Spot Reducing: Can we all please stop trying it?

12 posts | Original | Recent
 
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139 Posts
Feb 18, 2014 7:43pm
via Android

I keep seeing post after post of people looking for ways to reduce fat around ......pick a body part.....(abdominals, thighs and hips seem to be the most popular).

Sorry to be the one to burst your bubble but you will never get a flat stomach by just doing abdominal exercises. Why? Because a muscle does not own the fat surrounding it, so doing sit ups and working your abdominal muscles will not get rid of the fat covering that particular muscle. Yes it will make the muscles stronger but fat loss is the result of a balanced diet, cardio and yes weight training.

You may have noticed that you will loss fat deposits in some areas of your body quicker than others. This is because of your genetic make-up and not because you are doing more exercises for that area.

Men tend to store fat in the abdominal region while women store more in the gluteal/hip/thigh region. So can we all please stop trying to reduce the size of ...... by doing hundreds of exercises to ........ and wonder why it is not working and focus on a well balanced program that targets all areas of : healthy eating, cardio and total body strengthening.

18 Feb
well said brain
18 Feb
brian my bad
18 Feb
Demarez......you were right the first time. I'll take being called"brain" any day. I'm sure I get called a lot worse on a daily basis. Thanks for the compliment. I enjoy reading your post comments and replies as well...they are spot on.
18 Feb
like wise my friend
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274 Posts
Feb 18, 2014 11:35pm
via Android

I totally see what you're saying man. But I read this interesting article a few months back saying it was possible to pinpoint fat reduction. Something about when you contact the muscles in a particular area, the blood flows to that muscle better, thus burning calories in that area... or something like that. I'll have to dig it up again, even if it's not true, sounded not to far fetched

18 Feb
That would be interesting and the first I have ever heard of such a theory. But if I have learned anything from research data is that if you structure you experiment correctly you can make the data come out however you want it to. Either to support your theory or disprove another one so I'd like to see the other variables they used to come to that conclusion .
18 Feb
No doubt. Like I said before, I take all studies I read with a grain of salt, because next week there will be another to refute it. But then again, research is improving every day. There are things we know today that we thought were dumb a year ago. It was an interesting read either way, I'll try to find it
18 Feb
Please post the link when you find it Jason. I'd love to see it.
19 Feb
@ Jason thts exactly how its suppose to be.....the whole point of many experiments from numerous scientists is to make sure their is no manipulating the facts or findings through method or means and tht the research can be cutting edge science and as close to fact as possible..only the media tends to make grabs
19 Feb
Yeah I almost brought that article up the other day but it also specified that it only is in small amounts and for high performance athletes who are already low body fat percentage so i figured I'd just be giving the masses more fuel for their ignorant hopes and ideas than helping any, so I just kept it simple and said, "spot reduction is a myth."
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481 Posts
Feb 18, 2014 11:47pm
via Android

Tht would be incorrect research data...and tru science is always countered by numerous scientists before coming to a complete conclusion and even thn anther scientist can still conduct his own experimentation and challenge the existing data thus ths idea of  bogus manipulated research data is completely bogus and missing variables itself ...and all the rest is media sensationalism

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265 Posts
Feb 18, 2014 11:58pm
via Android

Actually, there is a degree of fudging involved when publishing experimental data. The data collected may be entirely correct, the procedure unrefutable and the general laboratory acceptability great, but when data is analysed, there are a range of transforms available from which significance can be derived. When data is not really normal, a range of transforms can be applied until significance is achieved.

Then media takes the results and sensationalise them as Hannah said.

19 Feb
So, you're saying we understand the human body completely 100% to this day, so any other findings past this point are null and void?
19 Feb
No..read it again...any scientist can challenge the findings with his own experiments...I'm agreeing with you... yes the media blows things up and jumps on the first new thing before the process is challenged and rechallenged..ths is called media sensationalism...my argument isn't that fitness is an area we are experts in but tht research is not manipulated to come to ones own personal conclusion seeing as is subject to numerous studies before being published as research data...infact I believe tht fitness and effects on the body is still yet in infant stages and most is still not understood
19 Feb
Jason, was your comment directed at me? Because I fail to see where you got that conclusion from what I wrote… I was mostly pointing out to Hannah that sometimes results can be presented in a biased manner, so while the scientific feel may not raise alarms, it's important not to take anything for granted.
19 Feb
How can reports be biased???..biased means prejudice....??? Can you give me an example?
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481 Posts
Feb 19, 2014 12:14am
via Android

Can you tell me more bout these transforms? Please??? Id like to understand better what your saying... I've never heard of it... could you explain it to me?

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481 Posts
Feb 19, 2014 1:29am
via Android

But I also notice you say presented in a bias manner ... I appreciate you trying to point something out to me but I'm afraid I'm not quite understanding...

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953 Posts
Feb 19, 2014 3:25am
via Android

Haha if only this post could end the ignorance.

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265 Posts
Feb 19, 2014 10:51am
via Android

@Hannah:

I'm not a statistician and fortunately have never had to do any of the transforms myself but here I go:

When a trait in a population sample is being examined, it is theoretically meant to have a normal distribution (think of a bell curve). There is what is called a standard normal distribution curve where 68% of the population displays either the average value for the investigated trait or is within one standard deviation on each side. As the number of standard deviations increase, the percentage of the population included in that range of values for that trait increases.

A general normal distribution can be considered a stretching of the standard normal distribution.

The central limit theory then states that most distributions are normal.

Now, in a normal distribution, there are 3 key components:
The average, the variance, the stretching factor.
(Obviously, the trait is also important but that's the independent variable which causes the 3 key components to change)

By appling the central limit theorem, values for the 3 key components can be calculated such that the shape formed can fit the shape of the data. The basic idea of transforms relates to the stretching factor, which could be linear, quadratic, exponential, log or otherwise. Note that these are empirical factors. They're not necessarily wrong but it's often impossible to explain them. They are, in essence, fudge factors. Variables such as temperature, minerals in the air, a sea change etc which go unnoticed (scientists are humans too afterall) can affect the data - particularly since biological studies involving animals are so subject to randomness anyway to start with.

The final transformation which is chosen is the one which has the closest fit to the data. This is what I meant by bias - it's the best way to say that the data is important and therefore they pick this transform. Like I said, changes which are hard to quantify are hard to control and short of locking every subject in the study up in the same air conditioned and making all of them eating the same thing for the whole course of the study, total control of variables is impossible.

Again, I'd like to emphasise that I'm not a statistician so my understanding of the transform thing may be wrong. However, a friend conducting a thesis on possum behavior has had to do this which is why I learnt of it.

19 Feb
:-) we can just call it the "human factor " the inability to control the uncontrollable and the infallible proof that as much as we have learned we still haven't learned anything....thanx claudia... :-)
19 Feb
That's really well phrased! "The infallible proof that as much as we have learnt, we still haven't learnt anything". I will need to borrow and use it if you don't mind.
19 Feb
:-) thanx and I dnt mind .... you can use it :-)
19 Feb
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2 Posts
Feb 20, 2014 6:16am
via Android

You cannot reduce fat by exercising that part of body you need to work on full body

20 Feb
One could argue tht by targeting fat seeing as targeting the whole body still doesn't garantee fat reduction...but by targeting fat with cardiovascular exercise and proper diet as well as adding resistantance training you will properly target fat of course spot reduction is a product of the human mind as in "how can I make my thighs smaller" though saying it doesn't exist as an absolute fact seeing how limited our actual knowledge of the body and fitness truly is isn't correct ..as far as we understand now spot reduction doesn't work but who knws what we may learn tommrow...as...
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397 Posts
Feb 20, 2014 9:07pm
via iOS
Can spot increase muscle tho 
20 Feb
Yep :-) lol I was thinking bout tht
20 Feb
If you exercise that muscle then yes it will get bigger. So add that to the fat overlying the muscle which does not reduce. You have made the area larger by growing muscle beneath the layer of fat and thus made the issue worse. I'm all for debate but I think people are reading way too much into this and at times seems like trying to nit pick and start arguments.
20 Feb
Lol it is only an opinion tht th situation is made worse or not...comments like those is what makes arguments... the rest is just discussion...whn it becomes augument is whn human emotions and personal perceptions get in the way..for example saying its nit picking or trying to start aurguments which are bordering on accusations and since you do not knw the intents of tht person or persons accusations will lead to outbursts of emotions seeing as accusation is a form of verbal attack...and will only lead to an offensive or defensive reaction
20 Feb
Yeah I guess you are right but I only said nit picking and reading way too much into things because the discussion went from spot reducing of fat tissue to muscle building from exercise which is a whole nother physiological response and better suited for another topic and discussion. If someone got offended by that comment I'm sorry. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and until I see, read or hear a valid argument to sway me from mine I am sticking with the premise that spot reducing does not work.
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481 Posts
Feb 21, 2014 12:04am
via Android

Brian..its all physiology..... its all interconnected...thts like claiming tht the dicussion is about transportation and we went from talking bout cars..to trucks ..to trains and now to the subway transit system... no one on here has disagreed with you tht spot reduction doesn't work I'm pretty sure we all knw that but we arnt closing the door to it either..as we recognize that nothing is set in stone and we dnt knw as much yet in this field as we want to or think...I dnt like offending people either :) But I like to learn esp. bout physiology..its my " special interest" lol I have the college textbook in my room..so I guess I question everything Its my way of learning and I hope people dnt get the wrong idea...I like whn you post because its technical and I knw your educated in the field and I learn a lot from you

21 Feb
Yes it is all physiology and the head bone is connected to the shoulder bone, which is connected to the chest bone and so on and so on as the song goes. Cars, trucks, trains are all forms of transportation. Apples and oranges are both fruits and so on and so on. And yet the are all different in there own way. Cars go on roads, trains on a track. Muscle responds differently to stress and chemical changes during exercise than does fat. The topic on spot reducing was intended to shed some light on the idea that keeps popping...
21 Feb
Yes an all its topics are interesting and all belong to the heading physiology... I like that..you can indeed challenge a thought yet beliefs are ingrained ..very true..yet they are possible to change... though I'm not interested in changing thm but Learning from them.... I have to be careful because Ill change gears and instead of talking about physiology Ill instead began discussing sociology..lol people are complex..you could post about onions and the topic will not remain specifically about onions... the thought process is as complex as the body tht houses it..good day Brian :-)
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51 Posts
Apr 5, 2014 7:29pm
via Android

What I havent fully understood just yet, is how you know this stuff. You have recently discussed with me some aspects of metabolism and calories counting, remember!? Are you a trainer, an athlet, a coach, a dietician?

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