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Here's a little background: In the past year and a half I've lost 60 pounds. I've been doing this in a healthy way, following the advice of my dietitian and athletic therapist. My dietitian says that I need to lose at least 20 more pounds before I am considered a healthy weight.
The problem is, people who have been supportive in the past are now less encouraging as I get closer to a healthy weight. When I mention losing more weight they get concerned looks on their faces. I assume that as I shed my status as the 'fat person' in the group, they don't know how to respond.
This question is for those who have lost a significant amount of weight: How do you handle a lack of encouragement from friends and family? Also, do you have any encouraging words for me and anyone else in a similar situation?
It's really nice to have the support of your friends and family, but ultimately you have to be doing it for yourself. Set mini-goals for yourself. Treat yourself by buying new clothes at a milestone, or taking a vacation, or signing up for a new fitness class or race.
I think when you are obviously at an unhealthy weight people feel safer noticing and complimenting weight loss. However, when people who look healthy lose weight it's harder to know what to say. Sometimes people are losing weight due to illness or an eating disorder. In that situation complimenting weight loss is the wrong thing to do...but from the outside it's hard to tell.
Also, you've lost a substantial amount of weight, it was a big change, people have noticed and been supportive and encouraging. As you lose the last bit people may feel they don't need to keep harping on your weight loss since you are doing a great job.
You're doing great! Keep up the good work. and get your encouragement from this site.
Ohhh I so relate to this, I have lost 75 lb in the last 18 months and when i finally went and bought new clothes that fit, loads of people commented on how much I had lost. But when i say i want to lose another 28lb ... people continually say no I dont need it, or it will be to much and are completely discouraging! My BMI is still 32, i'm still moderately overweight, i've been 42 lb lighter than this previously. so I think I am being realistic.
So why do people now discourage me? Wish I could answer the question ..... jealousy? perhaps they like having a fat friend as it makes them feel better? genuine worry that i'm losing too much? ignorance re the health hazards of carrying an extra 28 lb? Wish I had the answers but I dont. Just gotta keep going and when i have lost it, hope people will realise it was for the best!
I've lost 87 lbs since Jan of 2010 and I have people telling me I shouldn't lose any more. I am pretty close to my goal and my main focus is on body composition and I'm not giving up! I just smile and tell them I am healthy and go on my way. I think the main thing is that they are used to seeing someone big and they have to adjust that image in their mind. I be it you asked them if so and so looked too skinny (that person being someone of similar size to you) they would probably say no because they are used to that image. Just stick with your goals until you feel good. Just be realistic about what you can expect as you get closer. I know I'll never look like a 20 yr old that was never overweight and didn't have 4 c-sections and it would not be healthy to try and get there. ;)
Thanks for all of your encouragement! It's so good to know that other people can identify with me.
I think I've realized that losing weight affects not only the person who's getting smaller, but also those around them. For example, my mom now serves fresh veggies at family gatherings. (I absolutely love fresh veggies. Meals aren't complete without them.) At the same time, she seems happy when I eat dessert. I think that she thinks there's something seriously wrong with someone if they don't eat sweets. Regardless, when I visit her I'll keep filling my plate with cucumber and carrots and end the meal with a bite or two of cake.
Yeah... I started getting comments when I was still 5-10lbs overweight... then again when I got to 135-140lbs, which is technically an OK weight for my height - but I have a small frame... now I'm around 118-120lbs (trying to maintain - and improve my muscle/fat ratio) and people keep saying I'm too skinny, even though I'm perfectly healthy and average... I think it's because people are used to me being a lot bigger, I used to be 205+lbs... I normally only get this from people who knew me when I was at a heavier weight - not from strangers, so yeah...
At the end of the day, I'm doing this for myself, not for them *shrugs*
I recently met some friends I hadn't seen in 3 years and they were shocked when they saw me, said I had "wasted away", lol... but I did explain that yes, I do eat, I don't starve - I just eat healthier and smaller portions than before... and while I do enjoy a treat every now and then - I don't feel the need for larger amounts of sugary food and junk on a regular basis... and I feel better and have more energy than ever before
Krissy 55555 and xmhwilson are right on the button! I have to do it for myself and constantly remind myself why I am on this journey. I am now living a healthier life style for over 18 months (lost nearly 93 pounds) and I can imagine that outsiders might find my long journey a bit tedious.
I am mainly encouraged and motivated by comments and stories on C. C. and by my weight loss buddy who I found through C. C.
I know it looks like not alot compared to you guys, but I lost around 18 pounds last summer. I am down to 174 now, and my face is way slimmer, i swear I lost it all from my face! :)
I have actually lost a total of 25 pounds of fat, and have built on 7lb of muscle.
As a freshman, being fat was not so fun. I AM going to have abs in the next 8 weeks or so, I just need to lose these last couple pounds off me tummy!
Also, don't do it for your friends or family. I don't even think my parents know i started to diet. I have not seen them since Christmas.
Do it for you, your transforming body and dreams of fitness model physique should be enough to motivate you, they are for me!
good luck in your quest, If you really want it, you will get there!!!
Good luck, and I hope this works bc it is my plan if I ever get to that point.
I had similiar things happen to me. I lost about 135 pounds. When I started to consider who I was hearing this from, a lot of people seem to say that I had lost enough weight when I was close to the size they were. But you need to remember that a normal BMI is not average in America. The average BMI is more like 28. So sometimes people are uncomfortable if you have always been heavier than them and now you are smaller.
Oh and I learned years ago not to talk to my mother! After I told her I lost 5 lbs she said it was all water weight!
I only lost 53 pounds, but to me, that was an accomplishment. For a while my friends and family were excited for me, but now when I say that I wear a smaller size or I'm happy to be skinny, they just ignore me. I'm not bragging..I'm just ecstatic that I was able to lose the weight. I just keep remembering that I am healthier and happier. Try not focusing on what others think..you can't please everyone so you have to please yourself.
Congratulations! That's an amazing accomplishment. I haven't lost a lot of weight (I'm working on my 30 lbs), but my mom has lost almost 100, so I've watched and encouraged her progress (she also has about 30 left to lose, which I'm in full support of!).
Just a suggestion, but if you feel comfortable enough with the people who don't understand you wanting to lose the last 20, maybe frame your response to their questioning in such a way that you say, "yes, my doctor wants me to lose another 20 lbs to lower my health risks." It's harder to argue with the doctor's orders than with what they might perceive as your personal "unrealistic vanity" weight goal.
I know that when I was at my healthiest I had several friends and even some family members treat me "differently" (I don't want to say "poorly") over what they thought was an unhealthy weight. I was 125 pounds of muscle and 5'2". According to doctors, BMI and most importantly, MYSELF, I was in the absolute best shape of my life, feeling great, never going hungry. I was fast, strong and eating way more than I think they realized. I was active.
After talking to my mom about why some family members acted that way, I was finding that if your friends/family have always been "smaller" or "healthier" than you or if they've struggled with weight and fitness in the past (and therefore it was a unspoken connection) or still do, that they can get "jealous" or feel left out when you start to succeed and leave the "fat" or "out of shape" or "overweight" group. It is a weird way to think about it, but it happens more often than not.
If you are seeking the help of two, what seem to be, experts in terms of diet/weight and THEY say it is healthy, then I don't think you need to worry about what your family/friends have to say. Some of them may just be envious of the fact that you have such control. Some may genuinely be worried - which is why you need to assure them that a) you are being healthy b) you are seeking professional opinions c) it is YOUR body and YOU feel healthy and able to lose more weight without crossing that line.
The only other thing I can think of in terms of them not being supportive is if you were overweight for a long time, then those people grew so used to seeing you at that weight. When you lose a significant amount of weight you may look abnormally small/frail to them simply because the "norm" for you has been the overweight you. I think if you tell them about your numbers, BMI and what the professionals have to say, they may retract their "worry" or lack of support.
I think sometimes people may not realize they are discouraging you. When people say things like, "oh, you don't need to lose anymore, you look great", I think it is just their way of complimenting you and probably don't realize the effect it is having. I also know a few people that have lost a lot of weight, whom we all supported. Then they have the 'fat-girl in a skinny-body' syndrome where they weigh 120 pounds but look in the mirror and still see a 250 pound person and talk about how much weight they need to lose. I know someone who lost 100 pounds ten years ago and is now at the low-end of the healthy scale. However, if she eats 1/2 a slice of pizza, she beats herself up for weeks. Your friends/family are probably just trying to ensure you recognize how far you have come. I've been the person to say, "You look great! You don't need to lose any more" before, not to discourage them, but as a way to ensure they recognize where they are.
It may help if you let them know that you have x lbs to lose until your goal. You can make sure they know that you aren't letting your weight-loss control you, but that you are still in control, and you know where you are and where you want to go.
Some, of course, could be jealous, but for most, it probably comes from a place of love.
i am at where you were, what did u change and how can i change. I struggle alot and just can't seem to do it!
Hello, i have been on my own personal journey since 2009 and so far im down from 400 lbs to 245. Its been hard and i struggle alot but one thing i do have
is SUPPORT from family and friends..I joined a group named TOPS and its
been a lifesaver for me...I get so much support and tips and healthy
advise from all..its so refreshing to know i can go into this group
meeting without being embarrassed if i loose or gain..they support and give
so much encouragement..
I count my calories and do about 1600 a day give or take some days.
I have bad knees so cant walk due to falling and pain so i do mine at home.
i have a stationary pedal bike i sit and do in front of my recliner and i watch tv but pedal too..and i have my stretch bands on my door knobs to pull and use and i have my recumberant bike which i do about 10 mins at a time through
out the day..its all up to me what i choose..somedays i dont want to do
nothing but feel guilty i didnt so i do mine in mornings mostly. I love to
re-invent my meals..i get bored easily so i have to change things up..sometimes
i eat lunch or dinner for breakfast and eat lighter the end of the day..haha
Some people are still rude to me about my wieghtloss but thats ok cause im
learning that its my journey and thats all that matters..I know where i was and dont want to get to again..so hang in there and remember your doing this for YOU so be happy with where your at and always love yourself..You cant change how people act so dont try or your going to be a very unhappy person..Remember life is too short to let others make you feel sad..so get out there and enjoy the new YOU and good luck with the rest of your journey!!