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Every time I mention that I want to do weight lifting for more upper body strength (especially my arms, currently they're thin and frail because I'm severely underweight), he says "ok, but don't be too masculine". Sit down boy, it's my body.

I don't care how I look, as long as I'm strong and healthy. He has a weird fixation against tomboys as well, as if women exist to only look pretty to men. He's in for a surprise.

Every time I mention that I want to do weight lifting for more upper body strength (especially my arms, currently they're thin and frail because I'm severely underweight), he says "ok, but don't be too masculine". Sit down boy, it's my body. I don't care how I look, as long as I'm strong and healthy. He has a weird fixation against tomboys as well, as if women exist to only look pretty to men. He's in for a surprise.

72 comments

Dick is abundant and of low value. You'd find someone to worship your strength in no time - if thats what you want. Get those gains sis!

Truer words have never been spoken. Dick has minimum economic value (since dudebros like to speak in economic terms)

Would it be too masculine of you for him if you told him to go fuck himself? Because that's how I'd react.

I want to play the long game lol. Get fit, and if he has a problem with how I look, he can either walk away or get over it.

I'm not the directly confrontational type, but I'm working on it.

he also doesn't really "care how I look" per se, he just wants me to get healthy. but the masculine comment rubbed me the wrong way.

There are men out there that you will not worry about how you look in the back of your mind, because they love you for who you are and all aspects of your journey. I have been about 5 different dress sizes with my husband over 10 years. It is the least interesting thing he finds about me, though he cares a lot if I am happy, fit, and well so has supported me taking up weightlifting. Also because he supports what I am interested in.

Your Nigel is not that.

I actually don't worry about what he thinks of how I look. it was just this one issue. I had a harder time with that with my ex, so yeah.

I'm currently severely underweight (34 kg atm) and he's seen how I look like, and never says anything negative about my looks. he is rightfully concerned about my health, and talks about it when appropriate (like if I skip a meal or something, which has noticable effects on me). he gets upset if I don't take care of myself.

I'll just talk to him about this and let him know that I don't really care if some people think i look masculine, I just want to be strong and healthy. I've hinted at the several times before, anyway.

want to play the long game lol. Get fit, and if he has a problem with how I look, he can either walk away or get over it.

I'm not the directly confrontational type, but I'm working on it.

He's sexist. He will not change. (Speaking from experience. This dude sounds like my beard.) It's not like you can't get another one in a minute.

Go listen to Beyonce sing Irreplaceable. That's what needs to happen here: all his shit on the curb and you moving on to someone who actually loves you and respects you for who you are.

He won’t do either. He will just passive aggressively neg on you for it. The game playing isn’t worth it. He’s showing his true colors. I’d dump him.

He already is dictating to you how you should look. Why do you want to stay with a guy like that? Why can't you walk away now?

He has a weird fixation against tomboys as well, as if women exist to only look pretty to men. He's in for a surprise.

You are still dating him because....?

to be fair, it's sort of hyperbole. someone asked him about what kind of women he likes before we started dating, and he said what he likes, and that he doesn't like tomboys. after we started dating, I brought the topic up, and he said he doesn't like tomboys and that they're not his type, he's not attracted to them at all. I just told him tthey wouldn't ike him either and not to worry.

we haven't talked about it since, and it's been a year.

Nothing about a strong woman's body is masculine.

Honestly girl, dump his ass. You think your boyfriend might view women as only existing to look pretty to men. Don't spend your youth on a creep.

I agree with everyone else, but also, it should settle his heart to know that it's not physically possible for a woman to grow dude-level upper body muscles without extra testosterone.

yeah, I told him so as well. but I'm not sure what his standards of "masculine" even is for a woman, it could be having a normal lifter's arm when you flex, or it could be looking like Hulk. either way, I'm going to get the gains regardless of what he thinks.

YMMV on that

Maybe so. Idk, I look at someone like Fatima Whitbread and my thinking is either she's intersex or was on a testosterone regimen back in the day, but to me those look like dude muscles.

Nobody gets to dictate what you do with your body. It's not about body image...it's about control. Good luck with him--not in a mean way, but I can foresee this becoming a theme...male entitlement does not go away...

This behaviour is absolutely 'testing the waters'.

It will sort itself out pretty quickly.

OP will either dump him, or get left for someone the dude is better suited to physically/mentally, or OP will lose her personality entirely to keep him.

It’s hard for men to build muscle. It’s very much harder for women and it can’t happen by accident. Lifting a few weights will not turn you into Schwarzenegger.

Have you seen anybody about being underweight - they help you put on weight healthily. If you strength train without a proper diet you’ll just make yourself ill and stress out your body further. To build muscle mass, you need food (primarily protein) to feed the growth. If you’re working out but not giving your body the required fuel, you’ll just be exhausted rather than healthy.

Yep! And healthy fats and carbs are key too. Eating these on a caloric surplus to slowly and steadily gain weight.

I started weightlifting this year, for me, for my health, and for my future health. As women are more prone to losing bone density and muscle mass as we age, so we should all be weightlifting.

My arms are slightly bigger, but incredibly toned. I am also the smallest size I have been in years, with a really snatched waist and excellent legs/glutes. The key thing will be diet. If you eat maintenance, your body will reconstitute to look more overall fit and toned but you will stay roughly the same size and weight. If you eat at the right amount of deficit you can lose fat and build up muscle at the same time. It is very, very, very hard to build up a lot of muscle quickly unless you eat like a machine 6-8 hours times a day and lift for hours every week. Or, y'know, take testosterone.

I'd be tempted to dump the dude for being so entitled and ignorant.

[–] Fluffy_gender 7 points Edited

OP is underweight so she needs to eat more, definitely not at a deficit. She needs to gain fat, not just muscle

oh yeah, further deficit and I'll drop dead tomorrow lol. I want to make a post here about how to gain fat healthily, because I only see advice about how to gain muscle when I search online :/

[–] Fluffy_gender 2 points Edited

If you gain weight, it will be both fat and muscle. Just don't go overboard with the protein like what men are advised to do when gaining muscle.

Eat calorie dense foods such as nuts. Apply olive oil more liberally. Don't eat soups as much because they fill you up. But seriously, nuts are really calorie dense and if you roast them and salt them they're very palatable and easy to eat a lot of. They're also healthy. You could start your day with a spoonful of tahini and honey - it tastes really good and it's very calorie dense. I wish I had to put on weight lol.

How is it going, OP? Depending on why you're underweight, you may find it easier to gain weight when you're strength training. If you're very sedentary then the extra exertion might increase your appetite.

Do you mind me asking what your routine and diet is like?

Absolutely no bother!

Putting it here in case anyone is interested. I've tried to write this for both fitness folk and casual observers.

Note: I am not a professional personal trainer or dietitian so please consult with them for your needs. This is just a typical week for an amateur lifter who wants to balance keeping fit with performance.

I am also not a puritan. My diet and lifestyle is like 80% healthy and 20% life is for living. If you come to my house for dinner I'm not serving low fat substitutes and I like a pint. This balance seems to work for me.

My routine is lifting at the gym three times a week. On top of that I try to hit 10,000 steps a few times a week by taking the dog on decent walks. I also do one home workout a week that is bodyweight stuff (pull-ups, pushups, yoga etc) and I try to keep that as fun as possible. That's it.

I do not recommend learning how to lift weights by yourself. You really need a personal trainer for technique and safety. Once you learn the basic lifts though, the weight room is your oyster.

I do progressive overload, which is basically 1) Lift the thing with perfect form 2)Add more things to the thing you are lifting 3)Lift that with perfect form 4)Repeat

I aim for about 10 reps per set. So for example, that would be lifting the heavy thing 10 times in a row, then break, and do that three times. When I can do that with one amount of weight it means I need to add more and go down to 8 reps. Then maybe add a bit more and do 6 reps. You will notice what you can lift and for how many times goes up. That's it. It's great. Simple and meditative.

Here's an example of a beginnerish workout week to optimise lift performance: Monday - Lower Body Back Squat 20kg bar + 10kg weights 3 x 12

Hip thrust 20kg bar + 10kg weights 3 x 12

Leg Extension 15kg 3 x 12

Walking lunges 6kg dumbbell 3 x 20

Goblet Squat 5kg 3 x 12

Cool down Pigeon pose Deep Squat

Wednesday - Upper Body Warm up Travel exercises Stretches

Upright Row Bar 20kg 1 x 5 1 x 10 1 x 10

Fly Machine 14kg 3 x 10

Lat Pulldown 14kg 1 x 10

21kg 2 x 20

Tricep Extension 6kg 3 x 10

Assisted Pull-ups 3 x 6

Crunches x 20 Heel taps x 20 Russian Twists x 20

Thursday - Full Body (Yes I know you are supposed to rest between every workout but I like Fridays as my chill day, you have to find what works for you) Deadlift 20 kg bar 2 x 5

20kg bar + 5kg 1 x 6

Bulgarian split squat 6kg 30 seconds x 2 40 second rest

Tricep Extension 5kg 30 seconds x 2 40 second rest

Single leg lunges with height 6kg each hand 30 seconds x 2 40 second rest

Upright Row 8kg 30 seconds x 2 40 second rest

Straight arm cable pull down Triceps 7.5kg 30 seconds x 2 40 second rest

Plank pull through 5kg 30 seconds x 2 40 second rest

Mini crunches x20 Heel taps x 20

Diet will be incredibly individual. As a rule of thumb for a combination of building muscle and losing fat you want to eat a calorie deficit that is in between a weight loss and maintenance amount. This will depend on your starting weight, your goals, and how active you are. You will probably need to adjust this as you lift more/lose weight etc.

The only standard is that you want to be eating about 100g protein a day. If people are interested I can add some recipes to the Fitness circle or message me.

The majority of my diet is pretty much what you would expect. Lots of grilled and baked lean proteins like chicken, turkey, and fish. Combined with a bit of red meat and plenty of fresh fruit and veg. I eat full fat dairy but in small amounts. A lot of Mediterranean and Indian dishes too.

I've tried just about every combination of lots of small meals, snacks vs no snacks, and I have found that three decent meals keeps me full. I encourage everyone to find what works for them.

Here's a typical day for me:

Breakfast: Two slices brown bread, olive oil spread, Vegemite, scrambled egg, bit of spinach Calories 368, Protein 20g

Or if I'm busy/commuting/travelling I make chocolate protein overnight oats and that counts as a brunch for me. Calories 485, Protein 40g

Lunch: Ground Turkey Mince, Butternut Squash, Peppers, Spinach (etc basically loads of veg) Calories 304, Protein 31g

Or Vegetable Omelette and Feta Calories 300, Protein 23g

Dinner: Chicken Fajita Traybake with Vegetables Calories 600, Protein 40g

Or Mixed Seafood Pasta Calories 600, Protein 40g

This is a bit of a brain dump, but more than happy to make more posts/add info/answer questions/chat! Hope this helps.

Thank you for your reply! What did you dedicate to first, your 80/20 diet or weightlifting?

*Edited for clarification

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