevate the blood sugar level in the body. The pancreas secretes insulin to lower the blood sugar level. Insulin is the hormone that tells fat cells to open the gates and suck as much sugar out of the blood as possible.

          See many thin diabetics ?

          refined sugars and fast-burning carbs cause a glycemic reaction that effectively means your blood sugar level spikes. the body must gush insulin into the bloodstream to back that away into fat cells as fast as possible, because there's no way you could legitimately burn the energy stored in all that sugar in time to regulate your blood sugar back down via consumption. oh, theres a nice vicious cycle effect here as well. See, the more insulin you have in your blood, the more your body's cells are likely to develop insulin resistance. So you already need elevated insulin to quell the shitty food you just ate. Then you need to supplement that insulin because your body responds to it at a reduced rate. the pancreas eventually gives up, running at a dually accelerated rate. poor food choices are a 1-2 punch that basically guarantee type2 diabeties in people, which is why 30 and 40 year olds are getting it in droves.

          the shitty thing about this is polluting your bloodstream with a glycemic spike means that all subsequent food you eat - no matter how healthy - goes straight to fat until the suger level is under control. the helpful, natural sugars in fruits? - straight to fat, because you've still got more blood sugar than you can handle.

          Starch incidentally is one of the worst things to eat, because its turned into sugar by the body in an extremely fast and efficient manner. A baked potato is equivalent to between 50 and 85% of its volume of table sugar, from a blood sugar perspective. Nobody would knowingly eat that much refined sugar!!

          Non diet pop is the absolute worst, however. It is literally bottled poison. There are more than 10 teaspoons of sugar in a can of coke. There is infact so much sugar in there that they salt it up a little to balance the taste. (why do you think pop is high in sodium ?)

          case in point: on the nutrition card at burger king, they list the nutrition info for a extra-king size Coke. its 950 calories, and 108 GRAMS of sugar.

          lets do some math - 108 grams is a tenth of a kilogram, and a kilogram is 2.2 pounds, so 108 grams is .22 pounds, or a QUARTER POUND. There is a QUARTER POUND of sugar in a king-size coke from burger king. Nobody in their right mind would knowingly add a quarter pound of table sugar to a beverage. the refined foods industry in the US is doing its population a huge disservice. Unfortuneately, heavily sweetened foods taste better, so people buy them. But the costs are staggering. obesity will replace smoking as the #1 killer in america within the next few years. Childhood obesity is estimated at almost 50%.

          THe faster you cut all high glycemic foods out of your diet, the happier you'll be. (you being the "general you")
      • by crazyphilman (609923) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:04PM (#6503359) Journal
        I'm not going to argue the point, because you have a good one, but I'll add a warning:

        If you're one of the 800 out of 100,000 people who are susceptible to gout, you'd better stick to a high-carb, low-protein diet or you'll be in a world of hurt in no time. I went on Atkins and lost thirty pounds. So far, so good, right? But, one morning I woke in agony. The high protein brought on a horrible attack of gout, which is a form of arthritis affecting the large joints of the foot, and often comes on overnight with very little warning. I felt like someone was driving red hot spikes through my big toe's largest joint, and within a few days I couldn't even walk. It's about a week and a half later, and I'm hobbling around, yoda-style with a wooden cane, but at least the pain has gone way down (I'm a vegetarian now, and I'm drinking huge amounts of water, cranberry juice, and cherry juice, which seems to be helping).

        GOUT. And, I'm only 32!!!

        Anyway, you won't know you're susceptible until you have an attack, and if you have an attack, you'll wish you were dead for at least a week or two. It's really, really horrible. The pain is really intense.

      • by siskbc (598067) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:18PM (#6503568) Homepage
        No offense, but you're way off on the carb stuff..

        And lay off the carbohydrates too. This might start a flame war (Atkins diet arguments and such.) You should lay of the bread, chips, orange juice, and other things that have a lot of carbs. This stuff gets absorbed by your body and makes you fat.

        Yes, excess carbs do get turned to fat. However, so do excess protein and excess fat. The difference is that carbs and protein are 4 cal/gram, while fat is 9 cal/gram. You do the math.

        Actual fat is more or less just passing through and makes it into the toilet with your centrum multivitamin.

        Don't know who told you that but they didn't know what they were talking about. Fat is readily absorbed. Notice how people who eat a lot of fried food get fat? That's right. Fat makes you fat. Shocking, I know, but it's true. The only way fat isn't completely absorbed is to eat a ton of it really quickly. The problem is that 1) your body is then absorbing fat as fast as it possibly can, which is enough to make you morbidly obese, and 2) any fat in your poo gives you nasty diarrhea, which I'm assuming isn't an attractive solution. Otherwise, pretty much all fat is absorbed.

        Cutting back on the carbohydrates and stepping up on the exercise is really what makes the difference.

        Excercise is of course good - particularly intensive cardio, as the longer it takes you to get your heart rate back to normal after excercise, the more calories you burn. Additionally, doing a lot of frequent cardio can raise your metabolism. Think of it as excercising when you aren't excercising. Good deal, eh?

        Regarding the carbs fiasco - I guarantee you, if I eat 1 pound of carbs, and you eat 1 pound of fat, you will put on twice the weight as you consume (more than) twice the calories. The mitigating factor is that simple carbs are broken down much faster. Put a cracker in your mouth, and within seconds it tastes sweet - because it's broken down into simple sugar before it even hits your stomach, and simple sugar is readily absorbed like nothing else.

        That is bad because eating a lot of simple carbs spikes your blood sugar, causing your body to release a ton of insulin. However, because it was a short-term sugar spike, you now have too much insulin, causing blood sugar to plummet. At the same time, your stomach has emptied, making you really hungry. That's why simple carbs are bad.

        So what to do? To lose weight, you have to eat fewer calories than you use, of course. Naturally, that means regulating your blood sugar and keeping yourself non-hungry with the least calories possible. A nearly all-fat diet is bad because, while you're satisfied (fat digests slowly), you also consume massive amounts of calories. Simple carbs are the opposite - each binge is small, but you're hungry every 10 minutes. The best recommendation is a good amount of protein, complex carbs, and a diet with 30% of calories from fat. That way, you don't eat too often, and you don't get 2000 calories/meal, either.

        Complex carbs are things like whole grains and such. So brown, whole-grain bread is good. If you like pasta and rice, again get the whole-grain stuff, and cook it less time than usual - cooking carbs in water breaks them down, effectively digesting them. The more they digest in the pot, the quicker they are absorbed in your body.

        Bottom line is the Atkins diet is dangerous, containing way too much saturated fat, cholesterol, and calories from fat, and too much protein can be bad on the kidneys. Eat a balanced diet low in simple carbs, substituting complex carbs instead, and you'll do well.

    • Re:Get up and walk. (Score:4, Interesting)

      by TopShelf (92521) * on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:24PM (#6502689) Homepage Journal
      I worked with a technical manager who did just that - for lunch, he'd walk about a mile to Subway, do the Jared thing, then walk back. Over the course of a year, he probably dropped 100 pounds. It was amazing to see.
  • by gatkinso (15975) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:13PM (#6502443)
    ...there are some super hot chicks there, it breaks up the day, and I get a moderate workout in. I only stay for about 45 minutes, but I guess it is better than nothing.

    • Amen! If there is no gym close by, get up early and work out in the morning. Get some dumbbells and do a 15 minute routine. Mix this up with mornings of situps and pushups. Follow that with a jog. Work up to 2-3 miles a day. No records here--take it easy. In the Army they call it the airborne shuffle: 8.5-9 minute miles. Even us older guys can handle that. If you don't like running or think winters are too cold, buy a Nordic Track. They take some getting used to but are great! At a modest pace, t
    • Going to the gym during lunch is great advice. You can get in an effective weight/cardio workout in 45 minutes by lifting weights with less time between sets. Currently I'm doing a 4 days/week split weight plan, then jog on Wed(if I need to kill some energy) and one of the days of the weekend.
  • drink water! (Score:5, Informative)

    by Comsn (686413) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:13PM (#6502447)
    if you drink pop all day, all of the sugar accumulates. try drinking water instead. you should lose a couple pounds after a week or two.
    • Re:drink water! (Score:5, Informative)

      by MyPantsAreOnFire! (642687) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:39PM (#6502959)
      This is a perfect way to start. There are two ways to reduce your un-healthiness: 1. Excercise 2. Eat well. Because of your long hours and potential lack of motivation, exercise may not be possible for you. So, change your diet!

      1. Soda/Pop is terrible. It's like drinking liquid sugarcane that transforms into belly fat almost instantly (when you don't exercise.) If you can't live without caffiene, they have caffienated water available.

      2. Watch what you snack on. I know that when I code, I get cravings to buy every candy bar in the store across the street and eat it. One way I get around this is drinking TONS of water -- if your stomach is full of water, you won't want to snack.

      3. Bring a semi-healthy lunch to work. Don't go out to eat with everyone else when they do a mass exodus to {Wendy's, McDonalds, Burger King, Taco Bell, etc.}. Even if your lunch is bringing a frozen microwave burrito from home, it's still 100 times better than eating a double-double from In and Out.

      4. Switch to Light beer (Ugh). Yes, I know, it sucks, but it will save you in the long run in two ways: 1. light beer has half of the calories of regular beer, and 2. usually light beers are domestics, so they tend to cost less at bars and the store than pricey (yet oh so tasty) imported beers.

      5. Exercise. What I've found personally is that you can eat buckets of crisco all day but if you run marathons when you get home, you'll burn all that fat off. If you really want to eat and drink whatever you want, go home and run around the block.

      Hope this helps. Good luck!
    • Re:drink water! (Score:3, Informative)

      by mahler3 (577336)
      if you drink pop all day, all of the sugar accumulates. try drinking water instead.

      Water is good. Diet soda is good-- or at least neutral. Non-diet soda is bad. Why?

      Four words: High Fructose Corn Syrup. Most sweetened drinks (and many food items, from catsup to yogurt) are actually sweetened with HFCS rather than regular sugar. This is what makes you fat. [mh-18.com] Read the label first. Then drink water instead.

      Yes, I know; the poster didn't mention soda; I'm assuming that the beer tap isn't actually av

    • Simple tips (Score:5, Informative)

      by pla (258480) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:56PM (#6503214) Journal
      if you drink pop all day, all of the sugar accumulates.

      I agree with that one 100%. At my previous workplace, we had free soda fountains for the engineers, and I would literally consume up to a gallon of Mountain Dew each day. Switching to diet Dew, though I had to buy it myself, cut literally 1500 calories per day from my diet, and it didn't "hurt" (in the sense of having to go without something) at all.


      As a fairly typical geek, I tend to dislike most sports (particularly those involving "teams" - stupid primate dominance rituals). I also cannot stand going to the gym - You have to deal with too many people unless you go at obscene times of the day, bad smells, paying attention to which muscle groups you work, and at least one of my friends who go almost always have some gym-related injury they need to work around (Pulled neck, crunched knee, hyperextended bicep, blah blah blah). And, I personally consider going to a gym just incredibly boring.

      You might, however, find that you enjoy an alternative form of exercise.

      Personally, I enjoy hiking, and just getting out at least once each weekend for a good 4-6 hour hike will both keep you toned and keep the weight down.

      Alternatively, swimming burns massive amounts of calories, and you don't even need to sweat while doing it.

      As another nice alternative, though it does tend to involve a small number of other people, try taking up a martial art (a "real" one, not cardio-kickboxing or one of the cheesy pseudo martial arts designed just to give you an aerobic workout). I formerly took Kempo (and will again, when I find a good dojo in the area to which I moved), and found it quite enjoyable. You'll find yourself in the best shape of your life, it won't bore you nearly as much as going to the gym, since it engages your mind as well as your body, and as a side effect you'll gain the ability to defend yourself if you ever have a need to do so.


      The real "secret", though, doesn't count as a secret at all. Limit your caloric intake and/or get more exercise. No other "fad" will help you, they all just find ways to hide the discomfort of denying our genetic predisposition to eating as much as possible in case of a famine. Find something you enjoy, and do it. Try a lot of different activities, you must like something. And find little ways to burn more calories during the day (walk/bike to work and/or lunch, if possible; Always take the stairs rather than the elevator; walk to a coworker's cubical rather than calling or emailing someone 50 feet away).
    • Re:drink water! (Score:3, Informative)

      by FreeUser (11483)
      I used to be 50 pounds heavier, and can attest than switching from pop to water (or at least to sugar free pop) will get you 2 or 3 pounds.

      Cut potato chips out of your diet and you'll drop another 5-10 pounds.

      Go on the Atkins diet, and you'll dump a huge amount of weight in a short time (I dropped 40 pounds with absolutely no effort whatsoever). Be advised that once you go off the diet you will spike back up ... however, if you keep your carb count under control (without being fascist about it) and eat l
  • run (Score:5, Informative)

    by AssFace (118098) <`moc.liamg' `ta' `77znets'> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:13PM (#6502452) Homepage Journal
    there is no secret to losing weight.

    you have to burn more calories than you take in.

    so either take in less calories (stop drinking all the beer) or burn more (run).

    I run in the mornings and am working my way back up to 70 miles a week.
    I'm in shape.

    funny how those go hand in hand.
    • Re:run (Score:5, Informative)

      by blahtree (55190) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:24PM (#6502681)
      A note for those wanting to take up running. Running can be pretty hard on the joints. You need to start slowly in order to not only build muscle strength, but to build the stregth of your connective tissues as well.

      You might consider the American Running Association's12 week Walk/Run program [americanrunning.org]. It's a great way to get started.

      Plus, remember to stretch. You're setting yourself up for a world of pain if you don't.
    • Re:run (Score:3, Insightful)

      by TwistedGreen (80055)
      Exactly.

      And I find that, once you are in better shape, you tend to eat better. When I took up jogging and was running several miles per day, I could no longer stomach the less healthy foods I used to eat... I couldn't stand overly buttered popcorn, and candy just wasn't too appealing to me. I would rather eat vegetables or yogourts instead.

      In my experience, you can't really have exercise without a healthy diet.

    • Re:run (Score:5, Insightful)

      by mausmalone (594185) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:39PM (#6502947) Homepage Journal
      there is no secret to losing weight.
      Well, there are a few secrets... but most have to do with learning to get into good habits. I think if you don't work out now, the prospect of running 70 miles a week is daunting enough to scare you away, so don't think you have to approach this thing immediately.

      First, cut out all soda (pop). Like another poster said, the sugar accumulates. I was in a similar dilema, cut out the soda, and I was down 10 pounds inside of a month without much exercise at all.

      Eat healthier. With every meal, you must have a vegetable. They are low-calorie, fill you up (so you eat less else), and they're good for your digestive system.

      Eat less. A simple rule, but hard to follow. Cut back on snacking first, then cut back on portions. No matter how well you're eating, seconds are out of the question.

      Avoid starches. Starches tend to trap fat and sugars in your stomach and prevent them from being properly digested. As such, you have to eat more to get the energy you need to keep going, and the extra gets converted to fat later. Basically, less breads, less potatoes, will do you good. Remember: beer is liquid bread.

      Any activity is better than no activity. If you're unhealthy, it can be hard to exercise because you don't have the stamina, and you probably have a lot more weight to move around. But still, if you get out every day and do some walking, you'll lose weight much more effectively. Also, DDR is a great solution for those of us addicted to video games. It may not be all that amazing of a workout (by workout standards) but remember that every little bit of exercise helps.

      Stick with it. Even if you don't meet your weight-loss goals, don't give up. Re-adjust your goals and keep trying. Gradually, you will get used to the smaller portions and exercise, which will make it easier to push yourself harder. Remember that you're not trying to lose a few pounds for a date or something... you're making a slow transition to a healthier lifestyle.

      That being said, I'm no weight loss guru... I'm a web-page designer. I sit on my bum all day typing, and I don't wanna be a gigantic fat-ass. I used to be about 300 lbs., but using the above methods, I've worked myself down to 250 in about 6 months. It's not a radical change, but it's been slow, steady progress. My situation was a lot like yours is. There are no secrets to weight loss, but there are some tricks you can use to make it a little easier. The secret isn't that you have to take in less calories, the secret is learning to do that every day.
    • Re:run (Score:3, Informative)

      by firewood (41230)
      there is no secret to losing weight.

      you have to burn more calories than you take in.

      Yes, but there is a lot of medical evidence that the type of calories you consume strongly effect how efficiently your body burns them, and also somewhat your desire to consume more. Do a web search on the terms "glycemic index".

      There is also some evidence that most of the health benefits of exercise appears at fairly low levels of exercise (e.g. walking briskly), as long as done regularly. So even though running result

  • by Lieutenant_Dan (583843) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:13PM (#6502454) Homepage Journal
    I think it would benefit you not just physically, but also emotionally if you made your body available to the Open Source developer community. Their social integrity, hard work, and yoga expertise would enable to reach those goals you've had since Thanksgiving '96.

    It is vital that developers allow the Open Source developer community to dictate their diet, physical exercise regiment, and holistics. Their experience will allow to gain a physique similar to Atlas, Ferrigno, or a trim body like Woody Allen.

    Only when we realize the perverse writings of Suzanne Sommers are misguiding the children of our generation, can we free the stranglehold that Starbucks has on society.

    Which is nice.
  • Well (Score:5, Informative)

    by blitzoid (618964) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:14PM (#6502455) Homepage
    A simple thing you could do is go for a quick job during your lunch break. Of course it would be wise to change clothing, but a quick jog every day can do wonders for you. It's good excersize and you could probably fit it into your current schedule.

    And if it's a tech job, just move heavy computers around all day... it looks like real work!
    • Re:Well (Score:3, Funny)

      by mrpuffypants (444598) *
      A simple thing you could do is go for a quick job during your lunch break.

      The only job that I could do during my lunch break would be whoring myself out. Actually, that might burn quite a few calories, plus make you some $$ on the side. Good idea!
  • by phoneboy (11009) <dwelch AT phoneboy DOT com> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:14PM (#6502460) Homepage
    I still have a ways to go, myself, but I can tell you it works.

    http://flwd.com/5bx/main/index.html

    11 minutes a day, can be done just about anywhere. I'd suggest cutting back on the beer a little, and anything else with carbohydrates in it.

    -- PhoneBoy
  • by indole (177514) <`fluxist' `at' `gmail.com'> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:14PM (#6502466) Homepage
    Says he:
    Personally, I sit at a computer desk for 10 hours a day with very little actual work.
    I'll second that.
    (although clicking refresh to constantly reload slashdot feels workish.)

  • by _Sambo (153114) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:14PM (#6502467)
    I ride my mountain bike to work. I only live about 4 miles from work, which translates to a 15 minute ride to and from work. It's enough to keep me in pretty good shape.

    Oh wait, also give up beer.
  • by Strange Ranger (454494) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:14PM (#6502472)

    Fidgeting burns calories. [bbc.co.uk]

    It has definitely made a difference for me.
  • by Dark Paladin (116525) * <jhummel@jo[ ]ummel.net ['hnh' in gap]> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:16PM (#6502504) Homepage
    First, let me preface this by saying that I am not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV.

    I started to worry a bit more about my health when I hit 30 a few short months ago. I've been blessed with a decent matabilism, but even a good burn rate can't help you when you sit on the ass 12 hours a day between home/work/stuff.

    So here are my own tips that have kept me pretty good so far:

    Eating Habits

    Eat more meals a day, smaller amounts. Between 4 and 6 is good. Instead of taking that lunch break and loading up on tons of stuff that just leaves you sluggish, keep some food at your desk. And try to keep it to good stuff. A veggie platter is good with ranch dressing or something like that, maybe even a meat tray with mustards, I like sardines in mustard/tomato sauce with saltines off and on (which is why my coworkers are glad I have my own office).

    My personal adage for food is that it's better to eat a bit of something that tastes good, rather than a lot of something that tastes bad. Fats and oils are not the pure enemy - as long as you do it in moderation. I think Jon what's-his-name from Good Eats had a good point back in a slashdot interview when me mentioned people don't eat fats, then they get hungry later. Good point. So veggies good, dressing with veggies good, meat good - don't just have junk food.

    And I'm sorry - but loose the beer. I don't drink it myself, but that's because I think it tastes like shit. At least cut down, go lite beer - whatever. It's a lot of calories you don't need.

    Exercise

    Again, I have my own office, so about the chime of every hour I'll stop, do some pushups/situps, and go back. Not a lot, but just enough to get the heart pumping a bit. After work, I am again blessed to have a gym right on the campus I work at, so I can hit the treadmill for 30 minutes before I grab my stuff and go home.

    If you can't do that, then do what I did at my last job - squeeze it in. Park at the farthest point you can so you have to walk into/out of work. If there's public transportation you can use, do that - if you have to drive all the way in, then park far. Believe it or not, but my last job I parked about a good block oway.

    When you go to lunch, don't drive there, walk to it. You know that Jared guy? I don't think he got thin off of the Subways, it was the fact he walked back and forth from the Subway to work every day. Never, never, never use the elevator or escalators - always the stairs. Make less phone calls to co-workers if you can - get up, go walk to them.

    Now, I know some people will say "But - I'm a telemarketer/I can't get up/some other excuse". Bullshit. There's always something you can do.

    You don't have to change your whole lifestyle, but if your health is important and you want to be more when you're in your retirement than a rotting bag of bones, you have to make the time now. And it's not much - studies I've seen show 30 minutes a day is the rule, but it doesn't always have to be consecutive. A few minutes going up the stairs to a meeting, a little bit walking down the block to your car, maybe you buy an Eyetoy (I had a reader who loved hers [gameforms.com] - the boxing/kung fu games alone should get a good sweat) and play with that, or a Dance Dance Revolution pad for parties. And I will kill for a set of the official Sambe De Amigo maracas - not the cheap ass rip offs. Whatever.

    I'm no Richard Simmons (I like women too much), and I'm no Arnold, but I've been able to stay fit enough for wild monkey sex with my wife. I could probably even cut out the treadmill if my family was down here with me just running after my son when he steals my Gameboy Advance SP.

    Anyway, that's my take. These may not work for you, and I'm no expert, but hopefully these help.
    • > If you can't do that, then do what I did at my last job - squeeze it in. Park at the farthest point you can so you have to walk into/out of work. If there's public transportation you can use, do that - if you have to drive all the way in, then park far. Believe it or not, but my last job I parked about a good block away.

      A report [statesman.com] that was published in the last week or so gives more credence to the above then you would think at first. Walking from the back of the parking lot to and from work adds alm
  • No easy solution... (Score:3, Informative)

    by jeeves99 (187755) * on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:17PM (#6502513)
    There is no fdisk-like program to delete the beer belly partition. When it comes down to it, the best thing you can do for getting back in shape is to dedicate exercise time each day, or maybe a few days a week. Sitting at your desk doing curlups or pushups or whatever during short break periods is not going to benefit you as much as 30+ minutes of cardio activity will. Though there are conflicting studies, the current idea seems to be that light activity (30 minutes) really does nothing for you.

    I've tried those office exercises and even started taking the stairs instead of the elevator and walking home instead of public transit, but nothing improved. Hours on end at the office on the computer, and then at home on the computer, have taken their toll. Do yourself a favor and work on your diet and get a trial gym membership. If you don't feel better after a month or two, try something else. Good luck!!
  • Bicycle to work (Score:4, Informative)

    by Fastball (91927) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:18PM (#6502533) Journal
    If at all possible, take up residence a few miles from your place of employment and pedal to work. Thanks to encouragement and tips offered by fellow /.'ers, I regularly enjoy a 1.5 mile ride to and from work on my Bianchi.

    And it has just taken off from there. I go outside of town around Lexington, Kentucky's horse farms on the weekends and get thirty miles in Saturdays and some Sundays. I love it. Cycling is easy for a novice to pick up and continue enjoying. Once you learn, you'll never forget!

  • Finally! (Score:3, Funny)

    by WndrBr3d (219963) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:18PM (#6502549) Homepage Journal
    Finally, a stand up human being who's not looking for the easy way out, who's not looking for a quick fix, but someone who's willing to put some time and effort into his weight loss and make a change in lifestyle to be more fit and healthy.

    Someone who's not affraid to....
    ~RIDE THE SNAKE~
  • by EvilNight (11001) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:18PM (#6502550)
    It's the only way I know of to sit on your ass all day long and lose weight without exercise... other than going the Ghandi route, anyway. Of course, you'll have to switch to Michelob Ultra if you want to continue drinking beer. :)

    Seriously tho, give the Atkins diet books a read sometime. It takes a bit of work to switch your eating habits from carb rich to carb lite, but honestly after the first week it's a piece of cake. Wait, can't have cake... dammit. You can have Leek and Mushroom pie tho.

    Yes, the guy who invented the diet died. No, the diet didn't kill him. Well, maybe the sugar deprivation made him lightheaded which is why he fell, but I guess we'll never know...
    • Buy a Wok (Score:3, Interesting)

      by corebreech (469871)
      A wok is the Atkin's dieter's best friend.

      Basically, with Atkins all you get to eat is meat and vegetables.

      A wok makes making a meal out of meat and vegetables fast, easy and fun. Twenty minutes, including clean up, and you get a cheap and nutritious meal.

      Best of all, you don't need a cookbook! Half the fun is just picking shit at random out of the grocery and throwing it in the wok and then experimenting with how to spice it up so it tastes the best.
    • I'll begin by noting that I'm a bread lover. Rolls, loaves, biscuits. All of them. You can put me on the Atkin's diet when you pry the Italian sweet loaf from my cold, dead fingers.

      I tried the Atkin's diet for two weeks, and it failed me. I didn't gain weight to my amazement, but I didn't lose any either. I did realize that it was silly to deprive myself of certain foods (breads, anything with a fair amount of carbs) because I live a whack, sedentary existence as a programmer. I gave up the protein-or-bus

  • by yndrd (529288) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:18PM (#6502553) Homepage
    The key to losing weight with a non-active lifestyle is to EAT LESS. Exercising only burns off so many calories at a time, and you'll have a hard time catching up to a Big Mac when you're full time job isn't to run all day.

    I've lost about thirty five pounds by reducing my caloric intake every day. I don't watch carbohydrates or meat or fat or any of that; I just eat less than I normally would and pay attention to the calories printed on the sides of packages, opting for less.

    For example, I switched from a 300-calorie bagel to a 70-calorie apple every morning. I switched from a God-knows-how-many-calorie lunch every day to a single sandwich.

    I let myself eat what I want on some days as long as the average intake is lower than normal.

    I do also exercise (I walk up 12 floors of stairs), but the real weight drop occurred when I stopped eating as much.
  • Some tips (Score:4, Insightful)

    by BoneFlower (107640) <george.worrollNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:19PM (#6502576) Journal
    Fidget. People who fidget a lot are in measureably better shape than those who don't(and are otherwise similar exercise/diet wise). Just make sure not to do this at a meeting with the boss to discuss a raise/promotion:).

    Try lifting your desk while sitting at it. You don't actually need to lift it off the ground, just put a lot of force into it as if you meant to, do many repetitions of that.

    Volunteer for any odd jobs around the office that involve physical labor.

    If you live close enough, walk or ride a bike to work whenever weather permits. If you have enough time during your lunch break, take a walk or bike ride somewhere.

    Get up and stretch regularly.

    Situps/pushups and the like can help, don't worry about what other people think. When you are in shape to pull that vital bit of overtime that gets a product out in time, and they arent, guess who is employee of the month?
  • Get a Bicycle (Score:4, Informative)

    by Bilbo (7015) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:20PM (#6502586) Homepage
    OK... it's not at work, but it's on the way to and from work.

    Think about it. You have to get to work anyway. Why not use that time getting in shape? I've ridden to work on a regualr basis for close to 20 years (less a couple breaks for various reasons). I've gone anywhere from 3 miles to 20 miles (one way). Right now, I'm going 8 miles each way, which I think is about optimal. When I was 5 miles from work, I rode through the year, including upstate NY winters. Going 20 miles was hard, and I only did it two or three times a week.

    It's not for everyone, and it takes some hard work and dedication, but it does keep you in shape, and it's a great way to use what would otherwise be wasted time stewing in traffic behind the wheel of a car.

  • by Syncdata (596941) <syncdata71NO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:21PM (#6502618) Journal
    The simple things are the best. If you work in a two story building, use the elevator.
    When you get home, two sets of 25 situps. Pushups to your discretion.
    Don't eat microwaveable meals for lunch. You can stay mighty lean on deli sandwiches.
    The most important thing is to monitor what you eat. At least in America, we have a diet which is a hold-over from the days where the predominant profession was farming. Eggs, Eggs, Steak, Eggs and Ham is not a viable diet when you sit in front of a monitor.
    There is a reason why steak and eggs is a "lumberjacks breakfast". It's only viable if you're burning a hojillian calories a day chopping down trees.
  • by Gori (526248) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:21PM (#6502624) Homepage
    One way I found to keep at least a marginal amount of excercise while I sit and work is to sit on a ball instead of a chair.

    Have a look for example here [fitter1.com] (i'm in no way associated with these folks....)

    It helps improve your balance, strengthens your back/stomach muscles and does a great job of preventing Repetative Strain Injury. You really notice the difference after you used it for a while and than go back to a normal chair. It feels all stiff and uncomfortable...

    I've enjoyed it for more than two years now. I got some weird looks in the begining, but now there are a number of people in the office using them too. Hope it helps.
  • by Rooked_One (591287) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:21PM (#6502629) Journal
    ok.. I know where you are coming from. You are a computer "nerd" and you don't get out a lot. Well - thats one thing you HAVE to change if you want to turn that keg into a six pack. It won't happen by doing crunches at your desk... you need to do some serious physical activity. Most doctors will tell you that to maintain a health life, you need to take at least 10,000 steps a day. I'm sure if you have a beer belly you are not even reaching into the thousands.

    If you don't feel like exercizing, there are some things you can do... STOP drinking all soda/pop. These things are emtpy calories that just leave you wanting more. Don't drink it at all. Ever. Beer will also pack on the pounds but if you are moderate and just have a couple beers no more than 2 times a week, you will be fine.

    For things to suplement your non-excersizing. Park as far out in the parking lots as you can wherever you go. I don't care if you are just stoping at the local Quiky Mart - park across the street. And also, stairs are your friend. Take those puppies whenever you can.

    I havn't read what other people have suggested, but doing butt crunches while you are sitting in a chair isn't going to drop one pound. Be realistic. Eat better, and exercize more. Thats all there is too it, if you truely want to lose weight this is a no brainer.

    Do you ever wonder why you don't see etheoipians that are fat? Its becuase they don't have all the sugary foods we do and they constantly are working. Simple math here... can you do it? :)

  • Eat less. (Score:3, Informative)

    by mumblestheclown (569987) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:22PM (#6502634)
    i go to the gym 3 times a week for about an hour. if you claim that you can't, you're a liar.

    if you won't go to the gym, then you only have one real option: eat less. the average male will consume about 2500 calories. in a sedentary state, plan on consuming about 2200. every day. count them. for many people, the change can be accomplished by drinking nothing but water and unsweetened coffee.

    If you will go to the gym, then you basically have a choice: weights or aerobic fitness. i would suggest aerobic fitness. if you can run for 40 minutes on a treadmill at at least 6.5mph 3 times a week, you'll look and feel better. no whining about treadmills--just do it for 2 weeks and you'll recognize the difference.

    if you do weights, it won't make you lose weight per se, but it may well get you into a mode where you're doing more physical stuff. plus, you'll burn more calories.

    if you intend on staying in the office: eat less. eat less. eat less. count calories. it really works. have a salad for lunch instead of crap with fries. don't snack.

  • by cryptor3 (572787) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:22PM (#6502645) Journal
    I know it's real bad in my office, especially with all the beer I consume. What do you do to stay in shape? Any secrets, acessories?

    Wait, you get to drink beer at your office? Damn, I want to work at a place like that. Do you also get to hit on the boss's secretary?

  • Dance Dance (Score:3, Informative)

    by Jim Hall (2985) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:24PM (#6502668) Homepage

    Here's what I did: go buy a Playstation (if you don't have one already), and a $20 Beatpad. Pick up a copy of Dance Dance Revolution (you can even get a used PS1 version for $10 at your local GameStop or EBGames).

    Spend 30 minutes each morning on "Workout" mode before going to work. It's a great workout. By the end of 30 minutes, I've really worked up a sweat. That beer belly should start to go away in no time.

    And don't spend so much time at work. 10hrs ... sheesh!

    -jh

  • by -tji (139690) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:24PM (#6502670) Journal
    I've never been able to feel the benefit from quick office workouts.

    If your work schedule is flexible, try to get out of the office for a real workout. Head to the gym for 30 minutes on the stair machine or treadmill.

    My office has showers, so I sometimes bike or run in the afternoon. I find that I have more energy later in the day when I do this, and I am more focused.
  • Fidget (Score:3, Informative)

    by digitalhermit (113459) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:24PM (#6502678) Homepage
    Yup -- believe it or not you can burn lots of extra calories by fidgeting. Tap your leg to music, chew sugarless gum, twitch. You'll lose any remaining friends you have but you'll be thinner.
  • by GillBates0 (664202) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:24PM (#6502687) Homepage Journal
    I know it's real bad in my office, especially with all the beer I consume. What do you do to stay in shape? Any secrets, acessories? Recently I've started to do sit ups, push ups, and running up and down the stairs. I get alot of odd looks and would prefer something that doesn't make the whole office stare at me.

    An average human being can burn up to 100 calories for every ten minutes of masturbation. All you need is some tissue, a quiet room, and some good porn. It's fun, enjoyable and doesn't make you look like an ass running up and down the stairs. So, this is what I would suggest:

    Put in about an hour of vigorous masturbation through the day. An hour can help you burn upto 600 calories. That itself would make up for a pitcher of beer. Start slow, and gradually increase the amount of effort you put in. Soon, you will be having fun several hours a day, compensating for several gallons of beer and having fun, while you're at it!

  • what works for me (Score:3, Interesting)

    by pizza_milkshake (580452) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:25PM (#6502702)
    • eat less (less snacking)
    • eat healthier (fruit instead of chips)
    • pushups, situps in the morning before shower
    • do something to get your heartrate up for like 20 mins/day like running, swimming, intense masturbation, etc.
    • more liquor, less beer
    i know, the last one hurts... but try finding one person who looks decent who is a) a big beer fan and b) doesn't hit the gym a few times a week
  • by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland.yahoo@com> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:29PM (#6502789) Homepage Journal
    ..redefine what 'in shape' means.
  • by AtaruMoroboshi (522293) <<Anthony> <at> <overwhelmed.org>> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:29PM (#6502792) Homepage
    If you like video games, Dance Dance Revolution might be the answer for you. It's working for me, (ie, I'm losing weight and feeling better) and in the past I've only been able to stick to an exercise schedule if I was paying for gym access. "Better go exercise, I can't let the monthly fee go to waste!"

    The basic set up for DDR is a pad on the floor with arrows pointing front, back, left & right. The game has over a hundred songs to choose from, with difficulties ranking from 1 to 10 feet, and basic, trick, and maniac modes for each song. There's an immense amount of replay value.

    During the game, arrows scroll up the screen and you hit the arrows on the pad with your feet, in time with the music. For fast songs on difficult settings, this is very challenging, but more to the point: it's exhausting.

    The key to DDR is learning how to keep your balance while hitting all of the arrows. I found that at first, I would bounce my whole body up and down in time with the music. This was exhausting, even on the easy songs. Nowadays, 5 months later, I am playing some fairly hard songs (6 foot songs on basic and trick), and while I am moving significantly more efficiently, the game is still pushing my physical limits of endurance and dexterity.

    Because it is a video game with a scoring system and several levels of difficulty, there is a built in incentive to achieve the next level of ability, whether that means getting an A rank on a song, or trying a 6 foot song for the first time. This keeps me going, as I set goals and attempt perfect runs of my favorite songs. I can easily keep playing for an hour or more, and afterwards I jump right into the shower and cool off.

    Get the home version, a cheap dance pad, and a PSone, and you're set up for $100 (including the PS1!!)

    Run through the lesson mode, and you will learn the basics. If you stick with the game and play at least a couple times a week for 4 months or so, you will definitely lose weight and gain some footwork skills. Not to mention it's fun to show off in the arcade!

    for more info on DDR: http://www.ddrfreak.com/

    .
  • by selderrr (523988) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:30PM (#6502803) Journal
    sounds harsh, but it works. It's all in the mind. The natural reflex of a human is to eat when yuo're hungry. Fight that reflex in 2 ways :

    1. Don't stuff yourself when you're hungry. Eat a little. And eat stuff that contains fewer calories, like fruit or yoghourt.
    2. Learn to appreciate the feeling of a tiny hunger. Consider it a sign from your belly to your brain saying "hey dude : you're losing weight right now ! Keep up the spirit !".

    That, plus exercise offcourse. For myself, I found podBiking a great calory burner : iPod + real bicycle for 2 hours at least. Get a real bike though, not that mountainbike shit. That's for sissies. A racing bike is a bit more expensive, but it's so much more fun to ride since you don't get exhausted from rubbing the asphalt all the time with those huge gripping tires. When i switched from mountainbikes to racebikes, my appetite for cycling doubled. I do twice as many hours now as I did before.
    • by EZmagz (538905) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:55PM (#6503202) Homepage
      I was going to mod you down, but couldn't help myself...

      podBiking? Get real, my friend. If you're dumb enough to go biking on public roads for 2 hours a day listening to your iPod, don't be surprised when someone like me accidentally swipes you off the road in my '84 Cutlass hoopty. Honestly. There's absolutely no place for people to be biking while listening to music. Nada. Since /.'ers seem to love analogies, podBiking would be the close equivalent of being on a motorcycle while listening to music at full blast and talking on a cell phone. Dangerous, stupid, and setting yourself up for failure.

      And just because you don't like mountain bikes, doesn't mean they're for "sissies". I mountain bike on singletrack TRAILS, where mountain bikes are SUPPOSED to be ridden, and it's great and at least as exhausting as road biking. Trust me. I've done both for a looong time.

      However, your point about not stuffing yourself is a good one. There's a world of difference between eating and being content, and eating and being stuffed. Hence why more frequent smaller meals are better for you than 3 pig-fest buffets. The diabetic diet works for a reason.

    • Learn to appreciate the feeling of a tiny hunger. Consider it a sign from your belly to your brain saying "hey dude : you're losing weight right now ! Keep up the spirit !".

      Totally agreed. "Eliminate desire" is my mantra -- it works really well on many levels.

      A racing bike is a bit more expensive, but it's so much more fun to ride since you don't get exhausted from rubbing the asphalt all the time with those huge gripping tires. When i switched from mountainbikes to racebikes, my appetite for cycling d

  • Take the stairs (Score:5, Informative)

    by RainbowSix (105550) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:35PM (#6502894) Homepage
    Never take the elevator. Ever. Do you work on the 30th floor of an office building? Run them to get to your work area, then run them to and from lunch, then run them when you go home. 120 flights of steps right there. If you're like me and you live in an apartment, take the steps there every time you leave or come home, and when you are swapping laundry from washer to drier. It adds up very quickly. Last year I lived on the 9th floor and I took them at least 6 times a day to and from class, and to and from activities. 54 flights of steps a day.

    Next time you walk past the elevator or are in an elevator, take a look around: what type of people are the ones taking the elevator up one story?
  • by Jonavin (71006) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:36PM (#6502907) Homepage
    In the past six months I've lost about 30lbs and 4 inches off my waste (sic - pun intended).

    I used to skip breakfast and just have lunch and dinner. Now I eat a big breakfast, 2nd breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner, evening snack, mid-night snack. Oh, I also go to the gym 3 to 4 times a week (averaging about 1hr each).

    There's no other way. No fade diet is going to work. I eat plenty of carbs and plenty of meat. Haagen Daaz as mid-night snack? No problem. KFC? Twice a week.

    See, the one thing I've learned is that if you are going to make any changes to your life, it better be a change that you can keep up for the rest of your life. Once you fall off a "fad diet" you'll be back worst than you started.

    For those who wants to lose a few inches off their waist, skip teh situps and crunches. They've never worked for me. Just lows of low impact cardio exericise and some weight training to increase muscle mass will do it.

    BTW, I had 4 slices of pizza for lunch today.
  • by Angst Badger (8636) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:48PM (#6503093)
    1. Quit drinking beer in the office. If you really must be inebriated while you're coding, try whiskey instead.

    2. People won't look at you funny if you work in the office and work out out of the office.

    3. Tell me what slack-ass place you work at so I can get a job there.
  • by oneiros27 (46144) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:51PM (#6503150) Homepage
    It hasn't even been three months since the Hacker's Diet [fourmilab.ch] was mentioned [slashdot.org].

    Basically, one of the points made is that it takes a lot of exercise to lose weight [fourmilab.ch]. Although John Walker (the author) does suggest exercise, he recommends using a 10-15 minute a day program [fourmilab.ch] based off that of the Royal Canadian Air Force.

    Personally, by watching my calorie intake, without exercising, I've lost about 30 pounds since April, and I'm trying to shed another 10-20 to get back to the 150-160lb range. I'm guessing that cutting out sodas has has the most profound impact on what I've changed, diet wise. Of course, I had to slowly cut back... It's not like I was drinking 3L of Mt. Dew per day, as I was in college, but I was probably drinking a good 1.5L of sodas per day. Oh...and you do have to drink water, or as a compromise, sports drinks, as fruit juices tend to have just as mushc sugar as sodas.
  • Grad School! (Score:5, Informative)

    by Tim (686) <{timr} {at} {alumni.washington.edu}> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:53PM (#6503169) Homepage
    Since entering grad school, I've dropped more than 30 pounds! It's a miracle! I highly recommend the Grad School Diet!

    Seriously, when I was working a desk job, I was gaining weight, and now I'm losing weight. And this is despite the fact that I still sit on my duff 8+ hours a day while working. The differences are:
    • I walk everywhere . Something about being in a college environment encourages this, but there's nothing preventing you from walking more often. Walk to the store, to the bus, to lunch, etc.
    • I eat a lot less. When I was working, it wasn't uncommon to find myself eating high-Calorie fast food at my desk, sitting all day, then going home to eat a large dinner. These days, my schedule is less regular, and as a result, I eat smaller meals, more sporadically. I'm poor, so I often bring my leftover dinner to work (which reduces portion size). Finally, I just eat less now. I realize that this is harder when you're sitting at a desk all day long, but there's nothing stopping you from eating less food.
    • When I get stressed, I go to the gym. This one is simple, deceptively so. You'd be amazed at how an hour of daily weight training or running can eliminate stress from your life. And it makes you healthier, too! The trick is getting in the habit, and that can be difficult. Try this: sign up for a gym with a friend. Go regularly, and go together, at least at first. You'll force each other to go in the beginning, but before long, you'll find that you need to go to feel healthy and productive. And that's when it becomes automatic.
    I realize that this sounds a lot like the "eat less, exercise more" advice you're hearing from others. The thing is, they're right, but it seems impossible to follow their advice when you're out of shape and chained to a desk. You have to force these things to become habit. Start slowly (say, with walking daily), and gradually build up your exercise regimen. As you get bored, change what you're doing, and try something new. Before long, it will be an important component of your life (and as I said before, exercise is a great stress-reliever!)

    (Side note: whatever you do, you don't have to kill yourself doing it. I used to make the mistake of exercising way too hard, giving up from the pain, and as a result, rarely exercising. Whatever you do, stay in your aerobic heart rate range [psychiatrix.com], and realize that the fact that you're not dying doesn't mean you aren't getting exercise.)

  • by JudgeFurious (455868) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @03:56PM (#6503223)
    I don't know about the rest of you but if I don't do something soon I'm going to go "Marlon Brando".
  • Is this a joke? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by euxneks (516538) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:01PM (#6503291)
    Asking the slashdot readers how to get in shape?
  • by Fapestniegd (34586) <james@jameswh i t e.org> on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @04:25PM (#6503677) Homepage
    Post your email address online, or in newsgroups. I get about 30 emails a day with different products offering to help me lose weight.

    Oh, you have to stop using email filters as well.
  • by beej (82035) on Tuesday July 22, 2003 @06:10PM (#6505175) Homepage Journal
    If you don't like getting into the office all sweaty--God, I don't--then bike before work. Get up half an hour earlier and hit the local road. Take a new route each day for variety.

    When you get home, hit the showers and you'll be ready to go.

    But how do you convince yourself to get up instead of hitting snooze again?

    1. You barely have to do anything to be ready to go biking. Just pee, get your clothes on, fill your water bottle, check your tires, put on your helmet, et voila. Five minutes prep, tops.
    2. You know you're going to get to feel smug all day long since you've already done your exercising for the day. Even if you feel like crap now, you know you will feel better once you get on and pedal. And you know it will be worth it later.
    3. The alarm goes off. Visualize that you're trying to pry yourself off the surface of Jupiter (smartasses: prove to me Jupiter has no solid surface, then we'll talk.) Now see how much easier it was on Earth?
    4. If none of this works, say to yourself, "Get up, Trinity...Get...up!"

    Seriously, though, it is worth it once you hit the road. Find what gets you out of bed that much earlier, and do it.

  • by Linuxathome (242573) on Wednesday July 23, 2003 @12:04AM (#6508295) Homepage Journal
    I remembered a presentation a while back ago about the difference between overweight people and skinny people. There was a study whereby a group of people were given the same amount of calories in their diet. They lived within a confined space, at the same time. At the end, with the same amount of food eaten by all, some gained as much as 15 pounds and others didn't. The difference between these two groups? The individuals who gained the least amount of weight tended to be people who fidgeted a lot more. They tended to shake their leg while sitting more often, and got up and out of their seat more often. The take home message? Well, maybe try to move around more often, even simple repetitive "useless" movements may help (and no, I don't mean the M word, that'll probably get you fired).
  • by Qbertino (265505) on Wednesday July 23, 2003 @06:44AM (#6509831)
    I have a whole bunch of friends in the IT industry all going fat. I'm a little better off because im only in the IT mill for a few years having studied stage dance before :-). Stage dancers, especially ballet dancers are the people with the least body fat ratio.
    Now, especially with my wife into really good cooking, I often notice that I eat beyond my appetite. I'm absolutely shure that people who become fat in 'sitting jobs' have the same problem. Far to often do they eat beyond their appetite, be it due to frustration or just bad habit.
    Whenever I notice that I have to widen my belt by a hole I simply eat less. Period. I switch from a 3 course meal to Ramen and Broth. I don't eat 2 buns with peanutbutter and chocolate in the morining, I eat one. I don't take 3 balls of Icecream I take 1 and so forth. I do this for 3 weeks and then I'm down to ideal weight again.
    The problem overweight people often have is that they then tend to be disturbed by the slightest notion of not feeling absolutely fed up and allways have to think about eating. They often also eat because it's dinner time and not because their really hungry. The best way to handle this is to learn not to center your life around eating. I actually had times when I wouldn't eat for a day or two simply because I was so occupied with other things that are far more interresting. It's really strange when you get really *hungry* (when the last time you're been really *HUNGRY*?) at 11o'clock at night and then come to notice that your last food is 36 hrs away :-). I also can get very anoyed at my wife when she thinks I *must* eat because it's dinnertime.
    Bottom Line:
    Apart from other things I'd suggest that have been mentioned allready (check out the Aikido posting further down, it's right on!) the solution for tendency to overweight is so simple it hurts: If you're gaining weight simply switch your diet and/or eat less.

Life would be so much easier if we could just look at the source code. -- Dave Olson

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