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Middle Ground between..Cardio Lean & Lifting Lean..

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 11, 2012 at 9:55 PM

Please help me understand what is happening to my body..

  1. Female. 5'9" Dont know my weight...but around 10 lbs from goal weight i think.

I have always been into more endurance type activities, staying lean from running etc. I've been Paleo for around 1.5 years.

I started to realize that as i get older, without enough muscle I will continue to stay flabby. So I embarked upon a pretty dedicated lifting regimen and am about 1.5 months into it.

I have increased my protein to accomodate for muscle growth and stayed low-mod carb.

I undersatnd fully that you need to lift consistently for about 6months or more to start to see real changes..but i dont understand the middle ground i am in.

So going from "cardio lean" to "lean muscle lean" --does one need to put on bodyfat? my bodyfat has DEFINITELY been increasing since lifting..super duper flabby all of a sudden, i never ever used to have back of arm jiggle, or such thick abdomen look, and certainly never had this sort of inflated neck/traps look... I look sooooo weird and not in a good way.

I dont want to go back to running/incline walking/spinning my butt off...but i absolutely hate how i look right now...

IS this some sort of weird inbetween thing that a body goes through when transitioning from lean with little muscle to building muscle?

Im so confused. Should i just keep doing what im doing and wait and hopefully one day ill wake up and i'll have built muscle and lose the fat? I dont think it would be smart of me to reduce calories any further, as i have a history of an eating disorder, and it leads to bad things. I've just learned how to stop counting and measuring everything...

Am I overtraining? 5-6 times a week. ..about 3-4 lifting days (upper.lower,compound) and cardio 2-3 times 5km runs or incline walks etc..

I dont know if I can deal with the bodyfat increases being a bi-product of trying to build muscle..i want to still look lean...is there a way around this?

Thanks!

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 12, 2012
at 09:54 PM

also (i'm such a pest, sorry!!!), i just read back through one of your other questions, and saw you JUST decided to fight the ED in april. girlie, cut yourself some slack. 3 months does not recovery make. don't worry about your body just yet - it's your mind and heart that you are fighting to save!

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 12, 2012
at 09:26 PM

ps - what else are you doing in life other than exercising? that's a lot of gym time... do you do other things that give you fulfillment?

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 12, 2012
at 09:25 PM

i think there can be, but i think the key is mental and emotional balance first. it's backwards logic to attack happiness with our bodies by changing them... your body more than likely will never be perfect (to you), but you can learn to be happy with YOURSELF. i guarantee you that your struggle is in your mind, and that others can confirm, it's not with your body. mental peace does not equal obesity. when we are happiest with ourselves for who we are, we treat ourselves with the most respect. but that comes from inside, not from a bangin' bod.

60af23519906aa54b742ffc17477c3d3

(1186)

on July 12, 2012
at 05:41 PM

I use fruit because I like it, but it's up to you. Some people don't tolerate it as well, so they opt for yams etc. I'd say try both and see which your body prefers.

59ee717de524f921efb7f2984157339f

(871)

on July 12, 2012
at 02:45 PM

My goal is to build lean muscle in order to get lean. I can't get as lean as i want without lifting, i realize that now.

59ee717de524f921efb7f2984157339f

(871)

on July 12, 2012
at 02:43 PM

Rebekah...it's incredibly hard. I do not trust my body or brain AT ALL when it comes to knowing satiation. I just dont believe that it knows. I guess becasue I counted for so long. Gah..ED PErfectionism is a constant struggle. But can there be a healthy level of expectation aesthetically without being too obssesed with perfection? I can't seem to strike a balance...

59ee717de524f921efb7f2984157339f

(871)

on July 12, 2012
at 02:18 PM

Thanks Ashley--what sources were your carbs from? Starch or fruit? Thanks! I'll try it :)

4ef079c57d2140bba4dbf4e30240a645

(4413)

on July 11, 2012
at 10:42 PM

how old are you? over 35? Could be decreased EStrogen and or testosterone in addition to any training specifics...

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5 Answers

2
31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 11, 2012
at 11:02 PM

just my experience? after struggling with EDs for 6 years, i am just now coming to a place where i am learning to eat intuitively and not count calories. it can be hard when you have restricted and/or binged to learn to really listen to your body. have you been eating intuitively long? are you counting calories? i have found that i am going through an "adjustment" period learning to eat by my body, and have gained a little weight, but am now starting to lose it slowly. i might be totally off here, and if so i'm sorry! but maybe you just need more time. there's nothing wrong with looking lean, but if your goals are to be healthy mentally and physically, lifting and eating healthy is exactly where you need to be - good job!!! don't let the ED perfectionism creep back in now.

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 12, 2012
at 09:26 PM

ps - what else are you doing in life other than exercising? that's a lot of gym time... do you do other things that give you fulfillment?

59ee717de524f921efb7f2984157339f

(871)

on July 12, 2012
at 02:43 PM

Rebekah...it's incredibly hard. I do not trust my body or brain AT ALL when it comes to knowing satiation. I just dont believe that it knows. I guess becasue I counted for so long. Gah..ED PErfectionism is a constant struggle. But can there be a healthy level of expectation aesthetically without being too obssesed with perfection? I can't seem to strike a balance...

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 12, 2012
at 09:54 PM

also (i'm such a pest, sorry!!!), i just read back through one of your other questions, and saw you JUST decided to fight the ED in april. girlie, cut yourself some slack. 3 months does not recovery make. don't worry about your body just yet - it's your mind and heart that you are fighting to save!

31381cfeb5d6da6fc75f80ab68e041ea

(560)

on July 12, 2012
at 09:25 PM

i think there can be, but i think the key is mental and emotional balance first. it's backwards logic to attack happiness with our bodies by changing them... your body more than likely will never be perfect (to you), but you can learn to be happy with YOURSELF. i guarantee you that your struggle is in your mind, and that others can confirm, it's not with your body. mental peace does not equal obesity. when we are happiest with ourselves for who we are, we treat ourselves with the most respect. but that comes from inside, not from a bangin' bod.

2
4fa643a9adbc63301bb6fc6949da45bc

on July 11, 2012
at 10:43 PM

Seriously, it sounds like you're not getting enough rest.

Sorry @RaiseFitness, I don't even think her intensity is high enough to keep the fat gain to a minimum.

Ma'am you're doing 3-4 days lifting, while you're also doing 2-3 days of "5ks running/incline walk etc."

Where in that schedule have you designated as you're Rest and recovery?

I really think you would do much better if you figured out what you really want (a physical goal, stay lean, gain mass, or more specifically gain 10-20 pounds of muscle) that way we can answer your question with the best answer that we all can muster.

For what it's worth. Congrates to you for having been on this paleo sthick (Robb Wolf seems to use that a lot) for 1.5 years.

59ee717de524f921efb7f2984157339f

(871)

on July 12, 2012
at 02:45 PM

My goal is to build lean muscle in order to get lean. I can't get as lean as i want without lifting, i realize that now.

1
60af23519906aa54b742ffc17477c3d3

(1186)

on July 12, 2012
at 01:57 AM

I've had similar issues in the past with training a lot and trying to stay low carb. Sometimes the body just says, "wtf?" and you get inflammation. Try resting more, or eating more carbs on the days you're training. I just did this and I feel amazing. Even better? The 6-pack I'd been hiding is back in full-force. Also, fruit is unreal!

60af23519906aa54b742ffc17477c3d3

(1186)

on July 12, 2012
at 05:41 PM

I use fruit because I like it, but it's up to you. Some people don't tolerate it as well, so they opt for yams etc. I'd say try both and see which your body prefers.

59ee717de524f921efb7f2984157339f

(871)

on July 12, 2012
at 02:18 PM

Thanks Ashley--what sources were your carbs from? Starch or fruit? Thanks! I'll try it :)

1
C45d7e96acd83d3a6f58193dbc140e86

on July 11, 2012
at 10:21 PM

You should not be putting on fat if the intensity is adequate. I would recommend getting a body composition test done that way you can definitively tell if you are putting on muscle or fat. make sure your lifting is heavy and/or intense. Maybe also incorporate some sprint intervals in there occasionally.

0
Medium avatar

(2338)

on July 11, 2012
at 10:10 PM

if you have a gym nearby and can afford it i think crossfit would be a great option for you

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