The other day a prospective client walked into my office to sit down and talk about her struggles getting in shape. She is a bright girl with a very bubbly personality, except talking about getting rid of her “chunky thighs” as she called them was a sore subject.
“Sara”, let’s just call her, is by no means heavily overweight. She has a normal upperbody with a slim waist but she obviously carries her weight on the lower half. She began to tell me how she tried program A, worked out with personal trainer B, runs 3 times per week, spin classes, etc. Needless to say this girl was giving it her all, but to no avail.
When I asked her the types of exercises she does, terms like “weighted lunges”, “heavy squat jumps”, and “deadlifts” were coming up quite a bit. Now there’s absolutely nothing wrong with these exercises at all. In fact there’s a ton of good.
“So What’s The Problem?”
I see this happen all the time where the theory of working harder, or lifting more, or running more to slim down legs comes to play for a lot of people, mainly women. The problem is in most of these cases, the answer is “less is more”.
So when I asked Sara what the results were of all these lower body activities her answers were that despite her legs being tighter…they were also getting bigger! Again happens all the time.
Since it’s impossible for anyone to tell your body where to lose fat or size, purposely working that area isn’t going to necessarily get you what you’re looking for. I know plenty of folks who do a ton of situps to keep their guts.
So what did I say her solution should be?
I told her to stop working out her legs so much. Lay off the weights, squats and lunges…and focus on lower impact exercises to promote the long and lean look she’s going for.
So how does Sara’s story impact you?
The point is, you have to take a look at your goals with a smarter eye. Sometimes the path that you want to take doesn’t mean it’s the path you should take. If you’re a 16 year old kid who’s trying to add 20 lbs or you’re the 45 yr old who wants to lose 50 lbs, your path is going to look completely different.
Hopefully this will give you another perspective to finding the fitness and nutrition program that’s right for you!