How can I reduce my thigh-bulges?
November 27, 2006 9:02 PM   Subscribe

Running has made my "saddlebags" more noticeable. Is there any way to remedy this?

I have saddlebags (bulges of fat on the outer sides of my thighs). I run 3-5 miles a day, and this has made my hips very tight, which makes the thighs stick out even more. Is there anything I can do about this? The internet says that all one can do is lose weight, but I really don't need to lose any weight (this is a vanity thing, not an anorexia thing). I also don't have enough money for a personal trainer. Suggestions? Yoga? Biking? Vigorous gardening?
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Unfortunately, saddlebags, like arm flaps, bellies, and thighs, are a product of biology, not insufficient exercise to the area. Many people find their trouble spots don't go away even with exercise, because their body is predisposed to store fat in that area and the fat won't be reduced unless you reduce your body-fat percentage to a ridiculously low level.

So--unless you're willing to cut fat (not lose muscle, just fat) or get lipo, you should start thinking of ways to redefine your saddlebags. Like how they provide more leverage for lovin'! Who doesn't love lovin' leverage?
posted by schroedinger at 9:28 PM on November 27, 2006

I don't know if this will completely nix the saddlebags, but toning the muscles right underneath (I have no idea what they're called) may make them look less bulky. Tried Pilates or Callanetics?
posted by thisjax at 11:10 PM on November 27, 2006

Don't side leg raises (laying on your side, straight leg, lift it straight up) work the outside of the thigh? it can help tone the muscles in that area more... unfortunately though, the only way to lose fat there is if you lose fat EVERYWHERE. Spot reduction just don't work.
posted by antifuse at 3:37 AM on November 28, 2006

My landlady had this same problem, she was working out with weights but could never defeat her hip fat. The thing is, you can work out all day long, but if you don't change your diet, it is like nothing will ever change.

By the way, thanks to all the MeFites who gave me advice on diet and exercise, I went from 215 to 200 in three months and have made myself a target of 165 by next september!
posted by parmanparman at 7:10 AM on November 28, 2006

I've heard that women store fat in this area for use when they reproduce, and that many don't lose it until (or if) they have occasion to breastfeed.
posted by xo at 8:27 AM on November 28, 2006

Neither the distribution or loss of fat is uniform. Spot reduction is a myth. The problem might be that you will cut your calories and exercise to the extent where you'll lose fat, but the saddlebags might be the last thing that go (or the first, or the third, or ...). Keep this in mind, and if the rest of the body is fine and you're not overweight think about lipo.
posted by geoff. at 9:57 AM on November 28, 2006

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