Weight-loss Reality the Part No One Talks About
As I even begin to type this post out, my heart is pounding out of my chest. But, if I’m going to blast about how honest I am with you all, I’m going to have to practice what I preach here. So here goes nothing, it’s time to talk about loose skin, expectations, and the negative impact on mental health that occurs during and after weightloss.
The human body can withstand quite a lot, each and every one of us are proof of that testament. I personally can say with complete honesty when I say that I am shocked at how much my own body has been able to endure. I have lost 70lbs, developed an eating disorder, recovered and relapsed — major weight fluctuations here –, and have finally reached a healthy state of recovery where I have lost more body fat and built a significant amount of muscle — completely changing my body composition from that of the past. There are some days that I’m shocked that I am even standing here with a healthy and extremely well functioning body.
I have a decent amount of loose skin on my abdomin and my inner thighs from the weight loss. As well as various areas of my body that have smaller amounts of extra skin. It makes me extremely self-concious at times, and even creates physicial discomfort during various activities where the skin pulls or rubs together to the point of bruising (inner thighs –think chub rub but way worse). No matter what I do, these areas will not tighten up, and no amount of collagen creams or water, or wraps, or corsets, will remove the problem. I even have had consultations with plastic surgeons who have told me and showed me just how much skin could and should be removed. I lift weights, I stay hydrated, and I eat healthy — everything I should be doing, I am… yet it feels as though it is never good enough.
This leads me to my next point of expectations. I have lost 70 lbs, gained muscle, and over the past year have even dropped 13% of my body fat. Yet my body is no where near the fantasy image in my mind of the perfect body I once wished I could have. Although I am very proud of my progress, I still find myself criticizing my body and wishing I looked like some of the other women I see in the gym or on social media. I don’t have that “tight little body” that I used to read about in cosmo magazine, or the perfect abs. And honestly there are many days that I let those thoughts negatively effect me. But I try to continually remind myself that it is a process and I have already come so far.
Furthermore, by losing weight the first go round when I was 17-18, I developed an eating disorder that ended up plaguing me for the next 4 years of my life. My depression worsened and I became suicidal, just like when I was overweight. Now that I am in recovery, I struggle to keep my mental health in check. It’s not a switch that you can turn off. Counting macros, tracking exercise, posting on social media even can all be very triggering but I am choosing everyday to use these tools to better myself and to improve my health instead of allowing it to deteriorate my health and life.
Most of the time I still see myself as “fat Angie”. The inner overweight, teenager who hated her life and was bullied every single day by her peers. It is hard to overcome those thoughts when I look in the mirror and still see the 245lbs girl looking back at me. I may see that girl in the mirror for the rest of my life, or she may fade away but either way, I am am not her anymore. I am healthy, I am fit, I am strong.
It’s a very long road but it is one that I am committed to traveling. Each day is an opportunity to better myself, not just physically but emotionally too. At the end of the day, I wouldn’t go back and change the weightloss. I am so much happier without it because of the life that I have gained. Don’t be scared to lose the weight but with that being said it won’t be rainbows and butterflies, it is hard work and emotionally taxing. But I promise you, if you work towards your goals of a healthier you, it is 100% going to be worth it.