100 lb. Club - do former fatties weigh more?




View Full Version : do former fatties weigh more?


ubergirl
02-28-2010, 08:47 PM
I know this is probably a weird question, but I've been wondering about something. I sometimes hear stories about people who lose a lot of weight and then have ten to fifteen pounds of loose skin...

I also see pix of people who look very thin to me, but are saying that their weights are higher than I might have expected.

I'm just wondering if former fatties actually weigh more because of extra skin, muscle etc, or if that's just rubbish.


Shmead
02-28-2010, 09:16 PM
I have a theory that every woman in America thinks she "carries her weight well" because every woman in America lies about her weight. So you know you look about like all these women who say they weigh X, and you know dang well you weigh X+10%, so you think "Man, I must carry my weight better than they do", except they actually weigh X+10% as well.

Perhaps women who have lost a lot of weight are more likely to post their true weight, so they too look like they "carry their weight well".

eratosthanes
02-28-2010, 09:59 PM
I knew a woman who started out at 5'4 weighing around 300 lbs. After getting gastric bypass, and then coming down with cancer, she got all the way down to 109 lbs. She was actually much thinner, at least 10 lbs of that being excess skin. Yes, that skin can add several pounds to your weight.

Also, when I weighed 208 I was a size 12. Many people who are at that weight to begin with are size 16+. It was extra muscle, in that case, but the point is still the same. You can weigh a lot more than you look if you have been heavy before.


PeanutsMom704
02-28-2010, 10:03 PM
lolol @ Shmead!!

as for the original question, I can say that I am heavier now at the same weight than I have been in the past. Meaning I am not as toned plus being older and having been through a pregnancy, so and I wear a larger size at the same number on the scale. And in the past, I would have claimed to be one of those women who carried her weight well but I would not say the same now.

19Deltawifey
02-28-2010, 11:25 PM
Back when I was in high school I was a size 12 weighing 150 lbs and I was a size 10 when I weighed 140 lbs. After having 2 kids I got down to 180 and was a size 12/14. I think when you get over weight or obese and then lose the weight you tend to weigh more even though you can fit into smaller sizes. I wonder why that is but for me I noticed that I can be heavier and fit into smaller sizes. Its weird how I lost 3 lbs but my dress size went down since I was exercising.

BeachBreeze2010
03-01-2010, 10:22 AM
Maybe because those of us that started out overweight had to exercise to lose the weight so as a result have more lean body mass? I would be interested in seeing some sort of body fat data.

Eliana
03-01-2010, 10:29 AM
Back when I was in high school I was a size 12 weighing 150 lbs and I was a size 10 when I weighed 140 lbs. After having 2 kids I got down to 180 and was a size 12/14. I think when you get over weight or obese and then lose the weight you tend to weigh more even though you can fit into smaller sizes. I wonder why that is but for me I noticed that I can be heavier and fit into smaller sizes. Its weird how I lost 3 lbs but my dress size went down since I was exercising.

I was identical to you in weight and sizes in high school. Perhaps it's because we didn't exercise?? I'm not sure. Now I'm exercising as I lose this weight and I swear it makes me heavier! :dizzy:

PeanutsMom704
03-01-2010, 10:39 AM
clothing sizes have changed a lot too, though. Maybe I'm enough older, but what gets called a 12 now isn't even close to what it would have been when I was in high school. Today's 8 is probably closer to what a 12 was back then.

Lori Bell
03-01-2010, 10:43 AM
I'm not sure I understand the question....lol ;)

I don't know if I weigh more than a person of the same height and pant size who has never had a weight problem or not. I've never had the guts to ask a person their weight. The only person I know in real life that is a normal weigh and my height is my SIL. She has always been a normal weight and in my mind I thought I was smaller than her now, but when I asked my 17 year old (autistic)son who was bigger, he said MOM without hesitation. I asked my 11 year old son the same question and he said he never noticed and had no clue. I then asked my husband and he said I was smaller, (I think he might have been trying to get lucky that night...lol)

I always thought I carried my weight well until I look back at pictures that at one time I thought looked pretty good. I was just fooling myself. Fat doesn't lie.

Meg
03-01-2010, 10:49 AM
I've never seen any science to back it up, but I totally believe that former fat chicks have heavier infrastructures that normal weight persons. Our bones are dense and we have higher muscle masses due to all the weight bearing exercise we did while we were heavy. Every step we took when we were heavy was strength training -- like a normal weight person doing our daily activities with a 100 pound backpack on (for instance).

When we lose fat, most of the muscle and bone are still there (hopefully, if we've been strength training!) so we tend to have higher Lean Body Masses (LBM) than never-overweight women of the same size. In a way, we're like the pro football players who always test out as obese on BMI charts because of their high LBMs.

That's one of the reasons that body composition is a much better indicator of fitness in former fat chicks than is BMI. We may test high on a BMI chart, when in fact, our body composition is perfectly healthy.

Most people guess I weigh about 20 pounds less than I actually do. Even maintaining between 135 and 140/145 pounds, I can comfortably wear size 4 pants. It's due to my muscle mass and what my doctor tells me are unusually dense bones.

So I'm absolutely convinced that you're right! :)

ubergirl
03-01-2010, 11:07 AM
I've never seen any science to back it up, but I totally believe that former fat chicks have heavier infrastructures that normal weight persons. Our bones are dense and we have higher muscle masses due to all the weight bearing exercise we did while we were heavy. Every step we took when we were heavy was strength training -- like a normal weight person doing our daily activities with a 100 pound backpack on (for instance).

When we lose fat, most of the muscle and bone are still there (hopefully, if we've been strength training!) so we tend to have higher Lean Body Masses (LBM) than never-overweight women of the same size. In a way, we're like the pro football players who always test out as obese on BMI charts because of their high LBMs.

That's one of the reasons that body composition is a much better indicator of fitness in former fat chicks than is BMI. We may test high on a BMI chart, when in fact, our body composition is perfectly healthy.

Most people guess I weigh about 20 pounds less than I actually do. Even maintaining between 135 and 140/145 pounds, I can comfortably wear size 4 pants. It's due to my muscle mass and what my doctor tells me are unusually dense bones.

So I'm absolutely convinced that you're right! :)

Yes. This is what I was wondering, I guess.

Because I'm a health care provider, I get to see people naked and find out what they weigh, so I guess I have a little advantage, LOL, but I've seen this in post WLS patients-- at a BMI or 26 or 27 they look skinny.

Eliana
03-01-2010, 11:08 AM
Well...this makes staying at 198.4 a little more tolerable. :rofl:

19Deltawifey
03-01-2010, 05:32 PM
I was identical to you in weight and sizes in high school. Perhaps it's because we didn't exercise?? I'm not sure. Now I'm exercising as I lose this weight and I swear it makes me heavier! :dizzy:

I exercised for sports while in high school but once I got on Deprovera (birth control shot) I gained 40 lbs in 2-4 months. It made me so hungry and i was working at McDonalds and could not resist the food while being on depo. But for me measuring my body is a lot better indicator on how Im doing fitness wise then the scale is. Thats why I measure now instead of weighing every week. Plus my goal is a size 8 and I have no idea what weight I would have to be to fit in a 8. To me personally it wouldn't matter if I was 160 and a size 8 or 175 and a size 8. To me a size 8 is my goal and thats all that matters, so in my opinion I say forget the number on the scale continue working out and losing inches and eventually the weight will come off.

marigrace
03-02-2010, 05:26 AM
To me personally it wouldn't matter if I was 160 and a size 8 or 175 and a size 8. To me a size 8 is my goal and thats all that matters, so in my opinion I say forget the number on the scale continue working out and losing inches and eventually the weight will come off.

Sorry, I seem to be drifting off topic....In the past, when I was weight training, I wore a 14, and even squeezed into twelves. I stayed at 200 lbs for about a year, and the whole time, I was gaining muscle, and didn't understand why I couldn't lose weight. I know the goal should be to lose FAT, not WEIGHT, but I can't bear the idea of getting stuck like that again. I know it isn't logical, but I'm going to reduce my weight a little more, before I get serious about building muscle.

ubergirl
03-02-2010, 09:51 AM
I guess I'm getting off topic myself, but I have a fancy body fat scale at home.

Since December, I've really upped my exercise level-- added running and lifting, and working with a PT. I'm strong and I lift quite heavy weights, and my weight loss has slowed considerably. However, according to my body fat scale, my body fat % (a charming 44%) hasn't budged. My weight has gone down about ten pounds over two months, but my body fat has not.

So, I always wonder when people say they are so worried about "gaining muscle..." are we really gaining as much as we think we are?

Meg
03-02-2010, 10:03 AM
I think that often people overestimate muscle gains. Sometimes we'll read a post by a member who's just started an exercise program or walking and they'll see the scale go up a few pounds a few days later. Always someone will post to say "don't worry, you're gaining muscle!" If only it was that easy!

It probably would take a typical woman about six months of spot-on nutrition and heavy weight training to gain 4 or 5 pounds of muscle. It's not going to happen after a week of walking. It's takes a lot of really hard work to gain muscle!

Without weight training, up to 40% of our pounds lost during weight loss will be muscle. Our goal during to the weight loss process is simply to minimize the amount of muscle lost. So muscle maintenance, rather than muscle gain, is probably a more realistic goal for most of us during fat loss. :)

BeachBreeze2010
03-02-2010, 10:35 AM
I am wondering how this will work for me. About 8 years ago, I built quite a bit of muscle and was very lean (130lbs, 5'1", 12% BF). Then, I gained weight. Now that I am losing again I am wondering how much of it is still in there. There are parts of my body that never got too huge that I swear I can still see the muscles "in there." But, I really don't want to get to goal and find myself skinny fat. I have been doing some weight training, but I have a different life now. I don't have 2 to 3 hours a day to spend in the gym. I would imagine that I won't have that body back regardless of what I weigh when I get to goal, but I am hoping to see most of those muscles I worked so hard for. Any thoughts on what I should expect?

19Deltawifey
03-02-2010, 11:52 AM
Sorry, I seem to be drifting off topic....In the past, when I was weight training, I wore a 14, and even squeezed into twelves. I stayed at 200 lbs for about a year, and the whole time, I was gaining muscle, and didn't understand why I couldn't lose weight. I know the goal should be to lose FAT, not WEIGHT, but I can't bear the idea of getting stuck like that again. I know it isn't logical, but I'm going to reduce my weight a little more, before I get serious about building muscle.

I don't do heavy weight training. I lift 4 times a week rotating between legs and abs then arms and abs. But I do 15 reps, 2 sets. I usually get tired by the 12th rep. If I were losing weight consistently I would focus on the scale but since I'm not I go by how my clothes fit or if I lost inches or not. I definitely understand why this wouldn't work for others but for me it keeps me motivated instead of giving up because the number on the scale barely moves. Plus I'm really happy that I can start running again, right now I walk/jog but I am seeing progress fitness wise and have faith that the scale will start to show it eventually. Am I gaining muscle I don't know but I'm definitely keeping most of my muscle that I have now. I weigh myself once a month now, so I haven't abandoned the scale completely but its not my morning ritual anymore to hop on the scale when I wake up.

Mariella
03-02-2010, 12:36 PM
I've never seen any science to back it up, but I totally believe that former fat chicks have heavier infrastructures that normal weight persons. Our bones are dense and we have higher muscle masses due to all the weight bearing exercise we did while we were heavy. Every step we took when we were heavy was strength training -- like a normal weight person doing our daily activities with a 100 pound backpack on (for instance).


I do think there is something to this.

When I was an early 20-something who had never been obese but also never strength trained nor formally exercised - I was I guess what you call here "skinny fat". I had NO muscle definition - I had little skinny arms and a soft belly thighs & butt. I was active doing things I liked - dancing, swimming, bicycling (sometimes long distances, but not consistently) - but not a "work out" person or a runner.

After my first child at age 28 - my weight hit 200 during the pregnancy and I was still 24 pounds more than my starting weight after delivery -- I went to my first aerobics class and I was uncoordinated, unbalanced and absolutely SPENT after every workout.

Fast forward - I eventually became a fit person who hit the gym 3-5 times a week for years, did power walking, eventually even weight training. I dare say that even now - in my 200+ obese condition and age 50 and not having worked out seriously in five years - I could walk into a gym or pull out my step & my step videos, and do a one hour aerobics session and be BETTER at it and and not as tired as I was after those first few months of post pregnancy workouts at age 28.

And I believe it is due to the cumulative effects of getting fit, building muscle and yes, probably the weight bearing exercise of conveying an obese body around for a few years now. I am more "solid" and carry my weight better than I did at younger ages.

As for sizes being different if we go back to our high school years - well, I may be older than most of you posting here so I know in MY high school years the sizes were most definitely different! But all that aside, if you wore junior sizes in high school and now you wear misses sizes - junior sizes ARE different. A junior size 11/12 might comparable to a misses size 8 or even a 6. So if you were a junior 12 in high school and now you're a misses size 12 at a higher weight - the misses-jr difference has to be taken into account.

ChrissyBean
03-02-2010, 01:26 PM
I stayed at 200 lbs for about a year, and the whole time, I was gaining muscle, and didn't understand why I couldn't lose weight. I know the goal should be to lose FAT, not WEIGHT, but I can't bear the idea of getting stuck like that again.

This is where I'm at, and it's heartbreakingly frustrating. My clothes are getting looser, my rings are spinning on my fingers, my watch is droopy, etc. but the scale is NOT budging. I'm totally replacing my fluff with muscle and while it feels great, I'm obsessed with that number on the scale. I'm just sooooo lucky to have a supportive DH who knows to say all the right things (a pound of feathers takes up a lot more room than a pound of bricks, he compliments me many times daily, makes sure I have time to exercise, does stuff with me, and so on) that keeps me keepin' on. Also, having NSVs is better than no victories whatsoever. :)

aluxa
03-02-2010, 01:33 PM
I have never thought about this. It is a great question and the answer where enlightening for me.

nelie
03-02-2010, 02:38 PM
I am wondering how this will work for me. About 8 years ago, I built quite a bit of muscle and was very lean (130lbs, 5'1", 12% BF). Then, I gained weight. Now that I am losing again I am wondering how much of it is still in there. There are parts of my body that never got too huge that I swear I can still see the muscles "in there." But, I really don't want to get to goal and find myself skinny fat. I have been doing some weight training, but I have a different life now. I don't have 2 to 3 hours a day to spend in the gym. I would imagine that I won't have that body back regardless of what I weigh when I get to goal, but I am hoping to see most of those muscles I worked so hard for. Any thoughts on what I should expect?

Muscle atrophies when we don't use it. So if you no longer are doing a similar workout, some of that muscle may remain but 8 years is a long time and I would expect it to be atrophied by now. That of course doesn't mean you have no muscle but the muscle you have currently is dependent on the type of physical activity you are doing at the current time.

marigrace
03-02-2010, 03:12 PM
I guess I'm getting off topic myself, but I have a fancy body fat scale at home.

Since December, I've really upped my exercise level-- added running and lifting, and working with a PT. I'm strong and I lift quite heavy weights, and my weight loss has slowed considerably. However, according to my body fat scale, my body fat % (a charming 44%) hasn't budged. My weight has gone down about ten pounds over two months, but my body fat has not.

So, I always wonder when people say they are so worried about "gaining muscle..." are we really gaining as much as we think we are?

I was hiting the gym for at least two hours six days per week. I know for a fact that I gained significant muscle, because I became very toned, lost the cellulite (that I had even at 125 lbs), and went down a few sizes....all while maintaining between 198 and 202 for at least 10 months. I have always had good muscle tone to start with, so that could could be the reason. Anyway, I am keeping the exercise light until I get to a weight I don't mind being stuck at (lol).

BeachBreeze2010
03-02-2010, 03:50 PM
That's what I thought, Nellie. Thanks for taking the time to answer. I will make sure to incorporate some strength training in my workouts through this journey. I am slowly accepting that unless I want to re-prioritize my life, that physique is probably a thing of the past. Who knows what will happen. Thanks again! :)

Meg
03-09-2010, 04:43 PM
Uber, I just read a blog post on exactly this topic that you might want to check out: BMI: Tool Or Tyranny (http://refusetoregain.com/refusetoregain/2010/03/bmi-tool-or-tyranny.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+RefuseToRegain+%28Refuse+To+R egain%29)

It says in part:

When we gain weight, the body has to manufacture new fat cells to store the oily triglycerides which are being created. These cells are supported by a scaffolding of connective tissue and muscle. After weight loss, the fat cells are emptied, but some of the tissue may remain. Many POWs (what she calls previously overweight people) find that they simply cannot lose enough weight to reach the white area of the BMI chart. This may well be because the BMI chart is based on the weights of those who have never been heavy, in other words, the weights of NOWs (never overweight people). Since they have never manufactured new fatty tissue, their baseline weights are lower.

It goes along with my theory that we POWs have heavy infrastructures that were created to carry around our many excess pounds.

As background, Refuse To Regain is one of the only blogs I know of that's devoted to weight loss maintenance. One of its authors, Dr. Barbara Berkeley, wrote a book about maintenance called Refuse To Regain that is well-worth checking out. It's a great blog to follow. :)

ubergirl
03-09-2010, 07:45 PM
Uber, I just read a blog post on exactly this topic that you might want to check out: BMI: Tool Or Tyranny (http://refusetoregain.com/refusetoregain/2010/03/bmi-tool-or-tyranny.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+RefuseToRegain+%28Refuse+To+R egain%29)

It says in part:



It goes along with my theory that we POWs have heavy infrastructures that were created to carry around our many excess pounds.

As background, Refuse To Regain is one of the only blogs I know of that's devoted to weight loss maintenance. One of its authors, Dr. Barbara Berkeley, wrote a book about maintenance called Refuse To Regain that is well-worth checking out. It's a great blog to follow. :)

Thanks for the reference. The blog does look interesting!