Body Image and Issues after Weight Loss Including discussions about excess skin and reconstructive surgery

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Old 01-29-2011, 02:54 PM   #1  
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Default Is anyone at or close to goal who had HUGE arms?

I don't mean standard fat arms. I mean HUGE ARMS. My upper arms are so big that they literally just have fat hanging off of the arm when I raise them and it's awful. I'm afraid that the fat from inside the hanging skin is going to disappear and I'm going to be left with this pouch of hanging skin which will look just as bad.

When you lost all of the weight did the skin bounce back a little bit or did you get a lot of loose hanging skin? Did you work on toning your upper arms and if so, did that help?

I'm also worried about hanging skin on my lower stomach "pooch" which is very large but my arms concern me more because I'd like to be able to comfortably wear tank tops and strapless dresses at goal. I've spent my life wearing shrugs to cover my upper arms and I'd hate to have to do that at 125lbs too because of skin issues.

Of course I'll take what I can get...I'd take empty skin over fat-filled skin any day.
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Old 01-29-2011, 03:37 PM   #2  
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I'm not at goal and I definitely have loose skin on my upper arms. The funny thing is it somehow got better looking without me noticing. It used to be super wrinkly loose skin but now not as much. I still have a bit of weight to lose though. And I wear tank tops because I don't care
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Old 01-29-2011, 05:14 PM   #3  
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I'm glad to hear that it seems to have gotten better. That gives me a little bit more hope.

I heard that age and past dieting experiences are a factor in skin elasticity. I'm 18 and haven't yo-yoed much, I've dieted up and down a little bit but it was mostly a steady but rapid gain of about 150lbs since I was 12. Could my skin bounce back easier because I'm young or is that not a true fact?
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Old 01-29-2011, 06:30 PM   #4  
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Unfortunately I have loose, hangy skin on my upper arms- they look pretty bad. Mind you, I'm 17, lost most of my weight at age 13-14, and did it the right way with healthy eating and exercise, daily moisturizing, etc. and waited a few years to see if the skin there would "bounce back" but alas, the improvement is slight at best.

However, I'm also convinced that I've been cursed with the worst skin in the world because I also have tons of faded, silvery stretch marks on the inside of my upper arms(the same part that's "loose" looking) all the way from my elbows to my armpits... so the complete lack of elasticity in those spots might be part of the reason it didn't "bounce back" much for me. I'm sure someone whose upper arms aren't basically one giant stretch mark would probably have more luck with the skin tightening up! As for me, I'll be considering brachioplasty in about a year's time.
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Old 01-29-2011, 06:48 PM   #5  
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I used to have huge arms. Now? Well, my arms are still pretty huge. But that's because they're full of muscle. So they're bulky (bulkier than I'd prefer), but I wear tank tops with abandon, and most of the loose skin is filled out with nice firm arm muscles.

Strength train, strength train, strength train!
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Old 01-29-2011, 10:16 PM   #6  
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I agree with Mandalinn. I also had huge arms. I could never wear the type of blouses/shirts that have cap sleeves or buttons on short sleeves. I couldn't get them buttoned (even in plus sizes) or the elastic would dig in and ride up. In 100 degree heat here in Texas in the summer I would wear long sleeves.

Now I fit into a size sm/med shirt. I have no trouble with those types of sleeves or buttons. Weight lifting is the secret. That's not to say that I don't still have some loose skin there, but it is getting better every day and I have lots of muscle that has replaced the fat.

Good luck to you.
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Old 01-29-2011, 11:17 PM   #7  
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Weight training sounds interesting. If it would help my loose skin I'm all for it. Did you start weight training when you were still very overweight or when you were close to or at goal? I read that you can't tone until most of the fat is gone, so if I started now would it be useless or would I still be building muscle that will show after the fat is gone? Also, do you pair your weight training with cardio?

I know exercise is good for the body, but I haven't really been exercising with my plan. I just figured I'd add exercise in later when I'm a little bit more comfortable with my body. I'm starting to reach that point now where I think I should add it in.

Can someone give me a basic idea of what I should start out with? The huge amount of information on the internet about different workouts is so overwhelming. I'm really out of shape so starting out slow would help. I'd like to focus on my arms, stomach, and of course overall fat burning.

Horo: My arms are like that too, all stretched out with faded silvery stretch marks on them. Then again I have stretch marks EVERYWHERE.
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Old 01-30-2011, 08:42 AM   #8  
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Well genetics play a part. I started weight training when I was 350 lbs and I never stopped Well I've taken breaks here and there. Basically, you can build muscle while losing fat. Muscle burns the fat and it increases your metabolism. When you lose the fat, you can start to see the muscle.

So I'd say start weight training now. There is some good info in our weight training forum. The one site I'd recommend looking at is http://www.stumptuous.com
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Old 01-30-2011, 10:17 AM   #9  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Linsy View Post
I don't mean standard fat arms. I mean HUGE ARMS. My upper arms are so big that they literally just have fat hanging off of the arm when I raise them and it's awful. I'm afraid that the fat from inside the hanging skin is going to disappear and I'm going to be left with this pouch of hanging skin which will look just as bad.

When you lost all of the weight did the skin bounce back a little bit or did you get a lot of loose hanging skin? Did you work on toning your upper arms and if so, did that help?

I'm also worried about hanging skin on my lower stomach "pooch" which is very large but my arms concern me more because I'd like to be able to comfortably wear tank tops and strapless dresses at goal. I've spent my life wearing shrugs to cover my upper arms and I'd hate to have to do that at 125lbs too because of skin issues.

Of course I'll take what I can get...I'd take empty skin over fat-filled skin any day.
I'm SO GLAD you started this tread becuase i have the same problem my arms are so out of proportion with my body! thier the thing i'm the most self concious about so much so that i refuse to wear sleveless shirts. glad to know thiers hope for me lol
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Old 01-30-2011, 08:37 PM   #10  
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For a while I couldn't wear small tops becomes my arms were still big. My arms uses to be the size of what my thighs are now. Horrible. But strength training did help. I can finally get in small or xsmall tops! my arms still have some loose skin on them and I still call them my bat wings, but they've gotten into the shirt size I wanted to be so I love em! Good luck!
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Old 01-30-2011, 08:51 PM   #11  
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you can do strength training at any size if you can move a body part. your muscles will strengthen and the fat will still be on top of the muscle if you don't lose the fat. but your muscles will be stronger and supposedly 1 pound of muscle burns an average of about 50 calories a day or something, so it does help. and, when you do lose down, you'll have the shape you (probably) want or much closer to it. if you are just starting, i'd say start slow, with light hand weights or no weights, something like biggest loser dvds, or jillians. they all have levels 1, 2, 3. or join a gym and do the weights classes. they will start you out slow if you are new in the class and tell them you are new to working out. or so they should do anyway.

Last edited by thinner; 01-30-2011 at 08:53 PM.
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Old 10-28-2012, 06:08 PM   #12  
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Although it is old, am glad I found this thread. My arms are sooo huge I just hope the shrink as much as possible.
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Old 10-29-2012, 12:36 PM   #13  
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My arms are still huge as well; they were at 18" when I started, and only down to 15" now, and I strength train! You can just see the skin/fat/whatever hanging off the muscle. It's icky, and I don't like it, and I feel like I'm always going to have "fat girl" arms no matter what I do, sans surgery. I wear tank tops and short sleeve shirts anyway, though; I'm not gonna let my fat-*** arms keep me from being cool when it's hot!
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Old 10-29-2012, 01:38 PM   #14  
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Arms! The bane of a woman's existence, right? I made a blog post about this (and that reminds me, I haven't written in my blog since August...eek!)

http://healthplusfifty.wordpress.com...s-part-1-arms/

My arms are actually better looking now than they are in that last picture (see picture 2 in this post), but you get the idea.

Last edited by sontaikle; 10-29-2012 at 01:42 PM.
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Old 10-29-2012, 01:56 PM   #15  
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Ummm- yep can relate. Lost half my body weight and still stress about my fat arms. Short of an arm lift I don't think I will ever be happy with them - strength training or not. Would I go back to 300lbs ...no, so will have to accept the arms I have.

Last edited by starbrite; 10-29-2012 at 01:56 PM.
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