It’s the unicorn of the fitness world because it’s something we really want to believe in, but we know it’s just not real.
Spot training, or spot reducing, is the idea that you can just “tone up” one specific area without affecting the rest of the body OR lose weight and slim one area alone without affecting the rest of your body.
Sounds nice…sounds magical, hence the unicorn comparison, but it’s just not a real thing. It is not something you can do to your body naturally.
There is no way to target only your thighs and slim them alone.
There is no way to just slim down the sides of your stomach alone.
There is no way to get rid of just your love handles and nothing else.
There is no way to spot reduce the size of your arms alone.
Unless you get liposuction. Which is extreme and not the way most people want to go.
Before you get mad and never visit my blog again….let me explain a little bit of the science behind it, and after I do that, I will explain how you CAN hit your trouble zones and shape the body you want.
Muscles and Fat
Fat is all over our bodies. We need it, so that is not a bad thing. Too much fat is a bad thing and too much fat is the reason why your abs don’t look so defined, or why your thighs look bigger than you want them to. There is a layer of fat between your muscles and your skin. When referring to your thighs, if you build your muscles without losing fat at the same time, your thighs will look thicker because the layer of fat will make them look thicker. You have to reduce the fat to reveal the muscle definition.
When we exercise, our bodies burn fat, but your body doesn’t give a crap WHERE that fat is coming from. So if you are doing sprints and weighted squats, that doesn’t mean that the fat will be burned from your booty or thighs. Your body will burn fat all over, not in just one area. Some people tend to hold fat in certain parts of their bodies. For me, I hold it more in my stomach and inner thighs….and no matter how many crunches I do and how many thigh movements I do…if I am not eating correctly, those areas will look the same, or larger.
And the truth is, unless I lose A LOT of weight (which I don’t want to do) I will never have a Victoria’s Secret style thigh gap. To achieve that look, I would have to lose a lot of weight all over my body, which would also result in twig-arms (which I am SO prone to) and a tiny ass. No thanks. I will forgo the thigh gap for the sake of the rest of my body.
To get that “toned” look most of us are after, you have to build strength and lose fat at the same time- all over your body. This is done through a good balance of cardio and weight training…and of course a clean diet!!
If you build muscle but continue to eat too much or skimp on the cardio, those rock hard, sexy abs you are working so hard for will never be visible! Those defined, lean thigh muscles will never see the light of day. They will be hidden from the world, never getting their time to shine- how sad for them!!
When you see an athletic model who looks really great, her secret is pretty simple (other than having good genetics). She eats healthy, but never too much, she does some cardio and lifts weights to get muscle definition. The end.
Lifting weights is almost as important as clean eating. Well..actually nothing is as important as clean eating, but weight lifting is the only way to change the shape of your body.
To get a perky, tight butt, you have to lift weights. To get killer abs and a cinched in waist, you have to lift weights. To get strong, lean muscle in your legs, you have to lift weights. And don’t be afraid of the weights!! A 5 lb dumbell will do nothing for you other than waste your time.
- When I do squats and lunges, I hold at least 30-40 lbs.
- When I do weighted ab work, I chose a 15 lb dumbbell.
- When I do wall balls or ball slams I hold a medicine ball between 14-20 lbs.
- When I do chest and back exercises, I choose 15-20 lb dumbbells for each hand.
- When I do arm exercises, I go with 12-15 lb weights for as long as I can and then drop to 10 lbs if I need to.
The point is, I chose weights that challenge me. If a 15 lb dumbbell starts to feel easy, I will go to 20 lbs the next time…even if it is a bit of a struggle. You don’t make progress if you never move up in weight. Being comfortable doesn’t move you forward.
If you do the same exercises with the same weights every single time, you won’t see progress after a while. You see progress and changes to your body when you challenge it, when you get out of your comfort zone and try something harder. THAT is how you sculpt the body you want. Along with diet and a solid amount of cardio, weight training will get you your #bodygoals.
And if body goals include thinner thighs and a smaller waist, I would hone in on your diet. Clean it up and make sure you are doing an adequate amount of cardio. Additionally, lunges are great for toning up your legs, and twisting ab moves with weights will help you achieve that cinched in look. But none of it will get you there without some fat loss too. So clean up that diet!!
Shoot me an email if you have any questions or personal stories about any of this that I may like! Always love hearing from you!
HAPPY HUMP DAY!