Weight Loss
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petrified of losing weight because of loose skin?


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hey guys. i'm 23 years old and i'm 5'5" and 240 pounds. I've been working hard and trying to lose weight. ultimately, about 100 pounds. The only thing is, I'm actually really really SCARED to lose weight because I'm afraid I'm going to have a lot of excess skin. I'd rather be fat than have a lot of loose skin hanging off of me. Is this going to happen to me? Is there anything I can do to avoid loose skin? I'm really afraid that I'm going to look worse after I lose all the weight than I do with the weight on. =[ 

I work out every day. Sometimes I only work out for like 20 minutes in the morning and give myself a little bit of a break. I do cardio like walking and running and bicycling. But, I also do weights a few times a week and things like push ups and crunches.

 

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I used to have the exact same issue (still kinda do). I'm 24, 5'3" and weigh 249. I have always made that my excuse for not losing weight I've seen people that have gastric bypass (HUGE people) an they look like flying squirrels afterwards ( like they could spread their arms and glide).

However, I've finally decided to not worry too much about it, thanks to my dad who tells me to not let it keep me from being a healthier person. He says not to worry about the problem till I get there. I keep hearing and reading about how drinking lots of water helps to retain the elasticitic qualities of our skin. I've also heard that taking chromium picolinate also helps with this.

Hope this helps..
Original Post by zephyrpixie:

hey guys. i'm 23 years old and i'm 5'5" and 240 pounds. I've been working hard and trying to lose weight. ultimately, about 100 pounds. The only thing is, I'm actually really really SCARED to lose weight because I'm afraid I'm going to have a lot of excess skin. I'd rather be fat than have a lot of loose skin hanging off of me. Is this going to happen to me? Is there anything I can do to avoid loose skin? I'm really afraid that I'm going to look worse after I lose all the weight than I do with the weight on. =[ 

I work out every day. Sometimes I only work out for like 20 minutes in the morning and give myself a little bit of a break. I do cardio like walking and running and bicycling. But, I also do weights a few times a week and things like push ups and crunches.

 

Your health is more important than any amount of excess skin you have, and if you are really that concerned about it, the skin can be removed. I have lost 140 pounds. 190 down from 330. I have loose skin, without a doubt, but it's hardly noticeable. Your skin is more elastic than loose. And it can be tightened up dramatically with the proper diet and continued weight loss. You are young. 23. I'm 23. Do it now, while you can, and your skin will be tight. The longer you wait, the more likely your skin will never return to normal. 

I totally agree with Danny! I just recently moved back in with my parents to lose weight and save money. The money I'm saving is going to my "tummy tuck/boob job" just in case. I'm hoping I won't need it.

Btw, I u lose weight and u have enough loose skin to where it hinders you physically or causes bad skin irritation from rubbing, you might be able to find a doctor into saying that it's necessary and not simply cosmetic and your insurance should help pay for it.

Neither one of you should need it, to be honest. There are extreme cases but neither one of you are the typical for those kind of problems. Cases of large amounts of excess skin usually only occur with patients who have been over 100 pounds over weight for 15 years or more. We are all young though and skin is extremely elastic. I just recently lost the weight and am still losing, and it tightens more and more each day. By the time I reach my goal I will have lost 170 pounds, and I can tell you right now, I won't need surgery. However, it is an option, as a last resort, if you are one of the "rare" cases. But remember, even after losing weight it can take a few years for it to tighten up, and it largely depends on your commitment to tightening your skin, which includes exercise, diet, and level of body fat. 

Thanks Danny very informative. I'm starting to feel more and more confident and optimistic about the whole thing every day.
Original Post by dannyc249:

Neither one of you should need it, to be honest. There are extreme cases but neither one of you are the typical for those kind of problems. Cases of large amounts of excess skin usually only occur with patients who have been over 100 pounds over weight for 15 years or more. We are all young though and skin is extremely elastic. I just recently lost the weight and am still losing, and it tightens more and more each day. By the time I reach my goal I will have lost 170 pounds, and I can tell you right now, I won't need surgery. However, it is an option, as a last resort, if you are one of the "rare" cases. But remember, even after losing weight it can take a few years for it to tighten up, and it largely depends on your commitment to tightening your skin, which includes exercise, diet, and level of body fat. 

i agree with you. for the op read this article. http://www.burnthefat.com/loose_skin.html

I remember hearing that if you lose the weight healthily and slowly, you'll have even less of a chance of loose skin. Because it gives your skin a chance to keep up with the shrinking, or something like that.

I have not had a problem with lose skin. Its important to have a work out program.  I used to be quite a bit bigger than I am now, and even before I started using CC. But I took some before and after pics that I have in my gallery.http://caloriecount.about.com/pics/jewelerdav e

More impressive is this guy http://caloriecount.about.com/pics/trainmanup

Skin is a type of fat, and it can shrink, If your 23 and take good care of yourself you will have no problems. A few stretch marks but they get less and less noticeable as time goes on.

The advice in the link above is accurate and a good read.

Do a search online of before and after pics and you can see what happens to most people. Some can have problems but its usually from doing unhealthy things to lose weight, or people who were very larger for a very long time, Keep in mind you want to make a lifestyle change and you want that change to be slow so your body can adjust. The pounds and the skin does go away at a slow and even rate if you tell your body to do it that way.

I have loose skin but not a lot...I always thought it was because of stretchmarks...once the skin is stretched it won't go back.

Anyway I have the baby pouch from having 3 kids that will never go away and I have a bit on my arms (more my left than my right I guess because I'm a righty and that arm naturally gets more exercise).

:o)

Thanks guys! I feel a lot better about it. I've still stuck to my diet and exercise and I *think* I'm doing really good and losing the weight at a very healthy pace. The main thing that made me think of this, is that I have A LOT of stretch marks, and I hold most of my weight in my midsection. 

I'm going to stick to my diet and my exercise routine and see how it goes! :]  

If it happens, I've already accepted that my health is more important than my appearance. But from what I've read, it isn't a given. I can't actually find very consistent answers to loose skin questions. Has there been many studies on weight loss and loose skin?

-Edit- Removed joke so that it wouldn't draw attention away from my valid question.

Original Post by zephyrpixie:

I'd rather be fat than have a lot of loose skin hanging off of me. 
 

Really?  Then why, with the fear of this, are you even attempting to lose weight?  Weight loss is more than eating right and working out...there is a mental aspect that keeps you going to a goal and beyond and it sounds like you just may not be ready for that journey since it could possibly involve some excess skin. 

Thanks for being supportive a-hole. Yes I am trying to lose weight. I started in October of 2011. It's totally normal to have a "fear". Take your negativity elsewhere. I've already lost 25 pounds, and I will keep going. Because, it's more about my HEALTH and my LIFE than it is about loose skin. It's just a RATIONAL fear. 

 

Original Post by zephyrpixie:

Thanks for being support a-hole. Yes I am trying to lose weight. I started in October of 2011. It's totally normal to have a "fear". Take your negativity elsewhere.

 

Honestly, I probably was an a-hole=)  Thanks for the cup check.  I apologize...I should not have pointed out your statement in that way so please allow me to explain:

I think I really just wanted you to re-read your statement.  Do you really feel that way?  Because it is absolutely the same negativity that you are pointing out in my post.  I am in total support of you losing weight but not in support of you fearing reaching your goal because of something as trivial as some skin.  You are young and deserve to be healthy and live a long life.  In order to achieve that goal you really need to be optimistic because it is a hard road.

So I've read discussions on this website for going on 2 years ago. I started my own weight loss journey back then and I was looking for a place on the net where I could relate to people, find hope and encouragement and motivation. I have not really posted much, but since this specific issue is something I deal with daily I thought I would post.

First off, I realize my profile and stuff isn't filled out yet but that's mostly because a) I've always been a reader, not a poster and didn't think it mattered and b) I'm extremely self-conscious and always worried someone is going to make fun of me or think negatively about me. But that sort of thing doesn't happen in the CC community. That is also a huge change I've been trying to make and I think it's JUST as important as losing weight/becoming healthy. Actually, feeling good about yourself IS part of being healthy. But anyway... here's a little bit about me just so you know, since most people have this sort of info filled out on their profiles:

I'm 26 years old. I'm about 5'10 (a bit tall I know) and two years ago I weighed 310lbs. Man, I've never typed that out before to anyone and it feels strange seeing it. I once weighed 310lbs. Today I weigh 198lbs. At one point I had got down to about 185lbs, felt amazing and was almost to my goal of about 165lbs. Then some major life changes happened, and boy did they happen fast, RIGHT around the holidays. Major stress, emotions, depression all hovering around holiday treats and feasts every where I turned. Yep, I ran right back to food and found myself a few pounds over 200 again at the beginning of 2012. I was busting out of my pants that I was so THRILLED to finally fit into. I felt guilty and ashamed and most of all, so disappointed in myself. I gave myself a little slap on the wrist and got back on track immediately. I still struggle with food and I'm guessing it's something I always will struggle with, primarily sweets. It's an addiction, pure and simple. If I feel stressed or upset, I gravitate to the nearest cookie or treat and of course I don't eat just one. I didn't get to 310lbs by eating just one cookie.

I got there by literally gorging until it hurt sometimes. By never playing a sport in school (too afraid to get mad fun of, I was always the fat girl) or being an active kid. By never exercising as I entered adulthood (again, I was afraid someone would laugh at me trying to run or exercise, I also didn't realize that pain from actually using your muscles was normal and a good thing, so I would stop any activity instantly if I felt that). I sat on my butt, on the computer for years playing video games, going to forums and on-online chats as my only means of social interaction. I hated myself, I didn't want anyone to see me. That was the old me. I never want to go back to that - I was in such a dark place. But in the past two years I have to say I am absolutely 100% glad I made the decision to change, no matter what my skin looks like now. There is no greater feeling than feeling healthy. To look back at 5 flights of stairs I just practically ran up and seeing a ghost of my old self slowly climbing each step, out of breath and in pain. I like knowing that I don't have to be scared of sitting on a fold out lawn chair because my butt might get stuck in it or the whole thing could collapse. I don't know, it's the little things and the big things and I could go on for days. It was worth it.

All right, so there's that. Now, I'm not here to scare you guys (I'm kind of addressing this toward both zephyrpixie and Krystahle) but I'm going to be honest with what I've experienced thus far regarding "loose skin". You are both around the age I started, which is fantastic. Still very young and I think age does factor in quite a bit. However I exercised a lot, ate the right things, drank an obscene amount of water, tried skin firming lotions and creams, tried dry-brushing, and did SO much research on what to do to prevent it, but here it is smiling up at me every day. I have the good ol' batwings going on, a bit of skin on my inner thighs, tummy is relatively flat (just don't watch what happens when I do push-ups Undecided), boobs are sad little things now. I never had huge ones to begin with - I was a full C at my heaviest and pretty happy with them... now I'm basically a B. I won't wear short sleeve shirts because of my arms. I get disappointed when a shirt that I feel SHOULD fit me (like a Medium) because it fits in the waist/chest will sometimes be ruined by the fact that my arms are so fat and flabby. They end up looking like sausages stuffed in a sleeve. Now, I'm still pretty overweight and I know I'm not done losing and I'm continuing to build muscle. So I don't see a point in continuing to sulk over something I'm disappointed with right now when I'm not even finished. The human body has an impeccable capability to morph and change form when you've put in the right equation.

At one point I became obsessed with it, mostly arms. Every woman, heavy and thin, I would examine their arms (while trying my best to not look like a creeper) and either wish they could look like hers, or wonder why even though she looks so much heavier than me her arms have such tight skin. One thing I started doing that I found very helpful was actually just talking to people on forums about the issue. People who had successfully lost 100lbs+ and if they had to deal with it and if so, how to feel better about it. I got very nice responses. Sometimes it was what I wanted to hear, sometimes it wasn't. You should see my Bookmarks - I have an entire folder filled with some before/after success stories of weight loss. Some people lose more weight than I have lost and will have lost at my goal and are standing around in swimsuits and bikinis looking fantastic with zero surgery (unless they're lying, I mean it IS the Internet). Others have similar issues to mine but couldn't care less and look SO amazing, I hardly notice skin. Others opt for surgery but in the end, they all made a colossal change to their lives and are so much happier, and for more than just the physical change.

The personal trainers tell me No! Don't even THINK about surgery! You can absolutely change the way they look by doing this and this oh and paying for my services. The plastic surgeon I saw for a free consultation told me no amount of weight lifting or exercise was going to fix it and surgery was the only way. Funny, two very different solutions, but both involved the person getting my money.

I don't know if stretchmarks automatically equate to loose skin areas, but I got pretty unlucky in this regard. I've known people who weighed more than me and never got as many stretch marks as I did. I'm painted with white squiggly faded lines - on my arms, around my boobs, stomach, hips, thighs, even some on the back of my knees I've had since puberty. I can pinch loose skin in these areas where I see the stretch marks and where I don't have them, the skin feels much more firm. I'm not a dermatologist, not a doctor. I don't know if it's just coincidence, but I'm just making an observation.

I don't know if any of this is helpful or not. Basically: I've seen people lose a LOT of weight with hardly ANY loose skin. I've seen people lose a lot with a lot of loose skin. And I see myself - I lost a lot of weight and I'm somewhere in the middle. I'm not done yet, but I'm certainly done with hating myself for my flaws. Please don't allow the POTENTIAL (it's not even a certainty) for some loose skin that can easily be overlooked or if it's that bothersome to you, in the end CAN be removed, stop you from becoming a healthier you! Laughing

Take care and good luck on your journeys!

Laura

#16  
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You're very young. If you take it slow and safe, you'll be fine. Never underestimate the power of your body.
Original Post by hotrs98:

no, it usually does not go away, that what my doctor said to me, once it gets stretched, it usually won't go back without plastic surgery, when i was 20. I waited for a year and it never did. i was 320lbs 6 foot 3 and went to 140 lbs, then i reliased i halve to gain it all back and  i did  that and look much better fat than with all that stretched wrinkled skin.

Let me get this straight.. you lost 180 pounds.. then gained it all back because you didn't want loose skin?

That is.. I don't even know what to call that. Stupid is the word I'm looking for, but I don't want to be insulting. I'm just gobsmacked by the power of misplaced vanity.

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