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Old 05-13-2012, 01:05 PM   #1  
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Default Do you suck in your stomach?

Since I started caring about my appearance as a young teen, I admit that I have almost always sucked in my stomach at least a little bit while in front of anyone else. (I'll suck it in hard if I'm trying to "strut my stuff", though I think a lot of people do that) If anyone else is in the room, I also like to hug a pillow to my stomach when I'm sitting on the couch so I can relax and let my gut out.

Is this common? I heard somewhere that sucking in your stomach just a little helps straighten your back and keep your chest high, thus making it a part of good posture. That might have been extremely outdated, though; I didn't read it from a "health" source (can't remember exactly where, though).
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Old 05-13-2012, 01:13 PM   #2  
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there is no sucking in my stomach, its just too big. but i used to do the couch pillow thing. then i looked at a picture with me and 4 other girls sitting down, and there were 2 girls with couch pillows on their laps... me and the other heavy girl. now i think it makes me look insecure if i have the pillow on my lap, so i just rock the gut. might as well, it will be gone soon....
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Old 05-13-2012, 01:20 PM   #3  
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Ever since 3rd grade I think I have sucked in my stomach.
I still do! Especially in pictures. I do the pillow thing too. I think it's very common. Samcakes: good point about the pillow making you look insecure.
I'll be keeping that in mind when a pic is being taken now.
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Old 05-13-2012, 03:54 PM   #4  
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I hadn't thought of that, samcakes! Whenever someone pulls out a camera I'll just put down the pillow and suck in my stomach...
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Old 05-13-2012, 04:16 PM   #5  
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I don't suck it in, but if I slide my shoulder blades back, roll my shoulders and stand up straight I find that it sucks in naturally. If I slump or slouch or am not watching my pasture out it comes.
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Old 05-13-2012, 04:27 PM   #6  
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Well, kind of.

I was taking Pilates classes twice a week, and they always started with us standing and assuming an erect posture and "engaging our abdominals."

This is described here:

I found myself doing this at odd moments during the day: Standing on the subway, or while waiting in line, or while walking past a whole line of occupied cubicles at work, or while walking across the whole length of the gym past lots of exercise machines.

It's a more elaborate stomach-sucking-in routine, with a whole theory behind it. I mean, you can do this & say you're doing Pilates. I recommend it to chronic stomach suckers-in.

Last edited by saef; 05-13-2012 at 04:28 PM.
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Old 05-13-2012, 04:44 PM   #7  
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Just looked through some older family pics and realized I am usually sitting there with a baby or a dog on my lap! Lately I've been sucking it in as an exercise along with Kegel exercises. (I have no life! )
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Old 05-13-2012, 07:42 PM   #8  
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When I saw my doctor on tuesday, I'd asked him as I noticed my posture is atrocious, and I have developed a slight bump on the back of my neck/shoulders that I think comes from working in a cubicle too many years slumped in front of a computer.

Lately I've taken to trying to roll/flex my shoulders and suck in my abs more to increase my flexibility and improve my posture.

My doc did suggest pilates to help strengthen my core, which he said naturally improves your posture. Wow, good to hear the affirmation that my doctor knows what he's talking about
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Old 05-13-2012, 07:52 PM   #9  
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I do it without thinking about it, really.. not that it helps much.. It's to big to make a difference. LOL
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Old 05-13-2012, 10:13 PM   #10  
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Originally Posted by RandomPaige View Post
When I saw my doctor on tuesday, I'd asked him as I noticed my posture is atrocious, and I have developed a slight bump on the back of my neck/shoulders that I think comes from working in a cubicle too many years slumped in front of a computer.
I had one of these that I attributed to bad posture, etc but since I lost weight, I lost my hump on the back of my neck. Totally unexpected bonus to the weight loss.

To answer the OP, Yes, I have been known to suck in my gut on occasion.

Last edited by Madame Souza; 05-13-2012 at 10:14 PM.
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Old 05-13-2012, 10:19 PM   #11  
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As you get more fit you don't need to suck it in purposefully (and I don't really mean sucking it in, but engaging the core). your body will tighten up more naturally as a NATURAL state. It will take work to relax those muscles to let it all hang out. Whereas being unfit, it takes work to suck it in and keep it in. Does that make sense?

We aren't supposed to "let it all hang out". our bodies were made to be more firm/toned.
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Old 05-13-2012, 10:27 PM   #12  
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My mom used to make me do it because she said it improved my posture hahaha. Well it's stayed with me forever since I'm about 12. I always stick in my stomach. I don't see any harm in it as long as you're not hurting yourself! xo
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Old 05-14-2012, 02:52 PM   #13  
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If I catch myself relaxing, yes yes yes a million times yes. I don't suck in so much as tighten up my abs.

Last edited by krampus; 05-14-2012 at 02:52 PM.
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Old 05-14-2012, 03:01 PM   #14  
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I always suck it in! I read somewhere once that it's bad for you as you generally don't deep belly breathe if you're sucking it in all the time and only take shallow breaths.

I'm also guilty of the pillow thing but never thought about it until now.. hmm.. I'm looking forward to getting rid of my gut.
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Old 05-14-2012, 03:04 PM   #15  
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I don't suck in, per se, but like Saef I keep muscles engaged whenever I think to, which means rolling my knees outward a bit, tilting my pelvis up, bringing my belly button toward my spine, lifting my chest, squeezing my shoulders together and pulling lats downs - all at once.

It is hard to do, initially, but now it is as natural as anything and my posture is greatly improved. It also flatted my stomach and strengthens the core muscles, which is very nice. When I work out the position is required to be very deep and exaggerated, but walking around day to day it is just subtle muscle tension and you can't tell I am doing it, except I look awesome

Last edited by Arctic Mama; 05-14-2012 at 03:41 PM.
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