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question about arms..
      #188259 - 06/22/05 09:37 AM
Dr. Spice Yamin

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 3286
Loc: Maryland

ok so.. I have a question, but I'm not sure if anyone will know the answer..

I listened to all the advice out there about how if girls lift weights they won't get big arms and thats its just not possible, but it was possible for me.

I was only using weights at a muscle conditioning class for women 2x a week for one hour at most (5pounds was the heaviest). well I noticed my arms were getting bigger and that all my button downs etc dont' even fit on the arms anymore and was getting really discouraged. I didn't say anything.. but the next time my sister saw me after that (we only see each other once a month about) she was shocked over the size of my arms, and my dad told my mom to tell me to stop working out as much.. then my mom told me I must have her genes which means working out gives you big arms and shoulders. (and my family are very far from judgemental and would never say anything to me if they weren't genuinely concerned.

well I hate it. I stopped lifting weights a month ago and they've gone down a little bit but what are some other ways to get your arms smaller. Hard question I know.. but I'm wondering if anyone's personal trainers have given them tips because basically I look like a beast and I hate it. I mean being muscular is fine.. but not so much so that you look fatter than you did before you even starting working out, and none of your clothes fit in the arms anymore.

HELLLLP!!!

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Re: question about arms.. new
      #188273 - 06/22/05 10:14 AM
tnchawk

Reged: 04/02/03
Posts: 489
Loc: New Ken, PA

Hmm, well, my mom is a personal trainer and here are some thoughts.....

1) You might try doing more reps w/ lighter weights. That is better for gals than few reps w/ heavy weights. Those tend to build the muscle faster where as the lighter weights will make your muscles appear leaner.

2) Are you doing cardio as well?? Just a thought, as sometimes it takes awhile for the built up muscle to burn the fat that is stored on your body. The cardio will help melt it faster.

3) Are you eating alot of protein?? That will build your muscles too.

I'm not sure if any of that helped, but I wouldn't give up. Seriously, like you said, some women are so paranoid that they will get "big" but you really can't. We don't have the testosterone in our bodies to do so. I would keep with it, but try a lighter weight and more reps. Even water bottles will work. Hope I was helpful!

Christianne

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What if the Hokey Pokey is what it's all about???



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Seconding Christianne! new
      #188312 - 06/22/05 11:25 AM
retrograde

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 1569


Great advice - everything I was going to say!

Don't stop lifting weights. If you don't want your muscles to look much 'bigger' then switch to lower weights and higher reps. (This is NOT a default prescription for women though... many women can do very well lifting heavy with low reps, but for anyone, women or men, if they're not as interested in building strength or muscle definition and more interested in endurance or weight loss, then high rep sets is the way to go.)

Also make sure you're doing cardio and watching your diet, because that will help burn some fat off your arms (well, all over) and make you look less 'big' and more 'ripped', so to speak.

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Re: Seconding Christianne! new
      #188337 - 06/22/05 12:39 PM
Dr. Spice Yamin

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 3286
Loc: Maryland

thanks guys..

what I meant was the my muscles are already really big with only five pound weights. They are defined, but they are too big looking, and everyone around me had noticed and said they look like boy shoulders and arms more than girls.

What I want ideally is to shrink them down a bit.

do you still think lifting litle weight alot is the way to go, because I feel as though lifting the five pounds (which is the heaviest I've gone has made me too musclewoman looking.)

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Re: question about arms.. new
      #188413 - 06/22/05 05:15 PM
Little Minnie

Reged: 04/16/04
Posts: 4987
Loc: Minnesota

My guess is that genetically you are programmed to get muscular arms. My family is pretty like that. My mom (works at walmart garden center) showed me her arms yesterday and wow! and my sister in law is even more prone to it. She doesn't exercise at all because she is naturally thin (hate her) and her arms are very muscular and she looks like a blonde Jennifer Garner. I guess the question is whether it is just your family that thinks they are too much or whether other people would think they are awesome?! (I mean it might be personal opinion)

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IBS-A for 20 years with terrible bloating and gas. On the diet since April 2004. Remember this from Heather's information pages:
"You absolutely must eat insoluble fiber foods, and as much as safely possible, but within the IBS dietary guidelines. Treat insoluble fiber foods with suitable caution, and you'll be able to enjoy a wide variety of them, in very healthy quantities, without problem." Please eat IF foods!

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Re: question about arms.. new
      #188420 - 06/22/05 05:49 PM
Wind

Reged: 04/02/05
Posts: 3178


Nothing is more disgusting than an old lady with FLAGS under her arms!!! Keep those arms lean and mean, toned and built.
Seriously, think LINDA HAMILTON in TERMINATOR 3! Honestly, strong is sexy! Perhaps spend sometime on your legs/torso/butt to sort of balance out the profile? I have these long skinny emaciated spider arms and am jealous of your arms of steel.

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Re: Seconding Christianne! new
      #188492 - 06/22/05 09:41 PM
retrograde

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 1569


That's pretty impressive then, if you're building up that much on just 5 lbs! (I'd KILL for that! lol) Must be genetic, as Tamara said. Personally I think muscular arms on women is really sexy, but again that's just personal opinion.

I'll repeat, but make sure you're doing cardio. Your arms are going to look bigger and more, ahem, 'man-like' if they have some cushioning on them; just the muscle gives a 'leaner' look.

If you're really concerned about it (again, I think strong=sexy but if you don't) then you could stop training your arms, at least for a while, and focus on your back, chest and lower body. Working your upper body without specific moves for your arms is going to be working your arms secondarily (i.e. bench presses use your triceps), but since you're not focussing directly on them that should be ok.

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Re: Seconding Christianne! new
      #188520 - 06/23/05 05:23 AM
Dr. Spice Yamin

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 3286
Loc: Maryland

thanks.. its not that I don't want to look strong..

but its gotten to the point that my arms don't even fit in the holes for medium sized shirts, and the rest of me is a small, and always has been a small.. (so basically my whole wardobe doesn't fit unless I majorly stretch out the arms of tshirts.. and forget about button downs without a ton of stretch.

I don't NOT want to look strong, but I don't want to buy a whole new BIGGER wardobe. (I do do cardio.. but I'll try to do more of it to help.. Any cardio you'd reccomend as most helpful?!?!)

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Ooo, I so sympathize! new
      #188521 - 06/23/05 05:35 AM
Linz

Reged: 09/01/03
Posts: 8242
Loc: England

One year I was in major training for yacht racing and I ended up with shoulders like a professional (male) weight-lifter! And my shoulders aren't exactly very feminine at the best of times...it's totally genetic: all my female cousins on my Dad's side have muscly arms and shoulders and everyone on my Mum's side has muscly legs!

Lots of tiny reps is def. the way to go...even if you're not actually lifting anything! And plenty of cardio. And maybe something like yoga or pilates instead?

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I have the same thing... new
      #188563 - 06/23/05 08:19 AM
epa_ginger

Reged: 02/23/05
Posts: 1158
Loc: Chicago, IL

My arms get bigger looking when I work out. When I flex, my biceps look pretty big. My lame, jealous SIL actually referred to them to her cousin as "man-arms". But no one else has ever criticized them, in fact, my other friends say "I wish!", so I just decided that oh well, if I wanted to workout and be strong and healthy, and have to deal with slightly bigger arms so be it! I never feel ashamed for looking muscular.
And as for shirts not fitting---same problem here!! Frankly I just think they make some shirts too tight in the arms. That's why I like summer...no sleeves!!
Now if only I could get my abs to look muscular....

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Re: Ooo, I so sympathize! new
      #188595 - 06/23/05 10:19 AM
Dr. Spice Yamin

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 3286
Loc: Maryland

thanks linz.. i'll try it.

I know that its definitly something thats changed recently.

My sister has tiny little shoulders and skinny arms, but what she does have is pure muscle, and thats how I have always looked as well. I've always been strong, but I always had a small frame up top.

NOw I hate it because I've since turned into a linebacker. UGH. I hate it. I'd much much much rather just go back to how I looked before, (when I used to be complimented weekly on how my shoulders were my best feature.. now I think they scare people )

Anyways.. this all changed when I started working out.. all my life i've never worked out and I looked stronger and hotter then. its really annoying.. and Im wanting to give up on working out. I'd rather look slim and toned than like a linebacker.



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Well why not skip the weights altogether? new
      #188683 - 06/23/05 01:48 PM
Linz

Reged: 09/01/03
Posts: 8242
Loc: England

Cardio and something toning like yoga would be great.

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Yeah... new
      #188699 - 06/23/05 02:08 PM
Linz

Reged: 09/01/03
Posts: 8242
Loc: England

...I have trouble with stuff being too tight across the shoulders! Even ripped shirts a-la The Hulk before. Sleeveless and stretchy tops are fantastic!

My abs will NEVER look muscular. I'm happy if there's no cellulite there! (I have scoliosis that's stretched my tummy muscles so much I'm incapable of doing a single sit-up - I do do crunches sometimes tho).

Edited by Linz (06/23/05 02:09 PM)

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Re: Yeah... new
      #188702 - 06/23/05 02:13 PM
epa_ginger

Reged: 02/23/05
Posts: 1158
Loc: Chicago, IL

Sorry about that! That's a bummer! I do crunches, and I KNOW I have muscles in there, unfortunately there is a very stubborn layer of fat. My abs are definitely my problem area. And of course IBS doesn't help!
(SIGH) Oh well, we are none of us mannequins, are we?

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exercise balls new
      #188749 - 06/23/05 04:26 PM
Little Minnie

Reged: 04/16/04
Posts: 4987
Loc: Minnesota

work wonders on abs. They totally make your gut flat. I do crunches on the ball. It is way harder but I have seen results from it and only from the ball. You can almost tell women who work out with balls because they have flat abs and a womanly butt.

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IBS-A for 20 years with terrible bloating and gas. On the diet since April 2004. Remember this from Heather's information pages:
"You absolutely must eat insoluble fiber foods, and as much as safely possible, but within the IBS dietary guidelines. Treat insoluble fiber foods with suitable caution, and you'll be able to enjoy a wide variety of them, in very healthy quantities, without problem." Please eat IF foods!

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how do you do it.. and what exercises do you do?!?! -nt- new
      #188754 - 06/23/05 04:33 PM
Dr. Spice Yamin

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 3286
Loc: Maryland



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ooh!! new
      #188758 - 06/23/05 04:53 PM
epa_ginger

Reged: 02/23/05
Posts: 1158
Loc: Chicago, IL

I had a ball, but when I moved to this house (2.5 YEARS ago), I lost it somehow. I JUST bought another one on Amazon.com, and I will get it tomorrow!! I ordered a couple of DVDs too, one with the ball, just to have something to follow along with so I don't get distracted by another Law and Order rerun....

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ball exercises new
      #188770 - 06/23/05 05:15 PM
Little Minnie

Reged: 04/16/04
Posts: 4987
Loc: Minnesota

I just got a book on ball exercises but a DVD comes with the ball as well. I do standard crunches with the ball under my back about at my waist. Then I cross my arms in front of my chest and suck in my gut as if pushing your belly button to your spine. Just go up a little bit. You will shake at first. I also do this but put the opposite shoulder to knee (to do obliques). Also put your legs over the ball and squeeze it with the back of your knees and lift it off the ground, and then do crunches. Or you can just rest your calves on the ball and do crunches. there are many ways to do it. Of course there are exercises for your whole body. I bought a book for $5.

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IBS-A for 20 years with terrible bloating and gas. On the diet since April 2004. Remember this from Heather's information pages:
"You absolutely must eat insoluble fiber foods, and as much as safely possible, but within the IBS dietary guidelines. Treat insoluble fiber foods with suitable caution, and you'll be able to enjoy a wide variety of them, in very healthy quantities, without problem." Please eat IF foods!

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I was thinking the same thing... new
      #189309 - 06/26/05 06:56 PM
Stephie

Reged: 03/10/04
Posts: 2696
Loc: Vancouver, Canada

about doing yoga or pilates or something for your upper body rather than using weights.. I mean, you could still use weights for your lower body but you might be better off without the weights for your arms. And oodles of cardio.
Good luck!!
--Steph

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~~I'm not crazy, I'm just a little unwell-I know right now you can't tell~~Matchbox 20
IBS-D,pain.

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thanks guys.. i'll try it out!! -nt- new
      #189329 - 06/26/05 08:15 PM
Dr. Spice Yamin

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 3286
Loc: Maryland



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Cardio for weight loss... new
      #189713 - 06/27/05 10:44 PM
retrograde

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 1569


I've been away for a few days, but a while back you asked about tips for cardio, so... the best kind of cardio for weight loss is INTERVAL CARDIO. Basically you do anywhere from 15 seconds to about 2 minutes of really strenuous cardio (i.e. sprint) followed by a recovery period of (i.e.) moderate speed walking.

Generally when I do my cardio (on a track) I do a quarter of a mile fast running followed by a quarter of a mile walking. This type of cardio challenges your body more because it doesn't allow your body to 'get used' to a speed or activity (thereby making it more difficult). But I actually find it easier, or at least more enjoyable, because you're not doing the same thing for the whole session!

Basically, interval cardio 3-4x per week for 20-45 mins each session should be all you'll need. One of those sessions can be a longer, steady-speed cardio like a jog or bike or hike too.

FYI, cardio of this type is also vital for abs - really, the biggest challenge to having abs that 'pop' is getting rid of a layer of fat on top of them - so fat-loss activities like cardio and a good diet are just as (and almost more) important than crunches. Most people have pretty well defined abs underneath, but pretty much everyone, even slim people, store fat in that area moreso than in other areas of the body (and for women, another one of those stubborn areas is the butt and thighs).

Anyway, best of luck!

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Re: Cardio for weight loss... new
      #189729 - 06/28/05 05:33 AM
Dr. Spice Yamin

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 3286
Loc: Maryland

thanks.. great tips!
I'll have to try that all out. I hear ya abou the abs too.. I bet I have hot abs underneath this fat haha. I'm glad the cardio will help that as well!

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Re: Cardio for weight loss... new
      #189880 - 06/28/05 02:30 PM
Kristin940

Reged: 05/04/05
Posts: 104
Loc: Massachusetts

Another great cardio activity is spinning, which also offers some really great interval workout options! Along with running, spinning is a GREAT cardiovascular workout! I'm hooked!

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Re: Cardio for weight loss... new
      #189924 - 06/28/05 05:01 PM
Dr. Spice Yamin

Reged: 04/15/04
Posts: 3286
Loc: Maryland

awesome! unfortunately my gym doesn't have spinning

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Re: Cardio for weight loss... new
      #189947 - 06/28/05 05:40 PM
Kristin940

Reged: 05/04/05
Posts: 104
Loc: Massachusetts

oh no! Well, if it is ever offered I definitely suggest trying it out. It is a huge challenge, but a fun one at that! )

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