Friday, September 25, 2009

Vanity Sizing and Losing Weight Without Really Trying - For Men

I had to laugh last weekend when my husband and I were out clothes shopping for him. Well, first, because apparently all of those salads I've served him over the summer have helped his waistline - he showed me how his shorts would completely fall down, while zipped and buttoned, if they weren't belted. They were really loose and baggy - it would have driven me crazy if they were my clothes, but that kind of stuff doesn't bother him very much. So since we are going on our trip in three weeks (!!!), we went looking for some shorts that actually fit him.

Found some great deals (gotta love the end-of-summer clearance racks), and while he was trying on the outfits I had picked out, I noticed that one of the shirts was too big on him. I checked the size - Large - and left the dressing room area to get him a Medium. Which fit. He was incredulous that at six feet and a little over 200 pounds, he could fit into a size Medium shirt. I hated to burst his bubble, but I explained about vanity sizing, and how certain clothing manufacturers do this to women's clothes to make them feel better about their purchase. And apparently it has extended to men's clothes as well. I think it's interesting for him to get a taste of what women encounter while shopping. Of course, he was mostly focused on the smaller waist size of his new shorts - I guess for men, that's the true size for them.

So while he's lost weight without really trying (yes, there are a lot of thing I could be saying about that), I'm still plugging away. The weight is coming off, slowly - but my body shape has changed, and I attribute that to my workouts. One thing that has me perplexed is the size of pants I'm fitting into. Y'all, I still weigh a lot - and yet the other day, I fit into every pair of size 10 pants that I tried on. If it were only a few pairs, I might attribute it to vanity sizing, but this was a lot of pairs of pants. Does muscle really weigh that much more than fat? I just know that when I was on my UP the scales, at this weight I was definitely not a size 10. It's weird to realize how much working out has done for my body...I never would have believed it. Some days, I still can't.


  1. I'm the same way, Shelley! I'm pretty much at my goal weight and now when i'm buy clothes, i'm at the smallest size.. it just feels SO weird to be buyin those sizes... i always thing, they can't possibly fit, but in reality they do of course 'cause i've busted my ass! lol! And you have too! So give yourself some credit and enjoy those 10's girlfriend!! ;)

  2. I think you are right, it must be better tone as I am certain I look better at this weight going down (while doing all this exercise) than going up when I wasn't exercising at all.

    Still nowhere near size 10s yet, though those size 14s are calling me...

  3. size ten, woman! SIZE FRIGGIN TEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    You rawk!!!!

  4. Congrats to your hubby on losing. Mine just went shopping when they changed the dress policy at work and was alitte upset that he went from a 34 to a 36 in waist size. Gee, do you think it's the bowl full of peanuts and slices of brick cheese you eat every day as a snack? Portion control, man. Otherwise he's really good eater and gets exercise.

    A huge conrats to you on the size 10s. I started out thinking I just want to lose weight. I knew I had to add exercise. Aerobics have always been fun/easy to me. I knew I had to add in strength training. You know how I struggled with that! Last week's gain was frustrating to me, yet I lost a half inch in my waist and hips. And while it may not be noticeable to others, I can see muscles under my fat--I feel much firmer. I just can't imagine what is going to happen to my body as I keep this up.

    I never dreamed I could actually change my body. Ever. And I really think I need to give credit to the bloggers who were actually doing strength training, and writing about it, to spur me on. And of course you are one of them.

    Now I have something more to hope for--size 10s and a great body, great fitness.

    Way to go, Shelley!

  5. Size 10 and still have a lot to lose? Not from where I'm sitting. You look mah-velous!

    And BTW, we all know that the waist size isn't really the size that matters most for men, don't we? (Blush, blush - I just couldn't resist.)

  6. A ten is awesomeness! Don't get me started on the "without really trying" thing. I get that from my guy, too. Seriously, he could drop ten pounds without so much as a walk in the park. Life is unfair sometimes.

    Way to go!

  7. Strength training and muscle building do make you smaller. It's seems impossible, but it's true! I gained about 6 pounds or so doing my triathlon, which I have now taken off. The interesting thing is that I am a size *smaller* at this same weight than I was before and I owe it all to training.

    Keep going - you are doing awesome in those tiny size 10s!

    I hear you on the hubby thing. Mine can lose while eating more than I can (comparatively). That is annoying LOL!

  8. I think 10s are the smallest size I can remember on my last weight loss effort! That is amazing! I think the muscle building just shifts everything around. I've gone down a size a couple weeks ago and hadn't really seen it on the scale. My butt is higher up though ;)

  9. Keep on going down down down in the sizes.

    All my clothes are vanity sized.
    My mirrors are too!

  10. Hi Shelly-Just wanted to pop in and tell you what a great job you are doing!!! I never really got back to my own blogging habit, so I'll just comment to you!! Way to go. Be strong and hang in there, you are doing great.

  11. I had to look up what size 10 means in Dutch size and thats size 40. Right now I'm wearing size 42 or 44 (I suppose size 12 or 14 at your sizes). So I'm far away from where you are right now.

    And I believe too that exercisings shapes your body.

    And it's not fair that men lose weight so easily wheater they're working on it or not.

  12. I am just so proud of you. You are doing such a great job and obviously all your hard work is paying off. And I am totally with you about the boys just dropping the pounds without even trying. I HATE THAT!!! SO unfair on so many levels.

  13. I am just so proud of you. You are doing such a great job and obviously all your hard work is paying off. And I am totally with you about the boys just dropping the pounds without even trying. I HATE THAT!!! SO unfair on so many levels.

  14. Size 10 - it's a beautiful thing. I'm working toward the next size down (doesn't matter what it is) because progress is progress.

  15. Vanity sizing. Cracks me up!

    Size 10 is awesome.

    And so are YOU!


  16. I remember your Mom complaining that all your Dad had to do to lose weight was stop eating his nightly bowl of ice cream, and do an extra 15 sit-ups every night.
    And vanity sizing for men? What is SO weird about that, is that it's something that men would want. Men usually want to be thought of as 'bigger' (umm - sorry - no sexual connotation there - I mean muscley). I remember telling my husband a few years ago that he was skinny and he got MAD at me. "I'm NOT SKINNY!" It was one of my first glimpses into the unfathomable depths of man-think.

  17. Thanks for sharing! Your success fuels us all with enthusiasm!

  18. Shelly, I stopped by from Hotch Potchery's blog to tell you how great and vibrant you look in your photo!

    Yes, you can definitely weigh a bit more with muscles but fit into smaller clothes. Here's an explanation from a trainer on the WW web site:

    If you only have a small amount of weight to lose, then you may feel like the weight training is not helping you move down on the scale. In fact, the number may even go up, but you will look thinner. This is due to an increase in lean body mass (muscle, bone, blood volume) and a decrease in body fat. In other words, even if the scale doesn't change much, you will probably see a difference in how your clothes fit.

  19. I know what you mean - I am short - 5 feet 2 inches tall, weigh 163 pounds, am still considered "obese" on some charts, but wear mostly size 12 and some size 10 pants - I don't get it either! :D

    So excited your trip will be here before you know it!!!!!

  20. A size 10 is wonderful! You should be really, really proud. The sizing of clothes is very odd to me, both mens and womens. When I first lost weight it would bother me that I wasn't the same size across the board, but now I try not to pay attention to the size!

    My hubby has gone up the size ladder a bit, so he would totally love some vanity sizing!

  21. Rob loses weight without trying too, and I can't wait to get into a size ten! :)

  22. Congratulations on the size 10s, Shelley! I have noticed the same thing . . . I definitely wear a smaller size now than I did on the way up the scale. It must be a combination of vanity sizing and a different body shape from working out.


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