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Old 05-28-2002, 03:17 AM   #1
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Post HELP needed, How can I get skinny, toned lower legs and ankles???!!!

Hello everybody!!! : )))))))

Does anyone know of any exercises that may help me with shaping my lower legs?

Iím skinny, small, A-shaped, thin, firm and toned everywhere apart from my lower legs, which are the opposite: big muscle, thick skin, water holding, some fat stored and no muscle toning. Help!!!
All I want is for my lower legs and ankles to be skinny, firm and toned like the rest of my body, and for my skin to be thinner and tight there. I have strong leg muscles so I definitely donít want to build any muscle there. I work out very regularly on a bike machine and a ski machine, I walk and dance, etc. and I have been on a raw and vegetarian diet for a long time. All of my good diet and cardiovascular exercise habits still leave my lower legs unproportionate and not shaped, while the rest of my body is toned, thin and tight, even my hips and tighs are small. Kinda silly looking like this and Iím fed up with it, nothing helps!!!! I refuse to believe my legs are supposed to look like this and I can not do anything about this... : ((( I need some very specific exercises that tone and shape my lower legs, make them thinner and tone them without building the muscles.
Is there any hope for me? Help!!!



[This message has been edited by Smoochy (edited 05-28-2002).]
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Old 05-28-2002, 08:28 AM   #2
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Unfortunately, it sounds like you are doing everything right. What you are asking for is kind of a paradox. You want an exercise that doesn't build muscle, but that is the point of working the muscles. You will not get _bulky_ if you use low weights and high reps, but it won't really make your legs leaner. The only thing that kind of does this is cardio. It will make the muscles more dense and help to burn the fat. It sounds like you are already getting a fair amount of exercise, so perhaps all you need to do is increase the intensity or duration. Drinking a lot of water will help drop water retention and minimize dimpling, although I don't know of anything that will "thicken the skin". It sounds like your genetics are working against you here, and that's about the best advice I have for you. Good luck!
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Old 05-29-2002, 02:06 PM   #3
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no, I don't want to thicken the skin, I want thinner skin!!! I know it's about genetics too but it just seems to me that I have some fat there that is tough to get rid of. Sortof a place in my body to store fat, and since I have smoked for a long time (quit now), it's probably so that the circulation in my lower legs is not too good. I don't even care as much about the strong muscles, the thing I guess that bugs me the most is the thickness of my skin there, the fat that is stored there. it sounds more extreme than it really is, but still I wish I could improve this area.
Anyway thx for your advice!
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Old 05-29-2002, 02:09 PM   #4
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By the way, what would be a good cardio workout specifically for my lower legs? When I cycle and stuff, it does a lot for my upper legs but my lower need more attention.
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Old 05-30-2002, 07:54 AM   #5
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Cardio is all about burning calories/fat by moving around and keeping heart rate up, not so much targeting a muscle group. Running, jogging, jump rope and swimming use _more_ overall muscles, but don't confuse the two concepts.
Also skin "thickness" and fat storage really don't have anything to do with eachother. Thinner skin tends to show cellulite more prominantly, so be glad if you're on the other end of the spectrum. It's just a matter of where your body prefers to store fat. Looks like your body favors the legs for some reason, so it's just the last place it's going to drop from.
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Old 06-01-2002, 04:05 PM   #6
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Right, thanks!
Also I read that it's more healthy to store fat below the belt. I guess everything has it's pro's and con's...
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Old 06-01-2002, 11:57 PM   #7
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Honestly, it sounds a little odd to me that your body would decided to store fat in your lower legs and ankles http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/rolleyes.gif as opposed to your hips and thighs (as is the case with most women). From your description it sounds like you're a little unsure whether its fat, muscle, water, giving your lower legs that larger look...I could be wrong but it sounds more probable that this is muscle and not fat. If it was fat and you were doing all the exercises/dieting that you described above than that fat simply wouldn't be there...just a thought

 
Old 06-03-2002, 03:02 AM   #8
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Prbobably so, of course it is not that I am completely fatless like a skeleton on my hips and thighs but they are very toned and my lower legs are not.
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Old 06-03-2002, 06:50 PM   #9
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running is AWESOME for toning lower legs, and for some reason distance runners ( as opposed to sprinters) end up with skinny but very toned calves.

I know my lower legs look great since i started running and before they were heavy,they are smaller now then weighed less and did not run..I find i must be carefull about biking and stepping since my calves LOVE to bulk up..

Happy Trails

Cyn

[This message has been edited by momonline42 (edited 06-03-2002).]

 
Old 06-06-2002, 12:45 PM   #10
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What about trying Yoga or Pilates? Pilates is supposed to give you a more toned and sleek look from what I've heard. It also helps build strength without adding bulk. Yoga also helps lengthen as well as increase flexibility. There are classes offered in these areas as well as videotapes that you can follow. It's just a thought.

 
Old 06-06-2002, 02:35 PM   #11
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Smoochy, you must be my twin sister!! I am 5'6" and weigh 118, very thin upper body and my calves and ankles are so fat! But then my mother and both sisters are built the same way so I have to accept the fact that this is my body. My calves and ankles actually have cellulite on them. I hate wearing shorts or even capris. I was told the only solution was liposuction since it is inherited. I have tried running, aerobics, everything and I lose everywhere except those two areas.

 
Old 07-05-2002, 05:06 AM   #12
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wow, i have felt like you do all my life. my only wish as a teen was to "have ankles!" i too, am small (5') in great shape with overly heavy ankles and calves. i went to see about lipo and even they could not guarantee results. i am so frustrated. mine also look like a combination of fat cells, cellulite, water, bloat, etc. it is so frustrating!!!!! i have searched and searched to see if something can be done to make them look more presentable. i NEVER wear regular length dresses, skirts or shorts or capris. they make me feel so old and dumpy. i was wondering if endermology would help people like us. i've heard it is expensive but the theory is that it breaks up the fat cells that are attached to the top layer of skin, along with any impurities and fluids that have accumulated there. have you heard of anyone to try this? good luck to you and just know that someone else shares your exact feelings!.....

 
Old 08-12-2002, 11:49 AM   #13
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Hey, I have finally found my people! I too, am a slender, fit person with disproportionately fat thighs, calves and ankles. In doing an internet search, I've just found that there's a medical syndrome called "lipedema" that seems to describe me to a T and perhaps also many of you. Do an search of "lipedema", then find an article written on it by Dr. Reid. Unfortunately, he says not much can be done except that weight management can be of some help. But I've somehow found it helpful to know that it's a medical syndrome and I plan to do a more thorough library search to see if I can learn more about it. I've found it somewhat comforting to know it's considered a medical condition. Makes me feel less ashamed. I too, never where shorts or skirts, exercise regularly with little result. I even tried lipo several years ago. Unfortunately, it seems the surgeon knew less about doing lipo on lower legs than he indicated, and it's apparently a surgery that requires special skill. My legs were slightly trimmed but mishapened at the ankles by the surgery. Sometimes I wonder if I should find the right surgeon now, but it was not an easy surgery the first time. I'm currently upping my workouts to see if I can make any inroads. But it's discouraging. I'd be interested to hear anyone's thoughts on the article on "lipedema."

rozbud

 
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Old 08-12-2002, 12:55 PM   #14
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I personally have awesome lower legs. My gastrocs are nicely shaped from doing 1000s of calve raises. I usually do them in very large sets now, toes pointing out, and toes pointing in. Then to make sure i don't leave myself open for shin splints, i stretch and then do some exercies to work the shin muscles (tibulis something or other to that effect lol) but then i've found running really brings out the soleus which gives the leg great shape and defines the other muscles all around there and makes it generally strong and tight. When i run i do it on my toes and that bouncing effect really isolates the soleus, so i've had great returns on that.

Basically i use bodyweight and just burn out the muscles.

 
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