Author Topic: one exercise to rule them all?  (Read 2659 times)

joonifloofeefloo

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one exercise to rule them all?
« on: July 09, 2018, 08:49:07 PM »
In my ideal world, I would locate one fitness thing that would meet almost all of this criteria:

*at this stage, a focus on core strengthening, general strength, and posture
*maximum one piece of personal equipment (e.g., treadmill)
*doable in weather that's hot, cold, snowy, or super rainy (gym/studio is fine, or outdoors unaffected by weather's whims)
*13 year old and middle-aged mom can do in the same place, same time (none of this "ladies only" or "teen only" class stuff)
*very quiet or with steady sound (not shrieks and echoes as with swimming; steady music is fine)
*obviously, not so expensive because this is the MMM forum
*has some form of external encouragement: tracking, trainer to check in with, something
*even minimally effective at 2-3x per week
*someone knowledgeable around, so we don't die
*outside of our house, as we do more than enough at home already
*not exposing us to hot temperatures
*late mornings through evenings

Happy to go to a gym or studio, happy to pay money.

We love swimming but find the pools way too noisy and crowded.
We both love dance, but kid doesn't like it in a group.
Kid hates yoga so far.
We both enjoy other things individually, but we're both tired of waiting on the sidelines for each other so many hours per week. I think it could be fun to go do a task together, then have a tea somewhere :)

I suspect we'd both enjoy weight machines -and his new age makes him newly eligible- or "fun" caveman stuff. I was hoping to start with Pilates but I don't think he'd be into that. Are weight machines my best bet? Do they meet all those criteria?
« Last Edit: July 10, 2018, 04:47:54 PM by jooniFLORisploo »

tyrannostache

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2018, 09:09:25 PM »
What kinds of things do you enjoy doing together?

Why not martial arts?

Could you get into something like bodyweight training and do an at-home program together? Lately I've been really enjoying the programming from GMB fitness. They have some excellent bodyweight training programs that are also a lot of fun. One thing I really love is their intense focus on building good form. For a 13-year-old, learning good form (and having fun) is going to be the most important part.

Maybe you could spend some time with a good trainer in your location to learn good weightlifting form. (NB: All certified trainers are not created equal. I have some suggestions if you're on the west coast.) You could do a couple months of training with that person to get form and workout plans dialed in. Then, all you need is a gym. Max reps with mom!

« Last Edit: July 09, 2018, 09:14:54 PM by tyrannostache »

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2018, 09:39:27 PM »
Thanks, tyrannostache :)   We haven't yet found the thing we both like in the same way that's available to both of us at the same time/space. He has a LOT of opportunities that aren't available to me or to us together, so all focus so far has been on access for him. I'd like to take something up now too, but neither of us wants to add another set of waits to our week. So, we'll need to experiment to find what we like to do together, that costs a reasonable amount. And because I know nothing, we should have someone around.

He does martial arts, but I haven't found a mixed-age class. I'll look again, though.

We're very, very, very homebased (work, school, social) so I'd love a fitness thing to be somewhere else. I'll add that to the list above.

FIRE 20/20

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2018, 10:22:37 PM »
Depending on the gym, I think indoor rock climbing may meet all of your criteria.  With proper training it's very safe, is a crazy good core workout that scales as you move up in skill, doesn't take much equipment after you have shoes and a harness, and most gyms are quiet especially during the day on a weekday.  The tracking piece is harder, but if you and the kid can self-motivate a little bit it's a great feeling to solver a higher level climb than you've done before. 

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2018, 10:31:12 PM »
Oooooooh! That's an interesting idea!!! Could work!!

Zikoris

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2018, 11:03:57 PM »
I think ballet would tick all the boxes, except maybe a 13 year old boy would not like it as much? Or maybe they would absolutely love doing the crazy leaps and kicks? When I did ballet there were lots of men in the class, but my studio had a minimum age of 16.

You could definitely do it at home if you wanted to avoid groups, though you'd want to put together some sort of barre setup. The music (piano) is very nice. It definitely works hard on core and posture. You could track things like flexibility, or how many spins you could get into a pirouette. 2-3X a week would be extremely effective.

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2018, 11:17:01 PM »
I got keen on exactly that for me, but no 13 year olds allowed in the adult class, and vice versa :(
Otherwise, group stuff is great.

Linda_Norway

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2018, 02:31:54 AM »
Could trail orienteering be something for both of you together?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orienteering

That is something you could do in nice weather, but also in rainy, muddy weather.

In the winter, cross country skiing would be a very good sport for training your whole body. After an initial investment in a decent pair of skies, shoes and poles it is cheap sport.

SquashingDebt

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2018, 04:06:26 AM »
My "one exercise to rule them all" is Jazzercise classes. 

https://www.jazzercise.com/Classes/Lets-Dance

I think there can be different types, but the one I go to is 60 minutes of steady "dancing" that's really cardio exercises, strength exercises (the second half of the class uses hand weights), and stretching.  Lots of moves that build core strength.

A few things I like:  mentally stimulating as well as physically a great workout (because the songs and routines repeat each week and only gradually are replaced, you get to learn the routines); community atmosphere with the attendees; nice philosophy to make people comfortable (don't face the mirror, lots of modifications for those who need it, etc.)

Linda_Norway

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #9 on: July 10, 2018, 05:50:46 AM »
I was going to suggest swimming until I noticed you already mentioned pools as too noisy/crowded. Have you tried "odd hours"? Depending on the pools around you this can be very different. E.g. in one of my places Thursday nights were particularly quiet for unknown reasons so I often had a private lane in a 3 lane pool.


You can also swim outside in lakes/sea. This requires a swimming wetsuit, cap, gloves and socks.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2018, 06:25:45 AM »
Tennis. Enjoy.

Éowynd

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2018, 07:06:15 AM »
I would highly recommend basic powerlifting: deadlifts, back squats and overhead presses.

Powerlifting will absolutely improve core strength, general strength, and posture.
All you need is a barbell and set of free weights or access to these things in a gym.
It's only going to be loud if there is loud music playing or if someone drops the weights.
It will be a very effective way to increase fitness at 2-3x per week.

I've done crossfit since 2009, plus ballroom dancing for 5 years and just recently started Brazilian jiu-jitsu.  So, obviously, I love learning all types of complex movements and doing hard workouts.  However, if I was required to pare everything down to the most basic and effective way to build strength and fitness, I would choose powerlifting. 

It is possible to teach yourself these lifts but I would recommend finding a knowledgeable coach at least in the beginning.  If you can find a coach that teaches powerlifting that would be awesome!  If not, you might try going to a crossfit gym, explain your goals and ask for private lessons (for you and your son) to learn those three lifts.    With good coaching, you can learn how to do these lifts safely on your own in just a few months (or less).

In my experience, most crossfit gyms will allow teenagers to join the adult classes.  However, a regular crossfit class is definitely noisy and probably more complex than what you are asking for.  If you have time to workout during the day, the gym will typically be much more quiet than in the evening.

Civex

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2018, 07:10:09 AM »
Running? You could research running training plans, sign up for a Fall 5k/10k or longer distance, and train for it over the summer.

Running is as inexpensive as you want to make it, is great for your core, and has huge cardiovascular benefits even at 2-3 times/week. There are many free phone apps that allow you to track your workouts, or you can buy GPS training watches.

acroy

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #13 on: July 10, 2018, 07:26:48 AM »
DW has been attending this for 6years and teaching for 3:
https://www.lesmills.com/us/workouts/fitness-classes/bodypump/#facType=modal&filterType=0&classes=bp

We also are home-based, this has been her get-outta-the-house release, excellent physically and mentally. last few years she's earned a few $$ as well.

It is fun, ticks all the boxes you mention, very motivating, and you see lots of results fast. Do it right and you get toned! It does hit core, posture, etc. It does not hit flexibility/stretching. The older kids enjoy it; 12+ is a good age to start.

Body Flow is better for flexibility, stretching, etc. Hits core and posture as well. Sort of a mix of yoga, tai-chi. Continuous fun movement
https://www.lesmills.com/us/workouts/fitness-classes/bodyflow/#facType=modal&filterType=0&classes=bb


good luck!!

toganet

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #14 on: July 10, 2018, 07:49:04 AM »
I'm a big fan of https://darebee.com/ and have been using various programs there for a while.  The programs there are generally equipment-free of minimal equipment, mostly bodyweight exercises and running.

There are a lot to choose from, including some that have a narrative structure, like this one: https://darebee.com/programs/age-of-pandora.html

These are a fit for me because I need to be able to fit a workout in at odd times, and I don't like paying gym memberships but need to be in reasonable shape to keep up with the kids :)

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #15 on: July 10, 2018, 08:01:48 AM »
Thanks very much, folks!!! A number of suggestions unfortunately bump into the "no" items in the opening post, but several of them seem to honour the whole tricky list! This is awesome.

formerlydivorcedmom

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #16 on: July 10, 2018, 08:58:54 AM »
A lot of gyms offer the opportunity to try out classes for free or a reduced price to see if you like it enough to join.  Our city's rec center has an annual event where they have 10-minute versions of the most popular classes so people can try them out.   My 11- and 12-year-old and I love to go try new classes and see if we like them.

I love zumba; the 11-year-old goes sometimes but the 12-year-old said no.  (Instructor makes a HUGE difference in zumba classes, FYI.)
           The 12-year-old liked Zumba Strong, which is a mix of dance and HIIT.  It was too much for me.

All three of us go to step aerobics and love it.  It's a good overall workout, and our teacher often does 10 minutes of light weights at the end.

We've tried Doonya, a new class that is basically Bollywood dancing.  It is an amazing overall workout and the oldest loved it.  We were very sore after.

We also do long walks together many nights, and sometimes tennis (the girls are a lot better than I am).

Good luck!

CNM

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #17 on: July 10, 2018, 09:04:51 AM »
Kettlebell training!  You could do it at a gym, in a class or with a trainer for motivation, or you can do it alone and at home with minimal equipment.  It's relatively quiet, you get a great cardio and muscle building work out.  With one kettlebell, you can do a lot of different exercises- more static lifting type, to more dynamic swings.

Cromacster

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #18 on: July 10, 2018, 01:33:22 PM »
If we're taking your title literally...Deadlift

The best most functional single exercise there is and hits all of your requirements.  Utilizes the most muscles groups of any single lift, helps with posture and core strength, will help you run faster, can be done anywhere with weights, progress can be tracked, and you will see results with 2-3 sessions per week.

as Éowyn MI suggested, I would also add in a squat and a press.  Also finding some local guidance on form etc.

Russ

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #19 on: July 10, 2018, 01:37:29 PM »
If we're taking your title literally...Burpees

FTFY

ematicic

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #20 on: July 10, 2018, 01:42:32 PM »
The single most beneficial exercise I do is the over head press squat. Balance, core, agility.


joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #21 on: July 10, 2018, 04:35:32 PM »
Really awesome, thanks so much everyone!

Kid and I are both keen on weights in a gym, and possibly climbing, so we're going to check those out, in that order. We both like that we wouldn't be doing it in hot weather. (I should add that to the list.)

We'll start by visiting three nearby gyms (community center, etc) over the next seven days, talking to the facilitators at each, checking out atmosphere, prices, schedules. Excited :)

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #22 on: July 10, 2018, 04:43:30 PM »
You know how I feel about weights...

Maybe there is no 1 exercise to rule them all, but I like this MFP article about good weight exercises: https://blog.myfitnesspal.com/6-exercises-everyone/

Although I think deadlifts should be on there and I don't personally do all of them anymore (I can plank long enough to get bored and prefer bench press to pushups because wrists). You know where to find me if you want to talk about what a gym should have :-). I hope you find a good one! I had a Very Unpleasant experience at mine last week but otherwise it is a diverse and welcoming place.

Candace

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #23 on: July 10, 2018, 05:01:55 PM »
Kettlebell training!  You could do it at a gym, in a class or with a trainer for motivation, or you can do it alone and at home with minimal equipment.  It's relatively quiet, you get a great cardio and muscle building work out.  With one kettlebell, you can do a lot of different exercises- more static lifting type, to more dynamic swings.
Another vote for kettlbells. You can do them by yourselves in relative silemce or in a class with a group and steady music. Great exercise that can vary from medium to extreme intensity. Good combination of weight training benefits and cardio. And if you want to buy a few for home, you can get a good workout in a small space.

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #24 on: July 10, 2018, 05:14:00 PM »
I sure appreciate all of you helping me think through this.

There was a quiet no in me to the idea of kettlebells, and I just now realized it's because of my kid's style of learning, receiving direction, and functioning. Like group dance, etc, these might well be a great fit for him in a couple of years (or whenever), but currently I'm very drawn to the idea of circuit weight machines, complemented by handheld weights, because it would allow us to be in the same room, yet apart from each other, doing very different things in a given moment, yet also able to discuss the shared experiences afterwards. Interesting...Yes, how he relates to direction, to instructors, to me, to shared activity, to timing, etc, all plays in.

I did weights at two points in the past and really enjoyed them -found it very grounding and soothing in a way most other movement wasn't for me- and intense push/pull activities are especially beneficial to him.

syednaeemul

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #25 on: July 10, 2018, 06:23:27 PM »
Technically it's one exercise, barbell complexes (https://www.mensjournal.com/health-fitness/5-best-barbell-complex-workouts-burn-fat-and-build-muscle/) would meet most of your criteria:

*Will give you overall strength increases, and good form can improve posture
*One barbell needed, though you will likely need to buy additional weights once it becomes too easy
*Indoor exercise needing maybe 5ftx3ft of space
*Whole family can do it; one person does it while the others rest between sets
*Beyond grunting, little sound
*Price of one barbell and weights can be low if you secure through Craigslist or similar
*Weightlifting can be tracked by amount of weight, amount of reps achieved, time to do one set etc
*Effective at 2-3x per week
*Plenty of online videos available to learn form. Initially you can do it with a broom stick so that there's little chance of injury
*Can be done in the gym
*Indoor exercise, so you're only subject to the room temperature
*Can be done anytime

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #26 on: July 11, 2018, 05:23:45 PM »
Gym #1 Pros
*15 min walk from home
*en route to and from stuff we regularly drive to
*very cool temp
*$50/mo for 2 of us
*super clean
*spacious
*shiny new equipment (machines, handheld weights, kettlebells, balls, etc)
*lovely space; lovely view
*full range of humans (age, ability, gender, etc)
*plenty of equipment for everyone there at time of visit

Gym #1 Cons
*says no scents, but one dude was doused in perfume
*music I couldn't stand (this surprised me, as I love a wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiide range)
*TVs everywhere
*no lovely tea space anywhere in the area

So, a firm possibility.

wotan

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #27 on: July 11, 2018, 05:38:51 PM »

BNgarden

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #28 on: July 11, 2018, 06:46:15 PM »
Gym #1 Pros
...
*$50/mo for 2 of us
*super clean
*spacious
*shiny new equipment (machines, handheld weights, kettlebells, balls, etc)
*lovely space; lovely view
*full range of humans (age, ability, gender, etc)
*plenty of equipment for everyone there at time of visit

Gym #1 Cons
...
*music I couldn't stand (this surprised me, as I love a wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiide range)
*TVs everywhere
*no lovely tea space anywhere in the area

So, a firm possibility.

Sounds like a great possibility (despite the cons, which I also find irritating).  Yay to price and to diversity of peoples.  The latter was a great part of my 1.5 years' gym membership.  Price was more than double that for one person.  Hoping to find a better deal cause I really do better with a range of equipment than on my own.  (For me, the TVs are a great distraction, and time on the machines passes more quickly.  I 'think I' get how they'd be more a barrier for you.  Would your own earplugs with white noise / story / tunes work for blocking?)

lhamo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #29 on: July 11, 2018, 06:53:59 PM »
See if the gym has a rowing machine -- it is a very good overall workout, and LF would probably like the repetitive/"Flow"y nature of it. 

When I go to the gym, I do a mixture of 30-45 minutes of aerobics (20 min rowing + rest brisk walking on the treadmill, or just treadmill running/walking) and a 15-30 minute round of abs/back and either upper or lower body weights. 

Just walking is great too, especially if you focus on keeping you core aligned.  You can throw in some bodyweight exercises, too, esp if you pass a park where there are climbing structures, etc (good for pullups)

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #30 on: July 11, 2018, 06:59:51 PM »
The price is discounted per disabilities (yay!).

I don't know if I'm up for one more place I wear ear protection in -that's already all my kid's classes, the library, my school, sometimes my house. I love my over-the-ear ones but I hope to sweat :)    But if those are the only real cons, and the other gym doesn't beat this one, we'll definitely give this one a three-month trial. In that case, I'll ask if there's different music at different times, or if the person in front of each TV gets to choose to have it off, or on what channel (I would enjoy watching a nature channel while on a treadmill, for example).

@wotan , I enjoyed that link :)    Is it two hours long??? I didn't watch two hours of it, but I skipped around and really appreciated the concepts. I might try that some time, but I don't think it would hold my kid's interest at this point.

lhamo, I think he would very much enjoy a rowing machine, yes! (I do consider maybe getting one piece for home down the road. We have a completely empty living room, lol. It could have something in there.) We do walks together currently.

mspym

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #31 on: July 11, 2018, 07:37:32 PM »
It sounds like the gym is a winner [and another vote for deadlifts from me, because they are #thebest] but another alternative to climbing is bouldering - essentially climbing without the harness for lower heights. We go with our boys and it's so much fun and a total workout even if [like me] you can't get very high at all. 

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #32 on: July 12, 2018, 05:10:49 PM »
Kid really liked the gym tour and said, "And this is my kind of music!" ha! If one of us likes the sound, that may be good enough for me. Realized we can go for $25/mo, too. It's getting better by the day!

Still waiting to hear back on Gym #2 on an orientation time.

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #33 on: July 12, 2018, 06:34:02 PM »
Okay, we're moving forward with signing up with Gym 1. Gym #2 is too hard to get ahold of, and it says it all that we just happened to be by Gym #1 twice in this brief period, making these contacts easy. It's next to or en route to our current life -blends in beautifully with our natural movement- and ease is what I'm looking for.

Completed health evaluation forms, papers for discounts, etc. Now we submit those and wait for a call to book our initial session (each) with trainer (additional cost, but important).

I still don't really want to exercise, but I do really want to prepare my body for old age so I will.

Swish

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #34 on: July 16, 2018, 11:25:48 AM »
SRT tree climbing :)

Candace

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #35 on: July 16, 2018, 12:06:50 PM »
Okay, we're moving forward with signing up with Gym 1. Gym #2 is too hard to get ahold of, and it says it all that we just happened to be by Gym #1 twice in this brief period, making these contacts easy. It's next to or en route to our current life -blends in beautifully with our natural movement- and ease is what I'm looking for.

Completed health evaluation forms, papers for discounts, etc. Now we submit those and wait for a call to book our initial session (each) with trainer (additional cost, but important).

I still don't really want to exercise, but I do really want to prepare my body for old age so I will.
Good on you for moving forward! May you and Kid find it easy to go, rewarding to do the exercise, and generally enjoyable.

When it's time for DH and me to work out (4x/week at home), often I don't want to do it. But once I start I get a rush of "proud" that probably comes with endorphins, and when we're finished I am always SO pleased we did it. I hope for you that you experience similar feelings. At the end of my workout I do a short yoga flow. The sensations I get during yoga always give me a huge impression that it's helping my body stay mobile. I'm 52, and it just feels like it's going to help, a lot. That's not to say I'm suggesting only yoga will give you that feeling, just to hope you get it from the exercises you choose.

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #36 on: July 16, 2018, 12:09:32 PM »
Thanks very much, Candace :)

It's a slow process to get registered, but I'm on top of our end of things and excited to get going. I've enjoyed certain exercise stuff (different ones for different life stages) in the past. I do think we're going to have a lot of fun doing it together. And we're there or within half a block so frequently that travel and scheduling will be zero barrier.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #37 on: July 16, 2018, 12:51:58 PM »
BB, who is 7, said to me the other day (after a spectacular tantrum over getting out of the car--extravagant threats were made) that he would enjoy going to the gym with me a lot more if he was allowed to work out with me instead of being in the child care :-). Wishing you guys happy workouts!

joonifloofeefloo

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Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #38 on: August 09, 2018, 09:18:14 PM »
I wanted to say THANK YOU to everyone who responded to the contents of my original post.

We've now completed 8 (?) sessions at the gym (i.e. 3x week since starting). WE BOTH LOVE IT!!
It's air conditioned, super accessible...trainer is a miracle for my kid... We now know when the good music and visuals happen and can aim for those times...

This morning I saw my first visible results, and also made my first 10 lb increase on one exercise.
Body feels FANTASTIC every time I do it, and craves to get back there.
Kid is thrilled with his schtick as well.
It's a really happy place for both of us, individually and together.

$15/mo each. I could have gotten it for half that, but didn't want to cross the line from frugal to cheap for such a great thing.

mspym

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  • Posts: 962
  • Location: Downunder
Re: one exercise to rule them all?
« Reply #39 on: August 09, 2018, 10:18:56 PM »
SO PLEASED it's working for both of you, and *man* $15 a month each is SO CHEAP. As comparison, that is a cheap price per week round these parts.

YAY for visible results and knowing the right windows for you.