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Exercise Advice


I've been on LL for 9 weeks, following this forum all the way through but not brave enough to post.

I've lost enough weight now that I feel more comfortable heading back to the gym. Even at my heaviest I really enjoyed classes like BodyCombat, BodyPump and Spinning but I've had really conflicting advice from 2 LLC's about exercising again so I've decided to draw on the wealth of advice available here as I've noticed people commenting on their exercise regime.

The first counsellor I spoke to said cardio exercise was fine but no way do any kind of weight work - ie things like BodyPump as it would be dangerous with no glycogen stored. The second counsellor (first one didn't have a group opening anytime soon) said that weights are fine. She cautioned against cardio because people who aren't used to gym may struggle with it more than weights but I'm planning to be sensible about it and take it slow.

I really want to get back to the gym and start toning up and enjoying it (not freaking out everytime I catch sight of myself in the mirrors!) but I'm now not sure whether its safe so could anyone who is doing these types of exercise and is happy with how they feel give me any advice?

I still have a long way to go on LL and don't want to give up the gym!

Any comments much appreciated,

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You sound like me. Pump, Combat and Spinning were my 3 favourites even at my biggest.

It's actually a very good idea to do some resistance exercise. You won't build muscle (quite simply, you can't while on LL) but you can maintain the muscle you already have. Don't go overboard with the cardio - if it's been 9 weeks since you did either Spinning or Combat I'd start with the cardio machines in the gym, go easy to begin with, and when taking the classes, take the low options. In Combat, when you're pulsing, keep the balls of your feet on the floor, and step instead of shuffle side to side etc. - take the low options. No jumping rear knees, and stay on the floor with the evasive side kicks. Same with Spinning, don't put on as much resistance as you would usually.

And obviously, drink extra water :)

Edited to add: you will also need to drop your weights in Pump. I'd seriously suggest taking it down to a 1 on each end to begin with, even though that seems really low.
Hi there

For the first two months I could not even contemplate exercise! Like your favourites they were mine before too but I havent gone back to them yet. I go to the gym every day and my routine is run for 30 mins on the treadmill and then I head up to the weights area and do some bingo wing work and leg work. I have been absolutely fine with that and suffered no side effects at all. Last week I joined a callanetics class which I go to 2 times a week and all in all I'm coping really well with it. Not sure when I will get back into the body pump etc as just enjoying the now what I have

Good luck with it

I was really concerned about not continuing with exercise and asked about it at my introductory session. My LLC said 'if you're already exercising, keep it up BUT be aware of your energy levels'. I started doing only toning activity but quickly found I had more than enough energy for cardio. Now I do Pump, RPM, Combat and Step at least 4X a week. This week I am also adding 30 minutes on the treadmill each morning because I am enjoying running for the first time.

The point is - don't be an idiot. Listen to your body and if you start to feel faint or unwell, stop. Make sure you have plenty of water.

If you are like me, you will find that the body starts to get saggy pretty quickly and you will want to do something to start toning it up...


Silver Member
If you look up Keeliewheeliebin you'll see that she did body pump all the way through and had terrific losses. I go through energy phases where I can manage much more - but just like you I was always a huge body pump fan before - I haven't done it since I started LL as I needed to go yoga for strength because of all the stress and changes - I wanted to keep myself grounded. If you do do it I'd keep to the low weights to start off with just in case. Also I think some of the counsellors forget quite how much exercise that LL actually recommends that you do! We should all be walking 5 miles a day (500 calories) as well as the LL DVD 2-3 times a week - and I can't think of a single person who gets their steps or the equivalent every day!
Hey Kerrie
I think exercise is really important. It's made such a massive difference to me and I know that I am so much more toned because I started exercising back at week 6.
I have a personal trainer now and it's been brilliant - in the main. You do have to listen to your bod and go with the up and down energy levels. I overdid it around 3 weeks ago and it made me a bit poorly - I had to have a break and I can definitely feel it, and not in a good way!
I started with a lot of strength training and avoided high cardio, mainly as the fat burning was happening elsewhere. I would advise that you have a chat with someone at the gym, tell them what you're doing and see what they would advise as a programme, based on your calorie intake and energy levels, weight and weight still to lose.
Let us know how you get on, you'll be absolutely fine as long as you listen to your bod :D
Just wanted to thank everybody again, managed over the past week and a bit to get back to BodyCombat and BodyPump. Even went out horse riding for the first time in a year so have had a very active week. The BP instructor was extremely negative, I let her know I was on a diet and would be taking it easy and keeping weights light. Not only did she tell me I looked horrendous :)eek:) she also kept drawing the entire classes' attention to the fact I was lifting lighter weights. Was quite embarassed but managed to enjoy the class. Will be having a firm word before my next class! Loved combat and felt fantastic carrying less weight, though i was sensible and took all the low options. And I even went cantering outside when horse riding - something that normally terrifies me so my confidence levels are much improved.

So thanks for all the useful advice, I am so glad I have made it back to exercise as it will only help!

Kerrie x
Kerrie - your instructir was totally out of order. I would be writing a complaint to the manager of the gym if I was you. All the 'Body' workouts are designed to be done at your own pace. (I know what i'm talking about because they originated in NZ at the Les Mills World of Fitness gym and are operated globally on franchise.)

There is no place for critical instructors who bully and humiliate.


Totally agree with Sandra. I'm a Les Mills instructor and believe me, that kind of behaviour is completely unacceptable and would be heavily frowned on not just by the gym itself but by FitPro (who licence Les Mills programmes in the UK). Have a word with her and if she's arsey with you, complain straight to the gym management. There's NEVER any excuse for humiliating a participant. NEVER.
I'm really shocked too. Suspect this speaks volumes about your instructor's feelings of inadequacy and hang-ups. Well done you for rising above it. But don't rise so far above it that you don't complain!
It more shocked me how suddenly she changed her mind about LL as last week (she also instructs combat) she was very positive and said she had a couple of friends on VLCDs and this week she was very negative saying she wasn't sure how safe it was. I was a bit gobsmacked when she told me I looked horrendous but at least that was semi-private as opposed to the comments in front of the whole class! I am a bit stiff today from lifting too heavy in one track (she said that nobody could lift any lighter than 5kg which was just too heavy for me but she made such a big deal when I picked up a lighter weight) but hopefully will get easier. Mainly will be attending classes by another instructor but certainly will not be allowing myself to be humiliated again! Thanks for the opinions - I was worried I was over-reacting a bit (it has been known!).


I am a bit stiff today from lifting too heavy in one track (she said that nobody could lift any lighter than 5kg which was just too heavy for me but she made such a big deal when I picked up a lighter weight) but hopefully will get easier.
Eh? Which track? 5kg each side or 2.5 each side (total of 5 plus the bar)? It's one thing to try to motivate people to push themselves (we're supposed to do that) and quite another to insist on minimum weights (we're not supposed to do that) and bully people into sticking to them, particularly people who are new or haven't done the class in a while. Most instructors would do a general sort of "come on guys, why not stick an extra one on each end - this is a bigger muscle group so you can lift heavier weights" but not single people out and making out that they're slacking.
Triceps (which I struggle with anyway cos of my flabby untoned arms) where you ditch the bar and just work with a single plate and move it from position overhead to halfway down back?- she insists it must be 5kg but many people in the class can't complete the track with that weight. Totally agree that instructors need to get people challenging themselves but nobody dares pick up a lighter weight - except me and then I get singled out for it!
OMG! My BP instructor only insists on 2kg each side on the back track for stability. the other tracks are up to us.

I've done BP for ages and I can only just do 2kg on each side on the bar and I always use a 2.5kg for any plate work.

You might do yourself an injury if you lift heavier than you can cope with.

I also go down to 1kg weights for the shoulder track because mine are quite weak and you work shoulders through BP anyway.
Totally with you - on shoulders she insists on greens (2.5kg) but there was no way I could do that so I did yellows (1.25kg) and got glared at! I found that i needed to do 5kg each side of the bar for squats and probably back (though last night lifted lighter but it wasn't heavy enough) but for most other stuff 2.5kg on each side was about right. Stuck to yellows for triceps and biceps though as I have very weak arm muscles and I can't do pushups if I lift too much!
Also will probably regret doing the class at all today as I have been persuaded to take part in my research institutes dodgeball tournament - was never one for team sports so I'm quite nervous!
Hi everyone, I've never done classes could someone please explain what Body Pump, Combat etc... are.

And well done Kerrie for not letting your B***h of an instructor put you off, I think I'd be so scared I'd run a mile if that happened to me.


The Body systems classes are marketed and choreographed through Les Mills. Body Pump is a class made up of ten music tracks, each choreographed around using adjustable free weights to target a different body section. For example legs or biceps. You set the weights (theorectically!!!) at weights you feel comfortable with so its a mixed ability class. Body combat works along the same lines but is based around various marshall arts disciplines. Its high energy cardio and lots of fun! Again 10 music tracks, some designed to get heart rate up some designed as power tracks. There are other programs too including Jam (dancing), Step (obvious), RPM (spinning) and Attack (high energy aerobics). New choreography comes out every 3 months to keep them fresh and they are lots of fun and extremely addictive! Hope that helps.


There's also Body Balance (based on yoga/pilates/tai chi - mind and body class) and Body Vive (low impact class mainly marketed at the over 50s). :)

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