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Yoga beginner.

cydonia2010-07-05 00:31:09 +0000 #1
I am completely new to yoga and currently trying to decide if it would help me fulfill my summer goal. I am currently 5 foot 9 and 160 pounds, and trying to lose about 15 pounds of fat during the summer while I realize that gaining muscle and eating right combined with cardio would be ideal for losing excess fat, I also don't like the idea of weight training and getting bulky. Basically what I want out of yoga are:

1. increase in strength

2. Looking toned and tight

So is there any specific type of yoga that I can do to help me achieve my goal? I also heard that "toning" the body is a myth and can not be done without lifting weights heavily. Thank you for reading and please share some ideas.
InnerAthlete2010-07-05 00:39:42 +0000 #2
Well this is an interesting question.

The phrase "toning the body" can have several meanings and like all truths it comes in layers not ultimates. Can you have lean muscles mass that is visible without going to a gym and lifting barbells and dumbells? Yes. Can you do it without bearing weight? No, I do not believe you can.

If this thing is your summer goal you have very little chance of "getting bulky" in three months. You'd have to work out like a banshee, eat very very mindfully (lean and low carb), and inject steriods into your rear end and even then three months is almost impossible. I say this just to mkae the point that you needn't fear getting bulky. If you don't want to lift weights then I wouldn't do it. and I wouldn't blame you. I don't fancy it either.

You are right, basically the formula is (a * activity) + (calories - b) = lower body fat where "a" is a multiplier of physical activity and b is a reduction in caloric intake. So do more and eat well but reduce calories. That's conventional wisdom. I also think it's fairly shallow wisdom and lacks a certain whole body or wholistic approach. But that's just me.

The two things you ask for can be achieved through Ta Bo or the like. Why bother with something else? Why waste your time?
Hubert2010-07-05 00:43:03 +0000 #3
Weight lifting with small weights lots of repetitions does not make you bulky and it does burn fat. But I admit, it is boring.

I lost about 15 pounds in three months doing weight training three times a week, and cardio, two times. I ate 6 times a day, and almost totally avoided fats. Practically I lived on poultry (white), and low fat dairy, oat flakes, ocasionally beef, eggwhites, and some small amount of fruits and vegetables.

Was it hard ? It was hell. I went hypoglicemic a few times in the gym. I did reach my goal, but ... there is big but. It is the energies you meet in these places, and the energies you get by doing this kind of practice. They turned me so rajasic (action oriented) that it created serious emotional problems I am adressing even now, more than a year later.

Sudden changes are always dangerous.

I heard good things about asthanga yoga, maybe someone who knows it better will recommend it.

PS. I can picture complementary weight training with specific anatomical focus ... especially for women who by nature tend to have less strenght in their arms. Just until their strenght allows advanced asanas.

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