Today I want to have a real discussion. One of the things that I hear a lot of people worry about when they know they have half their body weight to lose is loose skin.
If you look through my Facebook page, you’ll see pictures I’ve posted of my loose skin. I’m not sharing this so you’ll think I’m brave. I’m sharing this because I’ve actually found body acceptance and body love. It’s taken me a while to do that, but I’ve gotten there. Even more, I’m sharing this because I want to help you get mentally psyched up for the whole process and to have some honest information.
The first thing I want to clarify is that I’ve never had a tummy tuck and I’ve never had any augmentation. The only thing that I’ve ever had done was in 2012 when I had a double hernia operation, they removed the pannus that hung down because it wouldn’t have healed properly otherwise. But aside from that, I’ve had nothing done.
I’ve shown pictures of the loose skin that I have through my stomach, and I do have it even through my trunk. I also have it on my arms. I went from 313 pounds to where I am today, which is 155. I have minimal loose skin compared to how much weight I had to lose. It didn’t happen by accident; it happened because I was really diligent about weight lifting.
Here’s the hard thing about weight lifting: You’re going to be in there pumping it, you’re going to be doing a lot, but if you have a lot of excess body fat, you won’t see the muscle. It can be discouraging. I had to know, I had to believe it was growing underneath, and it was. The more fat I lost, the more visible the muscle became. The good thing about the muscle is it fills up the loose skin.
A lot of people end up with a lot of loose skin, especially through their torso, their upper body, their arms, and they get concerned about that. I have some on my lower body, as well. If you lift weights, you can minimize the amount of loose skin you have.
It’s a slow process. You have to stick with it. If you love running and doing cardio, I’m not discouraging you from doing that. I’m just saying, if you know you have a lot of weight to lose and you’re concerned about the loose skin, maybe implement some type of resistance and weight training into your program.
For women, the game changer is that you have to consistently increase the weight. If you stay at the really light weights the entire time, you won’t get the results. You have to put the muscle under strain in order to get it to change. There are so many benefits to weight training, not just the physical. You get an extra metabolic advantage with muscle tissue, and overall it will help you with burning fat. There’s a lot of good that comes with it.
I just want to come to you today, as a friend again, and let you know if concerns about loose skin and how you’ll look are cycling around in your head, first off, you can work on body acceptance and body love once you hit maintenance; that’s one of the things that I’ve had to really focus on. The other thing is to be proactive and to be eating well, of course.
And if you are doing any type of exercise, try to prioritize some strength training. It doesn’t have to be anything crazy; I’m talking about a basic StrongLifts 5×5 program or Body Pump. It can be anything where you’re hitting the major muscle groups a couple of times a week, and it can make a huge difference.
I hope this helped you today if you were struggling with the loose skin idea. You can fill it with muscle and it will look completely different. Kudos to you for being on your journey, and if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out.