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  1. #1
    Registered User killthelights22's Avatar
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    I'm not overweight, but my stomach sticks out?

    So, one main flaw in my body I've always wanted to improve on is my stomach/gut area. My abdominal area is fine, and I know it's not due to bloating as I don't deprive myself of water. I've also been doing about 20 minutes of abdominal exercises every other day for the past couple of months which has improved it slightly, but I always seem to have an awkward bump, and it makes me feel very self conscious. It's also been there at any weight I've been (110ibs to 140ibs), so it's not just fat as far as I know. I injected a lot into my stomach as a kid due to type 1 diabetes, and overused that injection site, so my doctor said it could be just tissue build up, however I've not used that area for a good 3-4 years.
    Is there anything I can do to improve this area, are there any exercised/diet tips which could help improve my lower stomach? I'd really like to be able to have a nice flat stomach for once, (some ab appearance wouldn't be unwelcome either :P ) but I'm just not quite sure what to do. I'm guessing if I lose a little more weight it will help to an extent but it've never really been one to show off my belly, I always feel like I'm having to constantly hold it in.
    Help? Thank you
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  2. #2
    Bulking freebirdmac's Avatar
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    Post up picts. Odds are you don't have enough muscle mass everywhere else and it makes that area look worse. Losing more weight = getting smaller but looking the same.
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  3. #3
    Registered User killthelights22's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by freebirdmac View Post
    Post up picts. Odds are you don't have enough muscle mass everywhere else and it makes that area look worse. Losing more weight = getting smaller but looking the same.
    Here, sorry it's not very clear. It's always baffled me, as my family all seem to have flat stomachs. It's just me and I've never seen anyone else with anything like it.
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  4. #4
    Registered User sonti's Avatar
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    I wonder if you may have diastasis recti- abdominal muscle separation. Even women who have not had children can get it, often from improper abdominal exercises making it worse. When you lay on your back and lift your head, does it 'bulge'??
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  5. #5
    Registered User killthelights22's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by sonti View Post
    I wonder if you may have diastasis recti- abdominal muscle separation. Even women who have not had children can get it, often from improper abdominal exercises making it worse. When you lay on your back and lift your head, does it 'bulge'??
    Just tried, it doesn't seem to bulge. When I tense I can feel all my muscles, until I get to the point where I start to have this weird bump, which indicates to me that it's some layer of fat/tissue/something else covering my muscles? I've no idea. Like I said, I've had it at any weight so it isn't just because I've got a layer of fat as far as I know. I'm so confused. Are there exercises which may help?
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  6. #6
    Bulking freebirdmac's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by killthelights22 View Post
    Here, sorry it's not very clear. It's always baffled me, as my family all seem to have flat stomachs. It's just me and I've never seen anyone else with anything like it.
    Lol at the wtf naming We need full body picts. Just from that pict I'd say building the entire midsection, front and back, would help. But full body would give more clues.
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  7. #7
    Back at square one wakechica's Avatar
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    posture or bloat or BF%. Pics or we can't help OP
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  8. #8
    Registered User killthelights22's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by freebirdmac View Post
    Lol at the wtf naming We need full body picts. Just from that pict I'd say building the entire midsection, front and back, would help. But full body would give more clues.
    I'm currently looking to lose inches, but are you suggesting that I focus on building muscle mass right now and go on a cut later? Full body picture attached. I'm feeling very self conscious about my body right now. >< Thick torso and thighs of peace.

    Originally Posted by wakechica View Post
    posture or bloat or BF%. Pics or we can't help OP
    How could I improve posture, is it a case of the usual shoulders back, head up, stomach in kinda thing or am I missing something here? Also, if it's bloating do I simply need to drink more or is it a bit more complicated than that? I am aware I have an average/'acceptable' BF%, however I'm looking to lower it by at least 5% eventually.
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  9. #9
    Registered User bethanyboo's Avatar
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    You have nice legs.

    If you are sensitive to gluten or dairy, that could cause excessive bloating. You may want to consider trying an elimination diet to see if food sensitivities/allergies are causing bloating.
    ** Current Maxes: **
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  10. #10
    Back at square one wakechica's Avatar
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    That's excessive bloating - plenty of water and a good dose of healthy bacteria. If this doesn't work after a few weeks try the elimination diet as suggested.
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  11. #11
    Bulking freebirdmac's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bethanyboo View Post
    You have nice legs.

    If you are sensitive to gluten or dairy, that could cause excessive bloating. You may want to consider trying an elimination diet to see if food sensitivities/allergies are causing bloating.
    Originally Posted by wakechica View Post
    That's excessive bloating - plenty of water and a good dose of healthy bacteria. If this doesn't work after a few weeks try the elimination diet as suggested.
    I agree. You can have bloating with no other food sensitivity symptoms.

    I would bulk only if you are interested in maxing your muscle gains. Otherwise I'd stay at maintenance and work everything but make sure you hit the middle section front and back. Good mornings, dead lifts, hyperextensions, and cable crunches.
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  12. #12
    ((( d(^_~)b ))) Romina81's Avatar
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    Waist trimmer?
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  13. #13
    Registered User killthelights22's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bethanyboo View Post
    You have nice legs.

    If you are sensitive to gluten or dairy, that could cause excessive bloating. You may want to consider trying an elimination diet to see if food sensitivities/allergies are causing bloating.
    I'm vegetarian, so eliminating certain wheat/gluten/dairy foods would be difficult, however I'll seriously consider eating meat if it means that it'll help me improve my body long term. What kind of elimination diet would you consider first?

    Originally Posted by wakechica View Post
    That's excessive bloating - plenty of water and a good dose of healthy bacteria. If this doesn't work after a few weeks try the elimination diet as suggested.
    How much water should I drink, and is it possible to be bloated for this long? I've actually noticed some days it's flatter than others so this does make a lot of sense, how would it be best to get healthy bacteria?

    Originally Posted by freebirdmac View Post
    I agree. You can have bloating with no other food sensitivity symptoms.

    I would bulk only if you are interested in maxing your muscle gains. Otherwise I'd stay at maintenance and work everything but make sure you hit the middle section front and back. Good mornings, dead lifts, hyperextensions, and cable crunches.
    Thanks, I'm currently deadlifting, not very heavy but I'll try and incorporate these exercises into my routine as well.

    Originally Posted by Romina81 View Post
    Waist trimmer?
    I'm looking to fix the problem, not hide it, haha.

    Thank you everyone, I'd rep if I had anything to give. >< I'll give what you all suggested a try, how long will it take to go away?
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  14. #14
    Bulking freebirdmac's Avatar
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    Go back to eating meat and take a couple of weeks off of dairy and gluten. See what your belly looks like. If you see great improvement, only add one back in for 2 weeks. Then switch.
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    Registered User killthelights22's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by freebirdmac View Post
    Go back to eating meat and take a couple of weeks off of dairy and gluten. See what your belly looks like. If you see great improvement, only add one back in for 2 weeks. Then switch.
    Thanks, I'll give it a go I've been vegetarian my whole life so this should be interesting, lol. It seems crazy that there is such an easy solution such as drinking more water and eating less dairy/gluten to such a long term problem for me, I've always been under the impression it was genetics.
    Like I said, one last question, how much water should I have? I probably don't drink enough, so should I go for 2.5-3 liters a day? Many thanks to all of you
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    Originally Posted by killthelights22 View Post
    I'm vegetarian,
    Oh boy. chances are this is causing the problem. Go to the nutrition section and read the sticky on counting calories and macronutrient needs and make sure your diet follows the principles in the sticky. I tried a vegetarian diet for six weeks but I couldn't get enough protein. I found out I need around 140g/day. otherwise I would get excessive bloating that would never go away. You could probably still do a vegetarian diet with dairy and protein supplements, but it would be a challenge because dairy also contains fat and carbs. Beans don't have enough protein to be classed as a protein alone. Egg whites, plain greek yogurt and low fat cottage cheese are fairly high in protein without adding the other two macros. See what you can do with your diet based on the info in that sticky and then get on a good lifting program. You should see results.
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    Originally Posted by killthelights22 View Post
    So, one main flaw in my body I've always wanted to improve on is my stomach/gut area. My abdominal area is fine, and I know it's not due to bloating as I don't deprive myself of water. I've also been doing about 20 minutes of abdominal exercises every other day for the past couple of months which has improved it slightly, but I always seem to have an awkward bump, and it makes me feel very self conscious. It's also been there at any weight I've been (110ibs to 140ibs), so it's not just fat as far as I know. I injected a lot into my stomach as a kid due to type 1 diabetes, and overused that injection site, so my doctor said it could be just tissue build up, however I've not used that area for a good 3-4 years.
    Is there anything I can do to improve this area, are there any exercised/diet tips which could help improve my lower stomach? I'd really like to be able to have a nice flat stomach for once, (some ab appearance wouldn't be unwelcome either :P ) but I'm just not quite sure what to do. I'm guessing if I lose a little more weight it will help to an extent but it've never really been one to show off my belly, I always feel like I'm having to constantly hold it in.
    Help? Thank you
    You should be holding it in - as in, your obliques and transverse abs are probably underdeveloped, so instead of just being naturally strong, you have to actively flex them. Seek help from a good Pilates instructor who can teach you to use your obliques and TA correctly during ab exercises.
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    Originally Posted by killthelights22 View Post
    Thanks, I'll give it a go I've been vegetarian my whole life so this should be interesting, lol. It seems crazy that there is such an easy solution such as drinking more water and eating less dairy/gluten to such a long term problem for me, I've always been under the impression it was genetics.
    Like I said, one last question, how much water should I have? I probably don't drink enough, so should I go for 2.5-3 liters a day? Many thanks to all of you
    Stop fretting about your water intake. If you're hitting the bathroom several times a day you're good.

    Since you've been meat free forever I'd take the introduction into meat eating slow. Start with small portions of chicken. Were you eating fish?
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    Originally Posted by freebirdmac View Post
    Stop fretting about your water intake. If you're hitting the bathroom several times a day you're good.

    Since you've been meat free forever I'd take the introduction into meat eating slow. Start with small portions of chicken. Were you eating fish?
    Haha sorry, it's just I know I'm very bad with my fluid intake, I'm usually lucky if I drink two or three glasses a day haha.
    No, I've never eaten fish. I had a small cup of chicken soup today, didn't taste great but is acceptable, heh. I have had tuna once or twice in the past so I might start eating that again too? My parents have literally been partying hard since I told them I'm gonna start eating 'like a normal human being'. lul.
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    Oh I wasn't suggesting a waist trimmer for hiding the stomach under clothes lol
    If you wear it when doing cardio/house work it definitely gets rid of bloating for me and makes my waist more trim.
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    Originally Posted by lexinak View Post
    You should be holding it in - as in, your obliques and transverse abs are probably underdeveloped, so instead of just being naturally strong, you have to actively flex them. Seek help from a good Pilates instructor who can teach you to use your obliques and TA correctly during ab exercises.

    Agree about Pilates; you need to learn to engage your deepest abdominals so that you don't have to "suck it in"; instead, you will strengthen your core, which helps keep your stomach flat.
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    All of this is fantastic information. But I didn't see an answer about getting healthy bacteria. There are capsules of Bifidophilis Flora Force. I think it is by nature valley or nature made. Something like that. Anyways these will balance the bacteria in your body. Really great stuff.
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    I can't offer advice on a lot of things but that's can help with. Good luck with these future endeavors. Hope you find the solution.
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    I have the same problem. Always this littlle gut below my belly button.

    in the mornings when I wake up its not there, as soon as I have breakfast BOOM it appears! I just have to look at food and its there.
    the only way to get it to dissapear is to starve my self.

    there are many reasons to why I have it.

    1. Gluten and dairy. but I love porridge in the mornings and I love cheese and dont want to give that up!

    2. I am not going to look at your pictures now becaue I am at work but I have a tilted pelvis and you might have the same? its where you stick your bum out and your stomach out and you have a curve in your lower back. google it and it will bring up photos. Its sort of a pregnant womans stance. this only adds to my problem.

    3. not enough muscles in my core.

    I really do NOT think that you need to start eating meat to get rid of this gut!! just look at meateating animals, they have intestines that are much shorter than ours and that are made to digest meat. Our bodies are not made for eating meat, we have long intestines similar to vegeterian animals. so I really do not think that eating meat will make your stomach better. Just stick to a high protein diet, there are as you know many good alternatives to eating meat.

    If you decide to eliminate gluten and dairy, let me know how you go and I might do the same!!
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    Re: Vegetarian...

    I was a wheat free vegan for over a year. Not near as hard as it sounds.

    After not eating meat for 10 years, I introduced it back into my diet in January. It was definitely strange considering I had no idea how to cook meat, what to buy, what was healthier etc. but I adjusted pretty quick. I was so concerned that I'd have major digestion issues but it wasn't a problem. The biggest problem was psychological, and even though it's been a while there are still only a few meats I can eat (but I'm working on it!).

    Let us know how the intro to meat goes! Choose your first meaty meals carefully. Sausage was my first meal. Worst.Idea.EVER.

    BUT if adding meat back into your diet isn't what you want to do for ethical or whatever reasons, don't do it. Though you seemed completely fine with the idea so go for it!
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    Originally Posted by bethanyboo View Post
    You have nice legs.

    If you are sensitive to gluten or dairy, that could cause excessive bloating. You may want to consider trying an elimination diet to see if food sensitivities/allergies are causing bloating.
    bingo thinking same thing..
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    Originally Posted by Romina81 View Post
    Oh I wasn't suggesting a waist trimmer for hiding the stomach under clothes lol
    If you wear it when doing cardio/house work it definitely gets rid of bloating for me and makes my waist more trim.
    Oh I see, my mistake! I'll look into it after trying an elimination diet.

    Originally Posted by NatK View Post
    Agree about Pilates; you need to learn to engage your deepest abdominals so that you don't have to "suck it in"; instead, you will strengthen your core, which helps keep your stomach flat.
    I've heard of pilates but never really looked into it - is it something I'd need to take classes for, or do at home, do I need equipment for it etc? ^^

    Originally Posted by RedGlare032 View Post
    All of this is fantastic information. But I didn't see an answer about getting healthy bacteria. There are capsules of Bifidophilis Flora Force. I think it is by nature valley or nature made. Something like that. Anyways these will balance the bacteria in your body. Really great stuff.
    Thank you very much, I appreciate it. I'll have a look around, how expensive are they?

    Originally Posted by anjanjanja View Post
    I have the same problem. Always this littlle gut below my belly button.

    in the mornings when I wake up its not there, as soon as I have breakfast BOOM it appears! I just have to look at food and its there.
    the only way to get it to dissapear is to starve my self.

    there are many reasons to why I have it.

    1. Gluten and dairy. but I love porridge in the mornings and I love cheese and dont want to give that up!

    2. I am not going to look at your pictures now becaue I am at work but I have a tilted pelvis and you might have the same? its where you stick your bum out and your stomach out and you have a curve in your lower back. google it and it will bring up photos. Its sort of a pregnant womans stance. this only adds to my problem.

    3. not enough muscles in my core.

    I really do NOT think that you need to start eating meat to get rid of this gut!! just look at meateating animals, they have intestines that are much shorter than ours and that are made to digest meat. Our bodies are not made for eating meat, we have long intestines similar to vegeterian animals. so I really do not think that eating meat will make your stomach better. Just stick to a high protein diet, there are as you know many good alternatives to eating meat.

    If you decide to eliminate gluten and dairy, let me know how you go and I might do the same!!
    You sound exactly like me, however I have to go for at least 12 hours without food for it to look flat, which I'm not really prepared to do >< I don't think I have a tilted pelvis though luckily. I do need more core muscle though, it's something I'll be looking to build as I lift more as well. I only decided to eat meat to broaden my food range - I've always eaten meat substitutes like quorn, which contain gluten, so I simply might just stop the hassle and eat meat like the rest of my family (less expensive too!). Vegan is an option for me, as I've discussed it with my mum, she'd be happy to get soy milk and the like as she thinks she may have a gluten/lactose/dairy intolerance too, however I don't want it to be a hassle for my parents. I'm a lover of carbs, which means I eat lots of cereal, bread, pasta...I can definitely see how cutting that out will be beneficial for my health.

    Originally Posted by HangTimePixie View Post
    Re: Vegetarian...
    I was a wheat free vegan for over a year. Not near as hard as it sounds.
    After not eating meat for 10 years, I introduced it back into my diet in January. It was definitely strange considering I had no idea how to cook meat, what to buy, what was healthier etc. but I adjusted pretty quick. I was so concerned that I'd have major digestion issues but it wasn't a problem. The biggest problem was psychological, and even though it's been a while there are still only a few meats I can eat (but I'm working on it!).
    Let us know how the intro to meat goes! Choose your first meaty meals carefully. Sausage was my first meal. Worst.Idea.EVER.
    BUT if adding meat back into your diet isn't what you want to do for ethical or whatever reasons, don't do it. Though you seemed completely fine with the idea so go for it!
    As said above, I could possibly go completely the other way and be vegan which does sound more appealing, however I can see that it may be more difficult than simply replacing one food group with another, and then slowly building it back in. I understand your problem, I'm downright scared of going near bacon or smoked salmon right now, haha. I feel a little bit like I'm wandering and not quite sure what I'm doing. I might just start with something plain like tuna or chicken.
    It isn't really ethical, I was just brought up vegetarian and just stayed like that. Not even sure why I'm vegetarian now to be honest, I think it's more out of habit, which is probably why eating meat isn't gonna be too hard to get over.
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    hmm just looked at your photos and that does look strange! my bulge looks more like fat, but yours, at least in the photos, looks hard and shiny! or is that just the photo?

    Maybe it is like you said because of injections you were giving yourself?
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    Originally Posted by anjanjanja View Post
    hmm just looked at your photos and that does look strange! my bulge looks more like fat, but yours, at least in the photos, looks hard and shiny! or is that just the photo?

    Maybe it is like you said because of injections you were giving yourself?
    It's not hard or shiny at all, just soft and squishy. Might be my lighting, it's very limited in my room. :P
    It was very firm when I overinjected, but I think that was tissue build up and bruising. Haven't injected there for about 4/5 years now.
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    I am vegan, so I just wanted to let you know it is possible to weight-lift and be plant based ;-)
    I have/had problems with bloated belly for years and it actually got better when I went plant based,
    but like some of the other ladies mentioned, it was because I cut out dairy, and eat very little gluten.
    I didn't cut out gluten because of an allergy per say, but naturally my diet shifted to very little gluten
    when I went plant based due to me focusing more on whole foods like brown rice and sweet potato,
    green veggies and such.

    I agree if you do go back to eating meat, start slow with fish maybe and see how you feel.
    Either way I would still cut out dairy and see how it goes.

    You have great legs btw ;-)
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