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    Workout/diet to tighten loose skin
    MissCaptainKirk posted:
    Hello, all!

    I am a young person (I just turned 21) but I am very self-conscious about my body and hate being in a swimsuit. People at the pool openly make fun of me.
    Over the past 7 years I have lost about 40 pounds. I also have a lot of stretch marks because I grew very tall very quickly. Between the weight loss and the stretch marks, my skin is very loose. The stretch marks are pretty faded but they are on my breasts, the back of my arms, and then start at my lower back and go very far down on my thigh so when I am standing it doesn't look too bad but it almost looks like I have cellulite when I am sitting because the loose skin bunches up around the stretch marks but I do not have cellulite. I've always been very active and workout regularly but it doesn't seem to help with firming. I also have fibromyalgia so high-impact workouts aren't good for me.
    Does anyone have a program that I could follow that would help? I work an active job full time so I don't have a lot of extra time and I also do not have a lot of money. I work out at my school's gym but I can't afford a professional trainer or anything. I eat healthy and stay away from processed foods as much as I can but I am wondering if there's a certain diet that would help?
    If anyone has a program and/or diet that would help, I greatly appreciate it. Thank you in advance!
    Amelia_WebMD_Staff responded:
    Welcome MissCaptainKirk!

    I'm so sorry that people are treating you this way after all that you have overcome, especially while dealing with fibromyalgia. You definitely deserve to feel proud and love yourself for your strength and hard work! Congratulations! :)

    As far as treating your stretch marks, I have never heard of a diet or exercise to help this concern. :) Your best bet would be speaking with a dermatologist on this matter.The WebMD How to Combat Scars, Stretch Marks and Cellulite blog does offer information towards a few types of treatments that might be beneficial for you to go over with a medical professional. You also may want to post your question in the WebMD Skin & Beauty Community for more expert and member insight.

    If you haven't checked out the WebMD Fibromyalgia Community , you should definitely consider reaching out there as well. The members of the community are a very helpful and understanding group, who may be able to share more advice towards your concerns. Here is also an article on Fibromyalgia and Exercise that may help to give you some additional tips on different activities to try.

    Wishing you the best and I hope that you keep us posted!
    Take care :)
    Rich Weil, MEd, CDE responded:
    Hi MissCaptain,

    Congratulations on your weight loss. As for your skin, there's no way to predict how much your skin will tighten once you lose weight. However, you are young, and age is one of the most important factors in how much skin tightens. At your age you still have very elastic skin that will tighten as you lose. As for what to do, keep up with both cardio and resisatnce exercise. Shoot for 4-5 days of cardio for 25-30 minutes, and 2-3 days of resistance exercise, 8-10 different exercises for all your muscle groups, 8-12 reps to fatigue, 2-3 sets. Make sure to do large muscle group exercises like squats, deadlifts, and lunges. Amelia gave you some great resources; ina ddition to those, keep up with exercise, and keep paying attention to your calorie intake.

    Good luck!
    Seraphim23 responded:
    First off, congratulations on losing 40lbs!

    I completely understand what you are going through. I have been the girl that has been made fun off constantly for her weight for most of my life. Sometimes even by family.

    I also understand all of the stretch marks and lose skin as I've finally gotten down 65lbs in my 85lb goal.

    The only thing I can truly suggest is that you need to check your body fat percentage. You can weigh less and have just as high body fat percentage as someone who looks bigger than you. Building muscle under the fat layers also helps firm up a little. Try yoga or pilates. They are very low stress on the body, and truly can turn a body around.

    I also would suggest looking into a firming and/or cellulite cream that has caffeine in it. I currently use a Jergen's brand firming cream, and it helps. I also use another lotion (I switch off every other day) that promotes elasticity in the skin and what not. A really good lotion that inexpensive is Gold Bond Healing CoQ10 for depleted skin. Or you can always use another that helps with elasticity and lightens stretch marks.

    Last thing to think on. It takes a while for skin to shrink to your new size. My weight loss has happened the past year. I've been told it takes a couple of years for skin to shrink.

    If you are truly uncomfortable wearing a typical bikini (which I can't wear because my stretch marks are on my stomach), I would suggest a tankini. If you are more worried about the ones on your thighs, buy some longer swim shorts or boardshorts.

    Hope this helps.
    MissCaptainKirk replied to Seraphim23's response:
    Thank you to everyone for replying. UPDATE:

    I have been able to tighten the skin a LOT more than it was even in the month since I posted this question. I used to work out a whole lot but didn't do a lot of cardio. I took Rich Weil's suggestion. Now I work out a lot less and do a lot of cardio, which is easier for me anyway b/c I have Fibro. Thank you to Amelia for suggesting the Fibro support community, it has been really great for me!

    Also I started a new diet that sort of detoxes. It is the insulin resistant diet (even though I was tested at the Dr. and I am not insulin resistant) b/c it cleans out your body pretty well and gets rid of the excess fat. :P I actually have a very low BMI so I think the fat I got rid of was just the unnecessary stuff that doesn't do anything for me. And I lost 5 more pounds!!!

    I also started using pure shea butter and lotioning with Non-Toxic Skincare lotion b/c my skin was so dry and I think it made the stretchmarks worse.

    Also I bought some boyshorts b/c the marks are on my thighs, and you are right Seraphim23, it does cover them up fairly well (the worst parts anyway).

    I think if I could just muster up some self-confidence I would be fine with them now. I will work on that. Thanks again guys!
    An_231882 responded:
    Hi Miss Captain Kirk: Keep on swimming you are doing a great job hopefully you have support from family and or friends go in the pool for great exercises low impact you are young so have fun
    Amelia_WebMD_Staff replied to MissCaptainKirk's response:
    Go MissCaptainKirk!!

    You are doing amazing and it is wonderful to hear this feedback. Thank YOU for keeping us updated! You're whole outlook and tone have really blossomed and I couldn't be more excited for you on your journey.

    Keep up the superb work and the self-confidence! Please, keep updating the community as well. You are truly an inspiration!

    Best wishes,
    MissCaptainKirk replied to Amelia_WebMD_Staff's response:
    Thank you for your encouragement! <3

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