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LARKUN7701 Posts: 25
1/22/13 3:11 P

Carrying around extra weight for a really long time is a great way to build really large strong calf muscles that have a bulky appearance to them. My calves are quite large proportionately because of this. There really is no solution either. Exercising them will maintain their bulk or increase it, and not exercising probably means Ill gain weight again, so they are something that I have accepted. You may be in a similar situation as me.

JEAN2666 SparkPoints: (2,069)
Fitness Minutes: (3,932)
Posts: 33
1/22/13 12:42 P

I agree with everyone else! But in addition, just wanted to let you know you can search online for XL/wide shaft boots. I have only been able to purchase ONE pair of boots from a mall/retailer. So I don't even bother looking anymore. They cost a little more but I just search online for wide shaft boots. always has free shipping both ways so if you need to return them, there's no additional cost.

1/21/13 10:16 P

Thank you, everybody, for the advice and encouragement. It is helpful to have you all here! Thanks again emoticon

26BETH SparkPoints: (5,522)
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Posts: 180
1/21/13 7:31 P

Mine too!

JILLO137 SparkPoints: (8,170)
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Posts: 149
1/21/13 5:19 P

Ohh, I can totally understand what you all are talking about!! I have the same problem, but my whole legs are very strong, but that doesn't really make it better.... I don't know if that's true, but the only two ways for me to get thinner calves is - guess what - loosing weight and trying to avoid excercices that are to intense for them.... Sure, try to keep them strong, but don't overwork them....

DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (61,458)
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Posts: 9,717
1/21/13 5:04 P

Realistically, your calves are the size they're supposed to be. ;) You can't make them smaller through exercise. I guarantee you that they're not as big as you think they are! Coach Nancy once mentioned that SHE has big calves... if you've ever seen her pictures, she most assuredly does not!

Check it out:

Buy shoes to fit your legs and feet... don't try and make your legs and feet fit your shoes. ;) Instead of trying to fit what you think is better, embrace what you have, and love the skin you're in! Remember that designers make their clothes for thin, curveless women on a catwalk... not real women on the street.

Edited by: DRAGONCHILDE at: 1/21/2013 (17:10)
1/21/13 4:47 P

Cardio might help.The more muscle you build the more defined your calves should get

ALORTA SparkPoints: (7,363)
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Posts: 310
1/21/13 4:26 P

I had the same problem! All my winter shoes had to be half boots or high ankle ones.
I did a lot of horseback riding as a child (despite being fat), so I always figured the big calves were due to using them on the horse. They were hard and defined, so I was positive it wasn't fat;
Not at All! Lost some weight and last summer found far fewer problems (some still don't fit, but getting there!), even though the calves still seemed to be just what they were before.

ALEXMAYLE SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (393)
Posts: 4
1/21/13 4:01 P

I would agree with the person below me. While you may have muscular calves, I really can't see them being developed to the point that you describe. The good news is that you probably have strong legs, the bad news is that there is probably some fat on them. So, just keep working out like you said and the fat will gradually go away from all kinds of places on your body.

You can be happy about all the other spots you're losing fat on in the mean time, and when your calves slim out you can treat yourself to some boots :)

MOTIVATED@LAST Posts: 15,451
1/21/13 6:51 A

Fat is considerably bulkier than muscle (check
iz_how_much_do_you_really_know_about_fat for a great photo of this). So bulk in the calves is almost certainly due to fat there, rather than muscle.

While not as common as storing fat in the thighs, belly or butt, some people do store fat in the calves.

Unfortunately, you can't target where you lose weight from - calf or leg exercises will not help you lose fat from there. 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, and some of it will naturally come off the calves.


1/20/13 10:15 P

Simplelife2: that info doesn't make me very happy but it does make a lot of sense. emoticon I've always thought I had my dad's legs (not very becoming on a woman, but o well)! Thanks for the info. All I can do is keep working, so keep working I will!

SIMPLELIFE2 Posts: 707
1/20/13 9:41 P

Much of your calf size is genetically determined. The number and type of skeletal muscle fibers each person is determined in the womb. Skeletal muscles do not grow by adding more muscle fibers. Rather, they grow by changes made to the fibers already present in the muscle through adaptations to increased demands.

You could have an overlay of fat, but the calf really isn't a prime spot for fat accumulation unless you are carrying very, very large amounts of body fat. You just might naturally have big calves. Also, because the calf is a second-class lever, you really are limited on the types of exercises and amount of weight you can use. The soleus and gastroc are really tough muscles to develop and are unlikely to be that developed in anyone but cyclists, who do thousands and thousands of reps.

They do make boots for wider calves. Perhaps you can find a goal boot by browsing that selection.

KRISTEN_SAYS SparkPoints: (81,670)
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1/20/13 8:55 P

Unfortunately you can't spot reduce fat. Losing fat is an all-over process that happens gradually overtime. That said, I found that my calves didn't shrink that much after losing 50 pounds. They were never that big since I carry most of my weight in my belly, but there's no exercise you can do to make you calves shrink. Eat a healthy diet and exercise, that's all you can do!

KAYLABGAME SparkPoints: (1,436)
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1/20/13 8:55 P

Oh good question I have this problem all the time! Mainly my calves are too muscular because of my constant rotating of my feet 24/7 as an anxiety issue. But some of it is weight too. Will be keeping an eye on this to see others replies.

1/20/13 8:44 P

So maybe not huge, but they are really big. My calves have always been bigger than I would like but since I put on so much weight they have gotten bigger. To make matters worse, there are a really cute pair of boots that I want to treat myself to as a reward and you guessed it my calves don't fit in them :( Does anybody have any ideas how to exercise the calves to help them out a little (or a lot).

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