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Old 01-20-07, 11:40 AM  
bfit
 
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why do some older people have skinny arms and legs and thick middles?

This is a strange question and I hope not too insulting to some people, but at the swimming pool that I go to I see a variety of bodies every day, and I've noticed that a lot of older people (60+) seem to be in good shape in that they are not overweight and can swim lots of laps, but appearance-wise they have thin arms and legs and are sort of thick or even flabby and droopy around the mid-section. I see this for both men and women. Is this something caused by swimming? Is it just a function of age? Or is it something that can be avoided? Any ideas?
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Old 01-20-07, 11:55 AM  
akaAnnie
 
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Teresa Tapp has a workout that is supposed to help with this. It's called the Ladybug workout because older people with larger bodies and smaller arms and legs resemble...well, sort of somewhat resemble, ladybugs.
Ann

PS. Maybe in the pool they're waterbugs...
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Old 01-20-07, 11:55 AM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bfit
Is this something caused by swimming? Is it just a function of age? Or is it something that can be avoided? Any ideas?
As for the saggy middles, it's gravity, baby! The earth is pulling your and everyone else's skin down. There is no escape.

As for the skinny arms and legs, maybe they need to pump some iron to build muscle. I'm thinking they must be fairly strong to do a lot of laps. But, time and gravity will inevitably make the skin loose. It starts anywhere from your 40's to your 60's.

But, by then, one's loving heart and warm personality outshine any physical imperfections!
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Old 01-20-07, 12:06 PM  
horsemom2
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more aging than anything else

Quote:
Originally Posted by bfit
This is a strange question and I hope not too insulting to some people, but at the swimming pool that I go to I see a variety of bodies every day, and I've noticed that a lot of older people (60+) seem to be in good shape in that they are not overweight and can swim lots of laps, but appearance-wise they have thin arms and legs and are sort of thick or even flabby and droopy around the mid-section. I see this for both men and women. Is this something caused by swimming? Is it just a function of age? Or is it something that can be avoided? Any ideas?

I believe most excess bodyfat goes to the middle as folks age, becoming less active, losing muscle and skin elasticity, and going through midlife hormonal changes.
Endurance swimmers do usually carry extra bodyfat for fuel and insulation so may have increased appetites to add this extra bodyfat.
Guess these folks really got caught in the middle

Barb S
whose dh became one of them in his late 40's after being thin his whole life but doesn't swim
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Old 01-20-07, 12:28 PM  
Sandi M
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I'm 47 and...

I'm not that old, but my fat is definitely around the middle. It should be interesting to watch it become even more pronounced as I get older!

I think it is a combination of gravity, genetics, and how the body deposits fat with age. I've never had fat arms and legs, but have always kept a little fluff around the middle. It's not any bigger now, but it is definitely looser and more obvious....

Sandi
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Old 01-20-07, 01:18 PM  
susan p
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I'd say that in general, if you could time-lapse photograph a hundred people's bodies from age 16 to age 80, you would see 98% of them transform in the general direction of thinner limbs and thicker torsos. I'm sure there are a few exceptions, but that seems to be the general affect aging has on people. Of course one can exercise to maintain muscle mass, but it takes plastic surgery to re-pin skin.

Older folks have a glorious wealth to offer in terms of wisdom, perspective, and experience even after their bodies have gone through the inevitable depredations of passing years...
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Old 01-20-07, 01:51 PM  
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I have read that the reason for women is that as estrogen decreases, we take on a more "male" pattern, depositing fat in the midsection rather than on the thighs and hips as many women do in their younger years.

I can see a difference in my body shape over the past 20 years and see the mid section accumulating more fat than it did before. My overall body fat percentage has stayed pretty much constant over the years, but it's apparently in different places.

I don't think swimming per se really has a lot to do with it, but since that's an exercise that tends to be popular with older people since it doesn't injure the joints, you may just be seeing more old people swimming than doing any other activity.

Leslie
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Old 01-20-07, 01:52 PM  
Lannette
 
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Exclamation

Quote:
It's called the Ladybug workout because older people with larger bodies and smaller arms and legs resemble...well, sort of somewhat resemble, ladybugs.
Um, no actually it's called Ladybug after the movement ladybug which I believe resembles a ladybug that's been upended and is trying to right itself. Teresa Tapp would never make fun of a certain body type.

One huge reason why older people tend to gain in the middle and maintain thin extremities is because of increasing insulin resistance. Our cardiologists routinely have their staff measure abdominal girth because it's an indicator of increased risk for heart disease.

If a person naturally has a short torso and longer limbs it will make the look more pronounced because they don't have much torso length to distribute the extra abdominal fat along whereas someone with a longer torso can distribute more of it before you notice it. Incidentally the deep fat that collects in between the organs is thought to be more dangerous in terms of health than the superficial fat.

Can it be removed? You betcha and I have photos of a client that prove it. If you have a short torso it's going to take some real committment to lifestyle change but it really can go away. I've had one male client that lost 6" in the waist and totally flattened his abs without much of a change in his limbs - well his arms and chest increased in size due to added muscle. He was in his 70s at the time and he ended up looking like he was in his 50s and guess what? He continues to use T-Tapp three times a week some 4-5 years later.
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Old 01-20-07, 04:35 PM  
akaAnnie
 
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I read it in a post on the T-Tapp forum and had no sense that any body shape was being disparaged in any way, it was just an observation like pear or hour glass.


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Posted - 07/08/2006 : 12:37:26 AM
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hi Tricia,

Maybe T herself will jump in on that question but here is what she told us when she was last in Houston (earlier in 2006). As we age, we tend to get rounder in the middle with skinny legs and arms ... sort of lady bug like. So, she created a workout that targets the torso to the knees or the lady bug area.

Most T-Tapp moves have really creative names. In this case, a creative name has been applied to a new T-Tapp workout. I done this new sequence with Teresa at least twice and it is phenomena. I can hardly wait for the DVD!

T-Tappin' best from Houston,Texas
Sherry, T-Tapp Trainer

sherry@t-tapp.com

--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lannette, do you have picturres you could share? When it comes to inspiration they are hard to bet!
Ann
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Old 01-20-07, 05:16 PM  
Lannette
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akaAnnie
I read it in a post on the T-Tapp forum and had no sense that any body shape was being disparaged in any way, it was just an observation like pear or hour glass.


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3384 Posts
Posted - 07/08/2006 : 12:37:26 AM
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hi Tricia,

Maybe T herself will jump in on that question but here is what she told us when she was last in Houston (earlier in 2006). As we age, we tend to get rounder in the middle with skinny legs and arms ... sort of lady bug like. So, she created a workout that targets the torso to the knees or the lady bug area.

Most T-Tapp moves have really creative names. In this case, a creative name has been applied to a new T-Tapp workout. I done this new sequence with Teresa at least twice and it is phenomena. I can hardly wait for the DVD!

T-Tappin' best from Houston,Texas
Sherry, T-Tapp Trainer

sherry@t-tapp.com

--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lannette, do you have picturres you could share? When it comes to inspiration they are hard to bet!
Ann
Well Ann, I guess I stand corrected but honestly I think it was the words "older people"
Quote:
because older people with larger bodies and smaller arms and legs resemble...well, sort of somewhat resemble, ladybugs.
in your description that got me going. LOL The Ladybug workout was designed for peri/menopause management and I don't consider women in this group to be older people. I totally admit that this is most likely because I'm in my 50s myself so I guess your statement hit me in a personal way.

Also the Ladybug move somewhat reminds me of a stretch that my baby ballerinas used to love back when I used to teach. I used to call it the dead bug.

I hate to say it but no I don't have any new pictures. The download cable for my digital camera is broken and Santa didn't bring me a new digital camera for Christmas. Right now I'm stuck between buying a new cable and making use of a perfectly fine camera or moving up in the world and waiting to get a new camera. But I promise if it's the last thing I do I'm gonna get some comparison pics! I can honestly tell you though that my waist and hips are at least an inch smaller than in my current avatar.

Editing because I just realized that you are talking about the pictures of the clients I was talking about. I honestly don't feel comfortable posting them publicly but would email them to you if you email or PM me.
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