Not sure what I should be doing to get the results I want?

  • ny247365

    Posts: 12

    Jan 19, 2011 5:00 AM GMT
    Overall, my main goal is to have a slim, toned physique. I'm about 5'9 and my natural body frame is pretty small, especially the upper half of my body. Any additional weight and/or muscle goes straight to my lower half. So, my upper body can look slim and toned, meanwhile my lower half tends to look bulkier. Still reasonably slim by most standards, but not on the same level as my upper body. I just want both ends to be equally slim and toned looking. How to obtain this is what I'm not sure about, since there's a lot of conflicting information out there.

    I mainly enjoy running and using the elliptical for exercise, while sometimes throwing in a pilate class or two. I'm a little hesitant with running, since I've heard it bulks up your legs, which makes sense since you're using those muscles more, then I've also heard that it slims down your legs. Plus, when I think about it, the people you see running marathons do not have bulky builds, which supports the idea that distance running is what gives you a slim, toned build. I just don't know exactly what distance is required to get that build, vs a bulky build. 3 miles, 5 miles, more?

    Any advice would be great!
  • KinesiologyMa...

    Posts: 123

    Jan 19, 2011 7:00 AM GMT
    Well i am sorry to say that genetics is genetics. If you mean you have fat on your legs that you dont like doing any cardio will burn fat and make some improvements where you want it. If you have bigger muscle on your legs there is no real way to loose your muscle.... unless you dont run nor move... or get out of bed for like a month lol. Swimming can help tone that ass for that upper dimple and also running is good for burning fat. If you want your legs to look more toned and loose fat than wear leg weights whenever you walk. My boyfriend is doing it and it is crazy what it has done.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 19, 2011 4:22 PM GMT
    Do you do any upper body exercises? If you only exercise your lower body, why would your upper body get bigger?
  • ny247365

    Posts: 12

    Jan 19, 2011 9:33 PM GMT
    I don't really do any upper body exercises, it just seems to be more toned on it's own as a result of basic cardio. I'm not trying to get bigger at all, just more lean.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 20, 2011 6:59 AM GMT
    I tend to be bulkier on the lower half naturally as well.

    I've pretty much been running 3 miles about two to three times a week and I have found that I lost a lot of the fat on the lower half (on the upper legs and on the butt), and now my legs are much more toned compared to when I first started working out.

    I am working on my upper body, but I don't really expect it to look that large like most guys since I've just come to accept my genetics... but it's nice to have that upper body strength for swimming.
  • Jessie_Lee

    Posts: 113

    Jan 20, 2011 7:31 AM GMT
    The problem with your work out is that you're not working your upper body. What the body does is work on the parts that you ARE using, and minimize the parts that you're not. Because you're not doing anything with your upper body, any muscle weight you'll put on will go to your legs, and not your upper body. So if you want to even things out with your body, start doing upper body.

    My suggestion is keep doing your basic cardio, but add some weight training after. Do a full-body workout with your weight training, meaning exercise every muscle, including your legs. Pick weight that's somewhat light and go 15-20 reps per set, but not too light that it'll be too easy to reach 20 reps. And it doesn't have to be a long weight-training session either, as long as you do at least 2 or 3 sets per muscle group.

    Even the lean, slender models do a little bit of weight training, y'know.
  • ny247365

    Posts: 12

    Jan 20, 2011 5:03 PM GMT
    Jessie_Lee saidThe problem with your work out is that you're not working your upper body. What the body does is work on the parts that you ARE using, and minimize the parts that you're not. Because you're not doing anything with your upper body, any muscle weight you'll put on will go to your legs, and not your upper body. So if you want to even things out with your body, start doing upper body.

    My suggestion is keep doing your basic cardio, but add some weight training after. Do a full-body workout with your weight training, meaning exercise every muscle, including your legs. Pick weight that's somewhat light and go 15-20 reps per set, but not too light that it'll be too easy to reach 20 reps. And it doesn't have to be a long weight-training session either, as long as you do at least 2 or 3 sets per muscle group.

    Even the lean, slender models do a little bit of weight training, y'know.


    Thanks, this is great!
  • Lincsbear

    Posts: 2605

    Jun 30, 2011 1:34 PM GMT
    Hi there,
    Before I ran I was 'bottom heavy' ,big legs,narrow chest,etc,so my advice would be to keep doing cardio of some kind,running,cycling,swimming,etc.I found running slimmed my legs down,turning fat to muscle.Then prepared,do some weight training in upper body alone (as I did) to develop and strenghten it.That way you`l have that athletic,masculine physique in balance,and not be bottom heavy.
    If you`ve a genetic tendency to put on weight/muscle on the legs,then it will be harder,sadly,but persevere,you will make improvements.
    All the best with your training!