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TOPIC: How to get rid of these "thick" legs?????

 
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October 5, 2012 2:03 AM
I don't have an answer but I share your pain!
  28442702
October 5, 2012 2:05 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

EMBRACE YOUR INNER PEAR!! I have heavy legs too but the rest of me is ok. Yoga and pilates will help to elongate and tone but you pretty much have to learn to love what your mamma gave you. If they are toned and strong who cares how big they are! flowerforyou

Noooooo... please not the "elongation"! explode Yoga and pilates will not elongate anything. Once you have stopped growing, your bones are a fixed length, and your muscles are a fixed length. Like any exercise, yoga and pilates will help you to lose fat through a calorie deficit, and they can help you to strengthen and shape your muscles (although not as effectively as you can with weight lifting).

But the part about embracing your shape - that's good advice. flowerforyou


Ah feck, totally worded it wrong, should have put 'gives the illusion of longer, leaner muscles' ANY eejit should know your bones wont grow with yoga but Ive slimmed down my thighs as best I can. I havent tried the lifting (yet) so couldnt give an opinion but Ive seen some AMAZING photos of the ladies on here. Please dont explode!
  17054306
October 5, 2012 2:06 AM
I'm not sure if you are saying that you have thick-muscular legs or thick-fat legs..

If its thick muscular, start doing long distance running!!! Look up the difference between long distance runners legs and sprinters...... Thin legs on long distance runners, bulky muscular ones on the sprinters. Its probably the only way to "spot reduce" but its not the fat... Its the muscle and not really reduction, it is the way and type of muscle fiber that you are building... I wouldn't say stop the squats and lunges and blah even though you are just building muscle, which makes them look bigger... but um cut back and run and run and run. It is the only way (that I know of) to get thinner legs, besides.. well, starving.

Just look into it and I'm sure you will find that I am right. Have you ever seen a long distance runner with thick legs? Didn't think so.

It will take time, but don't give up if you want results! :]
October 5, 2012 2:10 AM
I am 5'3.5" with the exact same issues at this moment in time. I lose in my face, waiste and back but it is impossible to lose in my butt, tummy and thighs. Grrr. At one point we have to just accept what we have, own it and love it. My hubby loves me no matter what I look like so I should follow him and love me for who and what I am as well. I am in the best shape of my life, I run long distance, lift weights, feel great except for these stupid fat pockets I can't seem to get rid of. Telling people not to be honest will not help your plight. Accept you for who you are, enough said. No one will ever have the perfect body or be 100% satisfied with themselves anyway. You just have to strive to be the best you that you can be.
  14463935
October 5, 2012 2:11 AM
QUOTE:

Noooooo... please not the "elongation"! explode Yoga and pilates will not elongate anything. Once you have stopped growing, your bones are a fixed length, and your muscles are a fixed length.


er... stretching kinda elongates :)
October 5, 2012 2:11 AM
I have what I class as 'thick' legs too - I've been told I have athletic legs..lol... and the more exercise I do with them the more bulked up they get - I have never had nice skinny little calves - EVER! Even at my skinniest where I was happiest with my body - I still never had the legs I would have liked.. my body just isn't that shape...
October 5, 2012 2:18 AM
I have the same problem. Squads, lounges etc will definitely tone your legs and it will make them look better. Recently I discovered that running and jumping (all kinds: rope, sideways, on the box) helps me loose more inches from my tights. I haven't yet found any solution for calves ;(

Edit: If you're not on a budget you could try some beauty salon treatments.
Edited by dominikaro On October 5, 2012 2:22 AM
October 5, 2012 2:40 AM
QUOTE:
So for those of you in my same position - how have you/are you targeting your legs? I workout at least 4-5 days a week. Lately, I've been adding more squats, lunges, leg presses, stair stepping, and running.

Also, please, please, please - DON'T respond with "you can't target certain areas" - I've heard this several times as well.


You may not like to hear it, because you've heard it several times before... but the reason why you've heard it several times before is because it's TRUE. You should know, as a functioning adult, that asking the same question over and over again won't inevitably result in that answer changing any. It's not like the people of MFP can change scientific fact for you.

That said, here is what I would do if I were you (I, for one, have the same body type. Smaller up top, tree-trunk legs... but I love my proportions, if not my weight. Once I'm through with fat loss, my legs are gonna be bangin'.):

-Do plenty of strength training exercises for your upper body and core, to build up your upper torso, thereby balancing out your proportions somewhat, creating more of an hourglass figure. Make sure to consume protein (I'd say at least 20 grams. Get some whey protein concentrate or isolate, if nothing else is portable) within an hour of strength training. Continue to eat a high protein diet (about 1g per pound of lean mass. Go get your body composition tested, if you do not know those stats). The workouts are one half of the equation. Your body can't build muscle without enough protein.

-Don't stop the squats, lunges, etc, as building those muscles will keep your legs shapely (instead of them turning into undefined, shlubby-looking stovepipes, like I've seen on some young women). I would throw in some deadlifts to build up your hamstrings and glutes, too. They're great for building a nice, round, firm bum. Do keep in mind, however, that these will generally only increase the size of the muscles, and will never spot reduce. If you're working on a calorie deficit, these will help you lose body fat overall... but no better than any other calorie-burning activity, regardless of what limbs you employ to perform it.

-Work on reducing your body fat percentage, overall. As I am currently obese, I am able to drop body fat while still gaining muscle. As you are not obese, from what I have read by other lifters, you will probably have to work to build muscle (called a "bulk", wherein you do not work at a calorie deficit, focusing on building muscle without losing weight), and reduce body fat (called a "cut", wherein you focus on losing body fat, without being able to build... even losing some of muscle mass), doing these two phases separately. This doesn't mean you will turn into some burly she-hulk; you can apply the same techniques that bodybuilders use, on a smaller scale, to get the figure you want. I would direct you to Google these terms, even dare to venture over to www.bodybuilding.com, to get a better idea of how this works, as I myself have not reached the point of doing either, specifically. Look for tips on how to do it naturally. There are a lot of articles out there, and some lifters use things like Hydroxycut, etc, that venture into iffy diet pill territory... which I don't condone.

-Stop listening to your friends' critiques of your body. Your friends clearly don't know jack. Our society has had its view of a healthy body distorted from so many people being overweight; a healthy weight ends up looking worrisomely thin, to a lot of the now "average" people. If YOU know you are still in a healthy range (and at a BMI of 22.5, you most definitely are), then the only person whose business it is to be happy with your body is YOU.
  21448730
October 5, 2012 2:49 AM
Usually big, muscular legs means you have a rockin' @$$. So work it and don't try to lose it. (Because, frankly, if you're built that way, it's not going to change.)
October 5, 2012 2:52 AM
I have the same problem and wish there was some way of them going away. I dont see that you can do anything other than surgery - Drastic i know.

i wish someone had the answer i would love to hear it.
  25252234
October 5, 2012 2:53 AM
sex! LMAO
October 5, 2012 2:59 AM
I may be wrong here, but I think most people are missing the point - if I am the one missing it, feel free to shout at me and throw stuff in my general direction.

What I understood is the following:

OP has lost weight and is now at her ideal weight.
Her upper body is lean and with a small concentration of body fat.
Her legs, though, still have a high percentage of body fat.

OP knows that she can't spot reduce, but is now in a situation where if she loses much more weight she will be emaciated. On the other hand, she still has fat to get rid of.

If I got it correctly, this is exactly the same situation I am in now.

Facts that OP seems to understand:
a) You can't spot reduce
b) You can't change your natural shape

Question:
How to get rid of the excess fat that didn't go away, knowing that spot reducing is impossible and knowing that further dieting at calories deficit will create an unwanted effect?

My answer would be the following:
1) Work on muscle tone of the UPPER body to balance out the figure, so that the arms, shoulders and back don't look too thin and emaciated.
2) Work on muscle tone of the LEGS: they may never become "thin", but a toned look is always better than flab.
3) Eat enough calories to be at maintenance and make sure to eat enough proteins, clean foods, not too much fat, the smallest possible amount of sodium.

If I am wrong in any of these points, please correct me, as I am in the same situation and would love some help. :)
  26657573
October 5, 2012 3:06 AM
QUOTE:

I can help!!! I RELATE 100%!! I have been a BIG leggeded girl all my life and mine was due to muscles (and fat), gotta love genetics plus overeating. This is the first time in my life I've really gotten my legs down along with the rest of me. That said, my upper body is still "thinner" than my legs but I'm balanced and proportioned. I went from a size 16 pant to size 6 jeans comfortably and my upper body is a size 6. What did it for me?

1) Weights!!! Lifting heavy (for me)! I was always one of those girls who said she wouldn't lift weights because she'd bulk. WRONG!! This is the smallest I've been since I was in the 6th grade.

Mon and Wed:
Legs--squats and goblin squats. 30lbs in the beginning, now up to 40lbs. 15reps. 3 sets.
Arms/shoulders/back--15lbs each arm. Bicep curl into shoulder press and tricep extensions (while doing goblin squats), bent over rows. 10reps. 3 sets.

Tues and Thurs:
Legs--Lunges and Romanian deadlifts. 30lbs in the beginning, now up to 40lbs. 15reps. 3 sets.
Arms/shoulders/back--15lbs each arm. Lateral raises and side lateral raises (while doing goblin squats), bent over lateral raises. 10reps. 3 sets.

Fri:
Just legs--squats, goblin squats, Romanian deadlifts and lunges. 30lbs in the beginning, now up to 40lbs. 15reps. 3 sets.

I don't go superheavy because I need flexibility and agility for dancing.

3) Cardio. When I do weights, I do them as HIIT. Meaning: I'll do 30 seconds hard rope jumping, then one set of movement, like 15reps of squats. Then 30 secs hard rope jumping, then 10 reps of arm weights. 30 secs hard rope jumping, then 15reps goblin squats. I do this until I hit all the reps and sets. I jump rope to keep my heart rate up and burn cals while I'm doing weights.

Every day, I jog 2-5 miles a day. Usually, 2 miles in the am, with the dog, then do HIIT/weights. Then 2 miles in the pm, after work. In the summer, I swam 45 mins -1 1/2 hrs 3 or 4 times a week. Or I do the elliptical. I clock at least 1 1/2 hr workout every day and then about 3-4 hrs Thursday, Saturday and Sunday.

But, I really believe that it's the running combined with the weights that have gotten my thighs, hips, and butt down. I had a boyfriend who was a biathlete and he told me that running distance over time (rather than fast sprints) break down the muscle fibers and rebuilds them longer and thinner and he said something about the pounding tears the muscle fibers so when they rebuild you want to build them longer, thus running over times (I think of marathon runners, lean thighs). It made sense. So I run for time...at least 20-30 minutes a stretch twice a day.

I still have thighs, but they're not huge and I'm complimented on my legs all the time :) I hope this helps. It took about 4 months to see really definitive results...and that's working hard EVERY day.

I'm am an example of a woman who changed her body type...I've always been "thick"...I'm not anymore. My body looks VERY different. Also, if you look at my profile pics, the black/white dress and the green skirtini were taken when I was a size 8. I'm now a size 6, so even smaller (not even trying to lose anymore)...



WOW love I'm very admirative of your motivation and dedication! It makes me feel lame bigsmile
  22806412
October 5, 2012 3:13 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

QUOTE:

EMBRACE YOUR INNER PEAR!! I have heavy legs too but the rest of me is ok. Yoga and pilates will help to elongate and tone but you pretty much have to learn to love what your mamma gave you. If they are toned and strong who cares how big they are! flowerforyou

Noooooo... please not the "elongation"! explode Yoga and pilates will not elongate anything. Once you have stopped growing, your bones are a fixed length, and your muscles are a fixed length. Like any exercise, yoga and pilates will help you to lose fat through a calorie deficit, and they can help you to strengthen and shape your muscles (although not as effectively as you can with weight lifting).

But the part about embracing your shape - that's good advice. flowerforyou


Ah feck, totally worded it wrong, should have put 'gives the illusion of longer, leaner muscles' ANY eejit should know your bones wont grow with yoga but Ive slimmed down my thighs as best I can. I havent tried the lifting (yet) so couldnt give an opinion but Ive seen some AMAZING photos of the ladies on here. Please dont explode!

I get what you're saying, but you'd be surprised at how many people do actually believe that yoga makes your muscles longer. Explosion averted. smile
  15417651
October 5, 2012 3:41 AM
Just of intrest OP would you mind posting photos? Often people post these topics and they've got a distorted view of their body.

I have the same issue but still have quite a bit of weight to lose so am hoping the more I lose the smaller my thighs and belly will get. My belly has just got to that squishy stage before you lose fat.
  9648316
October 5, 2012 4:07 AM
I can tell you my body shaped changed pretty drastically from the waiste down when I dropped the last 7 pounds. I am 5'8" and weigh 132 now, and make sure I get my walking and yoga in, and in the last month have been a Barre 3 enthusiast, I can feel and see the difference.

there is a new book out, "Ballet Beautiful".. It speaks to the daily exercises that are the discipline of ballet dancing. It also speaks to eatting correctly. it is written by a retired ballet dancer. It really speaks to the science of life long balance in body image and health.

I strive for long lean toning. It is all about conditioning your core muscles . Try any of the new "Barre" classes (many on you tube) on line for free. I guarantee you will find muscles in your inner thighs you didn't know you had!

Lastly, there is nothing wrong with optimizing what you have. If you don't like how you look in pants, don't wear pants. Wear dresses or tunics with leggings or skinny jeans. Don't buy or keep anything in your wardrobe that doesn't make you feel beautiful when you are wear it. even your work out clothes should make you look and feel great!
October 5, 2012 4:24 AM
I have the same issue, and came here hoping to get some kind of answer. Quite frankly, I'm now even more confused! Everyone has an opinion based on their experience, but since I believe every person is different, in order to get the most certain answer for YOU, I would recommend a visit to a specialist. Hope that helps in some way smile
October 5, 2012 4:28 AM
QUOTE:

I never saw a ballet dancer nor gymnast with clumpy legs - maybe there is a clue there to the type of exercises you should be doing.


Clearly you don't watch the Olympics. The ones who walk away with the gold medal are anything but slender usually. They're built like little tanks with massive legs that look like they can be used as lethal weapons. Exception being rhythmic gymnastics and gymnasts who very obviously have extremely naturally slender frames such as Nastia Liukin.
Edited by contingencyplan On October 5, 2012 4:29 AM
  21291152
October 5, 2012 4:29 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

QUOTE:
So for those of you in my same position - how have you/are you targeting your legs? I workout at least 4-5 days a week. Lately, I've been adding more squats, lunges, leg presses, stair stepping, and running.

Also, please, please, please - DON'T respond with "you can't target certain areas" - I've heard this several times as well.


You may not like to hear it, because you've heard it several times before... but the reason why you've heard it several times before is because it's TRUE. You should know, as a functioning adult, that asking the same question over and over again won't inevitably result in that answer changing any. It's not like the people of MFP can change scientific fact for you.

That said, here is what I would do if I were you (I, for one, have the same body type. Smaller up top, tree-trunk legs... but I love my proportions, if not my weight. Once I'm through with fat loss, my legs are gonna be bangin'.):

-Do plenty of strength training exercises for your upper body and core, to build up your upper torso, thereby balancing out your proportions somewhat, creating more of an hourglass figure. Make sure to consume protein (I'd say at least 20 grams. Get some whey protein concentrate or isolate, if nothing else is portable) within an hour of strength training. Continue to eat a high protein diet (about 1g per pound of lean mass. Go get your body composition tested, if you do not know those stats). The workouts are one half of the equation. Your body can't build muscle without enough protein.

-Don't stop the squats, lunges, etc, as building those muscles will keep your legs shapely (instead of them turning into undefined, shlubby-looking stovepipes, like I've seen on some young women). I would throw in some deadlifts to build up your hamstrings and glutes, too. They're great for building a nice, round, firm bum. Do keep in mind, however, that these will generally only increase the size of the muscles, and will never spot reduce. If you're working on a calorie deficit, these will help you lose body fat overall... but no better than any other calorie-burning activity, regardless of what limbs you employ to perform it.

-Work on reducing your body fat percentage, overall. As I am currently obese, I am able to drop body fat while still gaining muscle. As you are not obese, from what I have read by other lifters, you will probably have to work to build muscle (called a "bulk", wherein you do not work at a calorie deficit, focusing on building muscle without losing weight), and reduce body fat (called a "cut", wherein you focus on losing body fat, without being able to build... even losing some of muscle mass), doing these two phases separately. This doesn't mean you will turn into some burly she-hulk; you can apply the same techniques that bodybuilders use, on a smaller scale, to get the figure you want. I would direct you to Google these terms, even dare to venture over to www.bodybuilding.com, to get a better idea of how this works, as I myself have not reached the point of doing either, specifically. Look for tips on how to do it naturally. There are a lot of articles out there, and some lifters use things like Hydroxycut, etc, that venture into iffy diet pill territory... which I don't condone.

-Stop listening to your friends' critiques of your body. Your friends clearly don't know jack. Our society has had its view of a healthy body distorted from so many people being overweight; a healthy weight ends up looking worrisomely thin, to a lot of the now "average" people. If YOU know you are still in a healthy range (and at a BMI of 22.5, you most definitely are), then the only person whose business it is to be happy with your body is YOU.



Great post ^^^


Agreed!

Edit to say that if that's you in the purple dress in your profile pics.....you have rocking, strong legs! You don't look out of proportion and you need to stop listening to your friends critiques of your body!!!!
Edited by LoraF83 On October 5, 2012 4:31 AM
  16691827
October 5, 2012 4:34 AM
i have the exact same problem with my legs and by now i have given up that i would ever have leaner legs. i just go with my everyday food and workout.. and if it has to happen it will happen. i cant spot reduce it i have tried
October 5, 2012 4:37 AM
I too have very muscular legs, like gymnist my husband says, all muscle and always hard as if flexing! So yea Im really interested in the answers here. It seems like everything I do just builds them up more. But.......... that stops at my butt (sigh) wouldnt mind that bulking up or my arms trimming down. Why is it some areas are just naturally physical and other parts just slackers? Thought body should work as a team, but my legs carry most of the weight, litrally!
October 5, 2012 4:37 AM
If you have been quite overweight your legs will be massssive from lugging all that weight around (muscle).

My legs are pretty big from that I reckon - I'm kinda stuck with them which is OK , I think you can make legs bigger, but less muscle is near impossible.

If you are on about fat - if your legs are too fat you need to loose more body fat - end of
October 5, 2012 4:40 AM
QUOTE:

I'm not sure if you are saying that you have thick-muscular legs or thick-fat legs..

If its thick muscular, start doing long distance running!!! Look up the difference between long distance runners legs and sprinters...... Thin legs on long distance runners, bulky muscular ones on the sprinters. Its probably the only way to "spot reduce" but its not the fat... Its the muscle and not really reduction, it is the way and type of muscle fiber that you are building... I wouldn't say stop the squats and lunges and blah even though you are just building muscle, which makes them look bigger... but um cut back and run and run and run. It is the only way (that I know of) to get thinner legs, besides.. well, starving.

Just look into it and I'm sure you will find that I am right. Have you ever seen a long distance runner with thick legs? Didn't think so.

It will take time, but don't give up if you want results! :]


If she's eating in a deficit, then she is NOT building muscle by doing squats and lunges.

Plus, running without some type of muscle preserving exercise to balance it, is just going to make her legs look bigger due to lack of muscle tone.. and personally I'd rather have thin legs, with muscle tone and then thin and flabby legs.

If anything she should be doing both, and not one or the other.

To OP:
Everyone else has pretty much summed up what I was going to add.

I've always had bigger thighs, and I finally have slim legs thanks to running and squats/lunges.
  6370231
October 5, 2012 4:40 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

also you can change any body shape or type with the correct exercises and diet...

its how hard you work at it, takes a lot of sweat.

this is SO not true and quite frankly part of the reason so many girls end up getting eating disorders
i think with the proper training and diet you can change anything, its been done before, just cant focus on one thing its a factor of all.

l
Edited by south001 On October 5, 2012 4:58 AM
October 5, 2012 4:45 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

also you can change any body shape or type with the correct exercises and diet...

its how hard you work at it, takes a lot of sweat.

this is SO not true and quite frankly part of the reason so many girls end up getting eating disorders


Schwarzenegger didn't.

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  9711248

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