Body fat pictures and percentages


    I found this web page (and lots of the other information on the site; see her 2 essays on "defining bulky") quite interesting and informative. To me, the most educational part was near the bottom, where the poster (a personal trainer) shows pictures of two men, and then two women, who are the same height and body fat percentage, but one is much more muscular than the other. The part I find astonishing is her claim that there is only a ~15 pound difference between the 2 men, and only 8-10 pounds between the 2 women (I would have guessed easily double that number of pounds in each case). It suggests that even those of us who are doing weight lifting seriously can't really hope to "out-exercise" bad eating habits, since I don't think that an extra 8 or 10 pounds of lean muscle mass is going to make such a dramatic difference in basal metabolic rate. Pity.

  • Oh, no one knows better than I that you can't out exercise a bad diet. I've been lifting weights for 20 years, and I've always been in very good shape, but I couldn't get where I really wanted to be physically until I finally paid attention to my diet. I prefer to have a very lean but muscular look, and that requires attention to diet. When women at the gym ask me how I got my abdominal muscles, I tell them that first and foremost: diet. Yes, I do a ton of ab exercises. Yes, I do full-body exercises for my core. Yes, I burn fat through cardio and weight training. But ultimately it's what you eat that determines whether or not your hard work shows up. If you are carrying too much fat over your muscles, you won't see the definition, and you might even find the look you achieve a little bulky.

    As for metabolism, a pound of muscle only burns 2 to 6 calories more a day than a pound of fat. They used to think it was more like 50 calories a day.
  • neurodoc-- are you a member at Leigh Peele? Ive worked pretty closely with here over the past year, and i honestly feel that she understands fat loss better than anyone, anywhere. Ive learned SO MUCH from her, and about myself, and why i cant lose fat, and what i have to do...
  • thanks for posting this, nice to see.

    I just dropped from 28.5% to 19% and had been working hard with a trainer for the last 18mo...suddenly wow I have defined abs. they had been hiding
  • I'm not a member, though I'm considering joining, and/or getting her book. To be sure, I feel I'm already way too weight-preoccupied as it is, and joining would just encourage me to spend more time thinking "weight thoughts."
  • buying her books would be money well spent.
    The thing about joining her site, is that she actually gets on the forums every day and answers members questions
  • Very interesting article.
    Thank you for sharing.