[quote]Aww, that was uncalled for [/quote]
You're currently trolling a thread calling every woman posting here first fat and delusional, then strong but puny-looking (and still delusional). Forgive me if I'm not exactly shedding a tear over your hurt feelings.
I love the definition of Novice "A person training regularly for a period of 3-9 months. This strength level supports the demands of vigorous recreational activities."
This describes me, and I am very happy about it. I love that after a year in the gym and 7months of eating primally, I can play a game of netball, go hiking, biking or sailing, and try new activity like standup paddleboarding. I don't aspire to more.
[QUOTE=Kharnath;1090660]No, I'm not calling you a liar. I'm saying that women look fairly unimpressive in terms of muscle size regardless of their actual strength. That is, unless they take performance enhancing drugs. To even suggest that you can build muscle lifting dogs, feedbags and hay bales if you are a woman must be an insult to someone like you, who lifts heavy barbells multiple times every week and have little to show for it (relatively speaking).[/QUOTE]
You obviously only view muscles in terms of being jacked. You realise not all people have that perspective? A few weeks ago I was with some male friends, and when I picked up a water jug, one of the guys exclaimed that I had "guns". They asked me to flex! I'm not a big girl by any stretch of the imagination, but proportionately my muscle definition is noticeable. Although I suppose these mens' perspectives wouldn't count in your opinion because they don't deadlift, ha.
Putting the shoe on the other foot - I have a male friend who is tall, slim, and has natural muscle definition without doing much exercise (he cycles and plays tennis). He's not jacked by any degree, but he looks strong and has a great body in my humble opinion. It's not all about the bulk!
[QUOTE=heatseeker;1090677]We're simply talking about our ability to build muscle RELATIVE TO OTHER WOMEN.[/QUOTE]
[QUOTE=happybunny;1090683]this thread is talking about muscle size RELATIVE TO OTHER WOMEN.[/QUOTE]
That's exactly what I thought this thread was about.
We women are told all the time not to worry, we won't bulk up if we lift weights. We're shown pictures of these jacked women. Don't worry, you won't turn out like this, they plead. Okay, okay, we get it. But then we're also shown pictures of women with abs and visible muscle, just not really big steroid ones and we're told it takes years and years of hard work and special diets and only a few will ever get that much muscle. Okay, okay, I get it. I'm not going to look like that after 3 months in the gym. On and on they go trying to reassure us we won't get muscles, we'll stay smooth and soft and feminine. They'll show pictures of women who just look normal, no visible muscles, see? This will be you. The message ends up being "work as hard as you can in the gym, you won't get visible muscles unless you are a freak or practically live in the gym, you'll stay feminine and soft, don't worry." And we go in there prepared to work hard and not really see much for the effort.
And then we find out, at least some of us, that it really isn't that hard to get some definition. A couple months lifting really puny weights that barely put me into the "novice" category and I can feel a rock-hard muscle where once there was only old-lady bingo wings. I can see a shapely hamstring where once there was a concave empty space. Hell, there's even a faint outline of abs under my significant layer of belly softness. My waist is the same, my thighs are larger. A bicep bump flashes briefly when I just move my arm up and down. What is that if not muscle?
I'm still a soft and feminine slightly overweight woman and yet putting on some visible muscle was not difficult. Not like they led me to believe. Think what I could do if bodybuilding was an actual goal of mine?
Am I claiming it's ridiculously easy to end up like a bodybuilder without even trying or look like a man and lift manly-sized weights? Not at all. Just saying I don't find growing new muscle to be nearly as hard as they tell us women it is. There are some women on this forum who complain bitterly about how hard it is to gain muscle. They can even lift more than me. I don't find it to be that hard.
The truth is that some women find it easy to gain muscle relative to other women.
This was always true of myself.
Even before I started working out with gym equipment, and I was just doing farm work, both the men/guys around me noticed that I was a lot more muscled that other girls... and believe me the girls noticed too!
I caught hell for it from some of them.
I was made fun of.
Once a girl asked me if I had been in an accident because me "neck was all swollen". WTF. Traps. I was wearing a cute new scoop neck shirt that accented them too much. I never wore it again. This was way before being a "fit" girl was acceptable.
No, I was NOT fat. I had noticeable definition.
Large shoulders, traps, arms... and much larger/stronger legs.
I beat many a high school classmate GUY at arm wrestling, and had bigger guns than some of them.
Out leg pressed 3/4's of the football team... all but the biggest guys on the line.
All I can attribute this to is genetics.
Heck... I gained muscle easier than my own brother who was only a year ahead of me in high school at the time.
I got more of my father's wide shouldered build.
My father builds muscle incredibly easy as well... has massive upper body for a little guy, and was a gymnast.
It's kind of like my husbands legs and calves...
My husband has EPIC calves. They are popped! There is definition.
But basically... he was just born with those calves.
I'm incredibly jealous of them.
He has never worked them a day in his life. Seriously.
He has had like 3 knee surgeries in the past two years and doesn't do much more than walk any more... and his calves are still picture perfect.
This is why you can put 10,000 kids into a swimming pool and only one can ever be Michael Phelps.
Because that's how he is BUILT.
A kid who is built wrong for swimming can try his little heart out, but won't ever win an olympic gold medal.
Some people, including women, can build more muscle than others.
Some can gain muscle with relatively little little effort (in accordance with their gender)...
Some are willowy little people who can work and work and make only the tiniest gains with the greatest efforts, this applies even to men.
Good for you! Always a struggle for me, and I am still searching for a perfect training style to get some muscle growing! And you don't have to apologize for being the way you are. Some will consider it lucky, some - a curse... but that changes nothing. If you want a slower rate of growth, the high rep-light weight is supposed to do that or training in the water (both cardio and resistance, different muscule profile), but I bet you know it.
I understand the point Kharnath is making (or rather trying to). Let me try to rephrase it:
"It is somewhat irksome (and cliche) for a woman who is overweight to make claims that light to moderate weight lifting is making her bulky"
for the sake of something to compare lean versus nont lean -- [URL="http://www.leighpeele.com/body-fat-pictures-and-percentages"]here's a good link[/URL]
I believe the crux of Kharnath's "point" is that until a woman leans out to the point where "fat" is no longer bulking her body up, "muscle" isn't what is bulking her up. Additionally, because of the physiology of women in general, as well as the fact that the person who claims to be bulking up on account of muscle is probably an untrained or novice athlete training lightly they have much less muscle mass than they actually believe. That's as succintly and diplomatically as I can try and reformat it.
Any how I tend to agree with that statement ^^
Which isn't to say that girls like Holly Mangold aren't crazy strong (or that women CANNOT be strong).
She was helping coach a USAW Level 1 certification I was attending; she reps more than my 1 RM back squat
... but it does a disservice to women who do train intensely, are strong for women who do not and are not, to claim that muscle is making them bulky. Holly's coach is the first one who will tell you that Holly should lose weight -- it isn't her muscles that make her "bulky".
Thank you, TheFastCat, for not going out of your way to be insulting. Women get enough crap about their bodies without guys like Kharnath automatically assuming that we are stupid and couldn't possibly know what we are talking about. And I think those of us who are overweight have been completely forthcoming about it (I've given enough personal info in this thread to make me slightly nervous). But what do you make of the fact that for some women (like me), weighing 145 lbs would put me down into the essential fat zone if I somehow managed not to lose muscle along the way? And that several of us have said that we have lost significant amounts of weight while maintaining or even increasing measurements around extremities (in the last month, I've barely lost any weight, but my waist has decreased two inches and my calf muscles and upper arms are noticeably more defined and have not decreased in circumference)?
I'm not going to argue that claiming that "it's muscle" isn't common among overweight people of both genders. But I think several of us have given enough information to allow a reader to make a reasonable assumption that some of us just find it easier to develop lean body mass than others. And people like Kharnath, and even you (albeit to a much lesser extent), do not help women who might be a few standard deviations above the mean as far as building muscle goes feel like they have a place in the paleo/primal world when you seem to enforce the idea that healthy equals 20% (or 17%) BF at 120 lbs (a weight which for me, at least, would be extremely unhealthy unless I dropped 25 lbs of lean mass, and even then I'd be floating around at 16-17% body fat). Maybe I'm putting words in your mouth, but this is how guys can come across when it comes to women, weight, and muscle. I think we value your perspective, but please respond to us as individuals, instead of making blanket statements about our health and genetics.
Maybe that's what Kharnath is saying but it's not what I'm saying. I've gained and lost weight many times over my lifetime. This is the only time I've ever had my thighs get bigger and my waist get smaller. And the only time I've ever had my arms get harder and stay the same size.
[quote]"It is somewhat irksome (and cliche) for a woman who is overweight to make claims that light to moderate weight lifting is making her bulky"[/quote]
I appreciate your attempt, [b]TheFastCat[/b], and your tact, but that's [i]still[/i] not what we're talking about in this thread. We're not talking about being bulky, having big muscles, anything like that. The OP was asking if any other women out there, like her, seem to show muscle size and definition more quickly and easily than other women doing a similar amount of work. No qualifications as to the size or bulk of the muscle were ever made.
The point of the thread is: Girl A, who has been doing my exact workouts for exactly as long as me, still looks her skinny self with barely any change, whereas my muscle definition is much more apparent and my muscle size visibly larger. Therefore, I seem to be putting on muscle more easily than the other girl.
That's it. That's all we're talking about. We're not talking about looking like professional weightlifters, or bodybuilders, or men, or anything.