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CANDYICET SparkPoints: (745)
Fitness Minutes: (605)
Posts: 1
1/30/13 11:50 A

i know what you mean about babies stretching your tummy out. i am thinking of trying pilates. i was worried that i am too fat to do them tho. i think i will try them since i have read so many good comments about the results people are seeing.

JADOMB SparkPoints: (134,622)
Fitness Minutes: (68,349)
Posts: 1,708
10/26/12 8:12 P

I think that is a common problem for most of us. I went from 210 to 168 and am pretty much at my ideal weight, but I still have some soft fat in my stomach area that I can lose. I got a feeling it will be around for awhile since now I am eating normal in an attempt to actually gain muscle mass. Even body builders have this problem until weeks ahead of their competition when they go on a starvation type diet to melt away all the fat they can from their pretty muscles. So unless you are going to go to this extreme, you may have to accept a bit of a belly.

ELISAJANE57 Posts: 763
10/26/12 9:39 A

I'm know I'm not alone with the stomach issues. I have had two kids and my stomach looks terrible. I do understand the whole thing about not spot training but I do think regular core exercises done a few times a week do help. I have started doing planks more. I hate planks but I can hold them for longer and longer and I feel like I see a difference in my abs in the past couple months. I just wish the loose skin would fly away but that may be my badge or motherhood. I feel like strength training is really important for every body so keep that up and I'm sure you will see some results as well.

SHANNAKW SparkPoints: (625)
Fitness Minutes: (258)
Posts: 22
10/26/12 9:07 A

Yes!! The "raisin" tummy!! I have to say, my SIL became a bootcamp trainer 2 years ago and insists it will go away with enough work. She was quite big from having babies when she started her WL journey and looks great now. Just remember you may never be low-rise-bikini-worthy (in your eyes), there are some things that happen to us as women that it's unnatural to change after having kids! I've struggled with that lower belly my whole life but these saddlebags showed up during pregnancy and are stuck like glue!
Also, a great challenge is to incorporate a "1000" workout once a week, as it seems you have a good regime already. Do some researvh and find 20-25 different ab exercises, and take an hour to work your way through 40-50 reps of each! Hit that thousand and you'll be so proud, and your abs will sense a change-up! Slow and steady of course!
Those high-waisted bikinis are back in style anyway, I know I rocked a tankini version this summer! Good luck!

JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (81,972)
Fitness Minutes: (86,286)
Posts: 2,489
10/26/12 7:34 A

I think I'll have to give the pilates a go next time I switch up my ST routine. I do devote about 30 mins to regular core exercises 2-3 days a week. Right now my routine includes; leg lifts, crunches w/twist, bananas, a modified plank hold and bridges. I do 15 reps and 2 sets of each.

I think it's the lower part of my stomach that is holding on for dear life. My obliques have slimmed out and I finally have an inward curve there rather than a straight line. My upper abs are looking much flatter. It's weird. When my pants are pulled up to just below my navel. My stomach doesn't look half bad. It's when I unleash the lower gut that I'm like ewww, what the heck is that and why is it just ummm.... hanging there?

I did get HUGE when I was pregnant. I'm 5'2 and I gained around 50-60 lbs in both my pregnancies and it was all in my belly. If you could imagine, it didn't like look like I was hiding a beach ball under my dress, it looked like I was smuggling a swiss ball. Luckily after my first pregnancy, I managed to get down to 130 (after reaching a peak of 180 lbs in my 9th month) within a year before I became pregnant with my 2nd. So I reached the exact same weight again with my 2nd. But then I waited too long to get back into proper diet and exercise (2 years) and the fat decided to venture out from my belly and claim new turf in other areas of my body.

Edited by: JENNILACEY at: 10/26/2012 (09:09)
SHANNAKW SparkPoints: (625)
Fitness Minutes: (258)
Posts: 22
10/26/12 1:07 A

I have also struggled with the belly issue, from having 2 kids, being overweight forever and ever, and genes. I am quite active and strong, but fear I'll never show off those great abs under my soft raisin belly! However I have certainly found pilates challenging, and I was very surprised that I broke a sweat by making such tiny, seemingly insignificant movements! I also stick by that my body will tone up everywhere eventually. I put extra effort into my tummy exercises and believe that one day, it'll tighten up.... and then I'll get pregnant again..... darn babies! LOL

HAWTLIKEME SparkPoints: (21,813)
Fitness Minutes: (21,732)
Posts: 905
10/25/12 9:59 A

Thank you everyone, especially the OP and N16351D for your question and encouraging comments. I have this same problem. My husband is so worried that I will continue to lose weight from my already slim arms, legs and hips while my stomach mid section continues to protrude. I've been actively pursuing weight loss and fitness goals since January 2010, but have only been consistently doing ST since this April at Curves. I am seeing improvements, while slight and it has taken me 6 months to lose 10 pounds. Not sure if I have another 10 to go, or just continue to change my body composition as I'm trying to increase my strength and preserve my muscle to keep my limbs from getting too skrawny.

Anyways, it was a nice reminder that we're in this for the long haul and with patience and perserverence, we will get where we intend to go....EVENTUALLY!!

N16351D Posts: 2,349
10/25/12 7:51 A

First of all congratulations on losing a lot of weight and the inches! Wow! What an accomplishment!

You have a lot of company with a belly! How long have you been at this fitness/weight loss and healthy living? If it has been 4-6 months of exercise to lose this, then you can expect to have more rewards in reshaping your body in years to come.

The physical therapist recommended Pilates for me, and it is one great thing I have done for myself. It focuses on strengthening your core muscles. This makes it easier to stand up straight since your muscles can better support you. This helps you to look more lean and thin. Stand with your ears above your shoulders which are above your hips. Get your shoulder blades back by pulling them together in your back. All this helps your waist.

One fitness instructor tells us to "suck in our gut" all day long. Her mother was a ballet teacher and preached this her entire life. It is like exercising your abdominal muscles all day long. The hardest part for me is remembering to do it!

Be encouraged. Keep working out with weights, pilates, add yoga if you can, and keep that cardiovascular/aerobic portion of your workout going. Don't know how long you have been working at this, but give yourself two years of consistent strength training with the others and see if you don't get closer to your goals.

While not a fitness expert, nor a scientist, I have watched people change their body, their shape, and their lives through consistent exercise over many years.

Hang in there!

LIZ1147 SparkPoints: (6,615)
Fitness Minutes: (10,959)
Posts: 143
10/24/12 5:34 P

I hear ya! I have lost almost thirty pounds and am between a size 4/6 and small/medium. However, the first place I lose weight is my butt (I had a nice butt before :-( ) and my chest...yet, the belly just won't go away. I blame my diet on this one. I have noticed when I cut out alcohol and carbs my belly tends to go down a little. My belly also gets flatter when I consistently add pilates to my exercise routine (which I sadly haven't done in awhile). Good luck! Hope this helps!

NAUSIKAA Posts: 4,848
10/24/12 3:41 P

Correct! It varies from person to person, but for me at least, the correct waist measurement spot is actually my narrowest spot also. And there's a big difference between my waist measurement and my biggest tummy measurement.

But just so you know, if you continue to lose fat, eventually you will the belly fat -- it's up to you when you've lost enough for you.

Don't worry about the measurements being wrong. Your body itself is what matters, not the measurements you've been taking :) It sounds like you've made amazing progress!

JENMC14 Posts: 2,786
10/24/12 3:36 P

I always measure the smallest part of my waist, which is above my belly button (I have a very high waist). My husband thinks it's odd, but it's the way I've always done it. WHen I was getting a caliper test by a trainer at my husband's gym, she also took measurements, and I believe she measured my waist above my belly button, near the smallest part, as well.

Edited by: JENMC14 at: 10/24/2012 (15:37)
JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (81,972)
Fitness Minutes: (86,286)
Posts: 2,489
10/24/12 3:31 P

Ok. I think I feel a little dumb. I've always thought that you measure your waist across your navel line but I just looked it up and you measure just above, where your body creases when you bend. Well, that actually makes me feel a little better. I got a measurement of 31 inches. I also think I was measuring my hips wrong! I looked at a diagram and stood with my heels together this time and got 36 inches. I've been measuring everything wrong this whole time. Arggh!

That's correct right? You don't measure the thickest part of your stomach?

Edited by: JENNILACEY at: 10/24/2012 (15:36)
UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
10/24/12 2:21 P

Unfortunately, bodies tend to keep their shape. If you poke out in the tummy while fat, with lean legs, then when you get skinny you'll have lean legs and a pokey-out tummy.

Bless your children - they have gifted you with this curse. :)

At some point you can decide whether further weight loss to lose the tummy is worth the loss showing on the rest of your body. If you feel that the rest of you looks skeletal if you take the tummy down too far (or your butt disappears!), then you might want to try to learn to live with the tummy.

Some evidence is beginning to show that including monounsaturated fatty acids in your diet *may* help specifically target abdominal fat. That's just the healthy fats that, as a Sparkpeople user, you're probably already including anyway.

JENMC14 Posts: 2,786
10/24/12 1:07 P

Your body picks where the fat comes from. Unfortunately, I still have some jiggle belly, even at a size two, after my 45 pounds loss.

You may be able to "replace" some fat with muscle (I'm assuming you mean build muscle), but in order to really add mass, you'll have to eat at a surplus and gain weight. I will say,t hough, that the addition of squats did help my bum look a bit perkier. Perhaps try adding Coach Nicole's (or a simlar) butt blaster workout to your routine as well. Keep up the ST, continue your loss and see where you are when you get to your goal weight. Perhaps starting to eat a bit more now and lift heavy (and back off the cardio a bit) will help to do a sort of recomp as well.

JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (81,972)
Fitness Minutes: (86,286)
Posts: 2,489
10/24/12 12:34 P

Obviously this is my problem area.... but I'm getting close to the end of my losing weight stage and my belly is still way disproportioned to the rest of my body. My hips have shrunk from 38 inches to 34 inches! But my stomach is still 33.5 inches (down from 37 inches). I was never disproportioned like this before I had kids and gained weight. 4 years ago I had a 26 inch waist and 35 inch hips. Will I ever have these measurements again?

At this rate I'll be lucky to get down to a 30 inch waist at the end of my weight loss and why am I losing so quickly in my butt? Will my waist start going to down quicker near the end because I don't have much left to lose elsewhere on my body? Or will my butt continue to shrink away to nothingness?

I do strength training and all that, I know you can't target fat loss but I'm hoping that I'll replace the fat with lean muscle.

Edited by: JENNILACEY at: 10/24/2012 (12:35)
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