Big stomach but not fat - VeggieBoards - A Vegetarian Community
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#1 Old 12-21-2008, 08:15 PM
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Okay, so I work out 5 times a week, cardio and lifting. I have certainly gained muscle mass in the past few months, but it seems like my stomach is bloated all the time. I am not fat (6' 0", 175 lbs), but it looks like I am. My diet is vegan and I don't eat that much fat a day (maybe around 30g). I can feel the ab muscles under the thin layer of fat but it just seems like my stomach sticks out a lot. If I suck it in, I look normal. Does anyone have any ideas? Thanks.

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#2 Old 12-21-2008, 08:49 PM
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Okay, so I work out 5 times a week, cardio and lifting. I have certainly gained muscle mass in the past few months, but it seems like my stomach is bloated all the time. I am not fat (6' 0", 175 lbs), but it looks like I am. My diet is vegan and I don't eat that much fat a day (maybe around 30g). I can feel the ab muscles under the thin layer of fat but it just seems like my stomach sticks out a lot. If I suck it in, I look normal. Does anyone have any ideas? Thanks.

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#3 Old 12-21-2008, 09:09 PM
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Hello,,



I have noticed the same since a month ago when I strated my resistance workout program called (TT)



I am a lady used to have a flabby body with no mtoning at all ,, the reason is that I used to play cardio along months with no healthy diet ,, so what happened that I became underweight



So I moved to the resistance workouts ,, my body now is better ,, my diet includes soy protien everyday ,, MY body is much better ,, more toned than before,,



but what's shocking me is my abs ,, they are out of my body ,, I dont know how this happened?? my abs is more toned yes ,, but I feel it becomes much bigger than it used to be





I think its abd muscle grown up thats pushing the abs outwords,,loooool



its soooo funny



I dont want to lose fat ,, I am in 18% range as I think and now I am in agood shape except this abs



hope someone can help us in this
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#4 Old 12-21-2008, 10:05 PM
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Someone once suggested to raise yourself up with your arms (like you're doing a pushup) and just hold it for 60 seconds, do the same leaning on your left and again leaning on your right. She said tat doing this every day would build help to define ab muscles, which would help the fat look less noticeable.



But yeah, some of us just store fat around our mid section. I'm not fat, I have toned calves and slightly toned arms, but my midsection is . . . huggable. *shrug*
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#5 Old 12-21-2008, 10:14 PM
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Its possible that you either have intramuscular fat, which doesn't show under the skin, or you have developed an intolerance to something you are eating, and it is causing the bloating.



If you have had a doctor measure your body composition, and he has confirmed that you are not carrying hidden body fat, then you'll have to do some detective work, and try an elimination diet to see if the bloating goes away. I have only seen extreme examples of this in bodybuilders who take lots of whey protein supplements. Apparently it causes abdominal distention, even though the ab muscles themselves are toned. I haven't read about any other cause but the whey, though, and since you are vegan, I can't pinpoint anything else that might be causing it, but if you are taking any sort of vegan sport supplement or protein shake you might want to cut that out first.

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#6 Old 12-21-2008, 10:22 PM
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when i gain muscle in my stomach area i get that sticking-out, distended look instead of getting a tighter, smaller stomach like expected. that makes me feel really uncomfortable even if i didn't eat a lot....i have absolutely no idea why this happens....it could be just genetics and how some peoples' bodies are built and how they respond to muscle?
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#7 Old 12-21-2008, 10:56 PM
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The last place I lose fat is on my belly.



Both above and below the abdominal cavity.



It annoys me. I need to damn near starve before I start losing weight.
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#8 Old 12-21-2008, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by troub View Post

Someone once suggested to raise yourself up with your arms (like you're doing a pushup) and just hold it for 60 seconds, do the same leaning on your left and again leaning on your right. She said tat doing this every day would build help to define ab muscles, which would help the fat look less noticeable.

You mean planks? I do those, along with other ab workouts.

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#9 Old 12-21-2008, 11:09 PM
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I used to have this problem; now I really am fat; so not a problem anymore...



Are you looking down at your stomach? Because I think, IIRC, you might look better if you look in the mirror...that's how others will see you anyway.

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#10 Old 12-21-2008, 11:57 PM
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Mmmm...I'm just wondering if this is how you see yourself but others would say they can't see your 'bloated' tummy. We can be our own worst critics so maybe ask a few close friends if they agree with you. Whatever you do, don't starve yourself in pursuit of an ideal body image and good luck.

Death is everywhere, there are lambs for the slaughter waiting to die and I can sense the hours slipping by, tonight - Depeche Mode
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#11 Old 12-22-2008, 01:23 AM
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Nah, I'm not going to starve myself. That would be counter-productive especially because I'm lifting. I do tend to snack on a lot of high-carbohydrate foods such as bread. I'll try replacing the bread with fruit or something. I'll also try eating more protein-heavy foods. Still not exactly sure what causes it though.

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#12 Old 12-22-2008, 02:15 AM
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Reading between the lines, it sounds like you've been working out for 6 months or less?



Just keep going, the first few months are about laying the foundations. It takes time but once you've done that, it won't take long before you start to notice the difference. After 6 months of working out, my gut and body shape looked exactly the same as when I started, but 3 months later, everything had changed.



Also do some crunches if you're not already.
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#13 Old 12-22-2008, 02:57 AM
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Is your overall percentage body fat high or is it normal?



running up hills / stairs is good for the stomach and ass
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#14 Old 12-22-2008, 05:46 AM
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While you can tone muscles in a region, you can't do spot fat reduction in a region unless you turn to surgical procedures.



The body doesn't work that way.



If your body needs to make up excess calories, it will burn fat, but the trigger to burn fat isn't region specific.
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#15 Old 12-22-2008, 06:12 AM
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I have the same problem if I eat more sugar and simple carbs, such as at Christmas. I call it sugar belly. When I concentrate on eliminating the sugar it tends to go away.
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#16 Old 12-22-2008, 08:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Licence View Post

Reading between the lines, it sounds like you've been working out for 6 months or less?



Just keep going, the first few months are about laying the foundations. It takes time but once you've done that, it won't take long before you start to notice the difference. After 6 months of working out, my gut and body shape looked exactly the same as when I started, but 3 months later, everything had changed.



Also do some crunches if you're not already.

I've been working out since the summer. So around 6 months, yes.



For ab workouts, I usually do planks, sit-ups on a decline bench with 25lb weight, torso rotation and other oblique workouts.

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#17 Old 12-22-2008, 09:15 AM
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Could it be simply water retention? When I first went fruitarian I actually gained weight due to the increase in sugar and water I was consuming. Maybe a liquid fast for a couple days would flush excess water out of your system. Just a thought.
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#18 Old 12-22-2008, 09:34 AM
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Well, I do drink a lot of water. But water is good for you. ^_^

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#19 Old 12-22-2008, 11:05 AM
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Yea my aunt had something like that but her was an enlarged heart. But that was her.
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#20 Old 12-23-2008, 07:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SonicEarth View Post

I've been working out since the summer. So around 6 months, yes.



For ab workouts, I usually do planks, sit-ups on a decline bench with 25lb weight, torso rotation and other oblique workouts.



Ha, my guess was a good one!



Right now my advice would be:



1) Most importantly, keep it going and don't be discouraged by the seemingly minor gains achieved so far.



2) "Abs are made in the kitchen, not the gym." As Das_Nut says, you can't spot-fat reduction in a specific region. Men are predisposed to put on weight in the stomach, just as women are on the hips. Thus any excess weight will go to your stomach first, and the corollary is that unfortunately the last place your body will lose excess weight will also be your stomach.



So you really need to look at lowering your overall calorie intake.



3) Do more cardio. Cardio will automatically lower your body fat, particularly if done on an empty stomach. Crunches will strengthen and define your core and stomach, but that won't show till you've shed the excess weight. Then it will look great!



4) Weights are still necessary - every pound of muscle burns 50 calories a day without you even trying. Realistically you will gain about 15 pounds of muscle in a year of working out, so it does take time.
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#21 Old 12-23-2008, 02:42 PM
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Well, I lost about 50 lbs about a year ago (was around 195) and ever since I started working out I've been slowly gaining weight. I think it's safe to assume that a lot of it was muscle mass (I was pretty weak before. =P). I have also been eating more since I started working out.

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