Weight and Resistance Training - What goes up must come down?

View Full Version : What goes up must come down?

07-12-2005, 06:46 PM
Hi everyone,

I had my measurements taken today. Most of my measurements have come down except my upper arms, and my waist. The waist doesn't worry me as it fluctuates anyway with that time of the month and all that jazz.

I started weight training in earnest about 8 - 10 weeks ago. I do weights every other day, and do upper body one session and then lower body the next, so three sessions a week. On my off days I do cardio. I usually swim after my weights sessions.

My thoughts are that my arms going up is normal. I still have a lot of fat to lose, although my body fat has gone down by 2% in the last 6 weeks, so it's all good, and that I am building muscle. And really it was only a miniscule amount that it increased by, about half an inch.

Should I be changing anything or just keep doing what I am doing?

07-12-2005, 06:56 PM
Hi Kykaree

I'm hardly an expert, but the same thing exactly happened to me two years ago when I was working out with weights and doing WW. My arms went up for about 3 months, but I could really feel and see muscle there. Eventually I started to lose inches from my arms but the muscle remained, and so the measurements went down.

I'm sure others here will be able to give you an explanation of why its happening.

By the way, where abouts in Lancs are you? I'm in Cheshire - fairly close :)

07-12-2005, 07:02 PM
Thanks Artemis. I have two gym instructors, one at work (where I do mainly cardio) and one at my local gym in Ramsbottom. The one at work does the measurements and thinks I need to make changes it was only a centimetre or so for goodness sake! I think it's too early to tell, and am quite happy to keep doing what I am doing and review it at next measuring session if it's still going the wrong way. But I wanted to make sure with people who know more about dealing with overweight/obesity and weight loss. My gym instructor is fabulous, but by his own admission has never had to help someone as fat as me!!! (he used another word other than fat, but call it how it is is my motto!!!)

I often wander into bits of Cheshire!!

07-12-2005, 07:10 PM
Hmm I think it has something to do with the muscle still being surrounded by fat but I know its odd when your other measurements are reducing.

Someone here will come back with an expert response I know it.

Ramsbottom, oh its a bit far from me, I'm fairly close to Holmes Chapel. Its nice up there though, and very different scenery to here in Cheshire!

07-13-2005, 01:35 PM
Kyka -- If you are still doing the same as you were 8-10 weeks ago I think it is time for a change :yes: ALTHOUGH some people take longer to reach plateaus than others, I know I reach a plateau after only 3-4 weeks ... I guess you could continue what you are doing and if in a couple of weeks the weight AND inches don't change start changing up your workouts and eating plan as per your gym instructors -- gee aren't you lucky to have TWO instructors!! Another thought just occured to me is that the instructor who wants to change things up now, does not want you to get discouraged by the lack change in your measurements, and he/she may be right to change things up now... I am certainly NO expert these are only my suggestions and thoughts...

07-13-2005, 02:59 PM
Hi Kykaree,
Change is good, and 8-10 weeks on the same program is probably too long. But I think something else is also going on here. Although beginning lifters see strength increases immediately, it generally isn't due to actual muscle growth until 4-6 weeks into a lifting program. Strength gains in the first few weeks are due to an increased neuromuscular efficiency. At eight to ten weeks, 'tho, you are seeing true muscle growth. As you say, you are still overweight. You are carrying fat within your now larger muscles, and on top of them. Where you store fat is very individualized.... Generally women lose top-down, but many lose the "tricep fat" and kidney fat last. If your bicep measurement isn't going down, my guess is that it's a combination of actual muscle growth (yay!) and just a stubborn spot for fat loss. I wouldn't worry about it since everything else points to the fact that your program is working in general.

But if you've been doing exactly the same program for 8-10 weeks, it's time for some changes regardless!


07-13-2005, 06:58 PM
It's never exactly the same, I do lots of changes and mix things up, not for any other reason than that I am a gemini with an extremely low boredom threshold. I will get the other instructor (he is away at the moment - one of the reasons for picking your brains!!!) to have a look at it and change things up again. I'm sure he was planning to anyway, he is brilliant too, I am very lucky to have all this help at my disposal. I don't feel at all disheartened, just wanted to make sure I was on the right track! I so appreciate all your help, Mel and Ilene. Ilene you are right, my gym instructor at work was sure I was getting down about it, but even though I am still obese, I am at my thinnest in 10 years, and am feeling positive about my body image for the first time in my life. I feel more motivated than ever!!! He doesn't really understand me (he is a man after all), and he is shocked about how positive I am. He uses me as an example all the time, bless him!

My upper arms look heaps better, and lots of people have commented they look slimmer!!! So I am not overly concerned and thought it might be fat on top of muscle. All my other measurements like my thighs have gone down. Two inches off my thighs in 6 weeks, you just gotta be happy with that, and 3 inches off my behind!!! I can live with slightly larger upper arms!!! I am losing from the bottom up!!!!!!! Trust me to be different LOL.

09-20-2005, 04:39 PM
I'm resurrecting this thread because I have had my measurements taken again. After taking your advice oh goddesses of maintainance, Ilene and MeL.L.L.L.L. my arms are smaller!!!!! 2 inches down on my upper arms and 1/2 an inch on my forearms!!! So thank you!!!!! I have changed my exercises again since then, I am being very hard on my instructor and nagging him religiously at 6 weeks, and then that gives him two weeks to get organised and re-do my program.

My body fat is down 1.5% from last time, which I am thrilled about, I am almost "above average" rather than obese!!!!! Even my calves are 3/4 of an inch down!!!!

09-20-2005, 04:49 PM
:bravo: Kika that's so encouraging for you!!!! Keep up the great work and pushing that trainer of yours :lol:...

09-20-2005, 05:02 PM
Are your arms getting smaller close to the elbow joint? Can you pinch as much fat over your triceps? I am guessing that you haven't lost much size off of your upper arm because it is much leaner than other places, and so should lose size at a slower rate if your losses are fat.

I have lost almost two inches off my arms, and 12" from my waist since I started my diet. I am hoping to lose another 6"-8" from my waist and no more than 1" from my arms when I hit my goal weight.

09-20-2005, 05:33 PM
:bravo: kykaree!