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How to fix “skinny fat”

(20 Posts)
NewMe18 Tue 20-Mar-18 22:28:56

35 is looming over me and I want to do something about it now.

Background: I’ve never watched what I eat, I come from a “skinny” family. I never been on a diet or even thought about what I’m eating. I don’t know how much I weigh but I’d guess at around 8st (I’ve always been 8st every time I’ve weighed myself before, it seems to be my default). I eat a pretty shit diet. Coffee for breakfast, tuna and cucumber sandwich, crisps, chocolate bar and a can of coke for lunch every day. Dinner is just a standard meal. I don’t snack, not bothered by cake or chocolate, rarely drink.

So I’m skinny. But I have no muscle at all. I can’t do one push/pull up. I don’t have any muscle definition at all. It’s all just a bit blah. I have a waist but it isn’t particularly toned. Stomach is flat but everything is very soft IYKWIM.

I go to the gym 3/4 times a week. I don’t do any cardio at all (because I don’t want to lose weight). I mostly work out legs and bum (because I’d love a booty) but in 4 months haven’t seen any change at all. This is probably because I’m not getting enough protein to build muscle? How do I burn the fat but eat enough to build muscle?

Any advice would be great. I’d love to be stronger and more defined. No don’t need abs you can cut glass on but I’d like to stop the softness from descending into middle aged spread if possible

NewMe18 Tue 20-Mar-18 22:35:39

Sorry I should’ve said what I do at the gym.

Stretch
Deadlifts (bar is 15kg and 5kg on each end) 3 sets of 8. This doesn’t feel like it does anything for my legs, but my arms feel like they’re going to fall off just picking it up.

Squats on the smith machine (same weight same reps). Legs feel a bit tired afterwards

Lunges on the smith machine (same weight and reps) legs and bum tired now

Walking lunges unweighted (about 30)

Hip thrusts (higher weight 40kg) three sets of 8. Bum on fire after these

Box step ups with 10kg kettlebells 10 each side 3 sets

Kick backs on cable machine 3 sets of 10, not sure on weight but the one underneath 18kg!

200 steps on the stair master, level 6

And that’s it. 3/4 times a week.

I feel tired afterwards. But I never feel sore or particularly feel any burn (except for the hip thrusts)

StripeyMonkey1 Tue 20-Mar-18 22:43:09

First of all it's great that you have chosen to be stronger and more defined.

In terms of nutrition, I think yes, you are not eating enough protein. You will want to include some sort of protein at every meal, including breakfast, and particularly after training.

I'd also recommend that you do a structured lifting or other strength building program if you are not already. Are you going to a strength and conditioning gym and can you get some advice from a coach? You will want someone to teach you how to lift properly before you start to add weight. If your current gym doesn't have a strength focus it might be worth looking elsewhere - if you don't know where to start I'd suggest you google for crossfit gyms near you.

Passthecake30 Tue 20-Mar-18 22:51:24

Joining you on the skinny fat team. I'm 6ft and a size 10-12, slim, but no definition, my bum looks small but feels very squishy.

I've recently started using the rowing machine and I can (very slightly) see some muscle appearing mid thigh (above the knee), it's a start! I tend to do about 30 mins cardio and then lots of abs, squats and lunges, but I can't see any change. Saying that, even when I used to do body pump years ago I looked the same.

NewMe18 Tue 20-Mar-18 22:57:33

There is a big weights section at my gym and I’m not intimidated by it, I would love to be lifting some of the weights that the women do there. But I seem to struggle with just the bar sometimes I end up feeling ridiculous.

I’m not sure how you start without someone spotting you (hence me using the smith machine and not needing a spotter). Even to do my hip thrusts I have to get into a ridiculous position and “roll” the bar up my legs to get it to my hips. I tried doing the one where your shoulders are on a bench or box but couldn’t even get the bar off the ground and up on to my hips to start!

satsumasunrise Tue 20-Mar-18 23:00:04

Stop eating tuna!

It contains high levels of mercury which is very dangerous for your health.

StripeyMonkey1 Tue 20-Mar-18 23:03:36

Can you get one of the stronger women to give you some advice? I think that learning how to lift safely is so important as a first step. Once you are moving properly, you should find that the weight you are able to lift increases very quickly.

NewMe18 Tue 20-Mar-18 23:07:33

That cannot be true? I eat a can everyday, I have done for years!

AlphaApple Tue 20-Mar-18 23:19:32

You need a decent personal trainer to get on track.

You also need to train your back and abs as well as your legs to improve your deadlifts.

And you need to eat protein.

NewMe18 Wed 21-Mar-18 07:52:05

Re calories, should I have a deficit (to lower fat percentage) or an excess (to build muscle).

There is one woman who is quite smiley and I could possibly ask but I feel rude interrupting someone in the middle of their workout. She does supersets mostly so isn’t sitting around often

Passthecake30 Wed 21-Mar-18 08:47:40

I think you need to replace carb calories with protein calories. I wouldn't want to have a deficit of calories as I'd just end up skinny.

NewMe18 Wed 21-Mar-18 12:23:02

I’ve downloaded my fitness pal so I can track protein intake. I’ll cut white carbs and replace with something else.

On the weight front I’m going to see if I can ask one of the PTs to check my form tonight

Strongbeatsskinny Thu 22-Mar-18 19:18:39

Up your calories and protein not forgetting the fats. You seriously have to eat to sustain a heavier work out. Everyone has to start somewhere but you need to up that deadlift stick 10s on each side next time and grip that bar girl.

Increase everything even if it’s 1kg at a time you’ve got to push aim for 12reps not 8 you need to train harder and learn to push out that comfort zone.if you want to see changes you might.

NewMe18 Thu 22-Mar-18 20:03:22

I’ve tracked my last weeks intake and realised I’m massively under eating. Average about 1200 calories a day. So the last two days I’ve upped it to 2500 with at least 100g of protein.

I upped my weights tonight for leg press but couldn’t finish my last set. Is it ok to lower my weight for my last set do you think?

Strongbeatsskinny Thu 22-Mar-18 20:17:53

What leg press weight are you doing it’s not on the above post?
I see your doing a lower session but no weight for leg press. Which type of leg press is it? Are you sat low with the weight plate above at a 90%angle? Or is it one where it has an adjustable seat smack in front of the leg push plate?

halfwitpicker Thu 22-Mar-18 20:22:05

Sounds like you are not actually eating enough... Have you tried eggs for breakfast?

mimibunz Thu 22-Mar-18 20:27:05

I’m skinny fat too and when I did weight training in my early 20s it took me a long time to build up muscle. I always thought it was because I was working with a deficit to begin with. Best of luck OP! It’s great fun.

HollyBollyBooBoo Thu 22-Mar-18 22:02:40

No knowledge on the weights but you're eating way too much tuna, just google it to see all the health risks!

I'd be getting myself tested for mercury levels if you've been eating 7 cans a week for years!

Symptoms include weakness and muscle atrophy...

NewMe18 Fri 23-Mar-18 08:15:47

Yes I didn’t include the leg press because it’s often difficult to even get on it when I go to the gym. So if it’s free I use it

Bar is 15kg I think? Plus 10kg on each side. 3 sets of 10. The machine where it’s at a 90% angle not the other one.

Strongbeatsskinny Fri 23-Mar-18 15:51:27

Leg press doesn’t have a bar lol think you meant a solid plate that you press against stick 20kg each side for the next two sessions then add another 5kg a side. I don’t usually offer training advice but you’ve not seen any changes in four months of trying and you won’t if you don’t get out that comfort zone you’re in and push yourself into a place your mind and body doesn’t want to go push for reps of 12 x 3 and if they are easy to do up the weight.

Squeeze the muscles your training on every single rep of every exercise and you will see change it takes us ladies a long time to build but don’t give up.

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