Weight Loss Support - Questions for the weight-lifters




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HungryHungryHippo
10-14-2012, 10:38 PM
I'll read the book--I promise!

But I have a few other goals first, and am just planning ahead. OK, first, if I'm happy with my arms and legs, and really just need to work on my core, will it help with that? (Belly, hips, butt.)

I'd definitely like to get my body fat down, and I know it will help with that.

What if I don't want to eat any more calories--what will happen then? Can my body just use some of the fat I already have to build muscles?

What type of weight lifting do you do? Is it all lifting dumbells with your hands / arms? If so, how does it affect other parts of your body?

Thanks!


JohnP
10-14-2012, 11:50 PM
I'll read the book--I promise!

But I have a few other goals first, and am just planning ahead. OK, first, if I'm happy with my arms and legs, and really just need to work on my core, will it help with that? (Belly, hips, butt.)

I'd definitely like to get my body fat down, and I know it will help with that.

What if I don't want to eat any more calories--what will happen then? Can my body just use some of the fat I already have to build muscles?

What type of weight lifting do you do? Is it all lifting dumbells with your hands / arms? If so, how does it affect other parts of your body?

Thanks!

This is a rather complex topic that can't be simply answered with a single post.

That said - what you want to do is put your focus on compound movements and progressive overload. This is a fancy way of saying that you want to do lifts that work more that one muscle at a time, (the opposite is isolation lifts) and work on increasing the weight you're lifting over time.

I'd suggest you take a look at NROL for women. I'm not a huge fan of the nutrition section of the book but it's not terrible and the lifts will give you a structured program to follow along with a lot of useful relevant information.

geoblewis
10-15-2012, 01:07 AM
Pilates for core fitness and free weights for me. Pilates is not enough for arms, but weights are not enough for overall fitness and toning. I use Pilates to strengthen support for my joints and build muscle groups. Then the free weights are for building more shape where I want it.

I am not sure what to tell you about how stored fat gets utilized when it comes to muscle building. Exercising doesn't use as many calories as most people believe it does. I don't think you'd need to eat up much if you're eating a healthy balanced diet. Not sure that those protein shakes really do anything for anyone unless they're competing body builders.


JohnP
10-15-2012, 02:03 AM
... weights are not enough for overall fitness and toning.

I'm not really sure what to say but ...

Overall fitness is a term that could have many meanings. I assume you mean endurance but you could mean balance and/or coordination. Since I'm not sure what you mean I"ll just point out that a weight lifting routine can be built around a number of goals. Increasing endurance, increasing strength, muscle size and even balance or coordination. That is one reason i reccomend NROL it shifts focus around to keep a person moving towards what I would call "overall fitness".

As for toning - I'll just say that there is nothing better for "toning" than lifting weights. I think you have been misled.

kelleyb
10-15-2012, 05:10 AM
Hey John- what don't you like about the nutritional info in NROWL? I am reading it now and just curious. I practice IF, so it does go against that when he says to eat 5-6 x a day and NEVER skip bkfast. What's your take?

OP- you may need to up your calories some to build muscle.

JossFit
10-15-2012, 05:18 AM
...but weights are not enough for overall fitness and toning...

Hmm, my body would suggest otherwise...

I am not sure what to tell you about how stored fat gets utilized when it comes to muscle building.

It doesn't. Fat and muscle are two completely different materials. It would be like saying that you can turn bone into muscle or visa versa. Their roles in your body are completely different and they are created through different processes.


Not sure that those protein shakes really do anything for anyone unless they're competing body builders.

I'm really not meaning to pick apart your post here, honestly. :) Just looking to dispel some myths! Protein shakes are just protein. That's all. Saying they are just for competing bodybuilders is a bit silly, as that's basically akin to saying that only competing bodybuilders eat protein. Can only they have chicken as well? How about eggs? Oatmeal?
Protein shakes are just a way to get extra protein into your diet and are convenient. If you choose to have a shake it really is no different than eating a serving of tofu/chicken/beef/egg whites/etc. save for the fact that it is portable and convenient. They aren't necessary at all, but they are handy.

To the op; I agree with John that your question regarding how to lift is much to complicated for a single post and that reading 'the book' (I assume you are speaking about New Rules of Lifting for Women, since it is recommended so much on this forum) to get a baseline. You can use dumbbells, barbells, machines and your own body weight... there really is no limit. You'd definitely want to focus primarily on compound lifts (squats, deadlifts, cleans, thrusters, bench press, etc.) and then on isolation lifts (bicep curls, tricep kickbacks, etc.) to get the highest calorie burn out of your workouts.

Geoblewis is totally right; exercise does not burn a ton of calories. The point of lifting weights is to build muscle, but the 'afterburn' does provide a bit of extra calorie burning as well.

Anyway... yes... a very complex question indeed! Start with the basics and go from there. Asking on an online forum generally only leads to more confusion when it comes to topics as broad as weightlifting.

geoblewis
10-15-2012, 10:10 AM
When I post, I generally try to only share what I do for my body and my own experience. Sorry if that wasn't clear enough in my post.

krampus
10-15-2012, 11:37 AM
Compound lifts work all body parts, so your core and butt/legs/back/arms/shoulders all get some love. Barbells, dumbbells, kettlebells, your own body weight, etc are only some things you can lift for strength training. Free weights work more muscles than machines because they're not "tracked" and you have to stabilize/balance them yourself.

I'm not sure about the science of calories versus lifts, but I do know that lifting and building muscle lets me eat A LOT MORE than I could if I didn't do any strength training. Protein protein protein.

sacha
10-15-2012, 11:45 AM
I would say the others have touched on dispelling those myths quite well :)

But I will also say this - even if you say you are "happy" with the rest of your body except one part, I suspect you'd be even happier if you used a good overall program.

For a beginner, a solid full body routine is great. If you lift hard and heavy, you will also be working out your 'core' as well (you can do 100 situps if you want, but let me tell you, try squatting and deadlifting 1-2x your body weight and you'll really use your core much more!!!).

I prefer powerlifting as my lifting but there are many other types of lifting - but I would argue all the GOOD styles start with a basic full body program. I also love doing kettlebells as well, if you are interested, Yoana Snideman (did I spell that right?), Pavel Tsatsouline, and Lauren Brooks (On the Edge Fitness) have some great material online.

HungryHungryHippo
10-15-2012, 07:23 PM
Thank you, everyone, for the tips and info. I appreciate them!

DisappearingActs
10-16-2012, 10:36 AM
You need protein to create muscle, so probably about 50-70 grams should be ok. Without enough protein you're only going to be eating away at your muscles, not gaining. So, you don't need to necessarily eat more calories, but you would want to change the types of foods you're eating to get the appropriate amount of protein.

For your belly you don't necessarily need weights but you would definitely want to focus on your transverse abs. You know how you see some people and they have like no body fat and amazing abs but for some reason their waist is so wide and their stomach is still distended? That's what your transverse abs are for, they pull it all in. This is why people notice such great results with pilates. Planks, ab wheel, these get you the little waist.

Squats are great for your butt but you have to go low (*** to the grass). Bridges, hip thrust, side leg raises, mule kicks, these are good for the butt and hips. If you ONLY want to tone your butt, use light or no weights, if you want to get a bigger butt, use heavy weights.

If you want to know how to incorporate weights into a certain exercise, just google it. Like, search for images of weighted squats (I prefer the front squat), weighted hip thrust, etc...

The rule for all muscles is that you have to go heavy to build, but for simple toning, it's ok to go light.

krampus
10-16-2012, 11:16 AM
Read this:

http://www.bettermovement.org/2012/some-myths-about-toning/

sacha
10-16-2012, 12:06 PM
OP, I wonder if you would benefit from checking out the strength training forum on here (other great websites include jpfitness and if you can, read the book "Starting Strength" for a great background on general basic lifting).

You're getting some myths here (I'm sorry, I really don't wish to start nit picking at various posts and get into an argument) and I would really hate for you to waste your time with "toning" reps or whatever.

I've been lifting for 10 years, and powerlifting for about 4 of them. Let's just say, the heavier the weight and the less reps I've done, the tighter my butt is. I recently attended a powerlifting comp with a girl who was a national champion - we were in the changing room and I wagered she could not have been more than 110lbs, just very fit looking (not even very lean, just very fit). She weighed in at 138lbs. That's what happens when you lift very heavy.

LaurieDawn
10-16-2012, 02:20 PM
Great article, Krampus. Thanks.

I have done precisely what Disappearing Act suggested: hiked up my protein intake while keeping calories low. I have also tried to concentrate the bulk of my calories right after I lift. I do lift as heavy as I can. But I also need to create a calorie deficit to shed fat (I would prefer to be skinny fat than well- muscled fat, if I have to choose), so I have continued to do that. It seems to be working for me, but I am curious as to opinions on this strategy.

JossFit
10-16-2012, 07:29 PM
I have done precisely what Disappearing Act suggested: hiked up my protein intake while keeping calories low. I have also tried to concentrate the bulk of my calories right after I lift. I do lift as heavy as I can. But I also need to create a calorie deficit to shed fat (I would prefer to be skinny fat than well- muscled fat, if I have to choose), so I have continued to do that. It seems to be working for me, but I am curious as to opinions on this strategy.

This is also more or less what I do, and it works for me. I just make sure I have MUCH more than 50-70g or whatever that number was... but it's all individual. I get closer to 180g of protein each day.

LaurieDawn
10-16-2012, 08:58 PM
I couldn't get a better endorsement of a strategy, Joss. Thanks.

HungryHungryHippo
10-16-2012, 10:07 PM
That article on toning is eye-opening. I'll check out the other forum too. Thanks!