Archive | April, 2012

let’s firm it up!

29 Apr

I can see that I’m getting lots of hits from people who are looking for information about losing weight and loose skin.  As you know it’s something very close to my heart!

As well as eating well and doing a lot of strength exercise I embarked on something else this week to see what effect it might have – thanks to Champneys day spa in Bath for a great experience!

I spent an hour and a half having ‘Bikini Bootcamp’ – now firstly my objective isn’t to wear a bikini this summer but rather to have more body confidence when certain bits of me come out for the summer and also to feel better naked!

The product is Mama Mio, popular with the american market and especially targeted at new mums for obvious reasons, it’s a multi stage process using essential oils, lots of exfoliation to detoxify and stimulate, improving skin tone and firming everything (hopefully!)  I have to say it presented some of the weirdest sensations I’ve ever experienced, one stage like having hundreds of tiny pinpricks and the stage of being wrapped in  polythene whist my seaweed wrap set was peculiar to say the least – on the whole though I could feel my nerve endings reacting for hours afterwards and it was good fun!

My skin does feel great especially my upper arms, we’re concentrating efforts on the bits that need the most work, that’s the great thing about this treatment, it is flexible, you can either have the whole body treatment or shorter amounts of time on specific areas. We’ve adapted mine to concentrate on my inner thighs which are quite damaged. It was good to have some professional feedback too on what my body looks like and what can be achieved. It was also good to hear that some areas are in quite good shape, the backs of my legs are good, there isn’t as much cellulite as I’d feared, my torso is also springing back quite well and my boobs aren’t any more saggy that other women my age!

My skin layers in some areas are damaged, there is only so much that can be achieved however we can improve the appearance and importantly my confidence.  That is the reality of stretching your skin for an extended amount of time and then losing the weight.  It’s not like being pregnant, that’s relatively short amount of time and the elastin in your skin will retract back to an extent, however stretch marks are another story – time is though a great ‘healer’!

My therapist has seen a whole host of women’s bodies, her experience is that everyone is very different, some with just ‘pop’ back, other won’t.  However obesity is a prolonged attack on your skin and recovery will be slow and require effort and present limitations. I’ve now gone from a size 24 to a size 12, that doesn’t happen without some effect however you can help things along.

The main things to remember are:

1. The faster you shrink the more work your skin has to do, lose it in a slow, sustained way, this will allow not only your skin but your muscles and organs to adapt.  You also stand a far better chance of keeping it off long term, I always think now of the process as being one for life now, I have no intention of doing all this again!

2. The bigger you become and the longer you stay there, the more potential damage to your skin in the long term, there are no miracle cures, even though surgery will reduce the loose skin,  it will leave you with scarring, that isn’t as easy to live with on the bits that are out more – like upper arms or legs. So the moral is to do something about your weight sooner than later, I always tell women in their 20s that it’s easier in so many ways for them to do something about their weight and to not then have to deal with some of the things years of obesity lead to.

3. Exercise and eat well – exercise does help, you need to lose body fat and build muscle to fill the space left, that way everything looks firmer, even if the skin doesn’t actually shrink back. My arms are certainly beginning to do this!  It doesn’t happen overnight though, it does take work and some professional advice on the best exercise to do, I’ve had totally change my exercise programme and to keep at it, I’m hopeful it is now paying dividends.

4. EVERYONE IS UNIQUE!  I hear all the time about women who shrink back, have no stretch marks etc etc etc, that’s great but not everyone will have the same experience.  However the advantages of being smaller far outweigh being big. Don’t be so hard on yourself, don’t set your goals as being someone elses, celebrate what you do achieve and don’t over focus on what may not be humanly possible. Don’t look at celebrities or women in the gym and think I want a body like that and I won’t be happy until I do, you may get someway there (and yes some people are very lucky in being able to do it) but the vast majority won’t, but what is wrong with that, if you get fit, healthy, happy and love your body what more could you possibly want!

5. Treat yourself to some treatments, it won’t necessarily perform a miracle but you will come away feeling great and loving your body. This is vital, I do love my new body, with its lumps, bumps and memories of where it’s come from, it deserves some pampering and some things do help!

6. And finally the aging process. There are a lot of ladies who use my gym of more advanced years, it’s interesting to see how their bodies have stood up to the passing years, one lady is in her late 60s, she’s been swimming almost ever day of her life, he skin though is now very sagging and she tells me it’s been like that for some years. It really does come down to genetics and how your very unique body ages. It could well have been that my body today wouldn’t look that different had I not had the obesity years, looking at the other women in my family, our body shapes are similar, especially our hips, so to think that I can substantially reduce this area may just not be possible!  What is important is that I give my body the best chance, to eat well, exercise and remain healthy!

I’m now methodically rubbing in lots of firming treatment stuff into my skin, I’m giving it my best shot on all fronts now – let’s see what happens!

Getting naked & happy

13 Apr

When I was bigger there would have been no way I would ever let anyone see me naked or god forbid touch me?
One of the things I now do is have massages, they’re great for stimulating my lymphatic system & maybe, just maybe they’ll help with the wobbly bits and loose skin. Had a long discussion with the therapist about stretch marks & have some brand new products to try.
Tonight my skin feels great, I like a hard massage so everything does feel as if it’s had a good workout!
It gives me confidence too, in fact the confidence is brimming over at the moment, the weights work is really helping in that department, maybe it’s because I have to do it alongside the blokes in the gym, and that I’ve really progressed which feels great!
I was discussing the naked thing with a friend yesterday, when I’m dressed the wobbly bits aren’t visible, my ‘story’ isn’t that evident however naked it’s there – getting better but still there…then I have to explain what happened. Part of me is very proud of that though, I’ve worked bloody hard to get to where I am today – in both mind and body.

I was also discussing ‘happiness’ today, am I happy? Oh yes, I was asked to score myself out of 10 on how happy I was – I gave myself a 9, it feels very good to be able to say that. And I can honestly say that losing the weight & how I look is only a part of that, there are a lot of things that are actually more important at the moment. When I was bigger I used to ponder if I lost the weight would I be happy? The answer is yes it started a process but there were a lot of other things that also needed to be addressed. What you look like won’t necessarily make you happier, I know people of all shapes and sizes & whether they are happy or not has in the main little to do with their size. I could have lost the weight, not dealt with all the other issues & maybe still not been happy?
Today as my thighs were being well & truly pummelled I was happy!

Being Pampered

10 Apr

One of the things I discovered I really like is to have a massage. When I was bigger I didn’t like my body being seen, let alone being touched all over by a stranger.
As part of the process of getting to know my new body I plucked up the courage to have a massage, it was amazing & it’s now my biggest treat to myself.
It also helps with the appearance of my skin especially as summer (& summer clothes) approaches. Last year I even had self-tan applied with massage – pure bliss!
I have a gift voucher for a day spa so booked in for a whole body, intensive massage, it will help to get my lymphatic system working, will exfoliate my skin & will importantly make me feel great! And now I have no problem with my body being seen or touched.
It’s another of those things I do now that I would never have experienced the joy of, had I not made all these changes to my life.

Searching

9 Apr

For all blog writers, our statistics are always interesting. We like to see how people find us and the search terms that are used.

For those who know and follow me, you’ll know how important this blog is, in that it took a lot of courage to finally put my story into the public arena, I was a very insular person and hadn’t shared in the past. It has helped enormously to be able to share as I know it does for other people who write similar blogs.

To find today that someone had used the search term ‘thinpeoplehatertrudykellyloseweight‘ was shocking and extremely hurtful. This isn’t an easy post to write, I could have just ignored what I read today (that was my original plan) however hate is such a strong, very negative word, it disables rational thought and it makes me very sad that someone may think that. As they used my full name which is not in this blog I am assuming it is someone I know and that makes it that bit sadder and more hurtful. However I believe it’s more about their issues than mine and has provoked me to think about what we say about both ‘thin’ and ‘big’ people and how we deal with that, whatever size we are.

There is nothing in the blog that implies that I hate thin people, I can’t see how anyone could find that? To that person I remind you that we are all human beings, we hurt, if you feel that my story of losing weight is in some way a ‘dig’ at thin people then I am amazed? As long as you are fit, healthy and at peace with your body then how can you ‘hate’ how anyone else looks?

My objective has been to get healthier, get fit and to change my body shape – all of which I’ve achieved and am still enjoying. I was never focused on becoming as thin as I was in my early 20s, I didn’t feel good at all being that small and I am ironically far fitter at the size I am today than I was then! We’re all very different and prefer different body shapes, it’s what makes us all so interesting. I love my curves (the smaller, more toned ones), I prefer my body that way, I’m just not personally aiming to be ‘thin’, I am still working very hard to get more toned and fitter – does that make me a ‘thinpeoplehater’ just because ‘thin’ isn’t on my key objectives list and I make no secret of that?

One of the key things I’ve learnt myself and from others is that if you’re fit, healthy and happy with your body then you won’t care what anyone else thinks or says about you? People will always make comments about thin people – some will do it out of jealousy because they would like to be you or as I’ve found because they just can’t come to terms with the changes that you’ve made, I’ve lost some friends because of that. Some will do it in jest and some in encouragement which is lovely.

However in some instances it will be done out of concern because they care that perhaps things have gone too far, in those circumstances, if there is no cause for concern then all should be fine. This could be done in the same way as someone once said to me that they were concerned about how big I was? It affected me because I knew it was true, at the time I took it as an enormous insult and very much ‘how dare you’? The same thing happened when I was very thin in my teens, looking back, I was way too thin and the comments were most certainly made out of concern not jealousy. They are difficult conversations but sometimes necessary.

However I reiterate that if you are fit, healthy and happy then what others say is their issue not yours. You can’t stop people saying anything, you just have to change how you deal with it.

In the main I’ve received very positive feedback on my story, it’s that I’ll focus on, I’m very happy with what I’ve achieved and will achieve in the future. We all move on.

Suffering

8 Apr

Well not badly but in a good way, my new gym programme is a real step up and I have obviously been using muscles in a new way as I’m sore.

Check out the Challenge page to see why!

However this feels good!  It means I’m moving on, I also know what the way to ease some of the discomfort is to do some more exercise, not more weights but certainly to get moving, so today me and the fins went off to the pool.  It would have been easy to have sat on the sofa nursing my aches and pains however now after a good hour in the pool, everything feels nicely stretched and much less painful!

And sitting around is so boring!

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