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Avatar universal

Should I take breaks from training and how often?

Hello, I’m a 13 year old guy and I am 176cm tall and I weigh 66,7kg. I train at home a lot. Every day I do 500 push-ups, 200 sit-ups, 100 with a 12kg kettlebell, Plank for 5 minutes and some other excersizes. I feel fine and I do not feel any pain in my muscles. But is it still bad that I do not take any breaks? And how often should I?
5 Responses
Avatar universal
Well, at 13, I'd personally tell you that's too young to be doing what you're doing.  You should be out playing and discovering the world and developing your brain and your interests.  Sports will work more areas of your body and be more fun than doing what you do when you're older and can't get folks together to play so easily.  You need cardio, not just resistance training, especially at that age.  But let's say this is you and what you're going to do -- there are as many theories about working out as there are people who work out, but most would say to alternate days -- you work arms one day, legs the next, abs the next, for example.  If you want to train all parts of your body, you play sports or you do cross training.  If you do the same things over and over you work the same few muscles over and over but don't work anything else, and will end up with an unbalanced looking body.  I'd also say, nobody does sit ups anymore because it's not great for the lower back -- most would recommend a range of ab exercises, including the planks.  Also, planks must be done with the core in perfect posture or you'll again end up hurting yourself, so I hope someone showed you how to do it correctly.  Form is very important, and usually if you use good form you can do fewer reps because it hurts more -- if you can do a ton of reps it may mean your posture is off and in the end you will hurt yourself.  My own opinion, again, is that if you're truly only 13, your body isn't anywhere near developed yet, your hormones are just getting started, your brain isn't anywhere near developed yet, and what you're doing is very isolating.  Maybe it's just me, but I'd urge you to get out and play and diversify your routine.  But if this is what you truly love, then it is recommended you alternate days for different body parts.  
973741 tn?1342346373
What about changing it up.  Add in some cardio work outs like a run or bike ride and on those days, limit the core and strength work.  And take two days off a week.  My sons are around your age and both in competitive sports.  My 13 year old plays club soccer and besides practice, he's expected to run 8 miles and spring 2 miles a week, and do 500 sit ups, 500 push ups, 200 mountain climbers a week plus an hour a week of soccer ball jugging.  That's his conditioning work.  He also runs track that makes it easier to accomplish outside of his 3 times a week soccer practice he also does.  

Both my boys have done push ups and sit ups daily (well, school days, so 5 days a week) for a couple of years (after getting into the habit having to do it for the physical fitness merit badge in scouts) but not 500.  They can both whip out 100 fairly easily.  So agree that maybe cutting down on the reps.

I think the school of thought is cross training.  No one activity like that every day.  Do you do any sports?  Play basketball, swim, run, bike ride, kick box?  Make sure you do that a couple of times a week and again, maybe on those days, do limited sit ups, push ups, etc.  Take your two days off a week.  Maybe get a light set of dumb bells and add in some weight work.  Change it up.  

Paxiled, everyone still does sit ups.  It's still part of the fitness test, it's still part of training, it's even still part of my old lady work out classes conducted by certified fitness trainers.  Other things like planks are still added in though, that is true.  

I also want to say to the poster, that everything you do should be discussed with your parents so that you know it is safe. Being safe is most important.  Our gym has a training they do for kids who are 10 and over to know how to use equipment and my husband and I also would make sure our kids are doing their fitness work correctly.  :>)  good luck to you!  
1 Comments
No, nobody recommends sit=ups anymore and haven't for years.  Crunches, yes.  All kinds of different abs, yes.  Bicycle crunches, leg lift crunches, crunches on the ball, planks, all kinds, but believe me, I've had enough physical therapy and training to fill most people's entire days and all I get told is, no sit-ups.  Just because people do things doesn't make them good things to do, and most personal trainers are not trained at all, not in how body parts connect.  Each time you do an old-fashioned sit-up you have to bend your lower back, and if you do that for long enough, as I did, you will exponentially increase the possibility of harming your lower back.  I've seen a ton of sports specialists, and not one does or recommends sit-ups.  That's why everyone talks about crunches nowadays.  Now, I know people do these things -- at the gym people also tie chains on them and do pull-ups, and do squats with really heavy weights, etc., but that doesn't mean it's a good thing to do if you want to grow up and not live much of your life in pain.  Look, everyone gets to do whatever they want -- no skin off my nose.  If you want to do the old-fashioned sit-ups I did 50 years ago in school, fine by me.  But there's a reason everyone talks planks and crunches these days.  You can watch videos of entire ab workouts with 50 different ways to build your abs without seeing one that requires you to bend you lower all the way from a lying position to a sitting up position.  That's what I would do.  But again, everyone gets to do whatever they want, I won't stop you.  Peace, all.
973741 tn?1342346373
You will find traditional sit ups still done regularly by various sports professionals/trainers and is a part of most physical fitness tests you'll encounter.   Add along with it planks (side planks are killer but effective) and other abdominal exercises.  If you are thirteen, have you ever worked with a trainer?  Again, my kids starting in 8th grade will go to the weight and conditioning room three times a week with the teams they play sports with.  And the school offers conditioning as a gym class.  So, even if your family does not have access to a gym, you can use your schools and get help there.  I admire your determination and being in good shape is for life.
1 Comments
Are you kidding, Mom?  A trainer at 13?  When I was 13, there was no such thing as a personal trainer.  We had gym teachers, who were sadists.  Conditioning?  Nobody did that then, pro athletes didn't do that then -- and they got hurt a lot less than they do now because of that.  Here's life when I was 13 -- there was Little League and Pony League and after school sports leagues but the coaches were Dads who knew nothing.  What was our "organized" life like?  Go out and play, get out from under me, go to the park.  We played in the street.  We picked up teams.  Gyms?  Nobody used gyms.  Our parents didn't work out, they played -- they bowled and played ping pong but nobody built their lives around organized exercise.  When you parents finished dinner, they, gasp, went out.  Things were cheap to do.  Almost nobody had money.  Parents weren't at all interested in the minutia of their kids' lives.  Kids and adults lived in different worlds.  People forget that all these organized activities that keep kids under tight control all day every day didn't exist until recently.  If a kid was a little odd, nobody thought they were sick, they just thought they were who there were, and most everyone grew up to be fine.  What lives are like now for parents and children is different than it has been for the entire history of human beings.  Is it better?  Is it worse?  Who knows?  It just is what it is.  Now, as for traditional sit-ups, as I said, the fact people do things is not only not evidence it's a good thing to do, it's usually evidence for what not to do.  But as I said, I'm not at all trying to decide for anyone how they should live their lives, only commenting that a lot of what people do is not backed up by experience, common sense, or experts.  But disregarding evidence is the American way.  Peace to all.
Avatar universal
The short answer to your question is, "yes, you should give yourself breaks when you workout to give your muscles a chance to heal."  

The longer answer is that it really depends on what your goal is for working out:  trying to bulk up, trying to get stronger, trying to lose weight.  That will affect the type of exercises you do, and how often you do them.

Paxiled is right, though, you shouldn't be working out so much before you've gone through puberty.  Believe it or not, it can actually have a negative effect on your overall growth if you start working out too much too soon.  Pushups, situps, planks, kettleballs  - these should be OK, but don't overdo it and don't start lifting weights until you're 16 or so.  Best thing you can do right now is stay active, get outside and play a sport or two, learn good form and keep stretching.  


7 Comments
High school starts at 14 and if you do a high school sport, you are in the weight room three times a week typically.  :>)  

Is that true, Mom?  For me, high school started at 16.  14 was called Junior High where I lived and Middle School in other places.  I started high school early because I skipped a half grade.  But again, in those days, there were no weight rooms.  Pro teams didn't have weight rooms.  
i am 15 and a half right now
It may be true that schools are pushing kids into the weightroom earlier, but that doesn't mean it's healthy for them.   As I noted, exercise is good - but 14 year olds shouldn't be hitting weightrooms three times a week - especially not with really heavy weights.  
I wouldn't worry about school weight rooms.  The poster who mentions them is probably a lot more affluent than most people.  Many schools have trouble buying textbooks, let alone having a weight room.  We don't know what resources the poster has in his school, but if you've been paying attention to the news recently, teachers all over the country are protesting low wages and lack of funding for schools -- at least, public schools.  But getting access to weights isn't difficult or expensive -- and there's always some gym you can go to, such as the local rec center.  They aren't well equipped gyms, but you can do a lot with a little.  So the question still comes down to, what age is it appropriate to do intensive weight training?  I'm sure people disagree, as when it comes to exercise there's a lot of disagreement.  What we do know is it takes testosterone to get big muscles and it takes a fairly well filled out body to lift heavy weights safely.  But anyone can do light weights.  But breaks are important, and again, bodybuilders, if that's what you like to do, generally alternate body parts and also mix in some cardio. My own opinion is that working out in a gym is something older people do because it becomes hard to get enough people together to do things that are more fun.  When you're young, enjoy the fact that there's a lot of people your age who are looking for stuff that's fun to do, and sports are fun and work the whole body, not just part of it.  As Mom has shown, soccer (or football if you're not American) appears to be all legs and cardio, but serious players will try to develop all around fitness.  That's how athletes typically train nowadays, and it's called cross training.  Even baseball pitchers today have weight lifting in the offseason and run for endurance and do a lot of things like pilates for overall flexability and fitness.  Doing a lot of different things when you're young enough to do them both protects you from overwork on one part of your body and keeps it fun.  The more fun it is, the more likely it will become a lifetime enjoyment of fitness.  But fitness in this way isn't at all necessary -- when I look back on my schoolmates, it was the nerds and the backcountry hikers and the readers who never exercised formally who made the most money and accomplished the most in life.  The serious athletes who made the high school teams didn't do so well, probably because they reached their heights so early in life.  Life is complicated, and there is no one answer, which is why I continue to emphasize fun for young people over regimented activity, but I'm always aware I could be wrong about everything.  
That's a little offensive.  I'm not a wealthy woman and in a regular old American public school system.  Highschool starts at 14 and it has since I was in high school.  You graduate around age 18 typically unless you are as smart as you and graduate early.  My husband grew up in a very rural town and his graduating class was 60.  He graduated high school in the 80's.  He lifted for football freshman year.  

It sounds like maybe some people are not parents and have had no involvement with teens of this age.  luck to the poster and rock on working out.  We're not talking weight lifting championships but strength training helps with every sport.  As does regular practice.  Time to rest your body is important, so 5 days a week is good.  Cross training and lots of activities is wise.  And always have fun doing it.
Mom, I'm wondering where you live.  I'm from California, though I now live on the East Coast, and high school started then and starts now at age 15 0r 16 depending on whether you have three years of middle school or two years.  In my youth, it was three years, and was called junior high school.  You started high school at age 16 and left at age 18 for most people.  While I graduated at 17 and was in fact a very good student, I skipped because of a peculiarity, not because I wanted to.  In my youth they had two times a year to start school, and they ended this when I was in junior high school.  The option was to spend an extra half year in high school or get out a half year early by going to summer school.  There was no way I was spending any extra time in high school, so I chose to get out early and started college early.  And I don't know why you find it offensive to be in a school district that is much better off than most of the country -- if you live in any state controlled by the Republican Party, and most of the people in the US don't but most blades of grass do, then if you go to public school the budget has been starved for years now and it is true that in these places you are lucky to have a classroom, let alone a weight room.  That's why you have rock solid conservatives striking in these states, starting with West Virginia and spreading.  It's why we have an Education Secretary whose entire focus is on bankrupting public schools.  Now, most people reading this might think this is a great idea, because in most of the country they're voting for this to happen.  I'm not saying this is wrong or right, simply that it's true that most public school students in most of the country do not have access to such things.  In wealthier states with higher taxes, they do.  That isn't offensive, it's a very important issue in our lives right now.  But it's also important that people know there are inexpensive ways to do resistance training if that's what you want to do -- you don't need a gym and you don't need weights to do it, which was my point.  No offense meant, quite the contrary, I was marveling at how lucky you and your kids are.  But again, I'm older than most on this site, and a little historical perspective is sometimes useful.  For those of us who grew up in the fifties and sixties, gym class was an extension of basic training in World War II.  We climbed ropes, ran, and did those situps and stepups.  Those fitness tests were devised for those of us subject to conscription, as I was, though I was not drafted (I would have been if the Vietnam War hadn't ended, because my lottery number, 88, guaranteed a trip to Vietnam).  So that's what the average person who wasn't a serious athlete was trained.  And only men -- women were not trained at all.  So it's good things have changed in many ways but it's also not so good how regimented young people's lives have become.  I can only offer food for thought, because I have no idea what the right thing is.  Peace.  
20822233 tn?1524242748
i'd take breaks every 5-10 minutes just in case. i'm only    15  1/2 thats what i do  just to give you the amount of time you should be taking a break
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