Why Is This So Hard to Believe?

Updated on April 29, 2012
S.S. asks from Osgood, IN
26 answers

Ok I would normally not ask this question on a site like this, but its really bothering me (yeah I have issues.) I asked a question about BMI calculators last night and everyone who answered seemed to have a hard time believing that i was a size 4 at 140 pds and 5ft2. my waist was 25 inches, and my hips were 34inches. I know I can't be the only one like this. In fact I know that I am not. I had a friend who was 150, and she had to buy all her clothes in the kids department and could only wear a training bra. No one ever believed her when she said she was 150pds. On me I have always thought the weight might be in extra skin (I lost almost 150pds) but with her I was never sure. She wasn't athletic so it wasn't muscel. Is there anyone else out there like this who knows what would cause the scale to read higher?

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So What Happened?

is there a way I could post a pic or something?
That is a link to my profile pics on facebook (they are public anyway) in them I range for 185 pds to 140 (in only one of them) in most I am around 160

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answers from Dallas on

I agree it is strange. I am 5'4" and weigh 120 lbs but I wear a size 5/6. I see people on tv who say they are a certain size i.e. Jennifer Hudson-I saw an interview where I think she said she was now a size 2 but even with her weight loss she still looks huge compared to me so I had a hard time believing her.

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answers from Seattle on

It's why I think bmi is bs! I have always weighed more than I look like I do. I could easily be a size 4 at 140lbs! There are so many factors bmi doesn't take into consideration, such as build, body type, frame, and muscle weight vs fat weight!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

It is hard to believe. I am 5'4, like 118 lbs, size 3 juniors. I dont understand where you are putting it, because you dont look 140 lbs.
I am chunky at 140 lbs!

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answers from Boca Raton on

Hummmm.... Not sure how that works..
I'm 5'10", weigh 136 and wear a 4, sometimes 6.
A couple of my girlfriends are 5'1" and barely weigh 105 lbs and wear size 0/2...
Either way, CONGRATS to you, for loosing 150 lbs. THAT'S AWESOME!!!!!!!
PS I try not to look at the scale, I look at how my clothes fit...

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Albany on

Well I looked at you MMP profile pix, and what *I* think is if you PUT THE BABY DOWN you'll be down another 20 lbs!


200, 140, 120, sz 4 or sz 20, what do the numbers matter? You're a beautiful Mama and I hope you're celebrating your accomplishments everyday!


4 moms found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

I think it is hard to believe because at 5'8 if I weight 140 I am a size 6. That is six inches taller than you, ya know?

My ex's sister is 5'2 and a size 4, she weighs 100 pounds.

The only thing I can think of is it is the way your body distributes the weight. Like your fat does not collect in your waist but everywhere else. So the reason people find it hard to believe is they are visualizing you with their body shape.

I just looked back at your other posts, so this was back when you starved yourself down to 140, yes that was excess skin. Even now you probably have some excess skin. You may want to speak to your doctor and see if it is enough for your insurance to cover its removal.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

First off, let me say you look great...

Secondly, it is not hard to believe IF you are not one of those people who are trying to compare themselves to you...some people are just SO vain, don't let it bother you, you know what you wear and what you measure and what you weigh!

I have read a coupe of your responses you got and more than one of the ladies here aren't buying it because your waist and hips measure in smaller than theirs and they obviously feel threatened by that...get a life people!

~Everyone has different body styles and different skeleton sizes, it is what it is!

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answers from Philadelphia on

Well, I'm 5'3" and 140lbs and although a size 6 is more comfortable for me (just bought a pair of cute shorts today), I AM able to wear a size 4. And my measurements are a bit higher than yours, so I totally believe you can be a size 4. But it DOES depend on the clothing maker. Don't let it bother you...just wear whatever size feels good and disregard others' disbelief.

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answers from Philadelphia on

i think the impt piece is the extra skin that you spoke of and where you deposit fat to. I do right to my chest. I'm 6ft tall and 160 and have DDD (i'm sure that accounts for some extra wieght) and fit in a sz 6 o 9 depending on brand so yes if you're talknig about someone with an average body shape that weights 150 unless theyre doing an insane tight squeeze into those clothes its rather unlikely
Although I worked in a clothing store and some quite big girls would squeeze into size 6...i have no idea how, but i don't think its done without a huge muffin top

3 moms found this helpful


answers from San Antonio on

I guess it is hard to believe because I am 5'10" (I got eight full inches on you in height)...and I weigh 125 (so that is 15 pounds less) and I am a size 4/6. My waist is 29 inches, my hips 36 inches.

I guess you could have more weight in your top side as I am not quite a B in bra size...okay okay I am an A. But if you were like a DD, maybe that could be a difference in weight.

We all come in different shapes and sizes and if size 4s fit you then go for it...4s on me are usually way to short unless they make a long...and i like to buy 6s for a loser fit if I was some breathing room, they also have to be a long length. I even have to buy larger sized tops not for "the girls" but because I am so tall...S fit size wise but are always too short, M sometimes work size and length, L is perfect for length but way too big and I swim in them.

Oh also I didn't read the BMI question...but 5 more pounds and I am listed as underweight...right now I am in the last green box for being the correct weight for my height. My husband at 6'4" and 220 is listed as overweight on the BMI...I think he looks fine... so???? (and people tell me I look too thin). Sorry if you got bashed...it is hard to believe...

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answers from Denver on

I'm also 5ft 2" and I weigh around 125 - and barely fit into a 4 - I usually go with 6 for comfort purposes.

So I supposed you could weight 140 (which was my post partum weight and NONE of my reg clothes fit) but your clothes (size 4) would be extremely tight.

Sorry - I'm not trying to question you but nothing you are saying adds up. Unless your breasts are a EEE I don't see how you could possibly have a 25 inch waist (at 120 pounds I have a 26.5 inch waist) or hips that are 34 inches (when I was super fit from barbell strength and lots of cardio this year I got my hips down to 36.5 inches) so something is off. Perhaps your scale is way wrong...cause my guess is with those measurements you are more likely to weight 120lbs.

Good luck.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

So many factors determine what *size* you wear.
I'm close to 5"5" and back when I weighed 145 I was an 8 or a 10. But I have a wide back and shoulders, and straight hips.
Also it depends on the clothing manufacturer, they have been getting very generous in their sizing over the years. If you do any vintage shopping you'll see what I mean. A size 4 from 20 or 30 years ago is smaller than today's 4 for sure.
And p.s. you look FANTASTIC :)

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answers from St. Louis on

Hello there!

BMI is only accurate for a certain group of people. For example, I have a cousin who is an ammature boxer. His BMI shows him as being obese - but he's all carved muscle. Since it only looks at weight and height, there is a lot that is not being taken into consideration. TJ hit on a lot of this, but there are also some important distinctions about the type and location of fat that is on your body, versus muscle. For example, subcutanious (under the skin, in your organs) fat is very bad and is a prime factor in Type II diabetus. Compared to fat stored externallia on the body (on the butt, stomach, thighs etc) which still isn't healthy, but since it's not smothering your organs, it's not so bad.

I would suggest speaking to your general practictioner on ways to measure your health and weight, in order to create proper weight loss goals. You're trying to lose weight, right? I believe I read that on your previous thread. If you're real curious, try getting your body fat percentaged tested. Even if you just do it with calipers, which isn't completely accurate, you can track the change in percentage which will be a sign of improved health and leaness.

It sounds like you a pear shaped (carry the weight below or at your hips). This is not abnormal at all and is actually somewhat healthier than those women who are "apple" shaped - carrying the weight around their abdomine. I would throw out the BMI and focus on measurements, decreasing your hip width, thigh width, etc. This is what I measure for myself, since I have a 26" waiste and a 38" hip (I think that was my hip number, I'm not certain).

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answers from Tulsa on

It's hard for people to believe because it doesn't add up to what is normal, most of the responses that were unbelieving (like mine) were from people that are taller and lighter, but wear the same or bigger sizes. But most of us haven't lost lots of weight like you have. Ultimately, who cares what strangers on the internet think? Your initial question was does BMI work for you and I think you got a wide range of answers. It wasn't "is my height, weight, and size" believable, although you got plenty of answers for that too. One thing about posting on a site like this is you will inevitably get answers you may not like to questions that you didn't ask. It sounds like you have some body image issues, you look great but are still asking for validation from strangers.

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answers from Albany on

You've had great success losing weight! Congratulations. I have been trying to maintain a 70 pound weight loss. And I run. I am 5'9 and try to keep my weight at about 165 pounds. I'm usually a size 10. But I find one of the pitfalls is 'Comparing yourself to other people'. At 165 pounds it would be easy to be down on myself if I compared myself to people who weigh less, so I don't do it. Being positive is a key to success. Good Luck :)

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answers from Dallas on

It all depends on where your body stores fat and how you like to wear clothes. I'm 5'3, weigh 138, and wear a size 8. I can fit into a size 6 when I'm 130. However I like to wear clothes a little looser. If I chose to wear my clothes very form fitting I could get into a 6 now, but I don't feel comfortable like that nor do I think it's flattering.

Maybe you just have heavy organs.

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answers from Dallas on

I way 97 pounds and wear a size 0-1. I imagine myself gaining 40pounds and simply can't believe I would only go up 4 sizes with 40 pounds. See the problem? I'm think about ME, not your body type or how you are distributed. I have a friend who only weighs 110 pounds, and she looks like she could way 30 more then that. I also have a friend who weighs 160, and I can't believe it. She looks so thin. When I think about them, it makes sense. When I think about me, I can't reconcile a 40 pound weight gain, with a 3-4 size gain. You look lovely...so it doesn't really matter!!

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answers from Seattle on


at 6'1 and 120 (not for a long time, gratefully)... I was a size 9.
at 6'1 and 170 (not for a long time :P) ... I was also a size 9

Just the size of my bones.

PART of why "no one believes" us about weight is that women lie, and men aren't as stupid as we make them out to be and go deaf about weight rather early in life.

PART of why 'no one believes us' is height. When someone is significantly shorter or taller than you... weight distributes differently. Myself, for example, I run 30lbs per SIZE. So if I want to go from a 9/10 to an 11/12 I have to go 30 pounds. One of my besties is 12 inches shorter than me, and she's 5lbs per size. Most people are around 10lbs per size. ((I couldn't figure out for the loooooongest time why on earth people cared about 'the last 10lbs'. Not until I realized that was a whole size for them)).

PART is bone density and shape. I'm currently fat, but I really am 'big boned'. :P I have girlfriends who, being the same height as me, have delicate bones and fit into 6's and 4's at 120lbs. Bone structure and density affects both weight and size.

PART is boobilage.

PART is skin (I have 30lbs of skin I'd like to say buhbye to myself) if you've lost a lot of weight, or it doesn't rebound after baby).

PART is confidence (act confidant / sexy and people see you that way... which either adds or subtracts pounds depending on your culture. Which is a strange thing... our eyes lie to us).

PART is distribution / how the weight is carried

PART is bonestructure, again, but this time in the distribution. Some people are TINY but have round faces so 'look' heavier than someone who weighs waaaaaaay more. Other people do the jowly thing, or the goddess cheekbone thing, or, or, or, or.

PART is skin type (darker skin = thinner appearance / tighter skin = smaller size, looser skin = larger size)

PART is clothing style/type.

<grin> Sorry... you combined 2 of my favorite things; art and physiology.

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answers from New York on

muscle is heavier than fat?? maybe u were all muscle with a very low body fat percentage? .. im 5foot and right now im 145 (im27weeks pregnant) and i look huuuuggeeee.. weight is just a number its all about how it looks on your body.. i mean before i got pregnant and i had gained weight i looked chunky at 125lbs but at 118 i was perfect.. 7lbs really isnt that much but on me it lookd like it was 25lbs

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answers from Dallas on

I didn't see that question.
I only have myself to measure by. At my thinnest 5'7" 160 lbs. I was a 12. That's stretching the lbs over 5 more inches of height and I could only fit into a 12 in jeans. If I tried to pack all 160 lbs into 5 less inches, I would be even rounder and probably at least a 14 in jeans.
Now, if you were really tall that would be easier to fathom. My daughter is 5'11" and weighs 140. Spreading 140 lbs across almost 6 ft, she ends up an 8.

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answers from Oklahoma City on

I carry most of my weight in my hips and thighs. If I wear a dress that is fitting in the bust with an empire waist I look tiny, when I am thin. I weighed 150lbs and was wearing a size 11/12 dress. I had 38D so it had to be bigger to fit those honkers....lol.

I wore size 16 pants though. Of course I dressed to look smaller, I never wore an A-line dress or something that emphasized my butt and hip area. I think that you may have some proportions like this. Where some part of you is still carrying some of the weight but where it doesn't impact the size clothes you wear.

It could also be your body style. If you are short and curvy then some of your weight is on your arms, thighs, and calves. If you are more of an athletic body style it can be more in the rib cage, back, and all over muscle tone. Muscle weighs more than fat does. So if you are the least bit muscular you will weigh more than someone who is the same size but has more of a flabby body tone.

I think it funny that people are challenging your weight and size over a question like this. I have always fooled the guys at the fairs who want to guess your weight. They always guess it pounds lighter.

I looked at your pictures and the one that is outside and you are wearing a light, maybe white with some pale print on it, you can see how tiny your waist is. Then you look at your legs and you can see that they are a bit larger than a really skinny person would be.

That's what I was pointing out above. You are a perfect example. You have a smaller torso and carry your excess on the limbs. That's not a bad thing at all. As a matter of fact, it's the best way to have it. You can dress super slimming and no one will even notice any heavier parts.


It's just that we all carry our body excess in different ways. That's all. I have a friend who is about 5'10" and is built beautifully. Perfect proportions. She looks good in anything she puts on. Like a model. But you will never catch her in a dress, know why???? She has very fat calves and ankles. She carries all her excess weight in her lower body. She dresses to accentuate the positive and downplay the not so perfect parts.

You look very good in your pictures. Continue to work on toning, not building muscle until the excess weight is gone, and you will see much difference.

You might try swimming to tone the arms and legs. Since there is no weight bearing going on you are toning instead of building muscle like doing leg lifts or riding a bike would do.

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answers from Redding on

muscle weighs more than fat, so dont discount that.
the scale is really not your friend. The mirror works better.
It's all about what how you feel and how you look, not how much you weigh.

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answers from Houston on

I don't pay attention to BMI, but I can understand how you can look way smaller than you weigh. I am 5'5" with a petite frame, but I am very curvy, and my boobs are huge and heavy. (You know how some fat people try to say that they're just curvy? Well, I'm not like that. At my skinniest, I have curves...hourglass-like. Just clarifying.) I carry a lot of weight in my boobs and some in my hips and thighs. At any given time, people always think that I weigh about 20-40 pounds less than I actually do.

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answers from Cleveland on

I would say after being heavier your skin and all other organs dont just go back down to where you were. If you just had your second I wouldn't worry too much until after the first year. I would try to get back down to within 10 lbs of your pre preggo weight an after a year go for where you want. I took up running and tracked calories and it did wonders. As far as BMI I was at the end of the BMI scale for normal but in a size 10. The thing I've noticed since I was a teen is that I have more fat than muscle which is why I've tried to focus on running 3x a week and signing up for races.

Unless you get your fat% measured you will never know where you are at. I wouldn't go just by size or BMI bc the sizes have changed in the last 30 yrs. a size 8 when I was a teen is likely not a size 8 now.


answers from Houston on

I always carry extra weight without it showing, not sure how. I have like an invisible 20 lbs. I'm glad the scale doesn't matter to me.


answers from Lakeland on

Don't go by clothes sizes each maker/designer is different when it comes to sizes. I can remember going for a fitting for my sister’s wedding and the dress was a size 2 and it was falling off me. At the time I was wearing a size 6.

Also muscle weighs more than fat so you have to consider that too. As long as you are happy with how you look then the size of your clothes shouldn’t matter.

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