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Stopping at overweight

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Old 05-23-2014, 08:19 PM   #1
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Default Stopping at overweight

I'm now 191 but I was 312. I was able to get down to 175 but for some reason am at 191 now...and trying to lose again. My coworker thinks that I should just be this weight. He says some people are not supposed to be small and there are stories of those who lost weight, felt awful and gained some weight back and felt better.
Has anyone decided to be overweight instead of a healthy weight to maintain? According to BMI (I am 5 feet 7 inches) I am at the high end of overweight, maybe even obese. I just don't like that...
But I eat healthy, workout. I wear a size Large in most clothes. I wear size 12-14 pants.
What do you think? Should I just try to accept my body as it is or kick myself in the butt and keep losing?
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Old 05-23-2014, 08:37 PM   #2
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It's up to you. Personally, I think you could get some more mileage yet based on your height and weight. But don't get obsessed about being "normal". My BMI is 25.2 (overweight) and normal (<25) just seems so untouchable even though I am clearly not "overweight".
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Old 05-23-2014, 08:44 PM   #3
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it's debatable if you'll get health benefits from losing weight. currently the jury is out when you are in the "overweight" range of BMI. it depends on a whole host of issues.

if you are really interested about health benefits, i would suggest getting an accurate measurement of your bodyfat (bod pod would do) as well as a full checkup and then see what the results are.

is your bodyfat under 30%? if so, you are actually within the healthy range of bodyfat percentage for females.

how do you feel. how is your athletic ability? other questions to posit and mull over.

eta: i don't know if you do, but like another member here, who posted about loving her body, you should *definitely* love your body as is. IMHO!!
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Old 05-24-2014, 02:19 AM   #4
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First, congratulations on your amazing success! I hope you feel very proud of your achievement and can see how far you've come.

I agree with getting a body fat measurement if you can. And consider your bone size, small or large?

Maybe you should just take a break and maintain for a while. Just enjoy your size and get some great clothes.

But please, feel successful!

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Old 05-24-2014, 03:22 AM   #5
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Wow, you've come a long way! Congrats!

When did you reach 175, and how long did it take for you to reach the current 191?

I'm asking because that data could help you MAKE YOUR OWN DECISION.

I stopped halfway twice before. Reason: I look at myself in the mirror and see a perfectly normal, cute and sexy body that I'm TOTALLY SATISFIED with. Sad to say, I have never ever been able to maintain it. It would take me months to lose, and weeks to come back to the obese category. And then the cycle would restart.

So this time around, I decided that I'm going to reach goal no matter what I think/feel, because my past failures have taught me that it's EVERYTHING OR NOTHING AT ALL.

So has this happened before? Do you feel it's likely to happen again? Do you feel it's better to leave a wider margin between 191 and the weight you don't ever want to cross again? If so, listen to your gut and continue to make efforts.

I agree with your coworker though, not everyone was made to be thin. BUT...this decision belongs to you and YOU ALONE to make. How would you know whether you were made to belong to the category of thin or not? By knowing your body, by experience, medical data etc So please focus on YOUR OWN PHYSICAL AND MENTAL WELL BEING. If being on the borderline makes you uncomfortable, leave yourself a reasonable margin for your own tranquility.

Don't forget that if you go back to your 312 all she can tell you is...sorry! So this is about you and you alone.

Best of lucks!
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Old 05-24-2014, 04:03 AM   #6
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I think there are healthy benefits and other benefits to being in your healthy weight range.

You definitely can't argue against there being health benefits. If being overweight doesn't cause heart disease, it certainly causes joint disease so lose the weight and your joints will last longer.

Secondly physically its much more comfortable being in your healthy weight range. You can cross your legs easily. Sleep easily at night and be less likely to snore and have sleep apnoea. (another health benefit).

You will be more comfortable in planes and trains seats. When you are older, you will be more comfortable getting in and out of cars if not already.

Life is easier being smaller.

It will also save you lots of money on your grocery bills and clothing bills.

Ultimately you have to do what's comfortable. If it was me and i had to lose a lot of weight, i'd start saving from the beginning for any skin surgery you may want later on.

Its probably good you had a pause in your weightloss program. Its easier to lose weight if you do it slowly and pausing gives your body a chance to adjust to the new lower weight which means you are less likely to experience the famine reaction. The famine reaction is an automatic response of your body to losing a large amount of body fat. If you pause periodically on your way down you have a much better chance of being able to keep the weight off forever.

Certainly i don't think anyone is actually meant to be at a higher weight. If you want to be at a lower weight long term you need to change your eating habits permanently though. You can't continue eating a lot of food and you can't continue eating junk food on a regular basis. Anything that doesn't really provide much satisfaction will make you want to eat more while whole foods are more satisfying and you can feel more satisfied for longer so need to eat less over all.
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Old 05-24-2014, 09:22 AM   #7
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pattience, you do realise that it's about body fat percentage rather than BMI, right? you can't POSSIBLY be thinking that BMI is the gold standard.

life is easier being stronger.

life is easier being happy.
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Old 05-24-2014, 10:38 AM   #8
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Something similar happened to me at around 180. I plateaued and was getting frustrated. I decided just to work at maintenance, which taught me two things.

1. Maintenance is WAY harder than weight loss.

2. I realized really did want to reach my original goal weight.

I say just work at maintenance for 3 months and see how you feel after. Also, doing a practice maintenance run will help you if you decided to continue on losing weight. I think that the time off from weight loss actually helped me when I decided to continue losing weight again.
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Old 05-24-2014, 10:58 AM   #9
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Dagny: Congratulations on your mega-success!

I'm in the middle of reading Robert Lustig's Fat Chance. He's an acclaimed pediatric endocrinologist at UCSF med center with extensive clinical & research experience (as well as firsthand) in dealing with obesity.

I learned some interesting facts...BMI is useful in populations but virtually useless for an individual. Many people that it classifies as overweight are metabolically healthier than people that it classifies as normal BMI. BMI cannot tell the difference between lean mass and fat. More importantly for health, BMI does not distinguish between visceral fat and subcutaneous fat.

Visceral fat is in muscles and organs, and is associated with diseases of obesity like diabetes2, hypertension, insulin resistance, cardiovascular disease, etc. Subcutaneous fat is what we all see and want to shed, but is associated with longer life span and does not contribute to those diseases, according to the studies cited by Lustig. A thin-looking, low BMI person with high visceral fat is metabolically LESS healthy than an obese-looking, higher BMI person with little visceral fat.

He says that you can get expensive lab tests or MRI to determine your visceral fat. A cheaper way is to measure waist/hip ratio. .85 or below suggests a healthy range. Also belt size under 35", though this depends on where you where your belt of course.

Finally, he says one way to tell if you have insulin resistance is to "look at the back of your neck, armpits, and knuckles. What you're looking for is acanthosis nigricans, or a darkening, thickening, and ridging of the skin. Many people think this is dirt or, in the case of the neck, 'ring around the collar,' but it's actually excess insulin working on the skin.."

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Old 05-24-2014, 01:53 PM   #10
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Ahhh.... I wish you had posted pictures of yourself, so we could see how you look.. whether upon looking, you seem like you have to lose weight... or not.

Even my body is not supposed to be 'petite' - my bone structure is large, hence always I go for the highest weight within the range of weight that is appropriate for my height. Going by this, you definitely can lose some more weight. Also, another point is that, if you go down another 20 lbs, later during maintenance, even if you were to gain some, you would still be within the 190 range and you can go back to losing immediately. You can have this 190 lbs as the cut-off or the highest weight you can afford to have and thus if you stay about 20 lbs lesser than this cut-off value, you can allow yourself some freedom in your food choices and exercising during maintenance. Hope this makes sense. If I were you, thus I would aim to be at 175.
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Old 05-24-2014, 03:42 PM   #11
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Katerina i think if you reread my post you will notice i never ever mentioned BMI. I did mention body fat though didn't i.
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Old 05-24-2014, 04:13 PM   #12
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How do YOU feel? What does your doctor think? If you are happy and healthy, then you are great where you are. If not, do whatever you need to be happy and healthy.

What has really surprised me on this journey is that in addition to the various compliments, some folks have discouraged me from losing weight and living health. Really?!? It was a shock.

I think we are about the same size. Personally, I am really glad to be at this weight now. I do want to lose a bit more, but my goals have shifted away from being about the numbers. Instead, I would like to feel more fit during workouts and have my size 12s comfortably rather than be too tight. That's me.

I've stalled for a bit and am getting refocused now. For me, it's not about kicking my *** to get going. It's about living the kind of healthy, active life that I want to live.
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Old 05-24-2014, 04:27 PM   #13
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Thanks for the responses. I think I just need a kick in the butt.
I don't know my body fat percentage. I think I am more of a pear shape though. I carry alot in my thighs and hips. Like I can wear smaller tops than I can pants and the only thing I can think of why this is would be my hips and thighs, right?
My belly is biggest around my belly button though it is just slightly larger than my public bones-not sure how to explain that. I think that if I were to get rid of any of the excess skin though from being larger, it might actually be smaller. I think its 40 inches at the belly button though. I think if I were to have a goal it would be 35 inch waist though I know I can't choose where my body wants to lose.
Going from 175 to 191 took about 2 years I would say. I was trying to maintain and went from college student to working. And I think that now I am actually more active than before. I am a receptionist, I am on my feet alot in the office. I have a Fitbit and whenever I wear it I usually get 4,000 to 5,000 steps in my work day. That is not counting exercise.
Exercise wise I did slow down on cardio and added more strength training. But I can't imagine that I gained that much muscle? I honestly don't have heavy dumbbells but I workout at home and am always adding stuff to my "gym" I now have a Total Gym that I use. I have up to 15 pound dumbbells and did Chalean Extreme. I did Turbo Fire. I just finished Xfactor St. I am not the most athletic but I can modify anything that is too difficult. I walk at a nearby park and timing myself I can finish the mile (walking and jogging) in 15 minutes.
Also I eat healthier than I did even at 175. At 175 I ate more processed foods and carbs. Like I would have a sandwich for lunch and lots of bread. Its odd...I now fewer carbs and weigh more? I know I need to really track calories because healthy does not equal low calorie. But now I guess I place more importance on food quality than calories. I started eating more meat like chicken and turkey and make salads for lunch with them. I measure out my salad dressing. I never really measured everything when I was losing weight...
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Old 05-24-2014, 04:37 PM   #14
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Sometimes it's hard to see how one's advice may be triggering and/or not helpful.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pattience View Post
I think there are healthy benefits and other benefits to being in your healthy weight range.
Please define healthy *weight* range. this has nothing to do with body fat percentages.

Quote:
You definitely can't argue against there being health benefits. If being overweight doesn't cause heart disease, it certainly causes joint disease so lose the weight and your joints will last longer.
you definitely can argue (and another poster gave out some great information from lustig) about health benefits while being "overweight" (which is currently only defined by BMI, so you have implicity referred to BMI here, pattience).

Quote:
Secondly physically its much more comfortable being in your healthy weight range. You can cross your legs easily. Sleep easily at night and be less likely to snore and have sleep apnoea. (another health benefit).
healthy weight range again. see, you do not mention BMI, but the standard used to define "healthy" "overweight" and "obese" all hinge on the BMI.

Quote:
You will be more comfortable in planes and trains seats. When you are older, you will be more comfortable getting in and out of cars if not already.
you have no idea exactly how big or small anyone is by their given weight.

Quote:
Life is easier being smaller.
life can be pretty difficult when "smaller," as well.

Quote:
It will also save you lots of money on your grocery bills and clothing bills.

Ultimately you have to do what's comfortable. If it was me and i had to lose a lot of weight, i'd start saving from the beginning for any skin surgery you may want later on.

Its probably good you had a pause in your weightloss program. Its easier to lose weight if you do it slowly and pausing gives your body a chance to adjust to the new lower weight which means you are less likely to experience the famine reaction. The famine reaction is an automatic response of your body to losing a large amount of body fat. If you pause periodically on your way down you have a much better chance of being able to keep the weight off forever.

Certainly i don't think anyone is actually meant to be at a higher weight. If you want to be at a lower weight long term you need to change your eating habits permanently though. You can't continue eating a lot of food and you can't continue eating junk food on a regular basis. Anything that doesn't really provide much satisfaction will make you want to eat more while whole foods are more satisfying and you can feel more satisfied for longer so need to eat less over all.
i also think pauses are a great idea.

what exactly do you mean by you don't think that anyone is meant to be at a higher weight? what is "higher" weight.

you claim that you don't mention BMI, and while technically this is true, you are all over the place in your post discussing how people need to be at a lower weight.

and that just isn't true. people need to be where they are comfortable and happy, first off. and if you want to just discuss physiologic health, then more useful terms would center around hip to waist ratio, body fat percentage and visceral vs subq fat, and other health measures. discussing people in terms of being smaller or bigger really is outmoded, especially when you are discussing the BMI range of "overweight"
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Old 05-24-2014, 04:44 PM   #15
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dagny it sounds like you have incorporated a lot of positive changes that will lead to better health. the question of needing to lose more weight really comes down to how you feel about yourself and your current health and what your doc says, like some people upthread have mentioned.

i am very exercise oriented so tend to put that out there, but IMO it's a very personal thing.
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