5.0 Exercise Update Jan 2022

It’s hard to know where to begin with an exercise update as it seems there have been a flood of “new” decisions and events in all our lives. (Thanks Covid!)

My objective is to exchange old behaviours for new, healthier ones.

So far:

The Weigh Scale Adventure

I’ve lost 10 pounds (I think). Our scale is on its last legs (Yes, we fed it new batteries) and it gives some wonky readings.  Our weighing system now is to stand on it, wake its tiny electronic mind – and get a reading.

  • We ignore Reading #1 and step off. 
  • Step on again and accept Reading #2.  

The difference between the two is roughly a bag of cement and we assume the second reading is a much closer measurement.

I’m now flirting with almost sub-200 pound measurements from mid 200-teens.

A new scale is on our someday list.


I have reestablished a 20 minute meditation into my daily routine and am considering a second one.

Note: I subscribed to Apple + Fitness and am using their meditations and exercise routines.

Walking As Exercise

My walking habit is now active again and I’m doing a minimum of 2 miles a day (most days just over 2.5) 

Important Point

My main objective in this slow and steady adoption of new behaviours is to cement the behaviours into my daily routine.

I’m not looking for a wild burst of enthusiastic beginnings and burned out endings a short time later.


I had begun dieting with a low-carb diet but read this note comparing low carb to restricted calories.

I”m now tracking the food I eat using a subscription to the app Lose It. I’ll report back on how this is going in a while.

The Next Step In My Exercise Routine

My next step is to add some strength and cardio exercises into my day. (They’re scheduled for Wed, 23rd.

I’ll start with 5-minute sessions even though I understand cardio requires an 8-minute period for optimum benefit (that may be old data however.)  I’m adding one cardio and one strength session to begin.

Remember – my objective is to cement these behaviours into my daily schedule. The benefits will be low at the beginning but will – once I’m satisfied with the daily routine – be increased in repetitions and time.

  • Establish the habit. 
  • Then do the serious work.
  • Celebrate each step and disappeared pound

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Don’t Start Your Seniors Fitness Program Like This

I started my Doug 5.0 seniors fitness programme off with a bang, setting the goals, starting the workouts, and learning (thanks to some introductory yoga videos), my body really wasn’t flexible.

At this point, I would have shared my goals with you. Indicated how many pushups, situps etc I was doing and inviting, encouraging you to join me at your own level.


My leg injury put me out of the picture for any kind of exercise – the pain was significant with just walking – never mind knee bends or supporting myself in pushup position.

The numbers of all those things are now zero or close enough to it that I’ve put that on my daily notes. I can do zero pushups, zero situps, zero squats, and …. You get the picture.

My fitness is so bad (and my leg still hurts a bit) that I hesitated to write this post, never mind share my embarrassing numbers. Seriously, I put off writing this post for as long as I could but then decided wtf, this is part of life so get over yourself and get on with it. In for a penny, in for a pound – as my grandmother used to say.

It’s Easy To Forget You’re A Senior

I forgot for a brief moment I was a senior and had to be kinder to myself (the little voice in my head has been unrelenting this past few weeks) when it came to limitations.

For example, here’s a link to my post on deconditioning or what happens when a senior loses fitness for any reason. I can confirm to you this process is very fast. Sigh…

A simple thing like my muscle sprain led me to lose a significant amount of muscle mass.

It’s humbling. Very humbling.

How’s The Leg?

It’s not 100% yet but I did start walking yesterday – it was sore afterwards and again this morning as I write – so I’m still taking it easy and not going for a fast walk (more like an amble) 🙂 But at least I rebooted the fitness project albeit at an extremely basic level.

In the coming weeks, I will (slowly, very slowly) expand the health and seniors fitness work and I’ll report on both the fitness and emotional impact of injuries “soon.”

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Setting The Objectives For Doug 5.0

So this is where the rubber meets the road. It’s one thing to write about doing a self-experiment and it’s quite another thing to post the starting points and report on the embarrassment of my lack of fitness.

The voice in the back of my head chuckles at my discomfort and points out the end points to this project will be different if I can keep my act together. And knowing I’m going to have to write and post both the successes and failures has a serious motivating effect.

Physical Objectives

These are the easiest to identify but potentially the most “interesting” to discuss.


Back down to playing weight in university at 185 pounds but ideally anywhere below 180 to high school playing weight.

  • Currently 201 thanks to a year of Covid popcorn eating.

Note I have a mesomorphic body type (shorter, thicker). Think football running back rather than long-distance runner or basketball player. These types of body weights are almost always heavier than the recommended health guidelines for the age/sex your doctor will quote.

Fitness Targets

I have no idea where to begin on this so I’m picking what I hope are very low fitness numbers and working up from there.

I expect to exercise strength and cardio 3 times a week and do Yoga (flexibility) 5x week.

I’m keeping the numbers in old-fashioned paper notebooks on my desk and I’ll share them as I develop baselines and results.


I already have a walking routine so will continue doing approximately 2 miles a day for 5-7 days a week.


I will eliminate snacks in the evening as a first step.

What about a “real” diet? Well, maybe. There are only so many changes I can realistically make in a short time. If you find yourself in this position you might want to read “Atomic Habits” by James Clear

Note, I’ve put this book on my reread pile and will review it shortly.

Common Problem:

A very common problem in these kinds of weight loss plans is to overestimate the weight loss you can achieve and underestimate the difficulty in achieving it.

And as I said above, taking on too many new habits in a short time is almost a recipe for failure.

The Real Objective

While the numbers are guesses, my real objectives for this first week or two are to

  1. establish the habit of exercising and
  2. avoid snacks.

The numbers will become relevant slowly but surely as the habit sinks into my daily routine and I find the appropriate workout levels.

I’ll report regularly on this adventure – and the amendments I make – just to keep myself honest.

Personal Update on Exercise Programme

I wrote this two weeks or so before it was published.

My fitness project took a whack when I blew out one part of my thigh-muscle (quadriceps) moving stone.

My “exercise” currently consists of: stair work (hobbling up and down stairs to my office) and deep knee bending (lowering myself gingerly onto the couch.) Oh, and there’s marathon hobbling to the refrigerator for a beer, high jumping onto a dining room chair for meals, and long distance running when I hobble out to the car to drive my sweetie for our shopping trips.

I’ll get back to you…

Join me for regular updates as I rebuild my fitness and health levels

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