Exercise! - Working out to build muscle, but not "bulk up"

Pint Sized Terror
11-30-2010, 11:58 AM
I'm totally lost on building muscle vs bulking up.

I've always had big thighs and upper arms. When I was younger I said I was just very muscular, buuuuuut I never had definition in either. On my thighs, I'm almost certain it is mostly fat because I can easily grab a handful of skin/fat on the inside AND outside of my leg at the same time while sitting.:o

I know that building muscle helps burn fat, but I suppose my totally irrational fear is that by building up the muscle in my legs, that it'll make them even bigger. Same with arms.

I want to be strong without looking beefy. I know that's totally possible, likely even, with certain workouts. I just don't know what moves to do.

I'm starting running again. I've done mostly elliptical workouts for the past few months but it's so boring, and I love running.

I've been told to do squats to tone/slim my thighs, but then had others tell me NOT to do it because I'll get bulkier muscles.

I want to be strong, first and foremost. I want to be lean, but not so lean that I lose my curves, secondly. Thirdly, I know I'll never be long and lithe looking, but I do have a smaller body frame, so I definitely don't wear my weight well. It hangs off me, which is why I want to slim down and build muscle.


11-30-2010, 12:54 PM
You will need to do hours and hours of very heavy weight training A DAY.....just to try to bulk up. Women are not built to carry that much muscle, so it would be very hard for you to get those big muscles you see on female bodybuilders.

Don't worry so much and just start small. Like adding more resistance or getting a pair of small dumb bells. Then once your body starts getting used to the routine, add more weight.

I started with a pair of 2 lb dumb bells and now I use 20s. And I don't have that bulky muscle :)

Weight training is probably my favorite part.
My body looks so much leaner and I feel 100 x stronger than before.

Good luck!

11-30-2010, 01:10 PM
Since I started doing heavy lifting, including lots of squats (with 30-40 lbs bar bells on my shoulders), deadlifts, push ups etc., I've lost the inches like crazy, and the lbs are flying off! I've been getting so many compliments since I stopped using cardio as my main form of exercise. And the best part is, I'm only doing heavy lifting 2x a week and it only takes 25ish minutes each time. I love it. My body is more defined, curvy and looking slimmer than ever! :)

Just don't take steroids and I'm certain you'll love the results

11-30-2010, 01:24 PM
I do heavy lifting, always have and I've never gained in inches. If you do find yourself gaining in inches then you'd look to your food to see if you are eating too much.

Also, muscle burns fat and muscle is easy to lose. So if for some reason you have lost the fat and think you are thicker than you'd like, you can always scale back.

11-30-2010, 01:29 PM
Agreed. :D

Just using your own body weight is great. You can do push ups, pull ups, planks, squats, lunges, wall sits, running up and down stairs, calf raises on a step or with dumb bells adding a bicep curl to the move. It is really difficult for women to bulk up as in it doesn't just happen.

I am so happy with my body at 10 pounds "overweight" that there are days I'm tempted to just call it goal. Toning makes a huge difference.

Pint Sized Terror
11-30-2010, 03:17 PM
Thanks! I have no problem getting 6 pack abs, even at the weight I am now, my stomach is pretty flat. I just have love handles, big thighs and big upper arms. The fear of making them BIGGER has always kinda freaked me out. LOL

And Pammi, if that is you in your avi, I would LOVE to have arms like that!