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Old 02-21-2007, 08:12 AM
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Stomach and Love Handle Weight Loss and Toning Tips?

I recently lost about 40 pounds that I had gained while I had a back injury and couldn't excersize for about two years (usually I'm EXTREMELY active). I'm only 5'4" so this made a huge difference in my size, pretty much everything is back to how it was before I stopped excersizing except my love handle area and my abs...I can't seem to get rid of the fat here.-

For the past three months, I've been doing an HOUR of cardio 5-6 times a week, buring 750-800 calories each time, and I do an hour and a half Pilates class 3 times a week. I also do a ton of ab and side toning excersizes (sit ups, crunches, side crunches, ab machine, side-to-side rocking machine, etc.) and I can the feel the muscle is more toned, the fat over it just won't go away. I eat six small meals a day, totaling between 1200-1500 calories, and almost all I drink is water (I have some drinks on the weekends, but nothing excessive). Is there ANYTHING else you guys can suggest doing for my stomach and love handle stuff? I'm wondering if it's something hormonal thats making me keep the fat there (I'm on the pill, which some people have said can cause this). I'm just really fed up with it. Is there some magic thing to do to fix this that I don't know about? Any and all advice would be greatly appreciated
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Old 02-21-2007, 09:53 AM
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Being on the pill i have found can make it harder to loose weight. # years ago i was on the pill, excersizing every day for at least an hour to 2 hours with weights and was doing 1-2 hours of cardio 5 times a week at least, eating 6 small meals, only drinking water, and doing a yoga class for an hour and a half once a week, and while i was toning up...i still looked heavier then i wanted to and i wasn't totally hard bodied.

I went off the pill, and all of the sudden...boom..i dropped like 10lbs without even looking.

Now, i would never every tell someoen to stop taking birth control because it was making them "fatter" then they want to be, but if it is really bothersome you may want to talk to your doc about it. You could change the type of pill you are taking, or think of alternative bith control methods (some people on here were talking about IUDs which are effective methods of birth control that do not have any hormones)

I would also recommend adding some weightlifting (free weights if you are able to do so) into your daily routine. By using free weights not only are you working out a specific set of muscle groups, but based on the way you need to hold yourself and position yourself while lifting you tone up your core muscles (abdomen, back, sides). Yoy may want to try out a program like "Body for Life" which is a really good program that can really help you tone your body all over.
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Old 02-21-2007, 10:09 AM
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This is what birth control did to my body. The first two pics are before and were taken about 8 months ago.






This to my everlasting shame is what I look like now. This was taken about 2 months ago. I can not even model my own clothing now.



I am going through the same thing that you are. I have tried about 3 different diets and go to the gym 5 or 6 days a week too. I started taking Sesonal which is the birth control that makes you have only about 4 periods a year. I stopped taking it about 2 months ago because of this tire I have around my waist.

This is a very sensitive subject with me. It makes me cry a lot as my small waist was one of the parts of my body that I loved so much. I feel so guilty for eating anything that I enjoy even though all I eat are foods that are good for me. I have lost 5 pounds but it will just not come off my mid section. I get really depressed about it and it has caused a little bit of a problem for my sex life because I just feel so insecure about it. My husband does not care but has noticed that I have put on the weight.

I did some research on the brand of pills I was taking and the number one complaint was weight gain. For most of the women it happened slowly as it did with me. I know that we read everywhere that BC pills do not cause it but I do not think its true and that everyone is different.

Sadly, I have gone to see a plastic surgeon and am seriously thinking about lipo on that area. If anyone else has any other ideas I would really appreciate the help too.
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Old 02-21-2007, 11:14 AM
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Aaawwww Nicole i think you look great either way!! Seriously i do. Plus if you don't mind me saying you have great...umm...breasts (sorry i don't want to sound creepy)

Birth control in my opinion does cause you to gain wight, at least in some people (i gained a LOT of weight...i went from the girl who could eat anything and still look disgustingly skinny to being the girl that couldn't look at food without gaining 10lbs). I never used to have a body image problem but now i have a hard time looking at myself in the mirror. I am considering lipo as well for my outter and inner thighs and my butt but sadly i am a starving student who can't seem to loose the weight i want to.

If you want to go off the pill and still want effective non hormonal BC you could try an IUD. Here is a thread that spoke about it...look into the last few pages for info about the IUD:

http://www.authenticforum.com/af-hea...27-plan-b.html
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Old 02-21-2007, 11:39 AM
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Try running.
It's insane how much fat melts away when you put aside the time to run an hour a day.
The gym only helps me tone up, but I have that belly pooch problem too and it only ever went away when I got my BMI down to about 15 or so.
Results showed within a month.
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Old 02-21-2007, 12:52 PM
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Have you tried doing crunches with a body ball? I'm doing it now and it's helping me, don't know if it will solve it though. Depo did that to me! I don't take any bc now, and I have to watch my carb intake. I am a pasta and bread lover! Even though I only do whole wheat I still watch it.

Good luck, I totally understand how you are feeling. I am there, too.
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Old 02-21-2007, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by edamame View Post
Try running.
It's insane how much fat melts away when you put aside the time to run an hour a day.
The gym only helps me tone up, but I have that belly pooch problem too and it only ever went away when I got my BMI down to about 15 or so.
Results showed within a month.
I DO run, 3-4 times a week! My cardio is either that or an elliptical trainer, I try to alternate between the two.

I think I will definitely talk to my doc...maybe switching pills would be helpful.
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Old 02-21-2007, 01:52 PM
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try yoga/pilates. that stuff tones you down pretty quickly. and i don't know if any of you watch the girls next door (the playmate mansion girlfriends), but i remember holly always saying that squeezing your butt helps. for some odd reason, my psych prof said that also once, that if you squeeze your lower abs and clench your butt in sets (just like weights), it helps tone that area. i hope that makes sense and doesn't sound uber creepy.

nicole, you have gorgeous hair, what do you use? you're also so pretty and tanned!
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Old 02-21-2007, 01:54 PM
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Core workouts are really important and they are more than just crunches. Try a pilates core workout, they do amazing things for your abs and back for men or women.
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Old 02-21-2007, 03:12 PM
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Thanks for all the compliments but here is the scoop. I bought the breasts about 12 years ago and the hair is my own hair mixed with clip on extensions. My own hair is just a tad shorter and not as full.

I will try some of the things you guys have mentioned but the running really hurts my knees and shins. Perhaps I could use an eliptical and just go fast.

Anyway, I can just not believe the difference in a few months. It is quite obvious from the pics. I can not even get those jeans on anymore without a HUGE muffin top so I do not wear them at all. Right now the only clothing I wear is gym clothing because I am always there.

Its a damn shame.....about 2 grand in jeans just hanging in the closet. This crap will come off one way or another though!
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Old 02-21-2007, 03:30 PM
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anyone interested in doing a weightloss thread sort of thing here? i was thinking before and after pics...now and again in 8wks? or every month just replace the old one? i dunno...just thinking out loud i guess...

i mean, sometimes when you know you have others who are "watching" you things happen faster. i had my 2nd child 10mo ago and have 15lbs left to take off, all in my waist hips (front and back) and thighs...ugh

i never used to have to worry about gaining weight in my stomach area, but after kids that's a different story...i used to have a 24" waist, and now i'm at 29"...my goal is 25 or 26...just don't think it's going to be possible to get back to that 24
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Old 02-21-2007, 05:00 PM
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Seeing my before pics (small waist) and my after pics (fat waist) makes me try harder. I think it could be a good idea.
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Old 02-21-2007, 05:07 PM
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i think it is a good idea too! I used to be a sz 24, but lately I have blown up to a 26-27. Now i was never as tiny as Nicole, but the difference in my body is unbeliveble! Makes me want to cry! And I can't blame it on baby weight, just married life and b/c pills I suppose!! I work out to yoga booty ballet tapes and one tape is called hip hop abs. That tape alone can kick my butt!! 30 mins of cardio and then ab workouts with a tiny squishy ball kill me!! But yea, I think we should all band together & get rid of our dilemmas!! Especially my grotesque muffin top!
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Old 02-21-2007, 07:07 PM
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It's true running does burn alot of fat in the stomach area. In the summer I ran everyday and my waist and tummy were small. Now that winters here I am lazy and I balooned up. I ran yesterday and I can see a diff. already.
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Old 02-21-2007, 07:10 PM
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I'm going to start runnung tomorrow!
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Old 02-21-2007, 07:14 PM
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I agree a weight loss thread could be fun, but I would insist upon no bad self talk. None of this "I blew up", or "my grotesque" or any other negative put downs. It only makes us feel worse. Instead use words like, "Today I didn't do so good, tomorrow I can/will/will try/should"

Sorry, I'm such the weight watchers wanna-be group leader and that's who's talking right now! I'd love to help with a new weight loss thread!

Viva La Muffin Top!
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Old 02-21-2007, 08:12 PM
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here's my take on it..having experienced something similar recently. keep at it. keep working out. keep eating right.

for me the love handles and stomach were the last thing to look fit and tight. as of right now i have lost 18 lbs (i only thought i had to lose 10 but my body had other ideas i guess!)...and there are areas where i wish i could put a little more back on (boobs come back!!) but the little stubborn love handles on my hips have taken FOREVER to start going away. now they are 80% gone and they shrink a tiny bit more every week. but everywhere else looks great and has for over 2 months..my stomach is as flat as it's ever been, and i don't really even do any specific ab work.

i started working on reaching my goal back in june 2006..and it's taken me this far to get the love handles going. so i'd stay just stay with it! and make sure you are eating ENOUGH/..i say this because i burn 2400 cals a week and work out 4-5x a week and i am SUPPOSED to be eating at least 1750 cals a day to maintain my weight where it is. you are burning more like 3000-4000 a week? and eating 1500 a day? that may not be enough, just be sure your body doesn't think it's starving and hold onto weight and fat thinking it's famine mode.

also make sure you are eating the right foods. i recently lost another 1.5% body fat, i'm now 18.9% which is very lean..but my weight didn't change at all in the last month which was interesting. now that i have reached (and exceeded my goal) i am trying to maintain not lose. anyway, i wondered what changed in the last month to have my body fat fall again, and i thought maybe it was that i was eating the same cals per day, but eating a little less fat in my foods. and now is when i am seeing my love handles go. i think it's kind of hit or miss though with how our bodies change, i feel like it kind of does what it wants!

anyway sorry this is so long but i know what you mean about the little love handles!! i was like COME ON..my boobs shrunk a size, why can't the love handles begone instead? lol. good luck and stay with it!
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Old 02-21-2007, 09:11 PM
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When I lost all my weight I went from a 36/38 B to a 34 A. And when I gain it goes to my ass and mid section. I don't get it!!!
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Old 02-21-2007, 10:37 PM
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When I lost all my weight I went from a 36/38 B to a 34 A. And when I gain it goes to my ass and mid section. I don't get it!!!
ME too. I gain most of my weight in my hips & mid-section. Its like as soon as Thanksgiving comes around, its all down hill from there. Then when Springs comes around, I seem to loose weight until fall comes back around again. I am 25 & my weight fluctuates with the seasons. It has been this way for years now for me. I share the common problem as well and cant seem to get rid of the love handles. I do agree that running works & can make a difference on your mid section, but sometimes I just want to run to a plastic surgeon and get lipo and get rid of them for good. (THE EASY WAY OUT)
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Old 02-21-2007, 11:02 PM
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I need to join the Ban The Muffin Top Club, as well. All of your posts have been really informative. I had two kids and lost all the weight by the time they were each a year old. Now that my younger one is two, I weigh as much as I did when I was three months pregnant... and since it is all concentrated in my belly, I look preg too! Most of my body is size 27/4 but my waist has swelled to 30 inches.

You guys exercise a LOT! And it shows. When I used to walk 4 mi. a day pushing a jogging stroller, I was back to my pre-preg weight, but still flabby (but not beer gut) belly. Pilates helped for a while, but my little one couldn't handle the day care at the gym.

I am really trying to walk/jog 3-4 times a week. Going to the runner's store to get some better shoes, as my knees hurt, too... and a runner friend told me that is often due to lack of cushioning.

Don't think I will post photos of myself anytime soon. That would be too demoralizing. Maybe if I start getting some of the weight off, I will take some pictures to celebrate...
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Old 02-21-2007, 11:27 PM
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I agree a weight loss thread could be fun, but I would insist upon no bad self talk. None of this "I blew up", or "my grotesque" or any other negative put downs. It only makes us feel worse. Instead use words like, "Today I didn't do so good, tomorrow I can/will/will try/should"

Sorry, I'm such the weight watchers wanna-be group leader and that's who's talking right now! I'd love to help with a new weight loss thread!

Viva La Muffin Top!
yep, i second that. i understand people are frustrated with weight gain but being size 27 and calling yourself "fat" is kind of a downer to those who would love to be a 29, much less 27 or 25. i know i'm guilty of saying the same things about myself, so we just need to keep the negative self talk in check.
i've read that sometimes pockets of fat are genetic and won't disappear no matter how much exercise/dieting you do.?
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Old 02-21-2007, 11:30 PM
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you know, i'm on a form of brithcontrol who's weight gain effects aren't that bad. I have been on BC since my pregnancy, so after my preggo weight loss I really didn't know it was affecting me. I forgot to pick up my prescription for about 3 weeks (and still haven't remembered) and I've lost about 5 lbs. doesn't seem like much, but on someone with as small of a frame as mine, it's a lot, especially since i carry weight in the hip/butt area.
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Old 02-22-2007, 12:22 AM
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When you "lose weight" you also lose muscle mass. When you "regain" the weight back it's fat.
Your body is programmed to store energy (as fat) and prevent fat loss. It's a primitive survival instinct. So the first place you store the fat in is the last place you will lose it, which is why we call it a problem area.

It's really not hard to understand why running (or if you have joint problems, brisk walking) burns off all the fat. As long as your heart rate is up for more than 20 minutes your body turns to fat for the energy because all the glucose in your cells have been used up. Unfortunately after about 20 minutes of exercise most of us feel too exhausted to continue any further.

I'm sure you've all heard that there is no way to spot reduce, which is very true, but it is possible to spot-train. You can build muscle in a specific area if you choose to. So technically if you want to build up your abs it's very easy to do so if you do the right crunches and make sure you work your lateral obliques and back as well.

However, just because you gain muscle doesn't mean you lose fat. You can have the best 6 pack stomach in the world, but as long as it's concealed by a layer of subcutaneous fat, it will always look and feel gross.

Someone who only does 500 sit ups a day to try to get rid of their belly will only succeed in making their waistline larger as the muscle grows. The fat will not disappear.

As Lvly808 can vouch, running is the best way to really burn fat.

Nicole, I'm sure you know that you look really stunning and I do feel bad for you that you've gained all that weight, but even with the extra weight on, you still look closer to an ideal body than most people will ever dream of. I wouldn't want to trivialize your loss because it is a great shame that you've put on some weight, but don't let this get you down! Stay positive

By the way, if you get joint pain from running, don't worry - walk instead, as fast as you can without feeling too much stress on your knees or ankles. As long as you walk fast enough to talk as though you are panting, it's good enough because it shoes that your heart rate is already up. Instead of worrying about running 1 hour, try to set a goal of say, 3 miles of brisk walking a day. I guarantee you that if you don't change your food intake (i.e. eat more than you usually do) within 2 months or less you will have your lovely figure back.

I know you mentioned liposuction, and it's good to have options, but you have lovely skin tone, great elasticity and if you can bring yourself to do the walk everyday you won't need to put yourself thru the lipo. We're all here rooting for ya
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Old 02-22-2007, 07:50 AM
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Thanks for all the compliments but here is the scoop. I bought the breasts about 12 years ago and the hair is my own hair mixed with clip on extensions. My own hair is just a tad shorter and not as full.

I will try some of the things you guys have mentioned but the running really hurts my knees and shins. Perhaps I could use an eliptical and just go fast.

Anyway, I can just not believe the difference in a few months. It is quite obvious from the pics. I can not even get those jeans on anymore without a HUGE muffin top so I do not wear them at all. Right now the only clothing I wear is gym clothing because I am always there.

Its a damn shame.....about 2 grand in jeans just hanging in the closet. This crap will come off one way or another though!
I have similar problems when it comes to running plus i am slightly asmatic (sp) and my shortness of breath is triggered by extream physical activity. The one type of cardio that i have found works really well for me and is an EXCELLENT workout instead of running is rollerblading. It is an excellent form of cardio for me because not only do you get an excellent workout for your heart but you are also working most of your core muscles and leg muscles in order to maintain your balance.

I used to be a dancer and it created some joint problems for me and i have found that rollerblading was the best option. My only problem is i can only rollerblade in the summer since we get a ton of snow where i live every winter.
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Old 02-22-2007, 12:02 PM
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Funny that you guys brought up the birth control issue thing, and I never liked the pill, so I started using the patch. I did not gain any weight with the patch, but I'm not losing weight either even though I am a gym addict. I started going to the gym about 1.5 years ago and have been losing weight steadily. I went on the patch about 3 months ago and suddenly I'm not losing any more weight. Although I'm still losing inches (I take measurements once a month), my weight refuses to go down, and I know I still have more pounds to lose as I still have a small belly and love handles, which is all fat. Each workout session is 75-90 minutes, and I alternate cardio, weights, steps, yoga between 5-6 days a week. I change my routine and weights occasionally just to mix it up a bit too.

Birth control weight gain is evil!
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