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How has your weight changed over your adulthood?

ONUnicornONUnicorn Member, Premium Posts: 14 Member Member, Premium Posts: 14 Member
So, the average American adult gains on average 1-2 pounds per year from their 20s to their 50s.

How does that compare with you?

For me, when I graduated high school I was 145 pounds. By the time I turned 30 I was 245, an average of 8.3 pounds gained per year.

I started trying to lose weight, watching my calorie intake and working out and over 3 years got down to 195. An average of 16.6 pounds lost per year.

Then a lot of things changed in my life - I went to grad school while working full time, lost a job, went through a deep depression, watched my Mom get sick and pass away, became more depressed, etc. Diet and exercise fell to the wayside.

I just turned 40. I now weigh 286.6 pounds, meaning since I stopped losing weight at 33 I've gained an average of 13.08 pounds per year.

Taking it all together, since high school I've gained an average of 6.43 pounds per year - almost 3x the national average.

That's . . . a depressing thought.

So, what about other people? Taking together what you've gained, what you've lost, periods where you maintained a weight - what's your average change per year since you graduated high school?
edited July 28


  • hiparihipari Member, Premium Posts: 810 Member Member, Premium Posts: 810 Member
    This is an interesting topic and I’ve been pondering about it quite a lot lately.

    In 2008-2009 I did an exchange year in the US and remember weighing about 150lbs then. My current weight is just over 210lbs. That’s 60lbs gained in 11 years, averaging about 5,5lbs per year.

    Looking back, my starting date (on this profile) on MFP is in December 2015 when my weight was 215lbs. I’ve been fluctuating between 200 and 220 ever since, it was actually 65lbs in 6 years (2009-2015), so almost 11lbs per year.

    More annoying is that during my years on MFP, I’ve lost an average of less than a pound per year. Sure, the trend is in the right direction, but it’s definitely lacking consistency.

    Ironically, my weight gain began when I returned home to Finland from the US. The obesity issues in the US were discussed in the media so much, that I was very careful during my year there. When I returned, I pretty much thought it’s safe to eat whatever I want and started gaining. Around that time I also started taking the birth control pill, so I don’t really know what caused what. I’m going off the pill soon, so it’s going to be interesting to see if it causes any changes.
  • nanamerriman2020nanamerriman2020 Member Posts: 325 Member Member Posts: 325 Member
    I think my weight changed because bad habits eventually caught up to me.

    I was the skinny kid in high school, into books and nothing active. Weighed perhaps 110-115 at 5'5". College I probably put on 10-15 but looking back: can't say if its because I was eating more or because I was still growing/changing? I was more active as I lived on campus, walked to where I needed to go for the most part. I think I was 130-135 when I got pregnant @ 23 and got back to that weight by 8-12 weeks post-baby but my body was shaped differently. Had my 2nd child at 25, and weighed perhaps 175 right after she was born. I went on the Depo shot for a couple of cycles, and I understand that can make weight loss difficult. But I also was not doing anything to actively lose weight. I weighed about the same 175 when I later became pregnant with my 3rd, and probably was around 190 a year after she was born when I made my first ever efforts at weight loss.

    Gaining pregnancy weight is pretty normal, and perhaps the Depo shot rounds made losing the weight the 2nd pregnancy a little harder. I worked desk jobs all through those years, without any particular intentional exercise.

    In 2014 I got down from 178 (do not really know my highest weight as I avoided scales for a long time) to 128 and maintained around 130 for a few years. Over the past 2 years I've been mostly n the 130s, then creeped up into the 140's. In the past 12 months made a couple of half hearted efforts to get it back under 'control'. Started this last time 6 weeks ago, and I'm down from 148 to 141.8 in that time. Headed back to the low 130's and plan to stay there!

    Comparing 135 @ 23 to 178 @ 39: +2.7 pounds per year

    Comparing 128 @ 40 to 142 @ 45: +2.8 pounds per year <--Glad I'm getting it under control now before it gets way out of hand again.
    edited July 28
  • ShortgirlrunningShortgirlrunning Member Posts: 971 Member Member Posts: 971 Member
    I gained a lot of weight in college. When I graduated high school I was around 130. When I finished grad school (when I was 24) I was in the 170s/180s.

    I hit my highest weight of 190 when I was 26. That’s when I really started making serious efforts at weight loss.

    I lost 50 lbs and got down to 140 between 27/28. Maintained/gained a bit back when I was 29.

    I’m 30 now and have just gotten under 140. So I’m just under 10 lbs from my goal weight of 130.

    So if you just looked at weight in 2008 and my weight today it’s only a 10 lb difference which would actually be less than a 1 lb per year gain. But I spent most of the years in between obese.
  • yirarayirara Member Posts: 5,291 Member Member Posts: 5,291 Member
    So I moved out 20.5 years ago. I was mid 20 and had no experience with adulting. I was 59kg at that time, which is not a lot. Until 2014 I gained to about 75kg. So I was basically systematically overeating by about 700 calories per month, or 23 per day :D Not to bad, considering how much I was snacking and how calorie rich I was eating. :D So I decided to do something against it, and lots to a nice level. Some fluctuations, but I'm generally at a weight I'm happy with (around 63kg). I'd not want to get lower as my face will look terrible.
  • threewinsthreewins Member Posts: 546 Member Member Posts: 546 Member
    I'm a yo-yo dieter so I've gained and lost numerous times. I think I've gained/lost about 260 kg in little bits and pieces. My highest weight above goal weight is 28 kg (twice). I've been at goal weight 5 times, the longest for 18 months and the shortest for one day (hangs head in shame). Longest time not being at goal weight is about 11 years. In terms of how much I gain when I am not caring, it's about 1 kg a month, it's quite consistent around that number.
    edited July 28
  • sardelsasardelsa Member Posts: 9,472 Member Member Posts: 9,472 Member
    Well I'm not 50 yet I'm only 36. I am about the same weight I was in my 20s, maybe less. I'm definitely more fit, lean and have more muscle. I did gain 30-40lbs with each pregnancy but that was temporary and came off a few months after birth.
  • Mouse_PotatoMouse_Potato Member Posts: 1,290 Member Member Posts: 1,290 Member
    I was underweight in high school. 5'3" and graduated at 93 pounds. I gained to about 125 in my late 20s and then dropped back to 107. Got married and crept up to 117 then moved out to the country and started cooking everything from scratch. Went up to 145. Moved back to the city, divorced, and dropped to 140. Met my boyfriend and went back up to 149. A year later I found MFP and began my slow journey back down to 114, where I'm pretty happy. I've got a lot more muscle than I had at 18, so I look much better. I'm 46 now, so overall I've gained .75 pounds per year since graduation.
  • RelCanonicalRelCanonical Member Posts: 3,779 Member Member Posts: 3,779 Member
    I'm about 50 pounds lighter than I was in high school. I recalled getting weighed once and I was about 170. I did not weight myself often, so these are all estimates.

    I probably gained about 15 in college, due to no longer being under the supervision of parents, which I think naturally regulated me through the embarrassment of eating too much.

    I then probably gained another 10 after college. I lived alone for the most part (I had a roommate, but she was never around), it was my first full-time job and also my first time living permanently away from my parents (i.e. too far away for weekend visits like with college). All my natural regulators were gone, and there was free food at work. It's possible I gained more than 10, but I wasn't weighing myself at all, and honestly, wasn't even thinking about weight loss.

    I didn't even think about losing weight until 2013, which was a couple years after college. In short, I got down about 50, gained it back quickly, then gained probably another 10 over four years.

    Two years ago, I started losing again, and have lost about 70. Net since highschool is about -50lbs. Broken down into years, that is about -3.57lbs. per year.

    edited July 28
  • spiriteagle99spiriteagle99 Member Posts: 2,747 Member Member Posts: 2,747 Member
    I've been a yoyo dieter all my life. In high school and college, I would go from 120 to 140 then I'd diet back to 120 then gain back the weight the following year. I had a depression period in my 20s when I went down to 108, but then I quit smoking, started exercising, emerged from the depression and gained weight again. For a while in my 30s I was active - walking every day, hiking a lot, and had little money to eat out so I was fairly stable in the 130s. I got married at 40, got too comfortable, and gained weight until I reached 175, so then I lost 40 lbs. A few years later we were travelling a lot, eating out at fast food places too much, and I was back up to 177. We settled down again and I dieted and lost 45 lbs. I joined MFP, started running, and continued to lose weight down to 120. Since then (about 7 years) I've stayed mostly stable at 120-125 by running regularly and continuing to log all my food.
  • deputy_randolphdeputy_randolph Member Posts: 876 Member Member Posts: 876 Member
    I weighed 153lbs when I graduated high school (I'll always remember that weight b/c I had lost nearly 40lbs by my senior year). At 40, I'm 133lbs (give or take a couple of lbs).

    With the exception of the 2 kids, my weight has stayed in the same 10lbs range since college (lost an addition 20+lbs during college). I think I have a huge advantage for maintaining my weight, b/c I was a chubby kid that lost weight without adult support. I was "forced" to learn about nutrition and exercise at an early age.

    Since I had previously lost a significant amount of weight, I was able to slowly and methodically lose the weight gained during pregnancies in 8-10 months postpartum.

    My habits for maintaning my weight are engrained and just part of my daily rituals at this point. I exercise most days. I eat reasonable portions most days. I eat a variety of healthy foods most days.

    I might gain weight as I age...that's normal. I'll just keep doing what I'm doing and see what happens.
    edited July 29
  • csplattcsplatt Member Posts: 485 Member Member Posts: 485 Member
    I got married at 22 at 127 lb, very lean and muscular. I am 38 now and my heaviest has been about 155. Currently at 138 but working on trimming up a tad and putting muscle back on, so basically recomp. Would like to be closer to 132-134 but I always have trouble staying there.
  • mom23mangosmom23mangos Member Posts: 2,995 Member Member Posts: 2,995 Member
    Avg. of 0.4lbs per year if you look at current weight at 45 minus weight at 20. But in reality weight was stable at HS weight until about 35 (outside of pregnancy and post-natal). So in reality, it was more like 1lb/year.

    And it's fluctuated up and down within 10lbs several times. I'm currently sitting about 10lbs heavier than at 20, but at approximately same size (except my back) as most of that gain was muscle mass.
  • Go_DeskerciseGo_Deskercise Member Posts: 1,327 Member Member Posts: 1,327 Member
    Diatonic12 wrote: »
    ....I've tried the fancy food protocols, denatured protein powders and the like. Food delivery. Fresh Pet. All of those things got me nowhere good so I joined MFP. I gutted it out. I posted photos and songs while I was tooling along because the weight releasing was slow....

    Am I reading this wrong or is this saying that you tried Fresh Pet to lose weight???
    edited July 29
  • Diatonic12Diatonic12 Member Posts: 5,424 Member Member Posts: 5,424 Member
    You read it right. :D

    I ate bowls of food that tasted just like dog and cat food, on a bed of lettuce with some secret sauce drizzled over the top.
    edited July 29
  • Go_DeskerciseGo_Deskercise Member Posts: 1,327 Member Member Posts: 1,327 Member
    Diatonic12 wrote: »
    You read it right. :D

    I ate bowls of food that tasted just like dog and cat food, on a bed of lettuce with some secret sauce drizzled over the top.

  • JthanmyfitnesspalJthanmyfitnesspal Member, Premium Posts: 2,395 Member Member, Premium Posts: 2,395 Member
    I really love hearing these stories. So interesting! I wish everyone the best success in improving their personal health-- of which body weight is just one metric. I hope we never neglect also our personal mental health!

    I was non-athletic in my first 14 years of life. I was overweight prior to puberty. After puberty, I was only slightly overweight. At 14, I fell in love with bikes, and started cycling everywhere. My interest increased in college and even more in grad school, where I also discovered weight training and swimming. I would say I was in the best shape of my life at 30, with bodyweight below 165lbs, fast swim and bike times (for me). And, I graduated from grad school and got married! Life was good!

    But, by the time I was 40 I had gained 50lbs! (These were very happy family years. Lots of work, child rearing, happy married life, good time!) So, when I turned 40, I decided I needed to control my weight. I first did it by using an app on PalmPilot. I used a few other web sites, but for the past 7 years, I have used MFP. I initialy reduced my weight into the 190s with a goal of keeping it at 190lbs. (Requiring several loss cycles as it drifted back up!). In the past few years (spurred by mild high blood pressure), I reduced to the low 170s.

    My weight is currently 174lbs with the short-term goal of reaching 170lbs. (For the 2nd time this year-- quarantine is a *kitten*!)
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