The name's Mary. I'm 18, 160cm (~5'3) and 82kg (~180lbs). I'm classified in the obese range, according to the BMI calculator. I know I should lose weight and I do have a goal of getting into the 55kg-60kg range, but for some reason I'm terrified of going through a weight loss regime. I'm afraid of the aftermath, really, and what would happen if I'm not successful... excess skin, still having large amounts of fat despite having an exercise regime, etc. It's really petty, I know, but I can't help the way I feel. The fact that my main - and perhaps - only reason is to look good and be "thin" makes me a bit more terrified, I think. I know I should be doing this for health reasons, but it's not easy to change my mentality to be frank.
I'm just sick of being the fat, ugly friend. I hate having my friend(s) make snide comments about my weight. And having my parents pick on me (dad: *looks at me eating and says this sarcastically* "eat a bit more... it's okay to be fatter") and my mum telling me explicitly that she's embarrassed to go anywhere with me because of my weight.
I look in the mirror and I'm disgusted with myself. I hate my skin, my fat oozing out of my clothes - essentially the way I look. I look... ugh. I'm embarrassed to look at myself.
Being overweight most of my life has really affected me in what I am like physically, and in-turn emotionally and in-turn socially... and I figured the logical thing to do is to fix this now than wait until I'm older.
I have this habit of hyping myself up to lose weight but then never start it. I manage to blow it up by starting the day with eating crap and then postponing the regime the next day... and then the next, and then the next. I'm not normally a procrastinator in other areas of my life, it's just losing weight that's really troublesome.
I suppose the point of this thread is... well, asking for some rationalised advice. I know I am being completely illogical here, but damn, my head doesn't seem to think so. I feel like a hopeless case and that even if I lose weight I'll be fugly anyway. The idea of excess skin and protruding fat despite being thinner scares the crap outta me. I know that logically this may not be/isn't the case, but it's really hard to believe it.
I am thinking of starting tomorrow - officially starting tomorrow - and was thinking of maybe incorporating an hour at the elliptical at home? Are there any other exercises that I should do? I understand the benefits of weight training, but I don't know what I could do at home. I never really got how squats, sit ups, etc. worked. Are they truly effective?
And yeah, I have a gym membership. With uni commitments, however, I've decided to suspend it until I finish (which is around November). That and the fact that I always go with a friend of mine. And since she's pretty busy herself, I'm scared of going alone because of the fear of people judging me.
Anyway... I hope I don't appear too whiny/weak. I'm just confused at the moment, haha. I hope I make sense here. I'm pretty sure I contradicted myself a couple of times, but I'm just writing whatever at the moment.
P.S. It's a nice forum, 3FC. A lot of inspirational people here. :D
08-09-2009, 08:30 AM
Maybe just focus on your health and not worry about the weight right now.
Think about your lungs and heart while you are on the elliptical, and think about making those stronger. Go to the dr. and get your blood pressure and cholesterol checked, then if they are too high, visit a nutritionist who can help you with a plan to get the lowered.
Also, having a counselor to talk to about all the issues that come with you parents and friend's behavior towards you can help, too. Your weight isn't the problem, they are. And you need someone to talk to about your disgust with your body. If you hate your body, you aren't going to want to take care of it and make it healthy.
It's much more than just eating less and exercising more, there are a lot of emotional things wrapped up in it. Having in person support (and not just online) can make a huge difference.
08-09-2009, 08:33 AM
Your skin shoudl be fine, as you are so young! If you do it now and take your time with it your skin should be able to adjust beautifully!
08-09-2009, 08:34 AM
Hi there :)
Every time I have tried to lose weight (and I have gotten past day one... a couple of times!) I ended up sabotaging myself, and I don't know if that's a subconscious thing because being fat is all that I've ever known or what. But let me tell you something. Once you make the commitment - and it doesn't have to be huge - just cut out some of the junk food, drink more water, eat more fruits and veggies instead of fried things, SMALL steps!, you'll notice you feel better. Then you'll notice you're clothes fit better. Then you'll think - "Hey! Maybe I can do this..." THEN, you'll go into a shop and see all these cute clothes that only tiny, skinny people can fit into and want to wear those NOW. Then, you'll want to see the look on your dad's face when you're small and skinny.
I wouldn't worry so much about loose skin or fat still hanging out or whatever. You can tone up with exercises, your muscles will be more defined and when the fat that's covering them up is gone, you'll look smoking :)
Hope that gives you at least a little bit of motivation to at least give it a go this time! Good luck!
08-09-2009, 09:01 AM
Hey there, welcome to 3FC. I just have to ask this, out of curiosity, do you think filled with fat, (so tight it looks like it could pop) skin looks better than skin with a little wiggle? Seriously? Oh boy, I'm in trouble! ;)
I never used that excuse to not lose weight, I had a lot of excuses, but for some reason loose skin never crossed my mind as a reason to not deflate it. Funny how different we all are.
08-09-2009, 09:24 AM
First off, I would stop using the word regime, the way you say it makes me not want to do it either! You remind me of myself, I am all or nothing and if I couldn't change EVERY aspect of my "regime" I figured there was no point in trying.
JMO, but I would not try one hour a day on the exercise machine as your starting point. I would say 15 mins and I'll bet you will stick with that and find yourself wanting to do more. Make one change today, then another one later, and then another one.
You sound like you are defeating yourself before you even start since you have this expectation of what this will take, frankly, it is not that bad, every little change makes a difference.
As far as the skin issue, I don't have personal experience since I waited 20 years longer than you to make the change, but my gut says your skin will bounce right back since you are so young.
Bottom line, if you are happy the way you are, keep on trucking and tell your friends and family to stick it. If you are not happy with the way you are, make one change today. Just one. I remember when I was your age, I lost 11 pounds in one month just by cutting out soda! (It was a competition at work to see who could drop weight in a month, that was my motivation). But one change made a big difference.
Glad you are here.
08-09-2009, 09:38 AM
Hi- sorry to be blunt, but it really sounds like you have terrible self-confidence! You are worth making this positive change for your health and you deserve to feel happy about how you look! Maybe you should start by trying to stop beating yourself up and instead do the little positive steps that were suggested. Once you start experiencing some success, you will feel better! But another thing is, i lost about 30 lbs a couple of years ago and i felt pretty good about that but i did not find that weight loss fixed all my self-esteem problems in the slightest- i was still a shy and pretty much unconfident person. I feel much better now the 2nd go round (older and wiser and all that ;-)) and i no longer expect it to. So you should start trying to feel a bit happier with how you are now and this will actually help you with changing the bits you aren't so happy with...Hope this makes sense. I did weight watchers back then and i found it was a really good plan for someone who didn't really know what they needed to do to lose weight.
I was 21 when i lost all that weight and i had absolutely no excess skin...like others have said it seems unlikely it will be an issue for you- but as for the fear of success, why don't you try imagining yourself as a thinner person? And becoming familiar with what that could be like might make it less scary.
Good luck! You can do it!
08-09-2009, 09:49 AM
Hi and welcome and :hug: because I'm sorry your parents are giving you such a negative image of yourself.
I can almost guarantee that you won't have loose skin, at your age, height and weight. I'm 3 times your age (omg, that's true :O ) and when I lost 106lbs just 5 years ago, I didn't have loose skin.
**Warning - don't be like me, currently on my 3rd massive weightloss expedition, after being incredibly successful twice before but only briefly, and have therefore basically had 50 years blighted by weight issues. Don't do it! **
At your height and weight, you may be technically obese but only just. I'm 5'2" and just down to 178, and I feel so proud of myself and hot. Yes, I know it's a personal thing whether we feel 'disgusted' with ourselves. I tell you now, your friends won't think you disgusting.
If you want to lose a bit of weight, go at it slowly, and yes, don't call it a regime, just make one change today and see if you can maintain it, see if it makes you happy. You can add more changes other days if you decide to.
08-09-2009, 10:28 AM
Since you're having such a hard time thinking about weight loss why don't you shift your focus and make fitness your goal? There are NO downsides to being fit, and plenty of benefits that can be seen pretty quickly! Try to incorporate exercise in at least three times a week and really challenge your body. For me the eating better part came much easier when I started working out.
08-09-2009, 01:43 PM
If your "friends" are being mean to you, they're not your friends.
As far as your parents, maybe picking up some new communication skills to encourage them to treat you in a positive way would help, since the odds of you eating because you feel bad would go down if they weren't making you feel bad. Some universities offer free counseling to students, and you might want to take advantage of that. Counselors can sometimes offer tips on how to get better results if you describe the situation. "My dad says this, how can I respond?" That sort of thing.
Meanwhile, since it doesn't sound like you have a lot of people in your life who are taking care of you, you need to take care of yourself. It's something I've had to learn, and when people do help take care of you, it makes it all the better.
08-09-2009, 02:34 PM
Mary, you are young. You have your whole life ahead of you (cliche, but true). You don't want to spend it self-loathing. You want to love yourself and feel beautiful and confident. But the key is you have to love yourself enough now to make a 100% committment to do what it takes to be successful. Do you think you can do that?
I think the key is to get a handle on how many calories you are consuming and start cutting back. You can exercise until the cows come home and get fit, but I have a feeling if you are still overweight you are not going to be happy. Take a look at Fitday, The Daily Plate and Spark People and see which calorie counting site seems easiest to you. Or make yourself a spreadsheet for daily calories (this is what I use) or even an old fashioned pen and paper. I use the calorie counter here on 3FC to figure out calories.
As others have said, don't even give a second thought to excess skin, or fat bulges. Not going to happen. You are going to be amazed with how much better you feel about yourself and look when you lose even your first ten pounds.
It sounds to me like you need new friends, and as for your parents, well they need a :frypan: and a :kickbutt:. I am sorry they are so insensitive. :hug:
Have a look around 3FC and find a forum where you can feel at home. Then post and read lots. There is a 20 something forum that I'm sure will welcome you with open arms. The support and encouragement are invaluable.
Hang in there kiddo. Many of us old fogies here were overweight teens and young adults so we can relate to what you are going through. :hug:
08-09-2009, 02:56 PM
1st and foremost- Don't start tomorrow, start now! I don't care if you had some crazy fattening breakfast/lunch and you feel like the day is already shot. start right now. There are infinite tomorrows and just one now.
2nd- try to find some people who will support you rather than criticize you (there're a lot of us right here!) Tell your loved ones that their criticisms don't help you. Tell them you want to lose weight and you want them to support you in a positive manner, not by harping on your mistakes.
3rd- You might not be concerned about your health now, but you will. The longer you wait, the more you gain, the worse your situation (speaking from experience. I joined WW for the first time at age 12, like you I just wanted to look good. Now I'm 23 and I just want to FEEL like a 23 year old instead of a 40 year old). Try looking at this like a job. You might not want to do it every day. Maybe you call in sick occasionally but you go right back in the next day. You do it because it is want you need to do.
08-09-2009, 04:48 PM
BRAVO to you for wanting to start NOW. I wish I had done so when I was 18; instead I was in denial about many things, including my weight and its effect on me.
Please don't be afraid to seek counselling to help with your issues about self-confidence, your relationships with your parents, friends, and so on. I'm only doing so now and I really really wish I'd done so years ago.
I'm afraid I don't have much practical advice for you; in many ways I'm in the same position you are, only you have the advantage of the years on me ;) But please do stick around and enjoy the super support we get here. 3FC is a great place :hug:
08-09-2009, 05:16 PM
Girl, I'm in the same boat you are (my boat's just a little heavier! ;)) I'm 19 and really trying to lose weight, but struggle with believing that I can do it and worrying about it not working, or about hating the way I look even if it does work. All I can tell you is that trying is better than doing nothing. I've lost 10 lbs in 2 wks, and every time I see the numbers on the scale go down I feel motivated to keep going. The first few days - and maybe even weeks - will be difficult, but YOU CAN DO IT. Don't listen to people who are putting you down. If they really wanted to, they could HELP you by giving you positive things to think about and try.
Hang around here, and you'll find the journey to be MUCH easier. When I started, I made it a point to workout at least 5 days a week. Didn't matter what it was, as long as I sweat! Recently I also joined fitday.com, and that's opened my eyes up about a lot of the stuff I'm eating.
Good luck & keep your head up!!
08-09-2009, 05:24 PM
The younger you are the better the skin snaps back :)
My advice is just start out- take it slow and in the end if you REALLY hate how you look you can always gain it back (but do you really think you'd want to do that?)
Don't be afraid :)
08-09-2009, 08:38 PM
don't worry about excess skin and fat. You won't have it! I lost 72 lbs after having my 2nd child at 28 and didn't have any issues. This time around after 2 more babies and 16 more years, well its a different story! Do this now and you won't regret it :)
08-09-2009, 08:39 PM
you absolutely remind me of myself. i always get super hyped to start a diet, and then after a day or even a meal of failure, i get frustrated and give up. 3 years ago i lost 30 lbs, but after a few days off the wagon i lost my motivation and gained it all back. since january this year, i have lost 40 lbs. here are the things ive learned... keep a food journal. i keep mine online. only weigh once a week, otherwise the scale fluctuations will make you insane. focus on portion control, if you're like me, its much easier to eat less of what you like than more of what you dont like. and i CANNOT stress this enough, dont set time based goals. i have had entire months where i only dropped one pound, but the next month ill lose 8. if you say, im going to weigh 195 in a month, and then you weigh 197, you focus on the fact that you didnt meet your goal instead of focusing on the 3 lbs you lost. you have to be realistic, and STICK WITH IT! just go into it knowing it is going to be slooooow and frustrating. i only think in 10 lb increments. to think about the whole amount at once is so scary that i never do it. i just go from one mini goal to the next and dont think about the big picture. 10 lbs sounds a lot more do-able than 50, so do 10 lbs, then 10 more, etc. i tried and failed MANY times but this is the first time where i am confident i will reach my goal and i've made it more than 1/2 way. you can do it too!! dont think about your past failures, think about your future success!!
08-10-2009, 12:40 AM
if you REALLY hate how you look you can always gain it back
I have to say, I love this!
08-10-2009, 01:00 AM
Oh, I wish we could all hug you right now.
I know exactly how you feel. I used the excuse that no matter how much weight I lost, I would be really ugly anyway, so none of it would matter. Your skin will be firm, you are so young.
So here I am, at 33 and always having felt like the ugliest ducking in the world, felt like I was so ugly I could make people throw up. I feel at times like a freak. Is this the case? No, logically I know not because once upon a time I used to be a model. Yet even then I felt like the ugliest one in the room. Part of the reason is because I allowed people to put me down, I allowed people to continually point out my flaws, so I blew them up in my mind.
My guess is you are a beautiful beautiful girl who has parents with self esteem issues of their own and frankly, need a good kick in the *** for being emotionally abusive to you.
08-12-2009, 02:52 AM
Wowzers... to be honest I didn't expect so much encouragement. I really, really,really appreciate it. :)
I apologise for responding sooner - uni has completely worn me out, with trying to transfer to a different uni, the workload, etc. sigh. Ah well, tomorrow's a better day.
I read back my post and I must admit it seems really stupid for not wanting to lose weight. It's funny to admit this, but that's my main excuse for not wanting to lose weight. My other problem is that it's hard for me to commit and I'm constantly stressed... which means I either binge A LOT or don't eat or drink for days. At present it's a mixture of both right now - there are days where I pig out, and there are days where the sight/smell of food makes me vomit or feel nauseous. For the past couple of days I haven't been eating much and my meals have started at 1PM (I wake up at 8-10AM) because I feel like vomiting afterwards. And in some cases I do. Mind you, I don't eat to the point where I'm completely stuffed. ;) Probably by the end of the meal I'll be 6-7/10 (in terms of how full I am). I know it's unhealthy and I'm thinking of strategies to remedy it. I don't exactly want to see my doctor because we've had a bit of trouble over the past couple of years due to my previous anxiety disorder/depression episodes. And my other "doctor"... well, she's all about time and money, LOL. She's always rushing in the appointments and gets really impatient when the meeting's more than 10m.
Some of you suggested counseling... and I don't think I could bring myself to do that (kinda ironic since I'm aspiring to be a psychologist, haha :p). I was under the care of social workers and counselors for my depression and anxiety disorder, and although it helped me in opening up a bit, I couldn't handle the fact that they'd tell my parents everything. As a result it was hard to trust anyone. That and the fact that I couldn't handle having different social workers all the time. Within less than two years I was allocated with four social workers, and I just didn't like the idea of having to tell all my problems again with someone completely new and familiar. I'm the type of girl who doesn't really like to talk about her feelings. And it always gave me the impression that I must've done something wrong for them to constantly leave, lol. Sorry, it makes me teary thinking about it, haha.
By the end of the two years the time was up and they just let me go. There was no gradual transition or contacts/information on where else I could get help and I was pretty much still... the same stressed and depressed self. The medication didn't work. It was hard at first, but it took a couple of months and holiday-time to adjust to the sudden lack of support. I stopped the meds completely and honestly, I feel much better now than when I saw counselors/social workers. I don't think I can ever place myself in that position again if I may be frank... I'm terrified of exposing my vulnerability to someone. To open up and then have that backfire on you - I don't think I can do that again. So I've decided that I'd just bottle my feelings up or just post my feelings anonymously online. It's working well so far, so I can't complain.
Don't get me wrong, seeing people for help is not bad at all. I reckon it's great if it can help people. It's just that I don't think it works for me.
As for my parents... they're good people, but I guess they don't really get it, lol. I'm Asian and so they expect me to be like a traditional Asian girl - small, petite, dainty-looking... not obese, lol. I've tried to tell them constantly that it doesn't help to criticise me (which pretty much led to my constant need to over-achieve and hence anxiety/depression), but it falls on deaf ears, really. Once I tell them, they get it for a while, and then they do it again. Especially my dad... I recall once, while I was on meds (I was always resistant in taking my medication), that he'd joke saying "take your medication or we'll take you the hospital". He knew very well how much I HATED the hospital, and how much stress/grief it caused me when I was there. And I'd tell him to stop it, but he'd still always make that joke again and again... Honestly, there were times when I'd eat and intentionally make myself fat, or try to kill myself, just to spite them. I know it's messed up, I do, but during those times I don't think. I just do it. And then when I fail again... and well, the depression/anxiety kicks in.
Sorry, I'm going on a tangent again... forgive me, I tend to do that often. I apologise for making this depressing; I know I have issues to sort out. I just needed to vent - there are some stuff that I've never told anyone, and it's a good feeling to just somehow let some steam out.
In other news I went on my elliptical today. :D Only 30m because I had to go to uni afterwards. But it was fun - I forgot how nice it was to physically let out stress.
Anyway, thanks for reading and responding - I really appreciate it that you took your time. :^: I wish I could respond to the comments individually but I'm a bit short with time - gotta study! And I didn't realise how long this post was, lol.
If I'm talking crap it's most likely because I am. I'm just writing whatever comes to mind.
08-12-2009, 02:59 AM
The best thing you can do is sit yourself down and write out your priorities, if weight loss is important to you, then writing it down will make the goal seem more realistic and it becomes more personalized rather than be a 'wish' sitting in the back of your mind. You need to find your motivation, the best thing to do is to just 'do' your workout routine and write down the foods you eat. You'll feel better when you can see what you've put in your body and its a good feeling hopping out of the shower after workout.
08-12-2009, 06:28 AM
I am so sorry that you have had such negative experiences with counselors and social workers. But please understand that this is not typical of what happens in therapy. Once you are 18, a therapist or social worker cannot disclose what you tell them to your parents. It is between you and them.
It sounds to me as though you have developed an unhealthy relationship with food--eating disorder behavior. I am not a professional or doctor, however. It might help you to seek out a counselor or therapist--and try to find a clinical psychologist--who specializes in food issues. A registered dietitian who specializes in eating disorders might also be able to help you cope better with food. You may have resources through school that can help you find someone.
I'd encourage you to get help before you worry about losing weight. First things first--you have to stop the starving/bingeing cycle and get your eating more normalized.