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Old 07-05-14, 08:43 AM  
pumptmuscle
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
For the pears - what workouts do you do...and which do you avoid?

I've been meaning to ask this for a while and I feel it's finally time.

To be a guy who's a pear is a real pain. We're supposed to have V shapes, not A shapes. haha Although I'm very proud of how much I've built up my upper body, the big legs remain. I'll never have those pencil/chicken legs you see some muscle guys have which totally contrast their big upper bodies. I'm not exactly saying I'd want to have chicken legs but yeah, it would be nice if my legs were less big and muscular.

For me, the toughest part is not being able to do certain workouts because they make my legs even bigger. Case in point...step. I love step workouts, especially the Les Mills step dvds I have. So much fun and the time flies. Could I still do them once in a while? Sure, but the thing with me is I really prefer to do workouts that are effective for my body and goals. Why do a workout that will bulk my legs when I could do one that won't? In my case, I know I wouldn't fully enjoy a workout knowing it's gonna produce undesired results...even if just temporarily.

For my fellow pears, who more likely than not are focused on slimming their legs, or at least not bulking them. What workouts do you do, and which do you avoid? I'm mainly concerned with workouts that either directly or indirectly involve the legs. Do you still do leg bulking workouts but just very rarely or do you avoid them completely? Do you just do whatever workouts you want and deal with whatever consequences they have on your legs, not really caring? What workouts have been successful in slimming your legs and which have bulked them? I'm very interested in learning what others do regarding this.
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Old 07-05-14, 09:14 AM  
alisoncooks
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: TarHeel country
I wish I could say "to heck with it" and do whatever type of workout I want... but to be honest, I do gravitate toward lower body workouts that claim to be slimming. I think my best results have been with:
Jari Love (high rep squats/lunges/deadlifts)
barre
traditional floor work, like Buns of Steel (original)
pilates side-lying leg work (Winsor Bun & Thigh, Strong Stride)
walking/running


I feel for ya, as a male with these issues. My DH is a pear shape (and currently in the obese category) and it's a difficult shape to be, as a man. ETA: I would say that my DH is in the "to heck with it!" category. He mainly uses kettlebells b/c he likes them -- he has no concern about anything but building muscle/losing fat. Perhaps if he were closer to goal weight, he might start target-specific programs (ie. slimming his lower body)... but even when he was at goal weight, he has VERY thick legs/round calves.
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Old 07-05-14, 09:51 AM  
shoegoddess
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: So. California
Quote:
Originally Posted by alisoncooks View Post
I wish I could say "to heck with it" and do whatever type of workout I want... but to be honest, I do gravitate toward lower body workouts that claim to be slimming.
I do this too but I've found that doing heavy lifting plus barre has had profound results for me. I am a small pear 5'2" 109 pounds. Right now my hips are 35" but they have been all the way up to 40"
I'm doing Body Beast with an extra leg day and added Barre and cardio twice weekly for each. Heavy lifting for upper body helps balance out the bottom half. I have a thin upper body. Wider shoulders and nice buff arms makes the bottom half appear smaller. I just got a very nice compliment on my body yesterday. My rotation for the past 2 months has been Body Beast/Barre/Cardio. I took a break between block 2 & 3 last week (and I needed a recovery week anyway) to check out PiYo but tomorrow I'm starting Block 3 and I plan on doing it for 2 months. This time I'm adding cardio 2X, Barre 2X and try to add in short PiiYo 1 or 2X a week. Plus I've been on Weight Watchers since October and I'm at Lifetime now. Diet also has a profound effect on results.
Try TurboFire or other kickboxing workouts. Barre and floorwork would help I think. Maybe low weight high rep workouts for lower body. I think Jari Love is in that category.
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Old 07-05-14, 10:48 AM  
Jeanne Marie
 
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Hi Bob!

Have you tried running? Just a thought. If you're not already a runner, it might do the trick for you.

You got some good suggestions when you asked this a few months ago:

Can I talk about reducing my inner thighs....

Good luck! I'm sure you look fantastic!
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Old 07-05-14, 10:53 AM  
PrairieGem
 
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Originally Posted by Jeanne Marie View Post
Have you tried running? Just a thought. If you're not already a runner, it might do the trick for you.
I second Jeanne Marie's suggestion! I am astonished at the way running has leaned out my outer thighs/low hips! (The area unfortunately known on women as "saddlebags.") It also doesn't take *much* running--I am really slow and have cranky hips/feet, so about the most I can manage is 2.5 miles twice a week.

You should also know, however, that running is also responsible for the disappearance of my butt, and has had negligible impact on my front/inner thighs. (Well, that's not true; I've lost weight overall, so technically everything is smaller, but the only dramatic *visual* difference I see is in that hip area.)
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Old 07-05-14, 11:12 AM  
alisoncooks
 
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I would guess that, based on his signature, he is familiar with running.
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Old 07-05-14, 11:20 AM  
bubbles76
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Shoegoddess, as a pear with 38 inch hips, I would love to have a bigger butt . I wish being a pear and having a big butt didn't get such a bad rap, but I understand people have their preferences. I have a 10 inch difference between my waist and hips, but I have woefully thin legs (at least in my eyes). As for me, I want strong, muscular, ice skater looking legs and butt.

I do want to be in proportion, so like Shoegoddess said, making the upper half look as symmetrical with the bottom half may do the trick. Maybe you should focus more on upper body if it appears that everything you do with lower body is not giving you the aesthetic results you are after? Not saying neglect your lower body, just saying train a little differently.

I have found that to decrease the saddle bags and strengthen up my lower body, nothing worked better than Xtrain for me. I didn't get "bigger" per se, just harder legs and more definition.
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Old 07-05-14, 11:32 AM  
starbelly
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Join Date: Jun 2012
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I am also a pear (but broad shouldered so not truly lopsided) with big legs. For me, the stationary bike is a ticket to enormous quads. Cycling outdoors on my road bike --clipped in-- burns loads of calories and gives me better overall leg development. My back, however, does not like it so I do mostly barre. I tried Drop 2 Sizes last year and got very strong but also quite puffy which took quite a while to subside. Kettlebells are good for me as is anything that works the posterior chain. Since I tend to be quad heavy, it's important to work the back body to give balance.

I just bought Strong Curves after reading a preview online. While the program is designed for women, there is no reason that men cannot use it (the author says as much in the introduction). Katy Bowman says that saddlebags are due to underactive external hip rotators. Since I have been following her alignment program I have noticed changes in my shape without altering the amount of exercise I do. Working the posterior chain may give you the change you are looking for.
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Old 07-05-14, 11:58 AM  
Jeanne Marie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alisoncooks View Post
I would guess that, based on his signature, he is familiar with running.
Thanks Alison. I missed that obviously. I just wondered why he keeps asking the same question. I guess he's not getting the answer he wants.
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Old 07-05-14, 12:04 PM  
beyond.omega
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I avoid the standing flute work in Callanetics Evolution because it slims the this too much for my taste (I like a but of outer quad curve on me.) If you decide to try it, do the leg work too, and then be sure to do the stretches after both sections as that is key to slimming.

T-Tapp slims my thighs like nobody's business too, probably because of all the time spent in T-Tapp stance.
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