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  1. #1
    Registered User 1stladyj's Avatar
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    Getting rid of thick waist

    Hi Ladies,
    I was wondering how some of you were able to trim down your waistlines? I have a really thick middle and would love to have an hourglass figure. My measurements for top and bottom almost match but I need to pull my middle in tremendously. Any tips? Also, does the oblique machine bulk up the middle instead of slimming it up if I'm using light weight high reps?
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  2. #2
    Dispelling Training Myths AmyJ's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by 1stladyj View Post
    Hi Ladies,
    I was wondering how some of you were able to trim down your waistlines? I have a really thick middle and would love to have an hourglass figure. My measurements for top and bottom almost match but I need to pull my middle in tremendously. Any tips? Also, does the oblique machine bulk up the middle instead of slimming it up if I'm using light weight high reps?
    What's your body fat %? Usually people that are looking for a slimmer waist have some fat to loose there. This is done mostly through diet. (read this to learn more about diet: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=1713071)

    If this is not the case (or even if it is ), you can make your waist look smaller by building up your shoulders, and increasing your lat size for that nice V-taper.

    While you shouldn't skimp or avoid core-work, you don't want to over-do it with abs, obliques and back excersises. The best look is an even, well-rounded one, so don't focus all on a few exercises.
    My new upper/lower split journal:
    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=1241101

    For an easy to read basic guide to nutrition and diet:
    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=1713071
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  3. #3
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    Sorry to say but you can't spot reduce.
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  4. #4
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    You'll have to reduce your bodyfat. If you find that your waist is still straight because you are genetically built that way then I would suggest building up your shoulders/lats and quads to create the illusion of the smaller waist.
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  5. #5
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    And if I were you I wouldn't do any oblique work. I don't do any oblique work. Your obliques get hit when you do regular abdominal exercises. I mean you can always add them back in later, but if you are wanting a smaller waist then I'd ditch them for now. Losing bodyfat of course will help as well as doing what the others suggested and work on widening your shoulders and lats. When you have a shortcoming in one area, you have to work on creating the ILLUSION that you DON'T. I mean my waist isn't what I consider small (it runs anywhere from 28.25 to 29 inches) but I've got enough quad muscle as well as shoulder and lat width to make it LOOK like I have a small waist! And I'm not a curvy gal by any means, I basically have no hips so that doesn't help me in the waist department, I was pretty much straight until I built some muscle mass to give me some curves.
    Please don't PM me asking for personal help with diet and/or training, I just don't have the time.

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  6. #6
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    There are two possibilities when you say "thick middle" - one is that you're already quite lean but have a straight abdomen where your waist should be because of overtraining the obliques. The other is that you're still carrying bodyfat around your middle that's obscuring a tight waistline. Which do you think is your problem.

    Overtraining the abs and obliques can definitely cause women to have a thick waist and this is way too common. I train abs no more than twice a week and never with weight. A few basic crunches and twists should do the trick, the rest is accomplished in the kitchen.

    Read this article if you think overtraining is your issue...

    http://www.t-nation.com/findArticle....6-169-training
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  7. #7
    Registered User absolutelove's Avatar
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    But do you ladies thing that heavy lifts...in the deadlift/squat/chest/back department could be leading to a thick waist? i am having the same problem. so if building lats and shoulders is the solution...wouldnt that just make your core even stronger, hence thicker??
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  8. #8
    Just doin' my thing... BuffedWildCat's Avatar
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    Exercises to build your lats and shoulders aren't going to make your waist thicker. Exercises like heavy squats and deadlifts yes, perhaps, since they recruit the muscles in your core to a much greater extent and higher degree.
    Please don't PM me asking for personal help with diet and/or training, I just don't have the time.

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    Originally Posted by MauiZos View Post
    There are two possibilities when you say "thick middle" - one is that you're already quite lean but have a straight abdomen where your waist should be because of overtraining the obliques. The other is that you're still carrying bodyfat around your middle that's obscuring a tight waistline. Which do you think is your problem.

    Overtraining the abs and obliques can definitely cause women to have a thick waist and this is way too common. I train abs no more than twice a week and never with weight. A few basic crunches and twists should do the trick, the rest is accomplished in the kitchen.

    Read this article if you think overtraining is your issue...

    http://www.t-nation.com/findArticle....6-169-training


    NO, I can't say I have a straight middle. I actually used to have a very small waist but since I have gained weight it is less noticeable. I need to get rid of some bodyfat which seems to all be piled there in the midsection. So basically I don't need to train my abs right now?
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  10. #10
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    Originally Posted by absolutelove View Post
    But do you ladies thing that heavy lifts...in the deadlift/squat/chest/back department could be leading to a thick waist? i am having the same problem. so if building lats and shoulders is the solution...wouldnt that just make your core even stronger, hence thicker??
    Heavy lifting on the big compound movements does NOT build a thick waistline!! That is a common misconception that is simply NOT true.
    Originally Posted by BuffedWildCat View Post
    And if I were you I wouldn't do any oblique work. I don't do any oblique work. Your obliques get hit when you do regular abdominal exercises. I mean you can always add them back in later, but if you are wanting a smaller waist then I'd ditch them for now. Losing bodyfat of course will help as well as doing what the others suggested and work on widening your shoulders and lats. When you have a shortcoming in one area, you have to work on creating the ILLUSION that you DON'T. I mean my waist isn't what I consider small (it runs anywhere from 28.25 to 29 inches) but I've got enough quad muscle as well as shoulder and lat width to make it LOOK like I have a small waist! And I'm not a curvy gal by any means, I basically have no hips so that doesn't help me in the waist department, I was pretty much straight until I built some muscle mass to give me some curves.
    Big bump to that.
    I do not do ANY direct oblique work at all. In fact, I do not do any direct ab work either. The heavy deadlifts, squats, rows etc give my abs more than enough stimulation.
    If I was to start training my obliques directly, I would start to get that square mid section look that I DO NOT want!!
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  11. #11
    Glorious Off Season MauiZos's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by 1stladyj View Post
    NO, I can't say I have a straight middle. I actually used to have a very small waist but since I have gained weight it is less noticeable. I need to get rid of some bodyfat which seems to all be piled there in the midsection. So basically I don't need to train my abs right now?
    You shouldn't ignore your core entirely, just don't fall into the cardio bunny trap of doing thousands of crunches everyday in pursuit of a sexy flat stomach. A couple times/week for 10-15 minutes at the end of a workout should be more than enough ab work. You can accomplish what you want with basic crunches, reverse crunches, twists, etc. I'm NOT a fan of doing core exercises with added weight, because that just builds up bulk in an area where you don't want/need it.

    I said it before, but abs really are made in the kitchen meaning it's all a function of your diet.
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  12. #12
    Registered User absolutelove's Avatar
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    Buffedwildcat, are you saying that you should lighten up the weight in deadlifts and squats to avoid a bulky core since the core muscles are recruited in these heavy lifts? If so the how can you build legs and glutes? Do chest excercises such as flies recruit the core muscles as well?
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    Originally Posted by absolutelove View Post
    Buffedwildcat, are you saying that you should lighten up the weight in deadlifts and squats to avoid a bulky core since the core muscles are recruited in these heavy lifts? If so the how can you build legs and glutes? Do chest excercises such as flies recruit the core muscles as well?
    Answer to your first question, NO, I wouldn't back off on the weight unless your legs are considerably more muscular than your upper body (and you're working on trying to bring everything into proportion).

    And as far as having an absolute answer to that question as to whether heavy deadlifts and squats will thicken your middle, I really don't know. As far as I know that is still a controversial issue, which makes me wonder if anyone ever tried taking a poll to include bodybuilders and powerlifters to ask them if they feel their middles became thick due to heavy squats and deadlifts. Logic would have me believe that it would be possible in some people because of the extent to which heavy squats and deadlifts recruit the core muscles. It would depend on the individual as to how his/her body responds to that stimulation. Just like some people's arms or legs grow like weeds with only a little stimulation but those same people may have a heck of a time getting their shoulders to grow. For example my legs are naturally muscular so I don't need to do much at all for them and same with my back and biceps, they seem to grow with a lot less stimulation than my triceps, calves, and lats. For those I've really had to work hard to build more muscle mass. So bottom line, it's a controversial issue and I think it probably comes down to each person's individual genetics.

    On your second (technically your third)question, answer, not to the same extent that deadlifts and squats do. I would think you can feel that for yourself, I can. Any lift you do requires core muscle strength it's just that some lifts require more activation of your core muscles than others. I know that all lifts use your core muscles not only because I've read it, but also because I've observed it myself. First, I once made the mistake of killing my abs before I did chest one day and guess what? I couldn't lift as much weight as usual! Second, I had a C-section which made my core MUCH weaker, I could both feel it pulling near the incision whenever I lifted (still can but only slightly now) and it affected how much I could lift, it's part of the reason why my lifts were weaker than before I had the C-section.

    So anyway, I hope that answers your questions. Heh, I'd almost swear you are looking for an excuse to get out of lifting! "Yes, um... I had to stop lifting to avoid developing a thick middle." LOL. Nah, but it's cool if you really are trying to learn, just almost comes off as if you are looking for an excuse NOT to lift.
    Please don't PM me asking for personal help with diet and/or training, I just don't have the time.

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    Registered User absolutelove's Avatar
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    Buffedwildcat, thank you soooooooo much for sharing your knowledge. I appreciate it. I actually loveeeeee to lift....but I am always scared that one day I am going to have to stop because it makes certain body parts such as my core look off. I honestly LOVE to deadlift and squat I think it makes the lower body look amazing...but I am really just trying to eliminate the block core..so I am trying to figure out how I can do that. I used to do ab work and have completely stopped because I definitely feel like my abs get enough work through my lifting sessions. Who knows...maybe that will actually help. But I love love to lift heavy weights(heavy for me). I guess I was just wondering if I lift lighter then maybe my core will lose bulk! I dunno so confusing!
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    Originally Posted by absolutelove View Post
    Buffedwildcat, thank you soooooooo much for sharing your knowledge. I appreciate it. I actually loveeeeee to lift....but I am always scared that one day I am going to have to stop because it makes certain body parts such as my core look off. I honestly LOVE to deadlift and squat I think it makes the lower body look amazing...but I am really just trying to eliminate the block core..so I am trying to figure out how I can do that. I used to do ab work and have completely stopped because I definitely feel like my abs get enough work through my lifting sessions. Who knows...maybe that will actually help. But I love love to lift heavy weights(heavy for me). I guess I was just wondering if I lift lighter then maybe my core will lose bulk! I dunno so confusing!
    If I were in your shoes, I'd probably try (besides making sure my diet was right and I was definitely losing fat) cutting out ab work and see if that works. I do know there are people who do not do any direct ab work because they feel that their abs get enough work from the heavy squats and deadlifts. So everybody is different, just always keep that in mind. You have to find and do what works for YOU. And sometimes you're not gonna know the answer until you actually give something a fair shot. What works for one person doesn't work for another. Good luck! If you decide to cut out the ab work, try it for about 2 months and see if you notice any difference (course keep in mind if you've lost fat, that will make a difference as well). Then you should post and let us know the outcome!
    Please don't PM me asking for personal help with diet and/or training, I just don't have the time.

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    Registered User absolutelove's Avatar
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    Thanks!!! =) yah I am going to try keeping out direct ab work..I have not done any for like two weeks! but i will let you know how that works out for me! Thanks again.
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