I think its been shown that "fit" (read active) overweight person has better health markers than a sedentary person that is of low body fat. BF% is definitely just a portion of the picture.
As to the "too lean"...well thats obviously quite individual. I wouldn't walk around with a nawing hunger just to be single digit lean, but I'm sure there are people that sit at that level quite naturally.
So in the end you do not have to be extremely lean to be healthy, but if you are it doesn't necessarily make you unhealthy.
[QUOTE=sbhikes;1029941][url=http://www.builtlean.com/2012/09/24/body-fat-percentage-men-women/]Body Fat Percentage Pictures of Men & Women[/url]
Of these pictures, 15-25% on the men looks fine to me. I think my man is probably between 25 and 30%. What I'm saying is that you don't have to be ripped to get a woman.
I'm not sure the pictures of women on that page are accurate. I'm supposedly (according to body measurement calculations) around 26% but I think I look closest to their 35% picture, although not quite as good as that since I don't have that hourglass shape. Not that it matters that much.
There are fitness model types who have really low body fat but if you ask me they are all messed up inside, in their adrenals and whatnot and also in their minds. Then there are the strong women who might be higher than 20% but they can fling around hundreds of pounds over their heads no problemo. That's what I would rather be.[/QUOTE]
Personally, I would prefer the men in 10-12%. It's very rare that I even see guys at the level of BF in the summer where I live so it's not like I care about it that much. According to this site and based on looking at the pics of women, I'm sitting at the 20-22%. I would prefer at the 15-17%. I don't think I have ever been that lean but again I wouldn't want to if it means losing my menstrual cycle.
Yeah a lot of female fitness model exercise a lot and don't leave too much room for cheating on their diet. I can understand if it is your job to look a certain way but if you are just average person that wants to be healthy fit then I wouldn't worry too much about it.
[QUOTE=Neckhammer;1030434] I think its been shown that "fit" (read active) overweight person has better health markers than a sedentary person that is of low body fat. BF% is definitely just a portion of the picture.[/QUOTE]
That's true, to be physical active is far more important for health reasons, even if having some blubber!
[QUOTE=Neckhammer;1030434] As to the "too lean"...well thats obviously quite individual. I wouldn't walk around with a nawing hunger just to be single digit lean, [B]but I'm sure there are people that sit at that level quite naturally[/B].[/QUOTE]
But I am not sure what is "naturally" here? Personally I can stay “naturally” below 10 % of bodyfat but I can also easily stay "naturally" above 25 % as well. When I weighed 245 lbs. it was all natural, I guess, and the body would happily have stayed there if not overruled by my will to lose weight and become fitter. So am I more healthy now at 8 - 9 % of bodyfat and 200 lbs., versus when I was 25 % + bodyfat and 245 lbs.? Well, I can exercise much more easy, less problems with injuries, and sprint the stairs in the morning and feeling “light as a feather” - a notable “feel good” difference from a couple of months ago when I was above 12 % and a BIG difference from being above 20 % of bodyfat.
The key is to find what is natural for you. If muscles come easily, I don't see why it WOuLDN'T be healthy. But if you're having to work day after day in the gym just to see even minute gains, then perhaps you are over thinking things a bit.[/QUOTE]
Once you reach a certain level of fitness the minute gains in the gym are MUCH harder to come by. An untrained individual can see great results with almost any sort of routine. But, someone who is trained needs to have a good plan and put in a lot of hard work to continue seeing any progress.
To answer the original post, if by ripped you mean ready for a fitness/figure competition.. then no those extremely low bf%s are not healthy or sustainable. But, there is certainly nothing unhealthy about being very lean and having a six pack. For men at least, carrying around extra fat is not healthy and I don't see how it could ever be considered desirable. Women are supposed to have higher bf% than men.
It all comes down to personal preference and body type. Some people have the natural ability to be ripped while others carry higher body fat. To me as long as you feel good I could care less. I would love to have my 6 pack back for vanity reasons but more importantly to decrease my back pain.
I think people focus too much on body fat % instead of how they feel. If you feel better at a little higher body fat then stay there, if you feel sluggish then drop the precentage down to a more manageable level. As for picking up women or men, looks will only get you so far. If you have the personality of a door then not many ladies or men will be lining up to hang out with you.
But I am not sure what is "naturally" here?.....[/QUOTE]
True I did leave that a bit vague didn't I? I suppose what I meant was with little effort or discomfort. Basically eat primal and not bothering to count calories or macros...letting the chips fall where they may. I do believe that by doing this most will fall in a healthy range of BF, but not everyone will be extra lean. For instance you had to do that all egg thing to get from 12% to single digits right? Well thats what I'm talking about.
I'm right at 26% too sbhikes...but I def. have visible abs--more like the 20-22% pic. I carry it more in my hips and bum!
[QUOTE=cayla29s;1030455]Personally, I would prefer the men in 10-12%.[/QUOTE]
Does look good. Yet, I'd still be happy at 20%. Getting to the 10-12% guy would mean that my body is my hobby. I'd rather be 20% guy and work on other parts of my life.
As a dude, I think the 30% woman is va-va-voom.
Plus, as you age, you really need to keep on a little fat for your face.
[QUOTE=rimam1;1029714]I know getting ripped is an obsession for lots of guys. I can totally understand where it comes from, as I myself am working to get more muscular, but the concept of "getting ripped" sounds like body engineering to [B]fine tune yourself to 8 to 12 percent body fat.[/B]
If you get lean naturally from working out and eating correctly, that's cool. It just seems that aiming to get ripped can leave you gaunt and wiry, which I'm guessing is not very good for you.
Maybe I'm wrong?
You fine tune by eating well (and not cheating), reducing stress, sleeping well, and exercising smartly, I don't see how that can be so bad.
Go to any good climbing/MMA gym and you'll see a lot of healthy ripped people. Most people I know who have been keeping smart life habits and competed in a sport of some kind for a few years are all leaning towards a ripped physique, and they look awesome, vibrant, and healthy. Those who try to get ripped but fail are just doing dumb things like too much cardio, not eating enough or taking bad stuff like fat-burners, and that's what's unhealthy. They then complain about how unrealistic a ripped physique is, or how it's unhealthy because of some weird personal conceptions about bodybuilders.
Lean and muscular seems to be the default look for human beings, and I bet it's also the healthiest.
Wow, lots of awesome posts on this thread!
I think if you naturally get that lean, that's awesome. But I see lots of people online trying to engineer themselves to get down to that level. It just seems unsustainable, unless you're a fitness model.