2

votes

Girls, did you go from skinny-fat to skinny-fab?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created February 15, 2013 at 1:53 PM

I'm curious what did the trick for YOU ladies (or male friend who have helped a lady-friend through this problem). I've been eating Paleo over a year, strength training 3x a week since October, then started carb backloading for New Years, ultra-low-carb Carb Nite a few weeks ago, and have yet to see an improvement in my skinny-fat state.

(I just want leaner arms man, is that too hard to ask?)

So without going into my diet and lifestyle, I want to hear what the trigger was for you girls. Any of you face the same problem as me, a year of no change in body composition? Did you suddenly take out one type of food, or add one type of exercise, and your body magically changed? Or did you struggle for years before getting what you always dreamed of? (Strapless dress, strapless dress, strapless dress!) Please share whatever magical change you made, and maybe the fairies will come sprinkle their dust on me too.

[22 year old female, 5'8, 138lbs]

32652cb696b75182cb121009ee4edea3

(5802)

on February 15, 2013
at 11:35 PM

I've heard this too - lift heavy, lift fast

68655ec9711d207d69a63ebf96b37573

on February 15, 2013
at 09:24 PM

This is quite interesting. Most people I know on paleo advise weights, even for girls, and don't really get that some of us want to be small, not skinny fat but just skinny/slender. Which as you say, seems to come from running rather than weights. Sadly for me, I hate running and steady state cardio!

C68f0b374156e5ce7a9b8358232bfed0

(637)

on February 15, 2013
at 03:19 PM

Ah sorry, didn't realise the your comment Britt was actually you! Apologies!!!

C68f0b374156e5ce7a9b8358232bfed0

(637)

on February 15, 2013
at 03:18 PM

Isn't that what you wanted? You said you wanted leaner arms...lean = muscle, or rather reduced BF to reveal the muscle. If you increase muscle size, it makes revealing it easier!

2e777bbcd49262eb31a24f821abec6bc

(1974)

on February 15, 2013
at 02:44 PM

ALso, I tried the lower carb thing and started to actually dislike my body composition on it... I almost started to feel more muscular looking and less slender.

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on February 15, 2013
at 02:37 PM

she's saying she's thin, just not toned.

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6 Answers

4
F299706618ad5d2c014130cb35d07dcf

on February 15, 2013
at 04:45 PM

Hey!

I was lifting weights for awhile and saw no change, then I started lifting heavy weights and really pushing myself. Doing max weights. It really helped transform my body comp.

Hope this helps a little,
Hannah

32652cb696b75182cb121009ee4edea3

(5802)

on February 15, 2013
at 11:35 PM

I've heard this too - lift heavy, lift fast

2
C68f0b374156e5ce7a9b8358232bfed0

on February 15, 2013
at 03:13 PM

I think this is a rather arbitrary question and will have many many responses, more than likely all differing. Paleo is about n=1 and becoming one, or, less cheesily, in sync and in tune with your own body. Experimenting with different macro ratios, differing exercise regimes and different food varieties will have different effects on your body, which in turn will be different to another's.

Females will find it more difficult to shed weight, tone up and revert to your natural phenotype but I don't think we should rely on this as too much of an excuse, more determination to find that very narrow 'sweet spot' with regards life.

For me, I have to keep active to keep weight off and that's fine, I enjoy activity. I particularly love strength training and sprint-style cardio. These two things I never really did pre-paleo. I was subject to conditioned learning and conventional wisdom: go run, run as far as you can for as long as you can, increasing mileage each time; the higher your heart rate, the better. Now I do the activities I enjoy and I love it.

I have had a very bad relationship with food but find Paleo was my miracle. My own particular macro preference is 10/20/70 so very LC. I need this ratio to prevent me falling into bad habits and triggering an 'episode'. I always thought I was an emotional eater but I was just denying myself nutrition and the foods my body craved. Fat and protein satiates me but before I went paleo I was scared of fat, always opting for the lean meats, even frying in water (broiling in a wok I guess!); I avoided good fats like crazy and when having to, opting and indulging in the zero calorie, happy heart, bad fats. I love protein but fatty protein is my favourite.

Happiness has alot to do with it. I eat the foods I like now, in the knowledge that the foods I am eating are good for me and knowing to keep my carbs low. Again, this works for me as my favourite veggies have always been the low carb, green veggies; higher carb veggies taste good too but with butter and salt, taste even better - good for the macro profile! I am active in a style I like that means I don't dread 'my exercise days - boo' I enjoy exercising now and if I don't want to exercise, you know what? I don't. I don't fall into that trap of increasing amount of calorie expenditure by exercising to my max twice a day. I listen to my body.

So what, am I super fit with 10% body fat? Am I heck. I am 5ft 10 and ~164lbs with decent strength and alot of muscle. I have unknown %BF because I don't want to stress anymore than I need to. I am currently writing up my thesis for a PhD and I don't need added worry about weight and fat. I know I am changing I can feel it. I have only been paleo for ~6 months and yes, I have put on weight but that's ok. Our....my obsession with weight and appearance falls into the same category as the traditional diet. We have ideas as to what is good to look at, based on the poor health advice from fable spinners who insist fat is going to kill you as they eat their soy-substitue meals covered in low calorie, seed oil spray.

I have developed hips but decreased waist thicknessa and decreasing pooch size. I have grown breasts and thigh size but increased muscle mass. My body is changing shape and I am continually intrigued as to where it's going next. Yes, as I have said I have put on weight and the old me would have been scared sh**less about that but now I don't care because I know the change is for the better. I know that my body will continue to change as I proceed further into my paleo journey and I love it. Health comes from happiness; the paleo glow eminates from the fire stoked with bacon, bacon grease and coconut oil, washed down with butter and duck eggs.

Tl;dr: Everyone is different, everyone responds differently, so ignore traditional and conventional advice: eat fat, play with your food, go have fun, lift stuff and most importantly, be happy. Chill man. Be Grok.

Peace out.

1
Ec802a9c44bf303d2266f4fad7a4606a

on February 15, 2013
at 02:29 PM

5'8 and 138? Do your arms weigh 100lbs? LOL! Sorry.

Sounds like you are a perfect weight for your height! :)

F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on February 15, 2013
at 02:37 PM

she's saying she's thin, just not toned.

0
68655ec9711d207d69a63ebf96b37573

on February 15, 2013
at 09:36 PM

Are you saying that you have seen no increase in muscle mass despite the increased protein and weight training?

I get the feeling in general that

Paleo + some weights = toned/some musce, not necessarily small, or thin paleo diet + crossfit/dedicated weights = quite ripped regular diet = skinny fat regular diet + tons of running = skinny, small paleo diet + tons of running = slender

Personally I don't have the time nor inclination to do tons of running, nor believe the only attractive female bodyshape is "slender" (How convenient. Actually I'd kill small babies to be 5'8" and slender, but like I said, I hate long sessions of running and steady-state cardio)

Anyway, what are you lifting? As in what kinds of weight, and how much? Are you doing compound lifts and free weights, with the max you can lift? What kind of body comp are you looking for? Has your bf % not changed at all?

Pre-paleo I had a decent amount of muscle, despite bad diet and doing no weight; I wasn't really skinny fat. Post paleo and post weights, my arms look better, but I dislike the size of my quad muscles (too big by far), and I don't want my arm muscles any bigger either. Ass looks good though. For weights I do 3x5 reps, heaviest I can lift.

0
15dfddb2195385569014b970890b12ad

on February 15, 2013
at 04:44 PM

The only way I have ever, successfully, gone from skinny fat, to skinny fab as you say, is by gaining both muscle and some fat and then shedding the fat while preserving the muscle..

I lost a bunch of weight fast, due to stress undereating about 2 years ago, and fully clothed I looked superthin though my butt wasn't too perky - but undressed I was a skinny fat disaster and it was very obvious I had lost most of my muscle and tone.

I once slimmed down and avoided the skinny fat look - but it wasn't eating paleo - that included weight training ~45 mins 3-4 times per week, nothing crazy just basics and TONS of low level cardio. Walking uphills all around the city, hiking for 2 hours in the hills doing tons of lunges and squats, doing pilates type exercises at home most evenings as well.. and I kept it up for 2 months - basically I lived and breathed exercise -

From MY experience, diet alone won't change your body comp unless you are extremely patient and willing to give it 8 months or more. And you can't just sit on your butt all day either if you want tone.

0
2e777bbcd49262eb31a24f821abec6bc

(1974)

on February 15, 2013
at 02:41 PM

I am exactly your height and age and for me to be completely happy with my body, I have to keep my weight in the mid to high 120s. If you think that you are doing everything right, then you may just have an extra 5-10 pounds that you wish you didn't. For our height, 120-160ish is healthy though so I do NOT mean that you need to lose weight by any means... that is just the weight that I am comfortable with on my body.

Other than the weight thing, cardio does wonders for my figure, while weight training doesn't seem to help as much. I realize that most people on here claim to have the opposite experience so this is probably just a very individual thing. If I make sure to run 3-5 miles at least on most days, and stay completely away from gluten, then my body stays exactly where I want it! Good luck and let me know if you have any questions. I completely altered my figure a few years ago through diet and exercise and am so much happier with my appearance.

2e777bbcd49262eb31a24f821abec6bc

(1974)

on February 15, 2013
at 02:44 PM

ALso, I tried the lower carb thing and started to actually dislike my body composition on it... I almost started to feel more muscular looking and less slender.

C68f0b374156e5ce7a9b8358232bfed0

(637)

on February 15, 2013
at 03:19 PM

Ah sorry, didn't realise the your comment Britt was actually you! Apologies!!!

C68f0b374156e5ce7a9b8358232bfed0

(637)

on February 15, 2013
at 03:18 PM

Isn't that what you wanted? You said you wanted leaner arms...lean = muscle, or rather reduced BF to reveal the muscle. If you increase muscle size, it makes revealing it easier!

68655ec9711d207d69a63ebf96b37573

on February 15, 2013
at 09:24 PM

This is quite interesting. Most people I know on paleo advise weights, even for girls, and don't really get that some of us want to be small, not skinny fat but just skinny/slender. Which as you say, seems to come from running rather than weights. Sadly for me, I hate running and steady state cardio!

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