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Taking it up a gear - anyone gone from fit to ripped?

(10 Posts)
PhoebeMcPeePee Thu 31-Dec-15 14:17:31

I've lost weight & got reasonably fit over the past 18 months and exercise is very much part of my everyday life now. I'm planning a couple of events next year (Triathlon, RideLondon, 10km runs etc) so will need to up my fitness levels anyway, but wondered what it takes to get <really> fit. I don't mean ripped like a bony builder just lean with good muscle definition.

Has anyone done this and how obsessed do you need to be about diet & regime? I eat normal food and do lots of cardio so can keep weight off but you wouldn't know how much I exercise to look at me grin. I want to actually see the fruits of my labour so willing to make a few changes but not sure where to start.

suzannecaravaggio Thu 31-Dec-15 17:00:44

some people are naturally very lean, most people (imo) will have to be very disciplined in order to have a reasonable amount of muscle and low body fat.
Day in day out train and eat right, for years and years

Different things work for different people so I have no advice beyond do lots of reading/research and experiment to find what works for you.

what sort of look are you after...can you post a link to a picture of a physique that you aspire to?

suzannecaravaggio Thu 31-Dec-15 17:03:31

how obsessed do you need to be about diet & regime?

the person that you see as 'obsessed' would describe themselves as focused, disciplined and motivated

KeyserSophie Thu 31-Dec-15 17:07:07

Agree with suzanne. To get that currently fashionable ripped-yet-feminine physique you need to both build muscle (lift heavy) and minimise body fat to around the 18-20% mark. It takes commitment in both exercise (3-4 lifting sessions pw minimum) and diet. There is also a genetic component as some people gain muscle tone more easily than others. Finally, a LOT of the models have false boobs because the loss of body fat does tend to make your own go MIA.

I know a few women who have achieved the look and maintained it. They all work in the fitness industry (Crossfit instructors and PTs) and are Crossfit competitors at international level).

suzannecaravaggio Thu 31-Dec-15 17:16:56

genetic component, yes, it's not just a case of having the right mind set, and enough time to dedicate to training, some people respond much more strongly that others to any kind of training.

Many people will need some sort of endurance work to get lean, but that tends to compromise muscle gains, eating at a calorie deficit also compromises muscle gains for many people.

It's so easy to get lost down some rabbit hole or other where you become convinced that they key is paleo, or low carb, or whatever....I suspect that what is optimal varies from person to person

Jacksterbear Thu 31-Dec-15 19:18:13

This is a really interesting article on the cost involved in achieving different levels of leanness/fitness. For me it makes me realise that on balance I am happy where I am, and although I'd ideally like to be a bit leaner, more toned, etc, I don't want it enough to make the necessary sacrifices. But it's all about finding the right balance for you, as the article explains.

PhoebeMcPeePee Fri 01-Jan-16 11:55:28

Great article thanks for posting. I think I can definitely take things up a gear but am not prepared for the personal sacrifices needed to get into the super lean category!

sleepwhenidie Sun 03-Jan-16 09:08:49

Jackster you beat me to it posting that link, I think it is excellent. I think in the enthusiasm for 'getting ripped' people can also forget about the maintenance aspect - staying ripped is the especially challenging part grin. I think for most people the commitment involved at that point becomes too much, so then you have the question at the beginning about what the point of months of effort and sacrifice is for being ripped for a week or two!

Personally I think stick with the fitness based goals and keep upping those if they motivate you. A great (but maybe not incredible) body will typically follow but you'll still have a normal life!

suzannecaravaggio Sun 03-Jan-16 10:18:22

Those who enjoy being disciplined with food intake and pushing themselves in training are most likely to achieve the 'ripped' look.
Not everyone struggles to motivate themselves, for some its very hard to not get to the gym

Not everyone wants a 'normal' life (whatever that isgrin)

sleepwhenidie Sun 03-Jan-16 23:26:38

I agree normal is subjective Suzanne smile - and I'd include myself in the category of finding it hard not exercising. I also happily eat very healthily most of the time, but I love good food and wine, and spending time socialising (which often goes hand in hand with the food and wine smile). Restricting myself to the kind of diet most ripped individuals would follow, and missing social events would be too much sacrifice for the sake of a six pack - a definite tip in the balance of physical/mental health for me (and, I'd suggest, for the majority). Of course there are individuals who achieve very low body fat and good muscularity without as much effort but they are probably the exception to the rule.

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