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Can ab exercises hurt your back?
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November 29, 2006

Is brown bread the same as multi-grain bread?"

"What is the optimal method of using the treadmill?"

"How does one get good abs?"

All of you who are inclined towards keeping fit are faced with these kind of questions every now and then. It is extremely important to know what you are eating and how you are exercising, lest the results may be counterproductive.

Get Ahead fitness expert Brinda Sapat answered your fitness questions during a chat on November 23.

For those of you who missed the chat, here's the transcript.

Part I: Want to lose weight? Eat well

pals asked, hello Brinda,I am a 25 years old female having a small bulging stomach.thats the way its in our family.I would love to have a flat stomach.what can i do for it?can i get a flat stomach by doing some specific excersises.I dont know coz its in the family.Please advice.

Brinda answers, Cardio, cardio, cardio! Follow it up by some abs and back exercises to tone up the area.

padmini asked, Hi Brinda! I am 37 years old, female, 160 cms tall and weighing 84 kg at present. I work at a desk job which involves no physical activity.I have joined a gym about two weeks back and going regularly six days in a week. I walk moderately fast on the treadmill for 20 minutes, do cycling on exercycle for 10 minutes, then lift 1 kg weights for about 10 minutes.Please tell me how long will it take to lose about 10 kgs. I want to weigh in around 74 to 75 kg. I feel my bone density is higher than most people since I dont LOOK excessively overweight at 84 kg, though I am aware I am obese. I feel target weight of less than 70 is unrealistic. By the way when I started gymming two weeks back I was weighing 85.5 kg.

Brinda answers, Well done, Padmini! Keep going. You need to target a two to three kilo loss per month. Watch your eating habits.

kendraj asked, Hi. Can u tell me the most optimal way of running on a treadmill. I mean inclination, speed and duration??? I keep getting conflicting inputs from various people

Brinda answers, You start at a comfortable speed and zero incline. Then increase speed gradually, over a couple of weeks and do the same with the incline. There's no hard and fast rule. Make it tougher when you are ready for it.

kanchan asked, hi brinda, how one can keep fit always??

Brinda answers, Exercise three to four days a week and eat sensibly throughout your life.

arul asked, Brinda thanks for your reply.But you have not told me whether am i overweight? Is doing some ground exercises is enough?

Brinda answers, Arul, don't bother about the height-to-weight ratio, as it depends on a lot more than fat content. Ground exercise is not enough, I'm afraid.

Shyam Sanker asked, Hi Brinda. I went to a local gym on the last 3 days. I did a set of excercises as prescribed by the trainer. But now, I have some pain in both my groins. So,I am unable to walk properly. It started today morning only. Do you think this is normal during the initial phase ? The excercises did consist of sit-ups, crunches etc causing some stress in the groin area. Thanks in advance.

Brinda answers, Hi, Shyam. It's quite likely that you are suffering from routine soreness post exercise. Try to rest as much as possible. Don't overdo the exercises since you are just starting out. Ease yourself into it gradually.

carol asked, Hello Brinda can one include brown rice in diet instead of white rice hoew many claories should I intake everyday , i want to reduce my weight by 10 pounds , I weigh 150 pounds height is 5 4 , my main problen is excess fat in lower reigon of my body pls guide thanks

Brinda answers, Hi carol. Brown rice is really good. 1200 calories per day should be the normal intake. Walk five days a week, at a brisk pace for 30 minutes or join an aerobics class.

baba asked, i m facing backbone problem so thats much weight is ok for me or i have to reduce a little bit

Brinda answers, Baba, please check with your doctor.

boniface asked, i think u r too busy to reply my query for stoping hair fall. if u answer, it would be a great favour

Brinda answers, Hi! This question is not a part of my field. Sorry.

Alok asked, Is Brown bread really made without any maida. How nutritous is it to eat butter free veg brown bread sandwich as evening snack. Is atta maggi available in market is a healthy option for dinner. ?

Brinda answers, You need to eat multi-grain bread for the best nutritional value. Maggi Atta is better than regular Maggi but not a great choice for dinner. Instead, eat fresh home-made foods than processed edibles.

Ahmed asked, HI Brinda, Can u suggest some floor exercises for the whole body(espesially legs) to gain mass

Brinda answers, Hi Ahmed. You need to do the routine weight exercises to gain mass. Floor exercises with no weights will not give you benefits of increased mass.

bonnyparmar asked, mem how to make cuts on stomach

Brinda answers, Lots of cardio and lots of abs. But remember to balance ab exercises with many back exercises or you will suffer back problems in the long run.


Brinda answers, I'm not a doctor. This question is not applicable. Sorry.

CHIRAG asked, hi, brinda . i am 24 the problem is that i am very thin and slim and my wieght is only 56 kgs, even if i eat too fatty food d do a loads of exercise i am not able to gain weight tell me what to do ?also working out at gym with help ? if yes , pls let me no good gym at south mumbai?

Brinda answers, Hi Chirag. Increase the amount of weights you are lifting. Heavy weights and fewer repetitions. Eat more carbohydrates and protein. Good gyms -- Gold's, Qi, Euphoria.

Caroline asked, Hi, Brinda, I am 4 ft. 11", 31 years old and weigh about 80 Kgs. I have also accumulated a lot of weight at the stomach (front part) and hips. Though I do not have cravings, I eat in moderation. But I do not have time at all for exercises. Till my schooling (when I used to use the bicycle), my physique was quite good and in shape. After leaving cycling, things have become very bad. What do you suggest. I am a Secretary by profession. I

Brinda answers, Hi! You have to walk five days a week for 30 minutes at a brisk pace. Eat a light dinner. No fried foods or sweets.

deepam asked, I have hypo thyroid and polycystic ovarian syndrome.I have gained 10-12 kgs in the last 6 months.Iam 164 cms tall and weigh 65 kgs.Aged 34 Yrs. Continuing to gain weight.What should i do

Brinda answers, Please check with your doctor first, on weight loss. Start walking five days a week.

dugg asked, Hi, thanks for your answer to my previous question (my lifestyle is such that i eat whatever i want,but make sure that i run atleast 1 km everyday..will this be enough for the long run, or would i need to change my diet as well? i am 5'8" tall and weigh 65 kgs).. im sorry i didnt phrase that question properly, i meant to say "in" the long run as far as my age is concerned.i am 25 yrs old.

Brinda answers, Dugg, it is always good to watch your food intake. Eat healthy and eat five small meals a day -- three main meals and then a mid-morning and evening snack of fruit.

Vibhu asked, Hi i'am 5'8 weighing 75 kgs. Am i overweight? Thought i'm quite athletic there's a small belly creeping in. what shud i do for flatter abs? What shud my ideal diet be?

Brinda answers, Vibhu, focus on your cardio. Do some abs and back to tone up. Cut out fried foods and sweets.

indira asked, Dear Brinda, I am 47 years old, 5'4" and weight 78kgs..I was doing yoga regularly for the last 1 year9 months but did not loose any weight, just lost some inches. So since last 6 months I have stopped going to the class. But now I find I have put on 2 kgs on my hips and waist. after stopping my class. Please advice me what routine should I follow to remain fit and slim and loose weight at the same time

Brinda answers, Hi Indira. Stick with a form of exercise you enjoy. Exercise is a must in your weekly routine, for life. Walking works for most people.

Rashmisrinivas asked, Hi, This is Rashmi. I am a mother of 1 child-1 yr old. My breasts are lost its original shape after pregnancy due to breast feeding to child. Pls give some suggestions to bring it back to its original shape.

Brinda answers, Hi Rashmi. I'm afraid you can't do much. Try some chest exercises to tone up the area -- push-ups, chest flyes, etc.

Alok asked, In market two kind of bread available are either WHITE or BROWN. Is brown bread same as multi grain bread. If not, under which brand "MULTI GRAIN" bread is available ?

Brinda answers, Hi Alok. No, brown bread is not the same as multi-grain. You don't get any particular brand of multigrain. Go to a bakery shop.

Eric asked, Hi Brinda. I'm 30 years old. 5'10, 68kgs. i workout at least 5 days a week - split body parts. Since the last year, I haen't seen any major developments. Could you recommend a good training plan? I tried locating good personal trainers - but they are more often than not prohibitively expensive! My second query is whether it is possible to put on muscle mass (by eating the recommended diet) and get washboard abs at the same time? OR that's impossible?

Brinda answers, Hi Eric. Nothing is impossible. Just takes a lot of hard work. Your body might be plateauing, which is why you aren't seeing results. Increase the amount of weights and also change exercises.

Rashmisrinivas asked, pls tell me you will answer my questionor not. So that i will not send you more messages

Brinda answers, Just answered it.

carol asked, Hi brinda camn you pls name few cardio and aerobic exercise thanks for your patience

Brinda answers, Cardio -- walking/ swimming/ cycling. Aerobics -- try any aerobics classes.

Brinda says, My time to leave. Sorry for not answering all questions. Not enough time. Please read my articles for more help. Bye for now.

Part I: Want to lose weight? Eat well

Brinda Sapat is the head of the Group Exercise Department at Gold's Gym, Napean Sea Road, Mumbai. Certified with Training Zone & Progressive Fitness (USA), she has been a fitness instructor for the last nine and a half years.


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Number of User Comments: 6

Sub: abs and back exercise

dear brinda, can you pls tell me what back supporting exercises should be done after ab exercising? and can you suggest any other exercise for ...

Posted by neha

Sub: how to improve structure of my body?

Hi, Brinda I m 21 yr old I m 6ft tall and weight around 68kgs.About 3 yrs ago I had a meagre weight of about ...

Posted by abhisek jain

Sub: I can't walk

Hi Bindra, I am 32 yrs old and a below knee amputee. I can not do jogging/walking. How can I take care of regular fitness. ...

Posted by Shikhar

Sub: energy compliments

hello mem i like u know hw i can increase me energy level in my body . guide me about the food to in take ...

Posted by amit kumar

Sub: Dark Circles

Hi Brinda, I work for MNC in night shift. I got dark circles. How to get rid of them. I am sleeping about 7 to ...

Posted by Kiran


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