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Weighing less but seeing the old you...

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Old 04-30-2009, 10:30 PM   #1
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Default Weighing less but seeing the old you...

Why is it that even after significant loss, sometimes we look in the mirror and still seem the old fat person staring back at us? My clothes are falling off, I'm going down in sizes and I'm in better shape than I've ever been. Yet after a particularly disappointing run this afternoon, I look in the mirror and feel like I can't see a difference.

I know I have a lot of weight left to lose, but I need some positive affirmations to remind myself how far I've already come! Anyone have any suggestions.... or can relate to the fat girl staring back at her in the mirror?
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Old 04-30-2009, 10:42 PM   #2
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Ooooooooooooh yah. Even with my puny 7 pound loss, I'm down a pants size and yet, I see somebody 5 sizes larger in the mirror. It is a brutal cycle.

It may sound stupid to some but when I have these moments, I talk out loud to myself. Yes, I admit it. I say things like "Wow! I'm doing so good. Look at those pants in the closet, I'll be fitting into those in a few weeks."

Try it. You might laugh at yourself, you might cry but when you look at yourself in the mirror again, you'll grin.
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Old 04-30-2009, 10:43 PM   #3
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I am the same way. I've lost 55lbs, and dropped THREE pant sizes (22s to 16s) and I still feel as big as before.
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Old 04-30-2009, 10:45 PM   #4
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Oh, I am so with you on that one! I took photos after I lost my first 20 lb, and was stressing about looking at them on the computer because I was CONVINCED I wouldn't look any different.

Of course, I was wrong. And now I keep going back to my blog post where I have the before and during photos to check and make sure they haven't changed...

I think even when I hit goal and am wearing a size 12 I will still think that I'm the same size I was. If you've been that way for as long as you can remember, it gets ingrained into your subconscious mind.
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:00 PM   #5
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Ladies, we MUST remember: we are what we think we are. We've got to stop seeing ourselves negatively.

Weight loss = a good thing. One pound, one hundred pounds. It is a loss and we've got to relearn how to like what we are seeing now.
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:01 PM   #6
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I completely understand where you are coming from. I have felt this way this whole journey. I felt soo good about myself, i felt soo healthy, then i would look in the mirror and look exactly the same!!

To me it is unexplainable...however i think you get to a certain point where you can see it.

For example last night i went shopping and i have been SO on plan and workin my butt off exercising and the change room had mirrors all around, and i tried this dress on and i was SHOCKED..i couldnt even recognise myself. For the first time in 6 months i could see a difference...it was amazing but scared the **** out of me. i didnt want to know that i looked good now and suddenly spoil it by going and eating to much "because i look good". Thankfully i ddint!
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:36 PM   #7
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Hey - I just realized we have "some" similarities- same part of country, height, weight and goals - AND I LOVE CHIPOTLE. Been trying to figure out if I can get something in on my diet even - but the calorie counts are all too confusing. Wonder what those new little soup bowls come in at....? With the baby taco?

Heck even when i was THIN I felt FAT. Looking back I can't believe I felt so ugly. This time my goal is to try to change that perspective. I am hoping exercising and going for buff this time will make the difference. But otherwise I'm clueless how to remove the fat girl from the mirror...

Maybe it just takes repeated practice of seeing the good things? Like nicolediana says?
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:44 PM   #8
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Same here. I've lost 80 + lbs, but still see myself as I was at 350 lbs. They say it takes your brain a while to catch up with weight loss.
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:49 PM   #9
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When I first lost the weight, I could see a huge difference and I felt so good about myself. Now that I have been at the same weight for the past 4 months I am starting to revert back to my old ways of thinking which is unhealthy to weight loss. I decided to go back to actively trying to lose the last 10 pounds. I wonder if that will make me stop this cycle though.
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Old 05-01-2009, 01:14 AM   #10
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I've lost 106 pounds... and some days I honestly can't see the difference. THOSE are the days that I look at the pictures I took the day I started this journey 7 months ago. THEN I get my reality check and move on.
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Old 05-01-2009, 01:26 AM   #11
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I tend to focus on my things that I still need to work on, as opposed to what I've done good on... I went fro man 18 to an 8/10 (depends on brand)... but I still see areas that need improvement.

Eh, I'm a work in progress.
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Old 05-01-2009, 02:19 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fat Pants View Post
Why is it that even after significant loss, sometimes we look in the mirror and still seem the old fat person staring back at us? My clothes are falling off, I'm going down in sizes and I'm in better shape than I've ever been. Yet after a particularly disappointing run this afternoon, I look in the mirror and feel like I can't see a difference.

I know I have a lot of weight left to lose, but I need some positive affirmations to remind myself how far I've already come! Anyone have any suggestions.... or can relate to the fat girl staring back at her in the mirror?
Yes. Ohhhh, yes.

Honestly, I think I could have written this entire post myself, word-for-word! I know for a fact that what I see when I look in the mirror (or even at pictures!) is *not* what other people see when they look at me. I think, in some part of my mind, I suspect that I look like a relatively normal-sized girl now... I've lost just over 100 lbs now, and I'm down from a size 18-20 to a semi-loose size 8--the ever-coveted *single digit size*, which I always thought I'd be completely ecstatic to fit into, because that would mean that I was *truly* a normal, healthy size. I can recall the memory of a friend of mine (who's actually a couple inches shorter than I am) telling me in the past she weighed around the 160s - the same as I do now - and she has a great body. I have seen pictures of women who weigh around the same range and wear the same size as me, and they look pretty darn thin to me... Every once in a blue moon I see a picture that is an utter shock because, just for a second, when I have the proper angles and the light is hitting me right, I actually don't look like a total blob!

Yet, unfortunately, when *I* look at myself, I'm not gonna lie--I see "fat." I see my big, jiggly arms/thighs that are sooo devoid of any tone or definition that it's ridiculous; I see stretch marks, and tummy flab and, I dunno, some days I really don't see much a difference in myself at all! Somehow, everything just looks "bigger" on me, you know what I mean? I don't have an accurate view of what I really look like, because I *always* look fat to myself. I don't really know how to explain it... It's like, I bet if someone took my body and put someone else's head on it, I would easily be able to think, Hey, this girl looks pretty good! But the instant I see my own face in the picture(/mirror/etc), I just immediately register Oh, that's Meredith; I already know what Meredith looks like--fat. I dunno. It's frustrating. I'm getting better at trying to foster a healthier body image, but I don't think it's going to be easy. I've lost a pretty large amount of weight in a relatively short amount of time, so the whole "adjusting to this drastic change" process was pretty rushed! I'm still hopeful, though. I mean, I'd hate to think that I'll never be able to look at myself without disgust, heh. I think it'll just take some time...
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Old 05-01-2009, 03:46 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvja View Post
Same here. I've lost 80 + lbs, but still see myself as I was at 350 lbs. They say it takes your brain a while to catch up with weight loss.
This. Negative thinking is probably a bit part of it too, but for me, it takes quite a while for the mental image to catch up with the physical, no matter if I gain or lose.

Remember that in most cases, other people see you more than you see yourself. Your coworkers might be around you all day, but you only see yourself when you pass a mirror, so sometimes it doesn't sink in right away.

But if you have lost, it would help to be positive and remind yourself, however you end up doing so. If you still feel fat, bring up your evidence to yourself of fitting into smaller pants or whatever. When I got down to my lowest weight since high school, I didn't believe it myself until I got into some pants which had never even fit me, and then I felt great for a while! Sure, the pants were a bit tight, but they were smaller than I wore since high school, so I didn't care about that.
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Old 05-01-2009, 04:23 AM   #14
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I think most of us feel like this..

Sometimes I try on my old pre-weight loss jeans just so I can say "Ooooo, look!! They're really big!"

I've kept them because I'm terrified I'll wake up one day, find out this was all a dream and be really fat again!!

Apparantly we percieve ourselves as bigger than we are. Girl thing.

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Old 05-01-2009, 08:46 AM   #15
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Oh yes. Absolutely. I've thought about this a lot, and think there's several reasons why this happens. For one thing, weight loss is a gradual process, and we "get used" to the image in the mirror as we go. Unless you stand a cardboard cut-out of your old self next to you, it's very difficult to imagine the contrast. Unfortunately, that happens with weight gain too.

Also, our body shape tends to be our body shape. If you're a pear, when you lose weight you're still a pear, just a smaller one! If everything is shrinking proportionally, it's hard to see a difference visually. Your belly or hips still look bigger than you want, relative to the rest of you. And it's discouraging when we want to achieve that so-called-ideal hourglass shape, and we're just not built that way.

The best way to know is by tape measure and clothing. The real eye opener is to look at old photos. That's the OMG moment -- was I really THAT heavy??? Positive self-talk helps too, even if it's hard to visualize progress in the mirror. We should congratulate ourselves on our progress, even if we aren't perfect yet. (and probably never will be -- who is??)
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