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Anyone else got or had one of *those* 'Bellys' and done something about it?

(28 Posts)
escape Mon 25-Mar-13 12:33:42

So embarrassed even writing this but needs must.
I know my only solution is diet and exercise by the way, but I do feel it is a pre disposed type of shape and I have been unlucky.
I look 8 months pregnant.
It starts from between my rib cage and is quite firm at the op before t becomes the wobbly, pouchy michelin man mess. Literally pounds and pounds of doughy flesh sad
Obviously, clothes never fit right and it's hard to find anything these days with a high enough waist to wear separates, maxi dresses- fine, but again, just look too 'maternity' on me.

Has anyone got or had the same and done anything positive about it? I literally can't feel any stomach muscles if I try and do sit ups for example...

Moredofbumsnet Mon 25-Mar-13 13:44:47

I have made a little progress with Tupler exercises here i have been doing the basic exercises for about 8m now and although my tum is still horrible,i no longer look pg,just fat! I can now pull my tummy in and it has started to go in a tiny bit below my ribcage. The exercises are incredibly easy to do, i didn't buy the book just flicked through it.

MerryMarigold Mon 25-Mar-13 13:47:43

You may have a diastasis recti where the muscles separate. I got a dvd from America!! (Was the only specific one I could find) and it did help, but wore off when I wasn't doing them. If you do sit ups you can make this worse. The best way to establish whether you have it is to do a sit up half way and see if your tummy bulges in the middle into a sort of ridge. The other lifesaver for me has been corsets!

MerryMarigold Mon 25-Mar-13 13:48:39

Sorry that was really unclear. I mean if you have a muscle separation then you can make it worse by doing sit ups. This dvd has specific exercises and they do really work if you do them...

MerryMarigold Mon 25-Mar-13 13:51:21


lotsofboats Mon 25-Mar-13 16:57:30

Sounds like you maybe an apple shape? I am, and am naturally inclined to store fat around my middle and its sounds like my tum used to resemble yours. It used come out from below my ribs just like a pregnancy bump. (people would ask me when I was due) As I got older it slowly became more apparent and just caught up with me. I measured my circumference around my belly button and it used to measure 40"
There is no quick fix. You know what you need to do. Healthy diet and Cardio cardio cardio. When you have lost weight you will have a clearer understanding of how your stomach muscles are and if you may have diastasis recti. - I had my midwife check my abdominal muscles, mine were surprising ok after 3dc's . You really should get this checked before starting any new exercise regime.
Hope this is a little helpful. I know exactly how you feel with regards to clothes etc. smile

knitknack Mon 25-Mar-13 17:53:37

I have this body shape too! I'm sorry to say that it's weight! Even half a stone makes a huge difference to my tummy... I investigated diastasis, bloating from foods, allergies- all sorts, then I lost weight eating primal(ish) and was embarrassed to discover that it was just 'weight'. VERY annoying! Especially because I'm not large (am currently about 4-5 months pregnant (in appearance only!) at 5'10" and 10 stone 4 lbs. in order to NOT have big tummy I have to be around 9.5 stone which is boringly thin sad

People comment on this, btw, especially children - my tummy is certainly NOT imagined! (Oh if only!!)

MadAboutHotChoc Mon 25-Mar-13 18:53:23

Pilates wink

ISeeRedPeople Mon 25-Mar-13 19:22:02

I'm glad I read this, I have one of 'those' tummies too, definite apple shape. But I'm tall so it misleads people to think I'm slim iyswim, and then I have less motivation to do anything about it.

I'm currently 6 months pg (actual, not shape wise!) but as soon as I have the all clear I intend to do Pilates as I have heard this is an excellent way to tone it. Will check out the links above too.

I've done tons of cardio in my life (mainly running and intense dance) and its never made an iota of difference to my overall shape tbh - just made my boobs smaller and legs more muscly. I was obviously doing it wrong!

OneLittleLady Mon 25-Mar-13 19:36:37

My tummy sticks out whatever weight I am because of my slighty mis-shapen rib cage. When I'm slightly overweight it looks fine, when I'm underweight it sinks in and makes me look ill and when I'm very overweight, it just sticks out. I can't win any which way. Plus I have an awful c-section flap to contend with. sad

RevoltingPeasant Mon 25-Mar-13 20:34:36

OP me too and I found two things helped: 1) pilates, but taught properly, like 1-on-1, and 2) cutting down carbs.

I did loads of CV for years and years and was a pretty good runner but still had a belly. These two things in combination helped.

Not that I am skinny right now as majorly fell off the wagon in Feb and still chasing it down the street.... sad

But those two things did really help!

Iatemyskinnyperson Mon 25-Mar-13 22:19:41

Another vote for low-carb. I'm an apple and have a waist for the first time in my life!!

RevoltingPeasant Mon 25-Mar-13 22:28:37

Yes, skinnyperson - snort at your name, I always tell DH I will eat him if he doesn't feel me enough grin

I always thought low carb was for people who didn't move much, as everyone knows you need carbs for energy/ exercise. Then I had 6mos where I'd have carbs for breakfast, but protein-heavy lunch and dinner, reducing carbs throughout the day, and it made SUCH a difference.

I also do quite a lot of exercise, like on a weekly basis: 2 x swims, step, spin, cycling to work 2-3 times a week, plus yoga & pilates. And I def found cutting down on carbs gave me more energy and a skinnier waist.

RevoltingPeasant Mon 25-Mar-13 22:29:16

feed me enough, obvs. Gah.

QuickLookBusy Mon 25-Mar-13 22:40:14

Another one who would recommend low carbing. I've been doing ot for 10 weeks now and have lost more weight than I thought I would, it's been great.

I have also been doing the 30 Day Shred DVD. The first 2 days I found it very difficult. However everyone said keep going, so I did and for the first time since having 2dds, I have a very flat

Honesty it really is worth giving it a go. I feel stronger and fitter, as well as healthier.

lotsofboats Tue 26-Mar-13 10:05:01

If you are an apple shape you will be predisposed to accumulate and store weight around your middle and it will be the last to shift. You store not only visible fat but, fat internally around you organs too. Tummy fat is the most dangerous and hardest to shift. It is a horrible battle that has taken me nearly a year to win.
I have reduced my circumference by 11 " and dropped 2 stone - Off course I have lost weight everywhere, Fat comes of in sheets, from all your stores like a roll of kitchen roll. Eventually you get to a point where losing a sheet make will a huge diffence to appearance, but at the start 1 sheet hardly makes any visable difference at all...Burn off more than you put it, then tone with strength training. Find a program that will give the body shape you crave. I want muscle definition and strength. Others want the long lean dancers physics pilates can give.
You can change and adapt to any shape you want. Just commit smile

squoosh Tue 26-Mar-13 11:20:35

As others have said the solution to this is a healthy low carb diet. Carbs are the enemy of apple shaped people. Losing it will be down to 80% diet and only 20% exercise. Your diet really is key.

pocketandsweet Tue 26-Mar-13 17:02:28

Ok. I have one of "those" bellies . 4 stomach operations vertical and horizontal scars and its a mess. Having previously had an effortless waist ( big hips and thighs but non problem waist). Now I'm 45 with this messed up stomach and while running has shifted some of the weight I carry lots now around my stomach ( and back !). I eat a healthy diet. Cook from scratch but I LOVE carbs. Pasta. Rice. Bread. So where do I start to try "low carb diet ". I am only interested in something sustainable so where would you look for good sensible advice.

squoosh Tue 26-Mar-13 17:39:33

Effective low carb means cutting out white carbs such as pasta, potatoes, rice and bread. They're all yummy, but they turn to sugar and land splat on your (my) belly. I try to operate to a carb avoidance 6 days a week and cut myself a bit of slack on the seventh.

John Briffa talks a lot of sense on this subject. Recipe wise the internet is chock full of great low carb blogs.

MollyNollyNoo Tue 26-Mar-13 18:23:44

I do low carb-ish pocketandsweet, I keep all my pasta and rice brown/whole wheat. If I do have bread I try to have very nice (bread maker) brown bread with seeds, thin cut slices and heavy on the protein and salad.

I've reduced my portion size quite massively, I've done this gradually cutting back on the amount of rice or pasta that I have, that has kept it sustainable.

Oats are good too, I cook a sort of flapjack thing made with treacle or molasses and oil. The aim for me is to eat high value carbs that will keep me full for ages.

herecomesthsun Tue 26-Mar-13 20:27:06

There is great help on Mumsnet from BIWI (i.e. Because I'm Worth It) who has provided the Mumsnet advice on Low Carbing and also sort of moderates low carb diet threads on the diet topic. You know, the Big Small Whatever-it-is Weightloss topic. The next one is due to start after Easter.

I have just lost about 20lb (since November) this way. I'm not an apple shape, but I am at high risk of diabetes from my family history and want to get my BMI down. This Way Of Eating seems to suit me, and I am thinking that it just isn't worth eating bread, potatoes, rice etc. if it is so bad for me. The weight has been coming off my hips and thighs most noticeably.

escape Tue 26-Mar-13 20:57:27

Just checked back in ...
Thanks so much guys.
The low carb thing - yup.. smile
Remember when Atkins was first a 'thing' ? I did it for a bit and it worked a treat ( this was after only 1 child, I now have 3 ) I had to stop after the constipation became too bad TMI smile
I am not an Apple shape actually, pear - and this hasn't been to do with my last pregnancy, I lost weight ( not enough) after that..
It's fat, and food, and not moving , so MUST get all of that sorted out.
BUT I swear to God I cannot feel my stomach muscles when I do any sit ups or 'crunches' and I do believe I know how to do them...
I weigh ( gasp) 17 stone - I am technically obese.
I am 5ft8 and a size 18, so 'wear' the weight well, but it's too much now...
How depressing sad

Wereonourway Tue 26-Mar-13 21:06:01

Hi op, I have one of these "bellies" too.

It's awful. Mine is like I had a baby 2 days ago. I have a fold which kind of flaps over if that makes sense.

I have strayed being more sensible with my food and have the 30 day shred. I have lost 13lbs in five weeks but absolutely cannot tell at all- I think due to my huge belly. I really should have measure it.

My tummy doesn't feel as heavy but still looks awful. I worry that the skin will stay as it is too so I'm interested in terrified by the comments about low carbing.

Start weight was 13st 12lb, am now 12st 13lb and 5 foot 4 so still a massive 36 lb to lose, hoping I really start to feel the weight loss, especially around my tum.

Good luck!

theartfulsoapdodger Tue 26-Mar-13 21:36:04

Low carb is good, but would definitely agree with the recommendation for one to one Pilates (NOT a DVD on your own, you must have individual attention, prerably from a physio in case you have diastasis recti).

I have 5 month old twins and am losing weight so not perfect by any means, but my tummy is a lot better than I expected it to be at this point. I'm not low carbing at the moment so i believe it's all down to Pilates.

Good luck smile

MollyNollyNoo Tue 26-Mar-13 22:26:36

Have you had a Dr check you for diastasis recti escape ? I had it with all 3 of my pregnancies and the feeling (for me anyway) was exactly as you describe, not being able to feel any stomach muscles, I couldn't hold my tummy in if I went swimming for instance.

I was referred to a physio and after DC's 1 and 3 were born managed to get my muscles as close together as they will ever be. I've been lucky with my last physio as she was fantastic and sent me away knowing how to do quite a few exercises that help join things together. With DC3 it took a good few months to lose the pg look and to feel strong again. How old is your youngest?

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