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Unread 01-09-2012, 06:56 PM   #1
KatyCruel
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Smile Toning up for cosplay?

....halp? XD

Okay, so in as few words as possible....
I'm a healthy weight. Not in great shape, but I'm healthy. I have a few areas of my body, though, that I hate. Both of my cosplays for Detour (at the end of March) show at least one of these areas - "these areas" being my stomach and my thighs. Two belly shirts and one pair of short-shorts.

So. I need help. I don't need to lose weight - I need to lose fat. Support, ideas, people to bug the crap out of me about my goals....all of it! Thanks in advance. =]
~Katy
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Unread 01-10-2012, 10:07 PM   #2
KamenRiderAgito
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My kindred spirit, those are the exact areas I've been working on (and I will continue to do so until I can wear my bikini with pride). ^_~

For toning your stomach, crunches are your friend. You should put together a workout to strengthen your core: crunches (regular, oblique, reverse, twisting), jackknife, plank, sit ups, superman pose, the hundreds (you'll definitely feel that one), v sit, rolling a like ball, etc. If you want abs (or you just don't want fat), try some of those. There are plenty of Youtube videos to show you how to do them.

As for the thighs: lunges and squats. Those two exercises alone can do wonders.

Check out (and join) the exercise boot camp thread, and we can all help nudge you along. We're all in this together, for the love of cosplay and fitness. Good luck! ^_^
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Unread 01-10-2012, 10:23 PM   #3
Disemballerina
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There is no such thing as toning and spot reduction of fat. The loss of body fat is almost entirely dependent upon maintaining a daily caloric deficit in comparison to your daily caloric needs. A small deficit of a few hundred calories (300-500) is usually the best way to go about it. Keep in mind that it it slow and takes time. Though, it is also recommended that you do some kind of resistance exercises and get enough protein in order to keep as much lean body mass as possible.
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Unread 01-10-2012, 11:54 PM   #4
KatyCruel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Disemballerina View Post
There is no such thing as toning and spot reduction of fat. The loss of body fat is almost entirely dependent upon maintaining a daily caloric deficit in comparison to your daily caloric needs. A small deficit of a few hundred calories (300-500) is usually the best way to go about it. Keep in mind that it it slow and takes time. Though, it is also recommended that you do some kind of resistance exercises and get enough protein in order to keep as much lean body mass as possible.
I'm not saying that I only wanna fix these two areas - I know that you can't just do one area and only that area. I'm trying to say that I'm trying to focus on these areas more than anything else since they're the worst. They're the top priority - not the only focus. I was asking for ideas for exercises that will work mostly these areas.

Also, it's not just loss of fat I'm after. I have, for the most part, a perfectly healthy amount of fat. I just don't want it to be all fat - which is basically what it is right now. And frankly, your comment was demeaning and unhelpful. I'm not trying to lose weight. I'm perfectly happy at 135 and damn thankful for it. I just don't want to be 135 lbs of all flab - which is kind of what I am right now.
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Unread 01-11-2012, 09:03 AM   #5
ne0ven0m
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^ I don't think they were trying to be mean, but point out a truth about biology people confuse. Building muscle in a certain part, which is what any kind of exercise movement does, doesn't equal losing fat in that same part. Say for you, you want better looking thighs and abs. The way to go about doing it is by overall burning more calories than you take in over time, whether you do it by weight training or cardio or whatever else you enjoy. Doing leg and ab exercises exclusively will NOT lead to more "toned" legs and stomach-- they'll just merely give you stronger legs and abs.

If you develop a good workout routine for the next few months, then you'll slowly reshape your body composition without changing the weight too much. Besides, as long as we look good, who cares about the number, right? ;D
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Unread 01-11-2012, 10:55 AM   #6
Rjr3412
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Like Neo and Dis said, "targetting" your trouble areas is not going to get you the best results. Developing a healthy diet, with a few hundred calories trimmed, and doing a full body workout with regular cardio will lead to much faster results.

Think of it this way. Building muscle and recovering from resistance training; as well as fueling muscle all take energy. Calories are energy. Developing your whole body will burn more calories than just focusing on two areas. More calories burnt, plus more muscle mass leads to lower body fat percentage.

By March though, you could definitely accomplish a lot.
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Unread 01-11-2012, 06:07 PM   #7
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@KatyCruel
I was just trying to give you a few exercises for the areas you were asking for, since you seem to be putting together a workout plan, but they seem not to be very helpful.

@ne0ven0m and Rjr3412
I wasn't trying to come off as an expert or anything (because really, I only know what actual fitness experts have told me), but I could use some more clarification too. What's the difference between building muscle mass and just strengthening your core/thighs/arms/etc? I know that you can't just target certain areas to get rid of fat (believe me), but do strengthening exercises really not make a difference in muscle definition?
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Unread 01-12-2012, 12:27 AM   #8
ne0ven0m
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An increase in size, whether that's gaining fat or gaining muscle, requires excess calories over time.

So strength training + excess calories = extra muscle mass. This is part of why most people (men and women) shouldn't have this notion that they're gonna beef up over night by just lifting some weights. If you're not eating like a bodybuilder (mega portions of meats, pasta, and protein shakes), you're not gonna look like them either. As a side note, you can still gain a good bit of strength without size gains if you weight lift while maintaining your caloric intake the same. But eventually, there's going to be a limit to your strength unless you get more/bigger muscle fibers.

And then no exercise + excess calories = getting fatter :P This part I think everyone gets.

As for the definition part, that's defined by your total body fat %. Unless you're bed ridden, we all have a certain amount of muscle mass just by daily life. So if you cut down your body fat % enough (aka decreasing the thickness of your "padding" around the muscles and organs), you'll start looking more "toned" even if you're not carrying around a lot of muscle mass. A good example is soccer players. They're not exactly heavy or buff dudes who live in the gym, but because they expend so much energy, their fat % is low, and their small muscles show up easily to give them a cut/lean look.

I hope this is a little more clear. Sometimes I don't even want to bother posting on this section because I feel I may come off all douchey, but I just want people to be clear on on things and not keep on spreading myths about human physiology. I've had several years of college and graduate level courses on biology, and I've always been interested in reading up on fitness since I was a young teen.
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Unread 01-12-2012, 08:03 AM   #9
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/agree with Neo

I too meant no disrespect, just wanted to clarify.

Consider strength as step 1 to muscle growth. Lifting heavier weights is a trigger for muscle growth. To do so you have to get stronger. If lifting progressively heavier weights in the presence of excess calories/protein you should see muscle growth (provided good health/rest). In the absence of excess calories, or in a deficit, attempting to lift progressively heavier will help prevent the loss of muscle (catabolism). Which is why full body workouts are important.
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Unread 01-26-2012, 11:30 AM   #10
Libis
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pilates and swimming would probably be good to look into.
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Unread 01-26-2012, 12:28 PM   #11
Celyddon
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Hi Katy,

I'm actually in the process of working on this myself--specifically the hips and thighs area.

(I'm also trying to lose a little weight, granted, but I'll explain.)

What I've been doing is to increase the amount of cardio I do--to increase long, lean muscle and stamina--and a little weightlifting on the side. I've been building in a 500 calorie deficit per day, and I'm losing about a pound a week. However, if you don't want to lose weight, you can build in less of a calorie deficit or even none at all--you'll still train muscle and help to shrink fat cells.

I can tell you honestly that in the 6 weeks I've been doing this, I have genuinely seen progress in my thighs--slow progress, but progress nonetheless. (I'm working towards Project A-Kon, so I have 5 months.)

For me, at least, the increased cardio/less on the weightlifting has helped. Before, I was switched around--I was doing more on the weights and less cardio, and while I gained muscle, I wasn't losing any weight (due to not enough caloric deficit--cardio seems to burn more calories over time than basic weightlifting does). Plus, I've changed my weightlifting so that I'm doing more reps with lighter weights (stamina) instead of heavier weights with fewer reps (power).

I hope this helps you. Best of luck!
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