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fetch
January 28th, 2005, 11:24 PM
Hi all I am new here. I am wondering what is a good routine to swim and lose weight? I am close to 250lbs right now and don't look good fat LOL. was doing some research and found an article (http://www.usms.org/fitness/articleofthemonth.php?a=12) written by USMS' own Bill Volckening (if he posts here, hi Bill!) that talks about how he lost weight by swimming and changing his diet, but he don't talk about the swimming much, just the eating. LOL and i've had enough eating.

His story is very inspriational though and I want tofollow suit! I've started a diet but I need help with swiming! ANy suggestions?? ThxU!

Kari
January 28th, 2005, 11:58 PM
Hi Fetch! Listen to Bill.

As for me, I lost 30 pounds and have kept it off for nearly two years by having swimming be my main form of exercise. What I did was change my diet. I was eating way too much cheese. Seriously. And I quit drinking wine and beer, which made a dramatic difference.

I was swimming 5-6 days a week and not losing weight. In fact, I was gaining. When I changed my diet it made a huge difference. I also stopped eating when I was full! In other words, I started listening to my body. That combined with watching how much fat and booze I was consuming and within 6 months I had lost the 30 pounds.

Good luck!!

dorothyrde
January 29th, 2005, 01:11 PM
Anything that burns calories will help, and swimming certainly burns calories, but you have to do more than float.

Seriously, it really is more about what you put in your mouth. Most people are eating 2-3 portions and counting it as one, and snacking, and eating way too much high calories foods. That would be me<raising hand>. Once I controled portions and the quality of food, I went from 180 to 145! And have maintained that for 2 years.

lapswimmr
January 29th, 2005, 09:19 PM
Diet is the main thing to reduce and swimming does help. It makes you feel good and helps keep you on your goal. I just read a study the other day that belive it or not attributes people who "figet" opposed to people who sit still. The figiters are thin people and the sit stills are heavy. The reason.. People burn several hundred calories a day just moving a little bit. Now think of the calories you loose while swimming! Truly you may lose at least 400 calories a day swimming and every bit helps plus the diet. Add up that 400 calories a day and you can see well 1600-2000 calories a week gone. It does make a difference but remember the best diet is a reasonable reduction plus the exercise . Baked Broiled or Boiled meats, fresh veggies and fruits and plenty of water to drink. Let go the white flour and sugar..cookies, chips, junk snacks and you will see results sooner then you think..

DAP
January 30th, 2005, 01:59 PM
Originally posted by lapswimmr
I just read a study the other day that belive it or not attributes people who "fidget" opposed to people who sit still. The fidgeters are thin people and the sit stills are heavy. That's interesting. It supports something that I had suspected. I am a very fidgety person. People often think that I am nervous about something, and I don't realize that I'm wiggling my hands or feet, or rocking back and forth. I have also never been heavy, even during the period when I was not actively exercising. I suspected that my fidgeting might be burning calories.

craiglll@yahoo.com
January 31st, 2005, 11:30 AM
I also fidget an am very skinny.

I read an article on weight loss recently. It was a study of over 200 peole. They only people who had kept the weight off were people who had had bariatric surgery. Every one lost weight but most had put it back on within two years. The basic conclusion was tha people who are over wieght aren't over weight because of what they eat or their life-style, they are over wieght becuase they are overwieght.

This interested me because I see people who swim really hard but are still overweight. They exercise, eat right and don't lose weight. I know that until very recently, most people in the field said that swimming is not going to help a person lose wieght. I don't see how it possibly can. For three reasons either a swimmer is not increasing the heart rate enough, not working hard enough for a long enough period of time, or the water is helping decrease the amount of energy needed. Also, it takes so much energy & work to get to the stored fat the body has set aside.

dorothyrde
January 31st, 2005, 02:05 PM
I think a key to maintaining weight loss is making sure you keep your muscle mass up.....and that means weight training. As we age, we tend to lose that muscle mass, and muscle mass helps the body burn calories. That is why men can lose weight faster than women, more muscle naturally. Swimming is a good calorie burner, but overall fitness relies on cardio, resistance training and flexibility. You need all three to be fit, and a healthy diet to be slim.

khiliah
January 31st, 2005, 04:57 PM
I am also starting swimming for assistance in weight loss, and I was reading a study where they were saying that most people who swim do not lose weight unless they accompany it with an aerobic exercise as well... BUT..... the reason is that people who swim tend to eat more... and the reason behind that is because aerobic exercize and running and such gives a natural release of chemicals that are like an appetite supressent... where as swimming does not release that... so swimmers ( so they say) tend to want to eat more)

If you're swimming for weight loss, please, make sure you follow it with a good healthy diet that watches calories or whatever works and don't fill up on more food just because of the absense of energy you'll feel after hard core swimming...

I guess we'll see how it goes! :)

EyeoreSAM
January 31st, 2005, 05:09 PM
See I tend to disagree with the fact that you have to do other exercises besides swimming to loose weight. I don't do any weight training, yet I have lost all the weight that I needed to from only swimming (I mean a lot). I won't do weight training b/c no matter how light the weight I bulk up rather quickly. I watched what I ate and swam 5 times a week and did just fine. I believe that the intensity and the variety of workouts that I did is what made the difference.

EyeoreSAM
January 31st, 2005, 05:09 PM
See I tend to disagree with the fact that you have to do other exercises besides swimming to loose weight. I don't do any weight training, yet I have lost all the weight that I needed to from only swimming (I mean a lot). I won't do weight training b/c no matter how light the weight I bulk up rather quickly. I watched what I ate and swam 5 times a week and did just fine. I believe that the intensity and the variety of workouts that I did is what made the difference.


SORRY FOR THE DOUBLE POST

khiliah
January 31st, 2005, 05:13 PM
That's what I'm saying... not that you need to run and do other stuff, but more like don't over eat and stuff yourself, eat a normal amount of food and don't overeat to replace the engery you've burned off from swimming if you want to lose weight...

I probably didn't write that the best way. :)

Basically the study was saying that if you're a swimmer, you tend to eat more, so if you're doing it to lose weight and you're eating more.. then you're going to have to add in like running or something else... but if you are watching what you eat, and swimming, and not adding in food, you're going to lose weight...

Kae1
January 31st, 2005, 06:28 PM
I heard about the study that says that swimmers tend to eat more after a workout than other athletes, thus making up some of the calories burnt by the workout. Now, that doesn't mean that swimming won't cause you to lose weight, but it may mean that you're subconsciously eating more when you're swimming than when you're not swimming, thus preventing weight loss at a decent rate. I had started swimming after a long absence in order to lose weight and it wasn't happening much. Then, a friend convinced me to join weight watchers, and BOOM, the weight came off almost faster than anyone else in the group (and they were jealous because after swimming for an hour I could have a guilt-free scoop of ice cream).

In other words - just swimming may not help lose weight (it'll still help with your cardiovascular system, though). You still have to watch what you eat.

Personally, I swim so I can eat ice cream without it going directly to my hips.

Kae

DAP
January 31st, 2005, 06:30 PM
Basically the study was saying that if you're a swimmer, you tend to eat more I can definitely believe that. After swimming, I have a ravenous appetite. But I have actually lost some weight since I have started swimming regularly about 4 months ago. I think part of it is that I have not quite learned how to swim very efficiently, so I burn a lot of energy swimming. When I'm resting at the end of the lane, I can feel myself generating a lot of heat, and I have to keep myself submerged to cool off. I continue to feel hot for a couple hours after swimming, so I assume that my metabolism stays elevated.

khiliah
January 31st, 2005, 06:31 PM
OK, well I'm completely addicted to whitey's ice cream.... so I'll just have to double up the swimming effort so I can be guilt free for a double scoop? :)

:D

knelson
January 31st, 2005, 06:42 PM
It seems Bob Bowman agrees that swimming isn't the best way to lose weight (at least for females). Here's a quote from an interview in the current Swimming Technique:

"Brooks: Do you agree with Paul Bergen that in order to keep control of body composition you need either an hour straight of hard aerobic dryland work like running or riding an exercise bike, or else weight training?
Bowman: I do agree with that. I don't think girls are going to lose much weight swimming, no matter how many miles they swim, if that's what you're trying to do. "

(The entire interview can be found at http://www.swiminfo.com/articles/swimtechnique/articles/200501-01st_art1.asp Lots of stuff about Michael Phelps, of course.)

I have to agree with Bob from my personal experience, too. I don't really notice a dichotomy in masters swimming, but in college it seemed like most of the guys were thin, while the girls were not. It's very possible it was just a skewed perception of what the ideal female body should look like on my part, but there could be something more to it, as well.

Fishgrrl
January 31st, 2005, 06:58 PM
As a female (and NOT an elite swimmer) I disagree with Bowman. I swim 1 to 1 1/2 hours, 4 to 6 days a week; once in a while I will throw in a 2 to 2 1/2 hour workout - certainly not at the elite level like I'm sure Bowman is used to seeing, and I weight train 2 to 3 hours per week. That's it.

I was not losing weight with this routine because I was eating high fat foods and drinking too much wine and beer. When I changed my diet, which included cutting out my nightly wine habit, I lost 30 pounds - and I stuck to the same exercise routine. There have been weeks where I could not weight train and I just swam, and I kept losing weight and I've kept it off since.

Is he talking about pre-teens or teens who's body fat % is going kind of crazy (norman for teen girls)?? - but then again he's pretty much in contact with elite female swimmers only, correct?

I don't understand how he's arrived at this conclusion.

khiliah
January 31st, 2005, 07:08 PM
Well, ya know, we could all prove Bob wrong. :)

knelson
January 31st, 2005, 07:16 PM
Originally posted by Fishgrrl
Is he talking about pre-teens or teens who's body fat % is going kind of crazy (norman for teen girls)?? - but then again he's pretty much in contact with elite female swimmers only, correct?

He was specifically discussing teenaged girls. Basically the interviewer (Brooks) was having him discuss the development of age group swimmers, and what he emphasizes at different ages. Brooks mentioned Paul Bergen after Bowman said something about dealing with the negative effects of puberty on girls' body shape for swimming.

Fishgrrl: yes, you were able to lose weight, but for a while there you would probably agree with Bowman. Even though you were swimming a lot, you weren't able to lose much weight.

Fishgrrl
January 31st, 2005, 07:40 PM
Kirk - I ended up reading the whole article after I posted and now I think I understand the point he was trying to make.

Swimming - as a sport - is certainly peculiar that way. From what I understand about it, an elite athlete has to consume enough calories to train at such a high level. And as a young girl, you can go from something like 8% body fat to almost 17% body fat in a short period of time.

Anyway - for what it's worth, I would be interested to read up further on the subject. For me, I know that I can't eat for at least an hour after I swim, and others feel like they're starving.

craiglll@yahoo.com
February 1st, 2005, 11:25 AM
Originally posted by khiliah
OK, well I'm completely addicted to whitey's ice cream.... so I'll just have to double up the swimming effort so I can be guilt free for a double scoop? :)

:D

I didn't know that Whitey's was ice cream. I thought it was frozen custard. Don't they have some nonfat flavors?

Oddly, almost all studies concerning weight maintance were centered on diabetics or top atheletes. Only recently have people began to study weight and average people. It truly is a controversial issue. Most swimmers, even some elite male (it might be hidden)swimmers have body fat. I woudl bet that the average female high school swimmer has less body fat thtan the nonswimming high school girl.

Most people don't swim long or hard enough towork into the reserve fat that their body hasstored. If you get into a pool and swim laps, itis very unlikely you will lose a significant amout of weight. I know a guy who islosing weight by kick 25yds as fast as he can, resting to a count of 15, and then, kicking again. He flys down the pool.

EyeoreSAM
February 1st, 2005, 12:05 PM
Well....I understand that anyone can think what they want, but I have lost the weight I needed to without and I really mean NO other form of exercise. I watch what I eat and it has worked just fine just as it did when I was in high school. I swim 5-6 days a week about 4000-6000 yards per practice and it has done the trick for me.

I just don't think that a generalization can be made about all women in general!!!

SWinkleblech
February 1st, 2005, 12:06 PM
I think heridity takes part in weight, too. My mothers side of the family just naturaly gains a lot of weight easily. All of my sisters are like this. My husband takes off of his dad's side of the family were all he as to do is lift a finger and he starts losing weight. My husband can pig out and not do any exercise and not gain a pound. Me, I work out four times a week and not even eat half as much as he does. I am lucky that I lose a few pounds.

Also, woman naturally have more fat then men. I think it is harder for a woman to lose weight. I felt it was unfair to put woman up against men on the show "The Biggest Loser". The men had an advantage over the woman.

thisgirl13
February 1st, 2005, 02:28 PM
A big thing with swimmers and the weight loss thing, is that it's mostly elite swimmers who don't lose weight.

Any form of exercise promotes weight loss; however, elite swimmers aren't really looking for weight loss.

Think of your body's stored fat/muscle as the base line. Now, anything you eat is "extra". For simplicity, let's say that foods sort themselves into three groups: carbohydrates, fat, and protein (I know there's a lot of other stuff, but bear with me, this is the simple version).

Now, when you swim, your body prefers to use up the extra carbohydrates first. When it's used all those carbs up, it will start using the "extra" protein and fat next (still working on the food you ate recently). Now, only when it works off whatever's above the base line will your body start considering alternate sources of fuel: your muscle protein.

What flummuxes most people is this: high-end training/swimming doesn't chew up the fat you already have. That's why swimmers also lift weights/have dryland, etc. Because muscle burns up stored fat. So, swimmers have to eat a lot, or their body starts burning into the muscle reserves they've built up.

Did I say that right? Did y'all get it? I'm not saying you guys don't lose weight, nor am I saying that's exactly how it works. This was just the kindergarten version of medical school (covers the essentials without using big words), to help explain why elite swimmers don't lose weight.

khiliah
February 1st, 2005, 07:04 PM
Whitey's is definitly ice cream... TCBY was the yogurt stuff... I'm pretty sure Whitey's has some custard or yogurt stuff, but it's mainly real ice cream and malts. :) Old fashioned style...

Stop.. stop... must get it out of my brain....

Fishgrrl
February 1st, 2005, 07:10 PM
Not an icecream lover....but if there is a food that inspires me to "swim it off", I would have to say CHEESEBURGER!!!!

In and Out - double double animal style.... large fries....

MMmmmmmmm........

khiliah
February 1st, 2005, 09:22 PM
Only if it's curly fries! :) We're so bad.

Mary R.
February 2nd, 2005, 09:44 AM
Studies and reality...my reality is that in the five years that I did not swim regularly (posted overseas where there was no proper pool!) I gained 15 pounds and a lot more fat than that. Back to swimming I am regaining my stamina and more, have lost the 15 pounds already and two dress sizes. It is slow but that should be better in the long run...

Now, I should 'fess up that I am still quite overweight...but it is indeed possible to be overweight and fit as many of us know. I'm not there yet but swimming is an important part of this. I lift weights as well.

The real issue in my mind is not can you lose weight swimming -- several of us have -- but to keep in mind that to lose weight you need to exercise more and eat less.

And, I fully agree that to lose weight swimming you need to swim either long or hard or preferably a bit of both.

aquageek
February 2nd, 2005, 10:00 AM
Originally posted by Mary R.

Now, I should 'fess up that I am still quite overweight...but it is indeed possible to be overweight and fit as many of us know.

I'm really not trying to stir things up here, but I have increasingly heard this fat and fit claim and am confused about it. We know that obesity is a risk factor for many of the major healt issues that shorten life (diabetes, hpb, heart issues, etc). I guess, conversely, you don't have to be skinny to have those health issues but, from what I've heard, it is much more likely that an obese person will have them over a thin person.

I'd be interested in information on this fit and obese claim that is curculating so that I can modify my opinion. Obviously, NFL offensive lineman are very fit and very fat but I don't think we should use those spectacular examples as indicative of the overall claim.

knelson
February 2nd, 2005, 10:49 AM
Originally posted by aquageek
Obviously, NFL offensive lineman are very fit and very fat but I don't think we should use those spectacular examples as indicative of the overall claim.

I've also heard the life expectancy for an NFL lineman is somewhere around 55. So even these guys, who might have the best claim to being "fit and fat" suffer the health consequences of obesity.

Kae1
February 2nd, 2005, 11:34 AM
I think the main difference here is that between being 'fat' and being 'obese'. You can be 'fat' - meaning over your ideal body weight, and still not be obese. Plus, when calculating things like body mass index (BMI), which is often used to determine relative obesity, there is often a disclaimer that conditioned athletes don't fit well into the categories, because of the "muscle weighs more than fat" thing. In which case, they generally recommend athlete track their body fat percentage.

We also have to ask ourselves how we define 'fat'. Most anorexics would consider themselves fat because that's what the disorder does to you. Some studies suggest that women, in general, see themselves as being heavier than they are and men, in general, see themselves as being thinner than they are.

Being in your 'ideal' weight range is a Good Thing, but I'm a firm believer than only one's doctor can make the decision if a person's health is in danger because of their weight.

I swim because it makes me healthier (OK, and the ice cream thing). Before I started swimming again (after a 8 year hiatus for the end of high school, college, and graduate school), I had a fitness assessment done at the university health clinic. The first thing I was told was that I was obese. Then they were astounded as my blood pressure, heart rate, and lung capacity numbers came out in the range of an athlete. According to the woman doing the assessment, this was unbelievable.

I think that's what's meant by fit and fat - if a doctor looked at everything but your weight, they'd say you're in great health and a model for others. One look at the scale, and suddenly, you're at death's door.....

Kae

craiglll@yahoo.com
February 2nd, 2005, 12:06 PM
It is a lie that NFL linemen are in good shape. Even though there are many reports that big football players are well trained atheletes, many linemen have 15-25% body fat or more. It is almost incredible that they even live to be 55 years old.

craiglll@yahoo.com
February 2nd, 2005, 12:10 PM
Originally posted by thisgirl13
A big thing with swimmers and the weight loss thing, is that it's mostly elite swimmers who don't lose weight.

Any form of exercise promotes weight loss; however, elite swimmers aren't really looking for weight loss.

Think of your body's stored fat/muscle as the base line. Now, anything you eat is "extra". For simplicity, let's say that foods sort themselves into three groups: carbohydrates, fat, and protein (I know there's a lot of other stuff, but bear with me, this is the simple version).

Now, when you swim, your body prefers to use up the extra carbohydrates first. When it's used all those carbs up, it will start using the "extra" protein and fat next (still working on the food you ate recently). Now, only when it works off whatever's above the base line will your body start considering alternate sources of fuel: your muscle protein.

What flummuxes most people is this: high-end training/swimming doesn't chew up the fat you already have. That's why swimmers also lift weights/have dryland, etc. Because muscle burns up stored fat. So, swimmers have to eat a lot, or their body starts burning into the muscle reserves they've built up.

Did I say that right? Did y'all get it? I'm not saying you guys don't lose weight, nor am I saying that's exactly how it works. This was just the kindergarten version of medical school (covers the essentials without using big words), to help explain why elite swimmers don't lose weight.

Your argument has one small flaw. Most "non-elite" swimmers do not burn enough caleries of easily accessible carbohydrates in their bodies to get into the stored fat. that's why many men who swim every day still have belly fat, and women who swim every day still have fat ontheir hips.


Also, about Whitey's, I didn't think that it was made from creme anglais. I thought that it was custard because of the mix that they now use. I might be wrong but I remember a story, I think on chanel 8 about how whitey's was moving into mass market production and now has a factory.

thisgirl13
February 2nd, 2005, 03:50 PM
Craig,

Yeah, I was hoping that point hadn't gone unnoticed. It seems my ADD can't keep up with my long thoughts, and my original point gets lost in the muck. Thanks.

As for the obese thing, I think there's a big difference between being naturally larger, and being grossly overweight. Especially when you're an athlete, the BMI indexes, and weight things can be "slightly" off.

For instance, I went to a new doctor this week. Since I'm from Ohio, and I live in Pittsburgh, I thought it might be time to get a doc. I called for a new patient appointment, and one of the nurses took a lot of my standard info over the phone, age, height weight, for records, though they would do it in the office less than a week later. Now, I'm a tall girl, at 5'10", and I weigh 196 pounds. I've been 140 pounds, when I was 14 and my tallness was new to a gawky teenager, and let me tell you, it wasn't pretty. I was all arms and legs and sticks. I have a medium frame, so I don't look horribly overweight, and I wear a size 12 to 14 jean and a large top.

To my surprise, the nurse gravely informed me, before asking the proper questions, that according to my height and weight, I was obese! After the initial shock reaction, I almost laughed her off the phone. She failed to see the humor, and informed me that there were serious health concerns involved. I assured her that I know there are health concerns, but I certainly didn't feel I fit the obese category. She double checked her information, and then proceeded to tell me I was indeed obese, and I should ideally weigh between 124 and 153 pounds. There was more laughing. Do you have any idea what 124 pounds looks like on 70 inches? It's all ribs and hips and shoulder bones. Very nasty stuff, especially on me.

As a reward for that long story, you all get a scoop of ice cream (or a cheesburger, in a couple cases). My point is, I went in for my appointment, and blood pressure, tests, and everything was normal. Muscle does weigh more than fat, and people who have (literally) bigger bones tend to weigh more without actually having their health in danger. Athletes, and even people who exercise frequently (more than a half hour on a treadmill), have trouble fitting into these mass categories. Like football players. I've read the stats, and there are quarterbacks who weigh 230 pounds, and they're my height, but they're in much better shape than I'm in, including their health. So it is possibly to be bigger and healthy. I think so, anyway.

aquageek
February 2nd, 2005, 05:17 PM
No one likes to be told they are heavy or ugly. Being a little heavier than I'd like and a lot uglier, I will just resign myself to both.

However, personal perception of ideal height/weight shouldn't be confused with the realities of actually being overweight and the health consequences of such. You may be the hottest 196 pound, 5'10" person on the planet but you should also consider that the doctor isn't trying to be insulting by advising you on the risks you take by being too heavy.

I watched a fascinating Frontline on PBS about the plumping of Americans and the point was made that obesity is as big a health problem as smoking but no one seems to want to stand up and yell at fat people like the way smokers are increasingly berated.

dorothyrde
February 2nd, 2005, 05:56 PM
But the point Geek is that she is NOT obese like the nurse was telling her. Size 12-14 is not obese, maybe a little overweight, but in no means obese.

In fact when I was a size 14 and 180, I had a doctor tell me he was really surprised I weighed as much as I did because I did not look it. Charts and BMI said I was obese, appearances said otherwise. BTW, charts still say I am overweight at 145-150 and 5-4, but at that weight I wear size 6-8. If I got down to the bottom weight of 115 for my height, people will tell me to eat, in fact, at my lowest I was 138, and people were telling me I was guant.

So muscle makes a big difference, and I think height/weight charts do not take that into account.

But this is a little off the subject..swimming to lose weight, yes, if you get your heart rate up, do it for a sustained amount of time to burn the calories, and then don't go and eat all of those burned calories.

knelson
February 2nd, 2005, 06:00 PM
Have to side with geek on this one. Yeah, 124 lbs would be awfully thin, but it's a very tough sell to consider 5'10" and 196 lbs in the normal range. I don't think you should evaluate whether or not you're overweight based on what dress size you wear.

dorothyrde
February 2nd, 2005, 06:05 PM
She didn't say she was normal weight, but that the range was given for her height is too small for having the muscle mass she has.

Having the same issues, I understand how having muscle mass and the BMI and height weight charts don't mesh.

Clothing size is a much better indicator. Size 12-14 on a 5-10 frame is not a huge person. Just by going down one size, you could probably look at her and say she is normal weight, and that would be 10-15 pounds.

aquageek
February 2nd, 2005, 07:01 PM
One's own perception of their ideal weight is quite different than the medical definition of obesity/overweight. You may think all is well but that's a personal impression. Carrying too much weight sets you up for many maladies, slower swimming being one.

Just because everyone is getting bigger and the perception of ideal weight has shifted does not mean that the problems associated with being heavy have also shifted.

centaur532
February 2nd, 2005, 08:39 PM
Originally posted by aquageek
One's own perception of their ideal weight is quite different than the medical definition of obesity/overweight. You may think all is well but that's a personal impression. Carrying too much weight sets you up for many maladies, slower swimming being one.

Just because everyone is getting bigger and the perception of ideal weight has shifted does not mean that the problems associated with being heavy have also shifted.

Actually, that's not true. It's not the weight, it is the BMI. You can be 5'10 and 196lbs and be as healthy as a racehorse. BMI measures the amount of fat on a person's body.
BMI calculator (http://nhlbisupport.com/bmi/bmicalc.htm)
Yes, that calculator claims that being 196lbs at that height is overweight, but that's a putzy little computation that's never looked at the big picture. Muscle is heavier than fat, which would contribute to the mass.
By your definitions, a lot of German athletes are overweight or obese. German females are notoriously large women. That's just how they are.
Not everyone fits into the obese/overweight box. Amount of fat on a body doesn't automatically mean healthy/unhealthy. What if you're 220lbs and 5'10, but you're male, you get an extreme cardio workout 3-4 times a week and you have a resting heart rate of 56? That's not obese.
It all depends on the person.

thisgirl13
February 2nd, 2005, 09:02 PM
Whoo!

I wasn't trying to start an argument, nor is this a shallow topic. I'm sorry you think I was speaking in vanity, geek. I truly wasn't. dorothyrde seems to have gotten the point I was trying to make, and I apologize if I offended anyone, or came across as being shallow or in denial about anything.

It truly does depend on the person, and BMI's don't take into account the athletics, muscle mass, or several other factors.

I am 196 pounds because, bearing in mind that I'm still a girl, I benchpress 200 pounds. This isn't walking around the track with 10 lb dumbbells in each hand. This is free weights. There is also the consideration of my five times per week swim practice, and my resting pulse of 52.

This is not a vanity post, to anyone who thinks so, I'm sorry, once again. I was just trying to show that there are different levels of being healthy, and that just because a chart says you're overweight if you weigh this much, it's not neccessarily taking in all the factors.

Conversely, just because you're 5'10 and weigh 129 pounds, that doesn't automatically make you healthy. There are too many factors to take into account to narrow it down to just height and weight. Call it thinking outside the box.

LindsayNB
February 2nd, 2005, 10:00 PM
It seems to me that some distinct concepts are being mixed up:
Fitness is an ability to carry out physical activity
Obesity is measured by percent body fat
Health is an absense of adverse medical conditions

Body Mass Index is an attempt at approximating percent body fat based on typical build. Body Mass Index will provide a poor approximation of percent body fat for people who don't conform to the assumptions about body type and amount of muscle. If you want to know if you are obese and prone to the health risks associated therewith have your percent body fat measured.

Swimming is unusual in that excess percent body fat interferes with performance less than in many sports, such as running.

dorothyrde
February 2nd, 2005, 10:51 PM
Originally posted by LindsayNB


Body Mass Index is an attempt at approximating percent body fat based on typical build. Body Mass Index will provide a poor approximation of percent body fat for people who don't conform to the assumptions about body type and amount of muscle. If you want to know if you are obese and prone to the health risks associated therewith have your percent body fat measured.

.

This is what I was trying to say. They make BMI the indicator and my BMI indicates overweight, but I have had my fat % measured and it was 21%, which is a normal range, not lean by any means, but normal. So BMI, which is based soley on height and weight, is not as good of an indicator as clothing fit.


And benching 200,WOW!

dorothyrde
February 3rd, 2005, 06:40 AM
BMI says I am overweight, and it is hard to tell without seeing, so let's see if this picture attaches.

aquageek
February 3rd, 2005, 08:21 AM
You certainly look fantastic but it doesn't have a bit to do with self perception. Obviously, the BMI thing isn't applicable to every single person but it is applicable to the vast majority of people and suggests a healthy weight range. Just because you don't feel or look fat doesn't mean you aren't carrying too much weight and have the potential for all the health concerns it may bring.

dorothyrde
February 3rd, 2005, 08:43 AM
Agreed, but I actually have the reverse problem. I still see myslf as size 14, and terribly overweight. Pictures are a must(even thought I tend to shun the camera), because in my eye I don't see a smaller person.

My main reason for losing weight was for the health benefits. Heart disease runs in my family, better to do something now in my 40's than wait for the heart attack later.

I read something the other day, and I wish I could remember where(who knows, maybe this thread), that men tend to think they look better than they do, women tend to think they look worse.

Anyway, I have to keep plugging away or it will come back on. I know swimming helps, because when I have a span of time where my swim time is cut, it is much harder to control the weight.

SWinkleblech
February 3rd, 2005, 09:02 AM
Originally posted by Mary R.


Now, I should 'fess up that I am still quite overweight...but it is indeed possible to be overweight and fit as many of us know. I'm not there yet but swimming is an important part of this. I lift weights as well.


This argument has seemed to have started from the above quote. I like to say I am overweight but fit. Just because I am overweight does not count me out of being fit. If I wasn't fit I wouldn't be swimming 400 I.M.'s, running 10K's, and competing in triathlons.

I, too, am considered obese on the weight scale. I don't feel I am obese or unhealthy. I think there should be a lot of other considerations other then weight to consider someone obese and unhealthy. Most have been mentioned above.

centaur532
February 3rd, 2005, 09:58 AM
Originally posted by aquageek
You certainly look fantastic but it doesn't have a bit to do with self perception. Obviously, the BMI thing isn't applicable to every single person but it is applicable to the vast majority of people and suggests a healthy weight range. Just because you don't feel or look fat doesn't mean you aren't carrying too much weight and have the potential for all the health concerns it may bring.

What you're talking about are people who carry too much FAT, and I mean way too much fat, for their height. As an EMT-B and a pre-nursing student (with a nurse for a mother :) ), I have experience dealing with people of completely different statures all the time.
Some people are genetically predisposed to carry more weight than other people of the same height. They'll never be able to lose the weight. But because of genetics, their bodies compensate for this in many ways. For instance, bigger bones will allow for the extra weight. It can be carried very well with no detriment.
Now, if you're a petite 5'3 and you're weighing in at 250lbs, that's unhealthy and has to be dealt with. Now we're talking about diabetes, heart strain, blood clots, cellulitis, faasciitis, necrosis, asthma, arthritis, joint problems up the wazoo. Those are the problems you're talking about. However, as long as you eat right, exercise regularly and keep in good health, you can very easily carry what you consider to be "unhealthy" body mass.
As a brief example, my boyfriend is a 5'10, stocky 220lb askinezac (I think I spelled that right, sorry if not) Jew. He was told that he would be a virtual skeleton if he ever reached 180lbs. Another guy I dated was the same height, and he weighed in at 160lbs. Bear in mind, both guys are black belts (in different arts), and my current boyfriend works out 3-4 times a week and has a resting heart rate of 56. How many people here can say that?

knelson
February 3rd, 2005, 10:38 AM
Originally posted by centaur532
my current boyfriend works out 3-4 times a week and has a resting heart rate of 56. How many people here can say that?

I would think many!

thisgirl13
February 3rd, 2005, 10:42 AM
Centaur, does your boyfriend have a younger brother? Lol.

I think you nailed it, Centaur. I think the whole world would look fabulous if we all weighed in the range of our BMI's. And yes, the BMI's serve a just purpose, but it's impossible for every single person to be like that. However, the whole point of this is that I do believe that people can weigh more than they "should" according to their height and weight charts, and still be wonderfully fit and healthy, for all the reasons everyone on here has added.

For a reverse story, my 22 year old sister is 5'6, and has a larger bone structure than I. She just naturally looks a little bigger, and she weight almost 235 pounds by her senior year of high school. My first year of college, she started following weight watchers, and working out, and lost a ton of weight. She got down to 140 pounds, and she discovered, to maintain that weight for her body size she either had to work out like a maniac (think 4 hours per day, every day), or she would just eat less. At one point, she pretty much started to live on cereal, dry toast, jello, things like that with absolutely no substance, and she looked horrible. Gaunt, almost sickly, because her skin color was pale and even though she was 5'6 and 140 pounds, it looked like someone had overstretched her skin around her body to make it fit. Does that make sense? It wasn't a healthy weight for her, even though how she got there was beyond scary. Her body type just wasn't able to be 140 pounds and healthy. It was too thin for her.

Happy to say now, of course, she's at a more comfortable weight, looks beautiful (if I say so rather jealously), and is engaged to be married (that was just so I can say that I get to be a bridesmaid! Yay!)

aquageek
February 3rd, 2005, 10:43 AM
Devil's advocate here - if everyone thinks they are a better judge of height and weight based on dress size, bone size, exercise time, etc, why would we have the BMI in the first place? Maybe instead of everyone going out of their way to explain excessive weight, maybe folks should lose the weight.

Also, you state "as long as you eat right, exercise regularly and keep in good health, you can very easily carry what you consider to be "unhealthy" body mass." How is this necessarily the case? If you are fat/obese or whatever we call it now, you are placing yourself at a health risk, regardless of all those other things you mention. If you eat right and exercise, wouldn't you by default probably be more prone to being in the healthy weight range?

I've not known anyone (my experience only) to be a good athlete and be overweight, lose down to ideal weight and lose stamina or performance. Plus, many have found other issues seem to disappear (asthma, grd, etc). I'm not denying you can be quite active and even excel while too heavy but you'd probably do much better at a more reasonable weight.

centaur532
February 3rd, 2005, 10:46 AM
Originally posted by knelson
I would think many!

What about yourself? 56 is unusually low for a heart rate of anyone. Horses have an average heart rate of 40. I take vitals a lot and I've never seen a HR that low.

knelson
February 3rd, 2005, 10:54 AM
Yes, everyone has a different body structures and there's no single catch-all target weight that is good for everyone, but I think more often than not overweight people have a tendency to make up excuses (I'm just "big boned," etc) when the bottom line is they are simply overweight and have increased health risks because of this.

Has anyone else noticed when you look at old photos, TV shows, etc.--and I'm talking about from the 70s and 80s--not really that long ago, how thin most people look? We're getting so acclimated to looking at obese people that our entire perception is changing. And as aquageek already mentioned, just because our perception has changed it doesn't mean the health risks have also shifted.

knelson
February 3rd, 2005, 10:55 AM
Originally posted by centaur532
What about yourself? 56 is unusually low for a heart rate of anyone. Horses have an average heart rate of 40. I take vitals a lot and I've never seen a HR that low.

Mine is typically from 48-56. I'm not in that tremendous condition. I swim four days a week, probably 15,000 yards at the most.

dorothyrde
February 3rd, 2005, 10:55 AM
Yes, you most definately do better at a lower weight, I can truly attest to that.

I think things like BMI and height/weight charts have their place. The problem with them is the cookie cutter way they lump everyone. At 180, I was overweight, and wake up and do something, or it will get worse, and the health issues related with overweight will happen. But people who know me would never have called me obese, but BMI did. Yes, BMI said wake up and lose weight, but BMI was wrong in its catorgy of me.

Most websites that have BMI information also carry a disclaimer that if you are an exerciser and have a lot of muscle mass, the numbers will be scewed.


One thing I notice is that people in general are bigger(not a good thing), but athletes are bigger. Illinois basketball just celebrated their 100 year anniversary on Saturday. There was lots of clips of previous teams. Those teams were good and the athletes were good, but todays athletes are not taller, there were plenty of tall people before, but their muscle mass seems so much more.

Same with the kids playing HS athletics, they seem a lot bigger and have more muscle than I ever remember when I was a young thing.

It makes me wonder of the future of BMI and height/weight charts if this is the case, because truly bodyfat % is the best way to judge.

centaur532
February 3rd, 2005, 10:58 AM
Originally posted by aquageek
If you eat right and exercise, wouldn't you by default probably be more prone to being in the healthy weight range?

I've not known anyone (my experience only) to be a good athlete and be overweight, lose down to ideal weight and lose stamina or performance. Plus, many have found other issues seem to disappear (asthma, grd, etc). I'm not denying you can be quite active and even excel while too heavy but you'd probably do much better at a more reasonable weight.

Well, some people just cannot lose the weight that way. They will stay at what's considered overweight, even though it's an ideal weight for them personally. I know I can stand to lose some weight that I've gained due to lack of exercise from injury, but I'm 5'6, and 138 with a small frame. I do carry my current weight extremely well, but I also have a fast metabolism.
The idea behind the BMI was societal norms. They took a homogenous group and got an average that way. The only way to truly determine body fat percentage is by going through rigorous exams. I do fit with BMI norms, so I can measure myself that way, but not everyone's going to, and it's unfair to expect that.
Try telling Olympic powerlifters, wrestlers, judo practitioners and field throwers that they weigh too much. They're suited to their sports, they're muscular, and according to the chart they're out of range. What you have to realize is that anyone slightly to the left or right of the bell curve is considered abnormal, when it's really not.

centaur532
February 3rd, 2005, 11:05 AM
Originally posted by knelson
Yes, everyone has a different body structures and there's no single catch-all target weight that is good for everyone, but I think more often than not overweight people have a tendency to make up excuses (I'm just "big boned," etc) when the bottom line is they are simply overweight and have increased health risks because of this.


Yes, but the discussion is not about overweight people in general, it's about those who do workout regularly but maintain a larger weight index. If you don't exercise, eat badly, and blame your condition on "big bones" while refusing to do something about it, that's entirely different.

centaur532
February 3rd, 2005, 11:06 AM
Originally posted by knelson
Mine is typically from 48-56. I'm not in that tremendous condition. I swim four days a week, probably 15,000 yards at the most.

That's highly unusual. An average adult heart rate is between 60-90 bpm. If other people here have the same average HR, that's worth a study.

dorothyrde
February 3rd, 2005, 11:13 AM
If you are talking about first thing in the morning heartrate, then probably many of the regular swimmers here would be below 60. Mine is between 50-55, but after I have been up and about for the day, it is around 60.

Scansy
February 3rd, 2005, 11:35 AM
I have not been able to get to the pool as much as I want recently (6 months), but when I was at my top condition, my heart rate in the morning would be about 50 and sitting at my desk in the range of 65 or so. Just took it now though and I'm at 75.....:(

dorothyrde
February 3rd, 2005, 12:08 PM
I just got up, walked around, sat down, read Scansy's post, so took mine....60.

fatboy
February 3rd, 2005, 12:14 PM
I haven't checked my heart rate in the morning right after waking, but the HRM on the treadmill gets it at 56-60 before I start. This is in the evening. Seems to match what I get taking it at my neck. Never sure of the accuracy of the heart rate monitors.

Scansy
February 3rd, 2005, 12:28 PM
Mine is 16, no wait, thats my number of strokes. It's 2500 - no wait, that's my workout distance. It's 1:40 no, wait that's my send off interval....... um I think its 5:00 .... no that's the time I get up to swim in the AM....um how about 25 - no - that's the pool length, maybe its 5.... wait, that's my favorite lane - shoot .... dang, too many numbers..... wrap my head in duct tape because it's gonna explode!:eek:

aquageek
February 3rd, 2005, 12:29 PM
Originally posted by centaur532
Try telling Olympic powerlifters, wrestlers, judo practitioners and field throwers that they weigh too much.

Other than the heavyweight division, most wrestlers are ideal or even underweight for their height. Wrestlers seem to be chronically trying to lose weight to maintain their class.

And, yes, powerlifters are FAT, FAT, FAT. I don't think that comes as any shock to them. After their careers competing are over most either get gigantic or go on a program to lose down to an appropriate weight.

centaur532
February 3rd, 2005, 12:32 PM
Originally posted by fatboy
I haven't checked my heart rate in the morning right after waking, but the HRM on the treadmill gets it at 56-60 before I start. This is in the evening. Seems to match what I get taking it at my neck. Never sure of the accuracy of the heart rate monitors.

This is quite fascinating...I don't really know of any other athletes who have resting heart rates that low. Hmmm...definitely worth a study...

dorothyrde
February 3rd, 2005, 02:05 PM
Originally posted by aquageek
Other than the heavyweight division, most wrestlers are ideal or even underweight for their height. Wrestlers seem to be chronically trying to lose weight to maintain their class.

And, yes, powerlifters are FAT, FAT, FAT. I don't think that comes as any shock to them. After their careers competing are over most either get gigantic or go on a program to lose down to an appropriate weight.

Yeah, I would not aspire to look like a powerlifter....

kristilynn
February 3rd, 2005, 07:54 PM
Originally posted by centaur532
What about yourself? 56 is unusually low for a heart rate of anyone. Horses have an average heart rate of 40. I take vitals a lot and I've never seen a HR that low.

My resting heart rate is typically in the mid to upper 40s. This is when I first wake up in the morning. During the day if I happen to be sitting around, (which isn't often since I'm a middle school teacher) it will be around 55-60. My specialty is distance swimming, and I don't consider my heart rate to be unusual. It was certainly not different than my team mates in college who also specialized in distance.

SWinkleblech
February 3rd, 2005, 10:49 PM
Originally posted by aquageek
Devil's advocate here - if everyone thinks they are a better judge of height and weight based on dress size, bone size, exercise time, etc, why would we have the BMI in the first place? Maybe instead of everyone going out of their way to explain excessive weight, maybe folks should lose the weight.

Also, you state "as long as you eat right, exercise regularly and keep in good health, you can very easily carry what you consider to be "unhealthy" body mass." How is this necessarily the case? If you are fat/obese or whatever we call it now, you are placing yourself at a health risk, regardless of all those other things you mention. If you eat right and exercise, wouldn't you by default probably be more prone to being in the healthy weight range?

I've not known anyone (my experience only) to be a good athlete and be overweight, lose down to ideal weight and lose stamina or performance. Plus, many have found other issues seem to disappear (asthma, grd, etc). I'm not denying you can be quite active and even excel while too heavy but you'd probably do much better at a more reasonable weight.

When you become a woman and have a couple of babies we will see what you say about some of us being overweight then.

aquageek
February 4th, 2005, 05:10 AM
Wow - that was completely out of the blue. Not sure what having babies has to do with being overweight. I didn't intend to have this be a sex oriented weight discussion. I do live with a woman who has given birth (my wife, my kids ) and does not have weight issues, however.

dorothyrde
February 4th, 2005, 07:08 AM
You know, I do think many of us women use having babies as an excuse. I carried my "baby" fat around until my "baby" was 10. That is a little too long. I think having babies can change your body a little( a little more saggy here, a little more stretched there :)), but we don't have to carry the fat that remains from bearing them around forever.

It is hard to be around food constantly with little ones, always making sure they eat correctly and on time, I think a lot of women struggle with that, and the exhaustion of the care of small children often translates into taking no time for the care of themselves, so no exercise, no focus on healthy eating.

dorothyrde
February 4th, 2005, 10:14 AM
I also think that people who have never struggled with their weight have a hard time understanding why heavy people cannot just cut down what they eat and lose weight.

This little article talks about the new study about skinny people fidget more. It is humorous, but it also hits home some things about how hard it is to lose weight if you are heavy.

http://www.skinnydailypost.com/index.html

SWinkleblech
February 4th, 2005, 10:35 AM
Aquageek,
I just take offense to how you make comments on our "excuses". There are reasons for some of us to be overweight other then being lazy and unfit. Having children can cause weight gain and can be very hard to lose that weight, too. Some of us come from families that naturally have more fat then others. It is also a proven fact that woman naturally have more fat then men. So your comment on those of us using excuses and just need to lose the weight, I think, is out of line. It is not so easy for everyone to just lose the weight at will. There are many of us here who use swimming to lose weight. I have been working hard to lose weight after having my second child and nearly two years later I have lost 15 lbs. It hasn't been easy. It can also be frustrating when you are working so hard and the pounds just are not coming off. This is especially true when you live with a husband who eats like a pig and hardly does any exercise yet he can still lose weight.
My point here is that we don't need you to be critical of those who are overweight. We all have are reasons for being who we are.

aquageek
February 4th, 2005, 11:15 AM
You clearly have taken this entirely too personally. The discussion focused on fit and obese.

But, as long as we are taking this personally, why can't we be critical of obesity? It is a horrible health crisis. The many health issues caused by obesity impact every aspect of our lives - increased health premiums, lost work productivity, premature aging and death but possibly not nuclear armageddon. Have you seen the stats on childhood obesity (those that aren't impacted by pregnancy)? You think that's not a huge problem for America?

Look, I'm no slim jim by any means and I applaud your efforts.

dorothyrde
February 4th, 2005, 11:17 AM
Shannon, I think you are at the very hardest time to lose weight, when your children are still young, trying to work, take care of them. I think losing 15 pounds, or any weight at all during that time is admirable.

I know I never was able to after my second was born. Add to that medication for migraines that added 20 pounds in 3 months, I just kind of gave up. It took 10 years for me to finally turn it around, and I will battle it for the rest of my life. It is good you are winning the fight, although it has been slow for you, you are not gaining, so you are winning!

SWinkleblech
February 4th, 2005, 11:41 AM
Aquageek- I don't think anyone here is denying that obesity is not a problem. What some of us are trying to state is that you can be overweight or even considered obese and still be fit and healthy. I am sure there are people out there who are in a normal weight range and is not as fit or as healthy as I am.

And yes I will take it a little personally whenever someone makes a comment about others needing to just lose weight and stop making excuses.

EyeoreSAM
February 4th, 2005, 11:45 AM
I completely agree with you. It is not easy to loose weight!!! All I know is that even at my heaviest I was in better shape than every member of my team!!!

Finding the right combination of things that works for each individual is not easy.

aquageek
February 4th, 2005, 11:51 AM
I will buy the overweight and fit argument. I will not buy the overweight and healthy argument. I think there are just too many reports that being overweight is not healthy. I am concerned that we are loosening our standards of fitness and weight as the population is getting bigger. It's the old mob mentality. Whatever, I'm going to eat a bag of chips for lunch cause I swam a whole lot this morning.

EyeoreSAM
February 4th, 2005, 12:24 PM
I agree with the fact that our society has made it much more acceptable to be obese by catering to heavier people. It isn't healthy to be very overweight...I know I was there. I have to watch what I eat even though I swim every day. Most of all even though I was fit (but FAT) I didn't like how I felt or even looked for that matter. Shouldn't we encourage everyone to a healthier weight instead of making it ok to be heavy.

There was an article in shape this month about just that. Women and men are encouraged to be happy with themselves as being overweight and because of that they think that they are ok being heavy---its like one extreme to another--too fat---too skinny---how about just right.

thisgirl13
February 4th, 2005, 12:53 PM
Originally posted by aquageek
Devil's advocate here - if everyone thinks they are a better judge of height and weight based on dress size, bone size, exercise time, etc, why would we have the BMI in the first place? Maybe instead of everyone going out of their way to explain excessive weight, maybe folks should lose the weight.

Geek, I think the reason some on this board are so angry with you, is that you make it sound like being heavy is someone wearing a pink sweater with green pants. They know the sweater's bad with the pants, so for crying out loud, go change!

It's really not that simple, darlin'. There are a ton of factors in today's culture that make it harder, even if it was just as easy as "stop eating, walk more." Cars, computers, microwaves, fast food, career moms, technology, genetics....there are a million reasons we're heavier than our grandparents were. In a fair example, you try fixing yogurt and oatmeal for breakfast when it's 6:30, you have yourself, three kids, one bathroom, and you have to have them all to two different schools by 7 so you can get to the office by 7:15. Breakfast doesn't happen. Then, you get to work, and in the breakroom, there's a nice box of donuts, or muffins, or whatever, and your poor tummy thinks, well, just one.

Personally, I think it's nice that society has warmed up a little to the plight of heavy people. Do you really think it's encouraging people to be fat by opening a clothing store? If we took away all the clothes over size 12, people wouldn't get skinny. They'd be naked a lot. Let us worry about our health problems, Geek, and what to do to be healthier. You concentrate on staying away from Shannon and dorothyrde. I think they're mad at you.

dorothyrde
February 4th, 2005, 01:33 PM
Nah, not mad, cause I have seen Geek do this before. He is playing with us. :) But he raises good points.

I have volunteered a lot in my kids schools, and it is so very true that children are overweight...a lot overweight. Which will mean that the obesity problem will continue to grow, no pun intended.

The causes, a much more sedantary life, much more dependance on fast foods, prepared foods.

How to fix it, certainly not by doing away with PE in schools(which has happened), and I think people have an awareness on how to eat, but it kind of is a I can't do that healthy eating mentality.

People are odd about this too. I lost 35 pounds 2 years ago, dropping 3 dress sizes and am maintaining, sometimes not real well, but still keeping it off. People almost take it as a personal affront if I choose not to have something fattening at a get together. Their reasoning is, I am not fat anymore, why not eat.
I watch people here at work take the elevator one floor, and fight over a parking spot close to the door. So no wonder our kids are fat.

People on this board probably don't fall into this category. I have a feeling that we are a group of people who concentrate on lifelong fitness and health.

But how do we get the general population to change? I have no clue. Luckily my children have inherited their fathers metabolism and are skinny as rails. I still try to stress healthy eating, because even thin people have heart attacks.

anyway, I am rambling and have work to do...

aquageek
February 4th, 2005, 01:37 PM
I can't understand why pointing out that fat is unhealthy is cause for anger.

How come if I point out to a smoker they are killing themselves and need to quit, that's acceptable BUT if I say, you're fat, you're killing yourself, in addition to driving up my health care costs, I've made some bad mistake? I have pals who engage in dangerous activities (rock climbing, the "perils" of the single life) and they don't get all indignant when it's pointed out to them they engage in risky bahavior with possible life threatening consequences. Why is it different for the beefy crowd?

Also, society may be faster than ever but it doesn't dictate you have to be heavy. Convenience doesn't dictate weight. You can just as easily microwave something heathly as something fattening.

I'm only partially stupid, so I realize most of what I say is easier said than done. However, I am a firm believer it is much harder to get heavy than to stay healthy. When I was all plump eating became a full time job!

Unfortunately obesity isn't a problem that can be relegated to individuals anymore. It is a societal issue that is probably health concern #1 or #2 right now due to the myriad of problems it causes.

aquageek
February 4th, 2005, 01:46 PM
I probably should mention that health concern #1 these days appears to be erectile dysfunction, based solely on the number of adds on this topic we are subjected to.

Fishgrrl
February 4th, 2005, 01:57 PM
Baaahhahhhhaaaa!!!!!!!!!!


Yeah, and according to those same ads, I should be strung out on cheap Valium from Canada AND be living in a house with an extremely low mortgage rate....

:D

dorothyrde
February 4th, 2005, 02:13 PM
I do think for some people, it is real easy to stay heavy and you are <geez I cannot think of a good word>, trivializing how hard it is to lose weight, and then keep it off.

If it were easy to do, then people would not be overweight. The fact that it is hard to lose, and hard to keep it off is why it is a problem. And that problem gets passed down because how many of those heavy children have heavy parents?

Again, if you have not had this problem it is really hard for you to understand. I have been battling this since I was 12 years old<and that is a looooooonnnnng time :) ).

And watch out for the 4 hour thing, makes me crack up everytime I hear that disclaimer...

hooked-on-swimming
February 4th, 2005, 02:16 PM
Originally posted by thisgirl13


It's really not that simple, darlin'. There are a ton of factors in today's culture that make it harder, even if it was just as easy as "stop eating, walk more." Cars, computers, microwaves, fast food, career moms, technology, genetics....there are a million reasons we're heavier than our grandparents were. In a fair example, you try fixing yogurt and oatmeal for breakfast when it's 6:30, you have yourself, three kids, one bathroom, and you have to have them all to two different schools by 7 so you can get to the office by 7:15. Breakfast doesn't happen. Then, you get to work, and in the breakroom, there's a nice box of donuts, or muffins, or whatever, and your poor tummy thinks, well, just one.

Personally, I think it's nice that society has warmed up a little to the plight of heavy people. Do you really think it's encouraging people to be fat by opening a clothing store? If we took away all the clothes over size 12, people wouldn't get skinny. They'd be naked a lot. Let us worry about our health problems, Geek, and what to do to be healthier. You concentrate on staying away from Shannon and dorothyrde. I think they're mad at you.

I do not wan to to offend anybody here or take the role of "a bad guy" going against the group, but I think GEEK have a very strong point and I will agree to what he says.
I think in a way he was misunderstood, too.Yes, the society said ok to overweight people, but does that really mean it is ok? Besides, it is only in America that people are comfortable(in a way) being overweight.You go to any other country in the world and you won't see the same there.I've been in the states for almost 4 years now,, and being originally from Russia I can tell you things are totally different there, most people will turn their heads when they see an extremely overweight person(I know it is not a good thing to do), but I am just trying to say that people are a LOT slimmer there.Well, let me ask you - do people i n other countries not give birth to babies, do they not have a tight schedule, do they not have stressful jobs(honestly, it is a lot more stressful there, that's why you see so many people immigrating), do they not have kids to take to schools(provided, not all families have cars) and so on.The point is,look, even in that forum everybody admits that there is a weight issue in the country, but we are still trying to excuse it, trying to say how hard it is.Well, nobody said it was not hard.No pain - no gain!The point is we should be able to admit to ourselves what we are and where we are from the weight perspective and that is where it starts ... as long as you feel "comfortable" about being overweight and keep looking for excuses for being that way nothing will happen!It starts in our head...
Yes you can come to work hungry and see a box of donuts in front of you and sell your soul to them, but hey, you can also place an apple or something healthy where you usually see donuts or you can spend some time before going to bed and make yourself something simple which will only require a quick warm-up in the morning, you can have a bowl of cereal(that does not take time, does it?)

THE THOUGHT IS: YOUR BODY GIVES UP ONCE YOUR MIND GIVES UP...

Leonard Jansen
February 4th, 2005, 02:38 PM
Originally posted by dorothyrde
And watch out for the 4 hour thing, makes me crack up everytime I hear that disclaimer...

The thought of having to get into the ER reception area with *that problem* while avoiding notice by other patients in the waiting area is terrifying. Sure, the ads show you the good-looking, middle-aged couple being all lovey-dovey, but they don't show the aftermath - where she drops him off at the ER door and waits in the car (wearing sunglasses and a ski mask) while he tries to look inconspicuous sneaking in wearing a bulky raincoat when it is a sunny, warm July day.

The horror, the horror.

-LBJ

AnnG
February 4th, 2005, 02:41 PM
I think we need to get away from the chemicals and additives in packaged foods nowadays - just look at all the stuff added to the snack foods! The high fructose corn syrup, which has an indefinite shelf life, is in everything. One of the hardest things I did was weam off all the sugar I used to eat - I was quite addicted to it without realizing it. I don't even buy snack foods and we don't eat packaged or processed foods at home and use Splenda, I think it has made a huge difference in my energy level - much more consistent throughout the day, and my teenage daughter and husband agree. But it was very difficult at first. We all also lost quite a bit of weight and were not obese people to start with, my husband lost 25 pounds, and my daughter and I both lost about 18 lbs and have all kept it off for almost a year. But we don't eat the same way we did before.

dorothyrde
February 4th, 2005, 02:46 PM
Originally posted by Leonard Jansen
The thought of having to get into the ER reception area with *that problem* while avoiding notice by other patients in the waiting area is terrifying. Sure, the ads show you the good-looking, middle-aged couple being all lovey-dovey, but they don't show the aftermath - where she drops him off at the ER door and waits in the car (wearing sunglasses and a ski mask) while he tries to look inconspicuous sneaking in wearing a bulky raincoat when it is a sunny, warm July day.

The horror, the horror.

-LBJ

Who would wait 4 hours? I am thinking there would be cause for concern before that...

Scansy
February 4th, 2005, 02:55 PM
Originally posted by dorothyrde
And watch out for the 4 hour thing, makes me crack up everytime I hear that disclaimer...

Disclaimer? Heck, I thought that was a selling point!:D

dorothyrde
February 4th, 2005, 03:35 PM
<NOTE TO SELF> Stay away from Scansy.......

aquageek
February 4th, 2005, 04:09 PM
It appears that fat doesn't hold a candle to the little man. Sorry I brought it up, although this discussion has become a great deal more amusing.

SwiminONandON
February 4th, 2005, 05:05 PM
Just to add heat to the fire or perhaps squelch it ... I think everyone here has valid points. I think that you can be overweight and still be relatively healthy. It depends on how much weight you are talking about though. 5-10 lbs, no big deal ... there does come apoint, however, when extra weight is unhealthy.

I have, however, read studies that have found that it is more important to eat healthy than it is to be thin. It is better to be heavier and workout than it is to be skinny and not. So in essence, if you eat healthy and don't over eat too much than you are going to be healthy. Whereas, if you are genetically skinny eat like crap and don't work out you are not going to be healthy. You can be "over weight" and healthy OR skinny and unhealthy.

There are people that struggle with their weight, that no matter what they do they can't lose weight.

Aquageek, perhaps you fall into the category of those that can take off weight rather easily if they so chose. I have pretty good genetics, eat well and work out a fair amount. For me it is pretty easy to drop weight if I want. I just have to watch what I eat a little more strictly. I have friends that could eat the bare minimum of calories in a day and workout and they would never be skinny.

So there's my 2 cents!

Swim on my friends!

Mary R.
February 5th, 2005, 01:11 PM
The posters (aquageek et al.) who are taking a tough stand on obesity in America are aiming their remarks at the wrong audience. Those of us who read this board are swimming! we are exercising!

And we still are not thin! or even normal BMI...
and I doubt we are all eating bags of potato chips after each workout.

Have a bit of empathy there -- For sure this society does have a problem with obesity; this is linked to all of the factors pointed out above; but it is not fair and quite unkind to jump from those facts, to individual judgements.

It could be argued that those of us with heavier bones (mine verified by the bone density scan that I had when I 'reached a certain age') ; who run to heavier muscles; and who spend a good deal of time in the gym or pool have more not less discipline that those for whom a slim figure comes easily.

I am off to the pool.

Karen Duggan
February 5th, 2005, 10:38 PM
Hi-
Growing up an age-group swimmer and logging up to 10,000m/day, I still gained weight when puberty hit. I was VERY strong in my arms, legs, and abs but it was my awful diet. I didn't eat a lot, it was just crap,and I didn't drink enough water.

Now as a masters swimmer, something weird has happened. I did the Feb Fitness Challenge 2 years ago, swam about 6,000y/day on average and lost 15 pounds in February! I kept it off until I got pregnant with number 3!

In my experience swimming can help to lose weight. However, I have found swimming and running to be an amazing combination for losing a lot of weight.

As far as the BMI and athletes being "different" I never understood that statement. Yes, swimmers probably have a lot more muscle, but if your body fat is 28%, it will be no matter how much muscle you have, it's still not healthy. I think that's what they mean about the NFL lineman?

dorothyrde
February 6th, 2005, 09:55 AM
Body fat % and BMI are two different things. When I got measured last year for bodyfat, it was 21% and BMI was 26. BF was in normal range, BMI was considered overweight. BMI is purely a calculation of how tall you are and how much you weigh. Muscle and bone density are not taken into account.

As far as exercise, I throw a little bit of everything in the pot. The pool is not always the most convenient form of exercise so I run with the dog, lift weights at home, have step video tapes, use the exercise room while my daughter has swim practice. To lose weight, you have to make it a priority to exercise, and a priority to eat right.

I have seen the girls on my kids swim team hit puberty and get heavy. In general, it is because they eat badly. A great many kids these days eat very badly. You can get the junk out of the house, but at school they are served school lunches swimming in grease, have pop machines and candy machines assessable as yound as 3rd grade.

aquageek
February 6th, 2005, 03:52 PM
So here I was, trying to be more sympathetic to the plight of those with weight issues. Folks on this forum were helping me.

Then, yesterday, I witnessed what can only be described as a full-on fat assualt and, regrettably, I'm back to my old pessimistic self. I was at my daughter's swim meet and this couple in front of me was quite large (250+ each). That, in itself, is no big deal these days. However, in the course of a 2.5 hour swim meet I witnessed the most unabashed display of horrific eating. Mid afternoon I watched them consume two hot dogs, all the way, a gigantic bag of popcorn, a gallon size bag of halloween type candy bars and 2 liters of Diet-Coke. It was unbelievable, I felt like I was on some show and was being filmed to see how much I could take without cracking. Care to guess their kid's size? HUGE also, very sad.

Anyway, instead of watching their children, going to workout out in the building, these two consumed 10 pounds of crap while reading romance novels. Everyone on this forum, if you are swimming and losing weight, congrats because I saw the dark (chocolate) side and no one should consume like that.

thisgirl13
February 6th, 2005, 04:01 PM
Alas, Aquageek, maybe you aren't as pessimistic as you think.....

Now, you have a distinguishing comparison to people that we are all referring to, as opposed to people who are not concerned with their health. Preachin' to the choir, sugar. We were never advocating habits like that, and it's good that you saw that, as you can now appreciate all the lovely ladies on here (and gentlemen too, I guess), for all our beauty and self-motivation.

:D

dorothyrde
February 6th, 2005, 05:31 PM
Yes, and what a difference this couple is, sedentary, eating badly, probably not a bit of muscles is to the size 14 196 pound swimmer who is 5-10 and while overweight, still greatly better off and in much better shape.

When I was fit and fat at 180, you would not have found me eating crap at a swim meet. I always brought fruits and veggies for myself and the kids to munch on. And my kids are thin....

Robert Strauss
February 6th, 2005, 05:54 PM
Dear Fetch:
The secrets to loose weight swimming:
a) Swim gently, maintain your heart rate below 125 that's about 19 to 21 in 10 seconds
b) You need to last minumum 40 minutes, but it is not necessary to go over 90 minutes
c) Approximately 3 to 4 weeks of 3 to 6 times per week into your routine, start doing workouts that you will find in this same site, I post Why Swim, If You Can Fly?!
Swimcerely,
Coach RS

jim thornton
February 6th, 2005, 06:14 PM
A bit of kerosene to the fire:

1) On average, the weight women tend to put on--so-called stabile fat that accumulates in the hips and thighs--is notoriously resistant to dieting and exercise. One researcher suggested to me that the only good way to get rid of this is to A) be starving and B) breastfeeding at the same time. Sorry to report this, but evolution appears to have programmed a certain fat-retaining stubborness in many females' physiology that serves a reproductive purpose. Back in antiquity, when vast quantities of savory food were not easily obtainable, and when starvation WAS a real threat, such women were arguably much better off than the rare Twiggy genotypes so lionized today. On the plus side, stabile fat does not seem to be nearly as much a health risk, at least for the cardiovascular system, as the "labile" kind described in item #2.

2) On average, the weight men tend to accumulate--so-called labile fat that accumulates inside the abdominal wall--is much easier to shed with exercise. But because of its proximity to the portal vein (among other things), this can enter the blood stream much more readily and is consequently much more dangerous to the heart (increased plaque formation, etc.) Males have the advantage of being able to work off their excess weight by diet and especially exercise, but they still get felled by the Grim Reaper at much younger ages, on average, than women.

John Gray said Men and from Mars, Women from Venus; perhaps a better way of looking at the genders (again, on a statistical average basis) is that Men are Apples and Women are Pears, with the latter type of tubbyhood being generally accepted as the much healthier physique.

3) An editorial in one of the leading medical journals a few years back (pretty sure it was JAMA) concluded that while being overweight is linked to a host of specific disorders, from heart disease to diabetes to arthritis (hard to carry around excessive weight and not hurt your joints), the subset of overweight people who don't have these diseases are no less healthy than normal weight people. More importantly, there has not been much, if any, data to show that losing weight makes you healthier, despite the overwhelmingly "intuitively obvious" supposition this would, in fact, be the case. In other words, a formerly obese person who has starved himself or herself into a normal BMI may not have done themselves any good. (Histological slides of such individuals post-wt. loss are actually impossible to distinguish from slides of "normal" people in the throes of real starvation.)

Stephen Blair at the Cooper Center for Aerobic Fitness in Dallas is an extremely fit but overweight guy who has authored numerous papers on the distinction between fit and fat. His data has shown time and again that overweight but otherwise fit individuals are much healthier than normal weight or even thin but non-fit people.

Final point: notwithstanding the counterexample of those 250-lb. parents engorging themselves in the stands of the swimming meet, the data shows that the thinnest people actually tend to eat the most food.

To me, weight regulation is among the most complex aspects of human physiology, with a host of poorly understood compounds from leptin to neuropeptide Y that conspire to make many of us find A) delicious food (especially fat and sugar combos) extremely difficult to resist and B) exercise all too easy to avoid. Many of our prehomind ancestors eons ago survived simply because their genes inspired them to eat as much as humanly possible during those rare times of plenty, then take a long nap. In our supersize me era, where food requires no exercise to obtain and is plentiful and cheap, who amongst us is entirely deaf to the genetic puppetmasters within us, puppetmasters whose foremost fear--despite all evidence--remains starvation?

The discussion of weight should, in my mind, have ABSOLUTELY NO MORAL COMPONENT--beyond, perhaps, some censure for the shameful behavior of candy and fast food makers who, knowingly or not, prey upon and profit from our once adapative genes. It is not a character issue but a biochemical one, a bedevilingly complicated one at that. If Iran gets the bomb and we're someday teleported back to the hardscrabble existence of our ancient progenitors, all of us running around like maniacs in pursuit of non-radioactive squirrels to eat, I think today's overweight people will have the last laugh.

Fitswimmer04
February 6th, 2005, 07:42 PM
I was a skinny kid, a skinny teenager and a skinny young adult-and I was SO self-righteous about it. People who were fat were lazy and irresponsible and I felt so superior to them. Then one day-I turned 35 and seemingly overnight I could no longer eat whatever I wanted and stay slim. I gained about 30 pounds in 5 years before I decided to stop whining about it and do something about it. I've lost about 20 of those pounds now, swimming, jogging, lifting weights and monitoring portion sizes.

If you believe in Karma, you could say that I bought my weight gain with my self-righteous attitude as a young person. To be honest,it would serve me right if I had. So I leave you all with the warning. This could happen to you-just imagine, an insensitive remark made about an overweight person and the next thing you know-BAM-30 extra pounds!! Not a risk I'm ever going to take again!!

knelson
February 6th, 2005, 08:40 PM
Originally posted by aquageek
Mid afternoon I watched them consume two hot dogs, all the way, a gigantic bag of popcorn, a gallon size bag of halloween type candy bars and 2 liters of Diet-Coke.

Hey, cut them some slack. At least they were drinking Diet Coke! :D

thisgirl13
February 6th, 2005, 08:50 PM
Originally posted by jim thornton
If Iran gets the bomb and we're someday teleported back to the hardscrabble existence of our ancient progenitors, all of us running around like maniacs in pursuit of non-radioactive squirrels to eat, I think today's overweight people will have the last laugh.

Non-radioactive squirrels, Jim? Really? That's creative, even for you. :p

dorothyrde
February 6th, 2005, 09:07 PM
Yes Diet Coke makes it OK :) and desert eaten first does not count!

Having been dieting since I was my daughter's age, I was always envious of the skinny girls who never had to watch what they ate. But now I see how hard it is for someone who never had to be disciplined on their diet, aquire some of the habits that are needed to maintain a healthy weight.

Jim quite a post, I knew my hips were there for a reason, radiactive squirrels, yum...

Karen Duggan
February 7th, 2005, 01:19 AM
Wow Mr. Thornton, I'm impressed. Well said!
As part of the 6th grade curriculum in CA, we teach early human history. I think I can safely say that a radioactive squirrel may look more tasty than some of the stuff our progenitors were eating! By the way, would the radioactive squirrel be thin or fat?
And your thought about the bomb, squirrels, overweight people surviving... this reminds me of a 24 Hour Fitness billboard that was all the hot topic of discussion for awhile in San Francisco. It read, "When the aliens land they'll eat the fat ones first!"
Living in liberal, politically correct CA, 24 Hour Fitness certainly got their moneys worth in negative publicity, upsetting people and thus being on the news... I, myself, thought it was kind of humerous :)

eliana2003
February 7th, 2005, 06:49 AM
i think it's a shame to see people so heavy. i do believe that you can be relatively heavy and fit, but fit is the operative word here. i have relatives who are absolutely obese and revel in every disease and illness that comes upon them. it's aggravating and pathetic. but i also realise that these individuals are self-medicating with food (I'm sorry- anyone who is grossly obese has some issues to contend with- as we all do) and making everyone else pay by helping to drive up the cost of health insurance. having said that, i used to be very thin, gained a lot of weight before losing it, so while i understand that it is difficult to lose the weight, it can be done, but takes a lot of hard work and discipline... most people can't be bothered to make the effort IMHO. american culture is dedicated to comfort at all costs, and obesity is perhaps one of the ill effects of the relentless pursuit of convenience.

just thought i would spin that karmic wheel and throw some (more) negative energy back into the cosmic soup :p

dorothyrde
February 7th, 2005, 07:22 AM
You know, thin is not necessarily an indication of healthy. I know a lot of people who are and were thinner than me at my heaviest, who I was much fitter and healthier than.

Kae1
February 7th, 2005, 09:30 AM
Originally posted by Karen Duggan
Wow Mr. Thornton, I'm impressed. Well said!
As part of the 6th grade curriculum in CA, we teach early human history. I think I can safely say that a radioactive squirrel may look more tasty than some of the stuff our progenitors were eating!

As an archaeologist and food historian, I take exception to that. There is no way radioactive squirrel would be tastier than most of what our progentors ate! Some hunter-gatherers ate quite well, thank you :D .

And before anyone starts on the cave-man diet thing (I have a friend who shared a book on the subject with me) - there's almost no evidence that prehistoric humans consumed mostly meat products. It's far more likely that they subsisted on gathered wild foodstuffs supplemented by small game and fish.

Kae

Karen Duggan
February 7th, 2005, 11:28 PM
Kae,
That is so cool. What are you working on?

Kae1
February 8th, 2005, 08:47 AM
Originally posted by Karen Duggan
Kae,
That is so cool. What are you working on?

Hopefully, this won't bore the others here too much...

I'm currently a "bureaucratic" archaeologist - I work for the Arizona Department of Transportation, reviewing projects and such for compliance with state and federal historic preservation laws. I get a little bit of everything with that, though I don't actually do the research and excavations any longer (now, it's all legal review and coordination with other agencies).

I'm also a member of a food history society, though most of their research is focused on early American food, and I'm more interested in European foods from the Bronze Age to the Renaissance. I'm part of a medieval living history group and do a lot of food research for that. It's fun - keeps me out of trouble. Next week I won't be at the pool because I'll be out in the desert escaping the modern world with the rest of my medieval friends.

Kae

eliana2003
February 8th, 2005, 09:09 AM
Kae,

Wow! That is really interesting (no sarcasm intended!)... makes my academic work sound dull (which it is...)

A food history society? Only in America! But it is an interesting topic and a valuable one, also...

Enjoy your trip...

peace,
e.