Help Ladies! Thighs still huge!

  • Finishing up week 6 and in the last 2-3 weeks, my thighs have not budged (neither has the scale but I'm not to worried about that)! I can feel the muscles are much tighter but the tape measure is the same. Lost a little on my waist over the last couple  weeks, but those thighs aren't shrinking at all! I have heard that for women the thighs don't really start leaning out till around 18% bodyfat, but I would think they would shrink a little before then? Could I be losing fat but replacing it with the same size of muscle...or is it still all just fat? I did BFL 3 years ago right before getting pregnant with my second child, but added an additional 45 minutes a day of cardio and was losing .25 inches on my thighs and waist consistently every week. I am tempted to add more cardio. I want to be smaller not just have more muscle! Help!

  • marathonmama,

    I am not a lady so I hope you don't mind my reply. I just wanted to encourage you to keep going and keep doing all the good things you are doing. It has been the experience of most of the ladies I have talked with that big changes don't happen until after week 8. It takes time. Keep going! Personaly My biggest and best changes happened in weeks 11 and 12. Fat doesn't spot reduce. There are places where we hang on to fat stores. It takes longer for us to notice changes in these places. Imagine your body is a swimming pool with a deep end and a shallow end. When you start BFL you pull the plug on that pool and the fat begins to drain. As we go along and the fat drains we see the shallow end first. This is exciting and we keep going. But the deep end of the pool can be deep. Have you ever noticed when a pool or bathtub drains how it drains equally and by just looking at the surface it can, at times, be hard to tell if the level is even going down? This is what happens in our bodies. Be encouraged! The fat is draining! It just takes time to get to the bottom of that deep end.

    I hope I am making sense. It sounds like you are doing all the right things. Don't give up and don't fall into the cardio trap. Keep eating 100% clean and pushing your every workout beyond self-percieved limits for all 12 weeks and you will see big results!!!

  • Orrin,Thanks so much! The whole "can't spot reduce" theory is what had me frustrated because I appeared to be spot reducing in my belly...but nothing in my thighs. I expected that my thighs would be shrinking if my waist was shrinking. What really helped me was your pool annalogy! I'd never heard that before (and I've practically lived in the gym for 10+ years!). I love that! Makes so much sense! I am definitely seeing changes, but just not like I expected. I'm waiting for that 8 week miracle and really want to give this the full 12 weeks, by the book, before increasing the cardio (I'm a runner and have a half marathon in July, so eventually I got to pick up the cardio just so I can finish the race in a decent time...looking forward to seeing how my new body will affect race performance).

    Also look forward to hearing from any ladies who experienced something similiar!

  • M-Momma,

    Orrin's right - fat does not spot reduce.  I had huge thighs my whole life.  But, by getting my BF% under 12, I drained off nearly all the "excess' fat, and now even the thighs are right-sized, albeit they are among the larger muscles on my body.  One cool thing is I can now see ridges between the individual muscles that comprise the entire thigh - meaning they're well-developed.  Ditto on my biceps.   IMHO it's best for overall health to get the overall body lean anyway.


    Once I discovered the joys of weight training, all other passions were transcended.


  • Thanks Jacium! I guess I just expected the thighs to shrink at the same rate as the rest of my body. Guess it will just be the last to go. When I did BFL 3 years ago with the extra cardio, they definitely were shrinking faster...but I don't think they felt as firm, so I might not have been building the same amount of muscle that I am now that (hopefully) will help me out more in the long run. Here's hoping!!!

  • Hi Marathonmama,

    I'm experiencing the same thing - I have developed plenty of visible muscle in my upper body, waist is shrinking, but the darned thighs aren't budging!  I've decided to just trust the program and keep plugging along, as most the fat on my arms is now gone it's gonna have to come from somewhere, and hopefully that somewhere will be my butt and thighs!


  • Women store fat on their hips and thighs because this is the fat that turns into breast milk when they have children.  No matter what your body type; apple, pear, cone, hourglass the vast majority of us would like to take off a few inches in these areas, and find that it's the last place to go.... Not surprising considering thousands of years ago we would go without food for days on end but still needed to feed our young.

    What I'm trying to say is that you will see these changes EVENTUALLY, but your body will fight to keep this fat for genetic reasons.  For instance, if you were to gain weight, you would probably notice it here first (I know I do), but don't worry, you can get rid of it through eating clean and exercising.

    I am a pear shaped woman.  I am not too disproportionate to be honest, so I'm lucky.  I will never have thighs like Angelina Jolie, so I am looking at Shakira and J Lo as inspirational pear shape gals!  It might take anther 2 challenges, but I'll get there!

    Hope this helps, remain focused and keep going!

    Jules x

  • Thanks ladies! I really want to see what kind of results I can get by sticking with the program as laid out in the book without increasing cardio or cutting more calories. But, I'm on the clock with a trip to Hawaii in the beginning of May! I don't want to waste any time with this if it isn't as affective as doing it with more cardio. For now, I'll keep trusting that it is going to work and hoping for that 8 week miracle!

  • Noticed a difference in my thighs and hips in week 9!  


  • EEE, my thighs look huge yet too.  After my first challenge, they stilled looked big, but I noticed less cellulite.  Whenever I feel that burn during LBWO that feels like fire and you're looking for an extinguisher, I'm like, 'I've got to finish this $%^&ing set!!"

  • Hi Marathonmam... well I HEAR YA!!!!!

    I have just started week 9, and my thighs have not gone down one teeny bit. I measured them yesterday and they were EXACTLY the same as when I started. Felt really disappointed... but I have read so much on this forum to trust the program, I just picked myself back up and realised I have to give these last four weeks my all and trust it will work. I have also not noticed much of a difference elsewhere, although have gone down 1.5 inches around my waist. I didn't have a lot of weight to lose, but I had thought by 8 weeks I would be seeing the start of a miracle.... especially as I have been following BFL by the book, and been lifting heavier every two weeks.... my strength has definitely increased... but no real definition yet....

    So all I can say is we need to trust the program... and that if we are doing everything right, it will work.

    Let me know how you go!


  • Laurie,

    Thanks for offering hope! Haha. I'm really hoping that 8 week miracle kicks in! IWhen I last did BFL I added 45 of additional cardio 5 times a week and was losing .25 inches approximately a week on my waist and thighs. So, I figure if this doesn't work as is, I know that I can go back to that regime. But, I've never done a full 12 weeks by the book challenge (and got pregnant last time around week 6 so I don't know how the extra cardio would have panned out over 12 weeks). I want to give this a shot just to see if it really will work for me!