Recommended Zone 2 Training

I’m trying to lose 60 lbs and my only means of working out is some weight training and cardio on a stationary bike. I’m not able to do high impact aerobic exercises because of a bad back. I just discovered zone 2 training and was wondering if anyone else uses this style of training. What would be the minimum amount of time I should bike per session to see results? Thanks

Answers

  • Retroguy2000
    Retroguy2000 Posts: 1,486 Member
    edited February 19
    You'll see results from calorie control. Doing some bike will help with fitness, and adding a few hundred calories burned to your day. You can't out-exercise a bad diet.

    Start with 20 minutes in the first week and see how you get on. Don't push too hard to begin with. Each week add 5-10 minutes if you're still feeling good.
  • tomcustombuilder
    tomcustombuilder Posts: 1,592 Member
    Fat loss is tied to diet way more than exercise. Learn to count and track calories correctly so that you’re taking in fewer calories than you burn on a weekly basis.
  • kalebramsey89
    kalebramsey89 Posts: 6 Member
    Thank you for your responses. I’m starting to see focusing on my diet is key. I was able to lose 20 lbs from extended fasting. I added 2hours on the bike a day and my fasting ability went out the window. I can’t control my appetite after working out and try to eat everything in the house. I realize this is my bodies attempt reach homeostasis.
  • Zone 2 is fine for working out 35-45 mins 4 times a week. Do weights and nutrition is where the weight comes off. Gods speed with your plan!!
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 9,387 Member
    Well yeah, here on MFP you're supposed to eat back the calories you burn from exercise. It's possible you're severely undereating. Eat more.

    This was a very general information. Can you provide some more info including your stats and weightloss goal?
  • drv123
    drv123 Posts: 59 Member
    Thank you for your responses. I’m starting to see focusing on my diet is key. I was able to lose 20 lbs from extended fasting. I added 2hours on the bike a day and my fasting ability went out the window. I can’t control my appetite after working out and try to eat everything in the house. I realize this is my bodies attempt reach homeostasis.

    The same thing was happening to me. I just started reducing cardio to a quick 5 or 10 min warmup followed by weights and my appetite has been much more under control.
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,124 Member
    Thank you for your responses. I’m starting to see focusing on my diet is key. I was able to lose 20 lbs from extended fasting. I added 2hours on the bike a day and my fasting ability went out the window. I can’t control my appetite after working out and try to eat everything in the house. I realize this is my bodies attempt reach homeostasis.

    I'm not sure what "extended fasting" means to you. You need to provide your body with fuel and nutrients. If you are losing weight, you can get some of the fuel from storage. You still need nutrients.

    Hunger can be fickle. The trick is to find healthy food that can make you feel sated and stay feeling that way. This may take some experimentation. One thing that can be really hard, especially at first, is to serve yourself an appropriate amount of food for your meal. This should be thought-out and measured, preferably with a scale. Then, after you eat, the hard part is to STOP AND WAIT for the signal to get to your brain. This can take several minutes. I know I used to have a second serving because I didn't feel full. Later I'd feel over-full. That became my normal. I had an insight one time after being more disciplined when I had more than I should have, felt over-full, and recognized it was actually uncomfortable.

    Another thing to consider, especially if your "hunger" comes after extended exercise, is that thirst can sometimes mask itself as hunger. Have a pint of water and wait to see if you're still hungry.

    Over time, if you track what you eat and how you feel afterwards, you can find foods that make you feel full as well as foods that make you crave MORE FOOD soon. They both exist, and they differ among folks.

    The important thing is to STICK TO IT.
  • kalebramsey89
    kalebramsey89 Posts: 6 Member
    @mtaratoot i define extended fasting anything longer than 24 hours. I fast for as long as I can then eat one meal until full and repeat the process. I’m going by the literature of some experts,Dr. Jason Fung, who says we have enough nutrients and energy stored in our fat.
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,124 Member
    You will find that most "experts" find the writings of Dr. Fung are not supported. His findings are not peer reviewed. They are very popular. He's become wealthy from what he writes.

    Some of his ideas may have some merit, but I am not convinced.
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 31,953 Member
    Thank you for your responses. I’m starting to see focusing on my diet is key. I was able to lose 20 lbs from extended fasting. I added 2hours on the bike a day and my fasting ability went out the window. I can’t control my appetite after working out and try to eat everything in the house. I realize this is my bodies attempt reach homeostasis.

    You're right that for many/most of us, food (not exercise) is the vital variable to manage. It takes me the better part of an hour to burn off a peanut butter sandwich I can eat in under 5 minutes. :D

    As far as your exercise routine: Zone 2 is usually a good choice for someone starting out, or even as the largest fraction of cardiovascular work for a more-fit experienced person. But two hours is a lot.

    Can you maintain good overall life balance riding 2 hours every day? (Good life balance = enough time and energy for job, family, home chores, social life, and anything else important to you.) I couldn't. If you can, that can be fine, if your fitness level is up to it.

    If you're getting fatigued from that, it may be counterproductive for weight loss to do that much. If we're fatigued, we drag through the rest of our day, resting more (possibly in subtle ways) and burn fewer calories in daily life than if we weren't exhausted. Similarly, if it's so much that your appetite is through the roof, it can be counterproductive for weight loss that way, too.

    Here's my bias: Weight loss to a healthy weight is a wonderful thing. Even better: Staying at that healthy weight long term. (I'm heading into year 8 of maintenance, since losing from obese at age 59-60.) Staying at a healthy weight requires finding new, reasonably happy habits that we can stick with forever to not only reach but maintain that healthy weight, on both the eating and exercise front. Ideally, those will be habits that can operate almost on autopilot when other parts of life get challenging, because sooner or later they will.

    It's extremely useful IMO to figure out those new habits during loss, while there's still the cushion of a calorie deficit to heal any oopsies. I'm not saying you have to do the same things from day one all the way through maintenance, but sooner or later, during the loss process, it's a good plan to find those long-sustainable habits.

    I'd say the habits are useful during loss, too: You don't say how much in total you have left to lose, that I saw, but losing any meaningful total amount tends to be a lengthy process, weeks to months, maybe even a small number of years. IMO, that puts a premium on sustainable methods even during loss.

    I'm also not a comprehensive fan of Fung. Some of his practices have been productive for some people, but some of his theories are . . . well, not supported by other experts in the field. Like any iconoclast, he'll make that case that that's because he has revolutionary new insights. In the history of science, there have been a few iconoclasts who overturn hidebound theories and create new progress. But most iconoclasts turn out to be wrong. You might want to check out what some of his critics say, just as a balance.

    Certainly, we can't harvest all the nutrients we need from our fat mass. It' simply doesn't contain all the nutrients we need. It has energy, yup, and probably some other nutrients, but not much in the way of protein (needed for keeping muscle mass as we lose fat), fiber (for digestive health), and many micronutrients. Has the rare person lost weight through an extended full fast (weeks) and lived? Some people claim to have done that, yes. "Alive" isn't necessarily "thriving". I do understand that excess weight can be a health threat in itself, though: It was for me.

    I hear and appreciate in your posts that you're working on this with a willingness to analyze tactics and adjust them if appropriate. That's an excellent approach.

    Best wishes for success: The results are worth it!
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 31,953 Member
    drv123 wrote: »
    Thank you for your responses. I’m starting to see focusing on my diet is key. I was able to lose 20 lbs from extended fasting. I added 2hours on the bike a day and my fasting ability went out the window. I can’t control my appetite after working out and try to eat everything in the house. I realize this is my bodies attempt reach homeostasis.

    The same thing was happening to me. I just started reducing cardio to a quick 5 or 10 min warmup followed by weights and my appetite has been much more under control.

    For me, it's strength training that tends to spike appetite. Cardio (in fairly high volumes because I've been doing it for years) doesn't do that, for me. People vary.
    Zone 2 is fine for working out 35-45 mins 4 times a week. Do weights and nutrition is where the weight comes off. Gods speed with your plan!!

    It's fine for longer/more frequently than that, too, if a person's fitness level is up to it without triggering fatigue or appetite. Zone 2 is pretty benign at volume, assuming it's not overdoing for the person's fitness level. Personally, I spend more time in zone 3, but I've been doing cardiovascular exercise 6 days most weeks for over 20 years, so I'm pretty adjusted to it. I'm not doing 2 hours a day (usually) though. Sometimes, yeah. Occasionally even more. On higher-volume days it's usually a mix of zones (1 to 4 for sure, maybe a little 5 sometimes), though, not all Z2.

    Yes, strength training is a good thing. So is cardio. Calorie balance (eating less than one is burning all day in all ways) is where the weight comes off, no matter the exercise level (or frequency of eating, for that matter).

    OP, many people who are doing good bits of cardio would think in terms of increasing volume no more than about 10% per week, for best results. There's a distinction between exercising for health, and training for a sport, and that can affect what's best. Exercising for weight loss (as the main/only focus) usually doesn't work out very well, unless appetite spikes are avoided, and eating was close to maintenance calories before that. I can easily eat back all of my exercise calories, and more. I did that for a dozen years while training pretty hard athletically, even competing (not always unsuccessfully), but staying overweight/obese. I got lots fitter, and even a bit slimmer (more muscle, less fat), but not lighter in weight.