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Weight loss- is this normal? - March 25th 2017, 02:27 AM

Recently I've been working hard everyday and eating very well and I've lost a lot of weight. I lost about [Edited.], maybe [Edited.] and for my height and frame size (I'm a 5'7 male and have a large frame bone structure) I should be roughly [Edited.], give of take a few pounds. I'm currently [Edited.] on the scale, so I have only [Edited.] to lose to be at a decently healthy weight. I've also strengthened my quads and put on a lot of muscle there from running, and built my biceps and triceps a bit. Everyone is saying if I go down to [Edited.], I'll look too thin, but every time I look at myself, I still see myself as fat and out of shape. At first I saw no difference in the mirror even though I lost a ton of weight, and gradually I started to see myself getting thinner every week. I still have days and moments where I see myself as huge in the mirror, but slowly my mind is catching up to my body in regards to how I look. I noticed I am standing up straighter as my spine is straightening out into better posture, and my core and chest looks much thinner with much less fat. My abdominals are also harder when I flex them than they used to be.

Sorry for the long rambling, but is it normal for me to see myself as the same weight that I was before getting into better shape, as if my mind isn't used to seeing myself as thin? Like I said, some days I see myself very fat, and others I see myself for what I actually am, which is much thinner. Do you think eventually it'll level out and my brain will catch up completely? I lost the majority of the [Edited.] in 3 months.

Last edited by LlamaLlamaDuck; March 25th 2017 at 09:17 AM. Reason: Please do not put weight numbers on TeenHelp.
   
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Re: Weight loss- is this normal? - March 25th 2017, 10:12 AM

The brain has a map of the body in it, and it is this map of our body in our brain that we perceive as reality.

(The brain creates a reality for us to live in and interact with. This reality is full of color and objects and things we recognize and label. The other reality, the reality that's "out there", can only be detected with scientific instruments. Such as there's this continuous spectrum of electromagnetic radiation. Lower frequencies are called "radio waves" and we need a radio to detect them. There's a band called "visible light" which our eyes can detect. Our ears detect sound pressure waves. Our brain puts it all together and creates a reality full of color for us to live in. It's this reality created in our brains that we perceive as "real".)

Anyway, our brain has a map of our body in it. This map isn't necessarily to scale. For example our mouth is mapped out as something pretty big, so we can detect small things in our mouth very well.

If someone loses an arm they may experience "phantom limb" syndrome, where they still perceive a limb being there, even though it's gone. This is because the map of their body in their brain still has an arm. (This can cause problems if they perceive pain in their phantom limb, because now they have pain in a non-existent arm. What can one do about that?)

Similarly it works the other way too. One can have a stroke which damages part of the body map, say it erases the arm in their brain's body map. Now the patient has an arm they don't identify as theirs. They may ask the nurse to take away the lunch tray and this arm that isn't theirs.

So we have this map of our body in our brain, and it's this map we perceive as reality. If the map of our body in our brain is "fat", we'll think our body is fat no matter what we see in the mirror, or what others tell us, or what a scale tells us. The illusion is so strong it overpowers even our own senses when we look at a scale telling our weight, or look at ourselves in a mirror.


So yes it's possible for our real body "out there" to not match up with the map of our body in our brain.

I'm not sure how to fix that if they don't match up. Possibly some qi-gong or tai-chi or yoga exercises might help. Mindfulness motion exercises where we pay close attention to the movement of our own body. Possibly seeing our own body while slowly moving our own body might help the brain tune itself up.
   
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Re: Weight loss- is this normal? - March 25th 2017, 10:19 AM

You simply need time to get used to your new look. Remember that changes when you excercise are rather gradual and subtle day to day, and because you see yourself everyday you won't see them as clearly as others.

The easiest way of noticing your size reduction is by your clothes. Im working on myself as well, and while I cant always appreciate my physical changes by looking at my body, all the loose pants and suddenly baggy hoodies make it so I don't forget I'm making progress :P

Just give yourself some time, enjoy your new, better life and stay focused!


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