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ERICADURR Posts: 243
6/7/13 8:12 P

I'd like to chime in and tell the OP that lowering your goal weight is not going to necessarily get rid of the problem..only lowering your body fat will. Lifting heavy won't hurt you, as long as you maintain good form, and since lighter weights don't seem to be cutting it anymore, it might be time to test it out.

MRSTIGHTWAD SparkPoints: (1,172)
Fitness Minutes: (2,769)
Posts: 80
6/7/13 7:58 P

I am a personal trainer, and being such....Dragonchilde is correct. Spot reduction is NOT possible, at all, period.

As for the term "toning"- this refers to using light weights to strengthen muscle you have without building too much more, looking gently sculpted. There are those such as myself, for instance, who prefer heavy weight training to build far more muscle and become finely sculpted and defined. Either way.....THE BODY BURNS FAT FOR ENERGY TO ACHIEVE THESE EXECISES. This is why bodybuilders are strictly regimented on their caloric intake/expenditure. One miscalculation can result in gaining a little fat and end up hiding all that hard-earned muscle.

SPARK_COACH_JEN Posts: 65,551
6/7/13 7:55 P

Hi everyone

I'm going to ask that you keep the tone of this thread positive and not direct any negativity towards each other. It's great that you want to help other members through personal experience. But when a post contradicts a lot of what SP teaches based on sound research, you will get others who do their best to correct that information.

Coach Jen

DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (61,313)
Fitness Minutes: (15,545)
Posts: 9,713
6/7/13 5:39 P

My Olga, aren't we becoming insulting? I have in fact done ALL of the exercises you've described... many times. Under the guidance of a personal trainer, even! With correct form, too. But indeed, it did not work, because isolation exercises don't burn fat.

Just because you did these exercises, and then experienced smaller thighs, does not mean that the exercises themselves did anything for the fat in that area.

You're obsessed with the word toning. It's a *marketing* term. That's why SP uses it. It generally means when most people use it to reduce fat, and increase muscle. Strength training is a more accurate term that has an accepted definition. Neither I nor anyone else in this thread is saying that strength training moves have no benefit other than weight loss; but unless you remove the fat OVER the muscle, that benefit is less visible, and is not going to provide the look people want. To do that, they have to lose fat overall. Where they lose is going to be determined by genetics... not the exercises you do.

J-Lo didn't get her booty because she did squats; she had great genetics that gave her a great booty, and then she likely did squats to enhance the looks she already had.

Strength training has tons of benefit, including improving muscle quality, boosting metabolism, and much more... what it doesn't do is burn fat from the area you're working. Period.

At any rate, you are being insulting and demeaning, and seem to be unwilling to disagree without getting nasty, so I'm done with this conversation. Enjoy your "toning" obsession, but stop giving bad advice to people who want to do something that's impossible. When someone asks how to reduce the fat in a specific area, listing a bunch of exercises is misleading and won't provide them the result they're looking for.

While I'm done commenting on this particular thread and going back and forth since you've decided that insults are more helpful than respectful disagreement, I will continue to give the advice that was taught to me by SP's OWN experts: Spot reduction is not possible. Period. No matter what your anecdotal evidence may say. And that means if you provide this advice on other threads, I will continue to disagree with you, respectfully. I suggest you do the same.

Edited by: DRAGONCHILDE at: 6/7/2013 (18:02)
LEC358 SparkPoints: (11,135)
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6/7/13 4:50 P

I'm like you. I've got curves exacerbated by years of fencing and a build far from a runners build. For the record, hours of practice moving around in a squat (that's what fencing is), leg lifts, abductors, leg presses, and box jumps didn't make my legs leaner and "toned" it made them bigger because the muscles were getting bigger but I wasn't losing fat. Just goes to show that you can't out exercise a bad or even semi-good diet.

If you don't enjoy lifting heavy weights, try looking into body weight or resistance band strength training. Sergeant Major has a great team for it on SP and two books are "You Are Your Own Gym" and "Body by You" by Mark Lauren.

Edited by: LEC358 at: 6/7/2013 (16:50)
OLGA18 SparkPoints: (22,504)
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6/7/13 4:06 P

Gordomoose, You and dragonchilde seem to be confusing 2 issues here but I'm not going to beleaguer myself longer by trying to explain something to you that are clearly incapable of understanding.

FITGLAMGIRL Posts: 2,045
6/7/13 3:20 P

Thanks for all the great dialogue even the disagreements. I appreciate all the thoughts and suggestions. This is not easy. I have tried walking. I can walk on a treadmill and I can jog and I can powerwalk and still the fat hangs. So walking alone is NOT going to do it for me.

I also believe one size does not fit all. I think it's time for me to get down and dirty and mix it all up. I like the idea of one legged exercises. More like balance posture moves. Yes I can try to lift heavier, but that would not be my first choice. I know there are safe ways to exercise, I am just not wanting to injure myself. I am in my 50's and want to make smart choices and let's face it lifting heavy is really hard work and takes lots of stamina. I can lift low to moderate weights just fine, but getting heavier I don't so much enjoy. I was hoping to get this fat off other ways.

Also I see that I will probably have to get leaner and maybe drop my goal to 115 pounds. I think it's safe to say 2 pounds to goal is NOT going to make this fat disappear. It's not, I already know that. Not trying to be pessimistic, but being real. Obviously, genetics plays a part here. I am not built like a runner. That nice sleek lean look. I have curves, hips and butt so that is a problem. In HS at 105 pounds my friends called me bubble butt, so apparently not much has changed other than more pounds makes more of a bubble. Ha Ha!

Also going to try to work on my body image. I have come a long way and should try to be happy with my progress rather than perfectionism. That's a tough one for me. I look in the mirror and never see good enough. Ahhhhhhhh!

KMOMODF1 SparkPoints: (1,204)
Fitness Minutes: (349)
Posts: 3
6/7/13 12:13 P

Walk, walk, and walk some more! Its so simple and it is extremely effective for your whole body. plus it's easy on your joints.

6/7/13 12:09 P

"Why do you think people do things like crunches, squats, etc?
Because it firms up those areas. That's just common sense. "

The correct term is ignorance. Exercise professionals have known for years that exercises don't target fat loss. Humans lose fat first from the places they most recently gained - regardless of which areas they work. If someone thinks a certain exercise shrunk the fat there, it's either because of the general calorie-burning effect that all exercises provide, or their results were from other lifestyle changes (diet & activity level/exercise).

There are a lot of exercise myths that people think are "common sense" because they hear them a lot. Here is a nice long list of them. ;-)

OLGA18 SparkPoints: (22,504)
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6/7/13 2:42 A

dragonchilde - You can disagree with me all you want but, since you have obviously never tried any of the exercises that I use, you can't really know that they don't work.
This isn't my first rodeo, I have used many different exercises for many years and I know what works for me. You can't know what works or doesn't work for you if you don't do it.
By your reasoning, exercise can do nothing other than help you lose weight.
Why do you think people do things like crunches, squats, etc?
Because it firms up those areas. That's just common sense.
Even SP uses the term "toning" - Look at Coach Nicole's DVD and you will see that she uses that term.

Edited by: OLGA18 at: 6/7/2013 (04:14)
MRSTIGHTWAD SparkPoints: (1,172)
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Posts: 80
6/6/13 8:50 P

You need to keep challenging your body. If you never up the weight that you are pushing and you have a set routine, you have hit that awesome thing called a plateau. Your body has an amazing way of being able to "remember" what you do when you hit the gym. These plateaus can be a pain in the butt to get past, but as long as you intensify your cardio and progressively overload your weights with each session to shock your body into burning that fat again.

MOTIVATED@LAST Posts: 15,443
6/6/13 7:37 P


The other way to increase the challenge with squats is single leg squats. This should help you avoid back issue with weights, and also works a lot more of the smaller stabilizing muscles.


FITGLAMGIRL Posts: 2,045
6/6/13 12:27 P

LEC, good point. The most I can usually lift over my head for a barbell is 40 pounds and that is pushing it for me. The squat rack would be a better choice, no lifting over your head. Ha Ha! The good news I see where I can improve now. It's just a matter of doing it. I really hate working my legs too since I feel so weak when I am working them and dang it's hard work. Ha Ha!

LEC358 SparkPoints: (11,135)
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6/6/13 11:52 A

Squat racks are awesome things. I definitely can not lift my squat weight over my head and onto my shoulders so I can squat with good form. When you do lift, make sure your back stays in a neutral position and you aren't moving it to get momentum for your exercises. I can't tell you how many times I've winced at people (men and women) using their backs to lift heavy weight (biceps exercises are the most common I've seen) and me just wondering when they are going to throw their back out.

DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (61,313)
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6/6/13 11:33 A

Except Olga, for the fact that it is accepted knowledge (and has even been admitted by you) that spot reduction isn't possible. REcommending exercises that worked for you is misleading, because it implies that you can reduce fat by working certain areas with certain exercises.

Personally, I prefer to get my advice from SP's experts and other people trained in the field... not "musicology" students and unsourced, unreferenced random articles that directly contradict all the current research. :)

You're certainly welcome to your opinion, surely. BUt don't be surprised when others disagree with you.

You were blessed with good genetics. Your isolation exercises didn't do a thing for the fat.

FITGLAMGIRL Posts: 2,045
6/6/13 11:14 A

Thanks to all that responded. I really appreciate the help. I will look into the exercises everyone suggested. It is just so frustrating. I thought after about 4 years of working out that the fat and cellulite would be gone. Maybe my expectations are off from reality too.

I am going to continue with P90X since I am finally seeing some movement in the right direction and add some other exercises. I am not sure about heavier weights. Sometimes when I go heavier I have back issues. I am going to check into using the squat rack at the gym. I always use the barbells and dumbbells.

I could clean up my diet a little, but it's pretty tight. I want to live and enjoy life too.

Mega, well walking with a jiggle is one thing, but when it jiggles with a layer of fat over the top of the thighs I don't think it looks FIT to me. It looks like FAT! Ha Ha!

I should consider myself blessed with as far as I have come, but if I could conquer this issue I would be so excited. I look pretty fit until I put on a pair of shorts. Grrrrrrrrr!

OLGA18 SparkPoints: (22,504)
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6/6/13 8:09 A

I think it's good when people recommend the exercises that they actually do and have found success with which is why I recommended the lying adductors aka inner leg lifts. Apparently I am not alone in my opinion:

LEC358 SparkPoints: (11,135)
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6/6/13 7:25 A

Ditto to what M@L said. From personal experience squats work all part of the thighs (including the ab/aductor muscles). I know my fatigue point for squats is when my inner thighs start being weak as my quads are pretty strong from years of fencing (current squat weight: 135# woot!)

MOTIVATED@LAST Posts: 15,443
6/6/13 6:55 A

The adductors (inner thigh) muscles are pretty small, and difficult to isolate effectively. The lying adduction may work that muscle, but like most isolation exercises, it is a pretty inefficient way to train.

You are actually better off working all of the thigh muscles, such as squats. Single leg work is good, as you work the smaller stabilizing muscles just to keep you balanced.

And as for "keep upping the reps", once you get to 15 reps or so, you aren't really building strength, but rather endurance. Basically, it is sufficiently easy that it almost starts to become cardio, rather than strength.


OLGA18 SparkPoints: (22,504)
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6/6/13 2:49 A

I've don't think you can get rid of cellulite though you can probably reduce it's appearance. Here's an article that may help:

If you want an exercise to help firm up that inner thigh I highly recommend the lying adduction. Just keeping upping your reps as that muscle gets stronger. You can really feel it working the inner thigh. Just be sure to use proper form. Link for demo is below. Good luck!

Edited by: OLGA18 at: 6/6/2013 (02:50)
DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (61,313)
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6/5/13 9:51 P

The unfortunate truth is that almost everyone has some cellulite... you may never be able to get it to all go away! Unless you're genetically predisposed to carrying your fat elsewhere (like me; I have awesome butt/thighs, but I carry all of mine in my stomach) you can't target where the fat comes from. Even supermodels have cellulite... they just get it airbrushed out.

You'll always have places you jiggle. You can keep working on reducing overall body fat. Weight isn't the sole (nor even the best) measure of progress; so close to your goal weight, having your body fat percentage checked isn't a bad thing.

None of us want anything to jiggle, but the fact is, most of us will, not without resorting to dangerously unhealthy methods to try and reduce our BFPs to unhealthy levels. :)

MEGAPEEJ Posts: 732
6/5/13 9:35 P

Wait, I thought all thighs jiggled! I've seen some incredibly fit people whose thighs moved when they stepped!

MOTIVATED@LAST Posts: 15,443
6/5/13 7:21 P

Burning fat is an all-body process, and unfortunately you can't target where you lose weight from. Energy is delivered to the muscles via the bloodstream, NOT from being absorbed from surrounding fat stores. Squats and the like will develop the thigh muscles, but will do absolutely nothing about inner thigh fat.

What you can do is to continue to reduce your overall body fat through a combination of cardio, all-body strength training, and watching your intake (sounds like you are doing this already, and seeing results).

At close to your goal weight, it sounds like what you are really looking for is to change your body composition - continue to reduce body fat, while adding some lean mass. Fat is considerably bulkier than muscle, so this will result in your measurements going down.

I see you mention "medium weights". You need to be lifting heavy to get this change in body composition, and to get the most out of strength training. Aim at something heavy enough to fatigue your muscles in 4-10 reps - once you get to being able to do 12 reps, it is time to move up to a heavier weight/more challenging exercise.


FITGLAMGIRL Posts: 2,045
6/5/13 6:20 P

Ok I don't know what else to do here. I am within 2 pounds of goal weight in my 50's and work out 6 days a week typically. I eat fairly clean, no soda, no processed food, mostly veggies, fruits and lean meats. Have an occasional sweets, but usually homemade. Don't eat breads, pasta, rice etc very often.

I weight train and do some cardio. I recently started P90X with good results. My problem is the inner thigh fat and cellulite and on my back of my legs too just won't go away. I am not sure what the issue is. Do I need to get down lower in weight or is it more exercise? I just want it gone, but not sure what to do or do I just need to live with it? If more exercise what do I do. I am already doing squats, lunges, deadlifts all using medium weights. I am not big into cardio and don't want to run, but I do my P90X dvd's for cardio too. I have seen slight improvement with P90X, but I just want this gone and have run out of options.

Any advice, suggestions would be welcomed! Oh I am picky and yes I want it gone! I don't want my upper legs to jiggle when I walk! Ha Ha!


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