Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Bones

I'm not talking about if and when Booth & Brennan will ever get together... seriously FOX... stop messing with my goddamn emotions....

No, I'm talking about our actual bones. I had thought, my entire fully grown bodied life, that I had a "medium" frame. For obvious reasons... it made me feel less FAT. I probably would have told myself I had a "large" frame if I thought I could have gotten away with it.

The thing is I REALLY believed this. What else would explain why I always weighed about 5 pounds (okay sometimes 17) over my "ideal" weight of 115 for my 5'3"? Certainly not the fact that I ate with wild abandon and didn't exercise. Must be that pesky medium bone structure I've been hauling around... right?

The best part is I didn't even make this up for myself... an actual Health professional did (okay it was my middle school field hockey coach... what?! I went to prep school. Sports were mandatory). At the tender age of 13 I was told to wrap my right hand around my left wrist (I think the coach had us do this... or was it Seventeen magazine?). If you could overlap your fingers than you had a "small" frame, if they met then you had a "medium" frame, and if they didn't meet you were FAT... er... I mean you had a "large" frame. I probably weighed around 115 at that time and guess what? My fingers technically didn't meet... I could squeeze really, really, hard and almost get them to touch. Now I wasn't fat, obviously, and I'm not a "large" person so the only explanation for this failure to conform to such a scientific assessment of my bone structure was that I was "medium large" or "medium" framed for short hand.

Being 13 at the time that label was burned into my brain... and maybe somehow led to a resignation (partially subconscious even) that I couldn't be as thin for my height as a "normal" person. So I never tried.

All through college my weight ranged in the 116-121 range... except for one summer when I inexplicably gained 15 pounds. I didn't really work out or watch my diet. During this same time I began suffering from chronic body pain. This led me to an Orthopedic Surgeon and he had me get a full set of Xrays. I note this because I clearly remember the Xray technician saying "You have the smallest bones I've ever seen." What?!?! I don't have a medium to medium large frame?!? Lies! I did what anyone would do and pretended she didn't say that. But, I confess, it did kind of eat at me sometimes... this idea that maybe it wasn't my bones that put my weight up over the hump of "ideal".

It wasn't until this past winter when I reached 110 that I realized that I really do have a small frame. I guess it took actually losing enough weight to be able to see my bone structure to finally put my old middle school measurement to rest. Sometimes I wonder if I had had big enough hands to reach around my wrist... if I had gotten the coveted "small" frame title back in my early adolescence if I would have tired harder to live up to that title. Instead I kind of spent the next 18 years of my life living up to the "medium" frame instead.

This all came up again for me after popping over to Haley's place last week. It seems there is a more accurate way to measure your bone structure... by measuring your elbow:


What do you know? Small frame. Kind of wish I had stumbled across this YEARS ago.
Hop over to Haley's for the measurement instructions... then have at it!

53 comments:

Kiki said...

2 inches...great....I have no excuse now!!!

Deb said...

You're teeny. Fact.

I have freakishly long fingers, so I bet the wrist thing is not accurate for me, either. I'm trying to live up to my small frame, though, so maybe learning I'm not small-framed would not be a good thing. Then again, I'm a glutton for information, so I'm heading over to Haley's.

Heather said...

Boy you were right about lots of things coming up in pregnancy -- especially (for me) when it comes to body image. I too always thought of myself as "supposed to be" bigger, heavy, etc. For some reason, now that I'm far, far away from that -- when I told Pete the other day that I felt like a whale, he said "But you're my favorite whale" -- I'm realizing the extent of how I held myself back and for some reason the extra 20 lbs were a manifestation of something else; realizing my full potential or something. Not to get all Oprah on you...

So I've made a vow that post-baby, I'm getting down to 115, period. My little girl is not going to grow up with me yo-yo dieting anymore, and fretting, fretting, fretting over my weight and why won't the scale move, etc. etc. It's just not going to happen anymore. I remember weighing 111-115 in high school and I felt like my body fit who I was. So there it is, and that's how it's gonna be. The End.

Marie said...

Now thats depressing. I have a small frame,and while I always *knew* I had a small frame, I haven't looked at what my weight range is since being pregnant (and again, and again...). Well, according to the great google.com, for a small frame at 5'4", the ideal weight is 114-127.

Guess my 141 isn't quite working for me. (But it IS within range if I am a large frame...).

Hmmm....dh HAS been kinda joking around about having a fourth...maybe I'll just stay pregnant forever...

Deb said...

Medium! Whoo-hoo! I feel freeeeeeee!

Robin said...

Interesting. I have looked this stuff up before because here's what I'm confused about... According to the elbow test, my bones are right on the cusp between small and medium frame. If I do the finger wrist thing, my bones are small. Smallish medium seems right to me, based on my wrist. So why the hell are my ankles so big?

Also, I wonder if the one Haley found took a person's height into consideration. I googled it, and some did, and other's didn't. I wonder if it matters. (Although looks like your frame is small, no matter how tall you are, Mrs. F!)

Elizabeth said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Elizabeth said...

WTF?!?

1.5" Really? really? My Dad's family-type-folks are along that peasant line Haley was talking about. Irish peasants but still...

And about the hand/wrist method. Do you have tiny little Mame-inherited hands? Because I totally do and I can't reach around my wrist.

Edited for mistaken use of NAMES!

Julie said...

Fuck. I spent a half hour measuring my wrist and elbow all different ways. I even googled this so i could see an actual photo of what i am supposed to measure. Wow, what a waste of time now that I think about it. No wonder I never have time to clean the house.

Anyway, I am small framed and that just makes me sad. Granted, I am only 5 feet tall so it's not a big surprise. I am a small framed fat ass. Oh, and apparently I am an "apple." I am a freaking fat apple. Fat apple should be my new nickname. Maybe that is what I should call my blog.

Mrs Furious said...

Heather,
"But you're my favorite whale"
Made me spit out my coffee!



Elizabeth,
yes I have freakishly small hands. I remember when taking piano I technically can't quite reach an octave.



I'll be back ... got take kid to school and do my errands.

Julie said...

Oh yeah, I forgot why I was so annoyed...I discovered (although I really did know it, but was in denial) that according to some random healthy body thing, in order for me to lose 1 to 1.5 pounds a week, i can only eat 1200 calories a day. This also does not take into account my fucking hypothyroid thing.

So if I seem bitchy at times, it is because I am hungry:)

btw, Mrs F, I have NO TJ's snacks in the house. I finally admit that I am powerless to honey wheat pretzels and organic animal crackers.

Yours truly,
Fat Apple

Mrs Furious said...

Fat Apple,
Being an apple rocks. Although you will seem much fatter than a pear carrying the same extra weight... when you lose it... you will look like a goddamn badass.

Haven't you been losing while still eating a bit above 1200? Haven't you lost around 15 by now? It's working.

Julie said...

In theory, if I had actually been eating on "plan", I would have lost 15 pounds by now. I have been more maintaining the 10 pounds I have lost. Actually, this week,it is only up to 8 pounds lost.

Let's face it, I am not really trying to lose weight.

I am doing it now. I do want to be a goddamn badass.

Julie said...

while still eating a bit above 1200?

That's cute...a bit above. I have found that the extra 1,000 calories really doesn't help the weight loss.

Cara said...

Apparently I am a small frame......... no excuses either. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. hahah. JUST KIDDING.

Mrs Furious said...

Julie,
The 1200 doesn't include the Jazzercize.

I think you should do 5 days under 1200, 2 days under 1500 (not consecutive) then 4 days Jazzercize.

Si?

I also think you should go no treats/snacks except the Skinny Cow for the next 2 months and just see what happens.

If this works you won't have much more to go after that.

Not that anyone asked me ;)

Mrs Furious said...

Robin,
ankles? Good point. I do have small ankles. no denying it for me.
But yes what about that.
Do you have the bone mass feature on the Tanita?
How much does it say your bones weigh?
That is taking height into account I think.
Mine are like dust... 4.6 lbs (I can never get over that either... who knew bones were so freaking light!?!!)

Mr Furious said...

The reason yuor fingers don't go around your wrist is because of your sub-evolutionary freak thumbs.

(It's true, people, her thumbs are barely opposable!)

Mrs Furious said...

Heather,
If you weighed below 115 in high school then I give you my blessing... go for it.
I firmly believe that any weight we could maintain(not through eating disorders) after puberty is a weight we can achieve again. You can totally do it. I'll be here.

Also YES not being a mother who is dissatisfied with their body is one of the greatest gifts we can give our daughters.

Mrs Furious said...

Mr F,
I was going to mention that... but I didn't want to take away from the post.

Not sub-evolutionary... evolutionary.... I'm the human form of the future... behold.

Robin said...

I do have that function on my scale. I will check it out. although I don't have much confidence...considering I'm pretty sure mine's not accurate on the body fat. I'll let you know.

Julie said...

Mrs F, I like that plan. I am going to try it.

Haley said...

Holy crap -- who knew this little factoid would hit such a nerve with so many people? I'm envisioning an army of women reaching for their tape measures...

The cool thing though, is that when you bend your elbow to measure you kind of look like Rosie the Riveter in her "We can do it!" pose.

Jennifer said...

2.5 on the nose. And since I call all the lines on the ruler that aren't big .. little slashes, you know 2 and a half and two little slashes after that ... kind of thing. I'm pretty sure that puts me at a medium frame. Which if I do the finger thing it works out the same.

Oh, Julie, I was lmao at your fat apple comment!

Robin said...

OK, I measured my bone mass on my scale. It says I have 5.4 pounds of bones. Every time I check, it is about that, so maybe it is accurate. You would think, though, that if you are (very) small boned, and I am small/medium boned and almost 4 inches taller, that I would have more than one more pound of bone mass. Interesting.

Here's the exciting part! My body fat was 25.5%! Maybe the 28% I got last week was a mis-read. (big meal or dehydrated or something) Fifteen pounds ago, my body fat was 32.7%. Yahooo!

Oh, and my metabolic age is 24. It may not be 12, but its not too bad, considering I am 35.

Robin said...

I just did the math on my body fat and (assuming the fat% is accurate,) my lean mass is the same now as it was 15 pounds ago. So all 15 pounds lost was fat. Yipppeeee! Weight training pays off. :)

Mrs Furious said...

Robin,
the manual that came with my scale says that average bone mass (for all people) is only 4-7 pounds. So that does seem about right. Mine is consistently 4.6.

I was going to ask you when you read your body fat.
If I do it in the AM it is always 22%... of course I'm completely dehydrated.
When I got the 18.9 was when I weighed in at 6 pm which is before I eat dinner. I do think the hydration factor is huge. Also that weigh in was at the tail end of my period ... and that is when I consistently get my lowest body fat readings. (like day 4 or 5 of my cycle).

Erin said...

I have totally realized that I have a small frame - unfortunately? Like you said, it makes me admit that I have to lose at least 10 pounds that I was blaming on my medium frame. When I was younger, I even thought I had a large frame! How that can be when I am 5'1", I am not sure....

Robin said...

Yeah, after I wrote that (about the bone mass) I was thinking, if you look at it from a percentage standpoint, one pound more than 4.5 pounds is quite a bit. So yeah, that makes sense.

Re: fat %. I got the 28% first thing in the morning. I got the 32.7% before dinner. Today it was before lunch, but I have had a decent amount of water today, so it is probably comparable to a pre-dinner reading. I never thought about how it would fluctuate with my cycle. I don't remember exactly when I got the 28%. It was either during or right after. Now it's about 1 week after. All very interesting.

P.O.M. said...

What if you have really small hands but big bones? Hmmm.

I gotta check this out now. Gee thanks. I hope the truth will set me free.

Andrea said...

Yeah I am a small frame, really dont know why I would think otherwise as Im barely 5'1" but I did always think I was more on the medium frame go figure excuses.

Mrs Furious said...

Robin,
oh it is hugely related to your cycle. In fact I'm pretty sure it is only accurate at a certain point each month. They do say that in the manual and suggest you track it daily for a month until you establish that accurate period... and by accurate I of course like to believe the lowest reading I get is "accurate" ;)

eurydice said...

omg... i was doing it all wrong until i saw your photo. i am 1.5 inches. i knew i couldn't have a medium frame!

Mrs Furious said...

Well I imagine it is possible to have a larger or smaller bone mass or bone structure for any particular height.
I'll be interested to know if any shorties have a large frame. So far it doesn't seem that way...

Mrs Furious said...

Eurydice,
Ah ... yes... I was wondering how you could have come up with Medium myself.

AshinMT said...

Okay, so maybe i am doing this test wrong. Elbow test says im extra large or something (three or so inches?) but the old wrist trick says small frame (overlapping fingers) although i have never credit this much because im 5'10" and someone who is this tall certianly couldnt have a small frame.Plus i have man hands. Am i testing this elbow wrong, its time to know the truth! Maybe i should just settle on medium.

Mrs Furious said...

Ashin MT
Well hmm. At 5'10" you could have a small frame (my sister does) it isn't a height thing but the size of your bone structure... you know you could be tall but willowy.
However if you think you have "man hands" and measure over 3" in the elbow you probably do have a large frame.
Are you measuring just from the outside of one bone to the outside of the other?

Mrs Furious said...

For example Kiki measure 2" and she's tall.

Sherry/Shay said...

Am I understanding this correctly...you measure form the two little bones that are on both sides of yoru elbow. Not just from one small bone to the elbow? Is that correct? Because at first I thought it was from the small bone to the elbow. But when I saw what Haley had posted as her measurement, then envisioned that, it's just not possible. So that leads me to think it's from the two outside bones. Please help!

Nutmeg said...

I get 2 3/4

This makes me large framed and at 5'6" it means I'm a badass at my current weight.

At BEST I'm medium framed, I'd say and I'm still a badass.

I don't feel like a badass though, since I know I am a bad ass when I weigh 10 lbs less.

So that's really my goal.

Mrs Furious said...

Sherry,
from the outside of the small bone to the outside of the big bone... so the entire span from one outer edge to the other. If you look at my pic you'll see I'm just under 2" for the whole span.

Mrs Furious said...

Nutmeg,
we always knew you were a badass :)

Kiki said...

Mrs. F. is right, I'm 5'10", and in my family that is short, two of my sisters are 6'+ and my mom is also 6'+. All that to say that I have a small frame and fat skin.

Amy said...

hehe, i'm like 1 1/2". great, that means i'm nothing but a lardass. but...like you, i just thought i was big-boned. turns out i'm a mouse in hippo's clothing.

Amy said...

oh, 5'1", so that makes another shortie with 4.4 lbs of bone according to my scale - and that figure never changes.

AshinMT said...

So last night i had the BF take some measurements (sp?) for me. 2 1/2. This seems right to me. Although, do you have any suggestions for websites where you can look at your ideal weight according to or at least including frame size? mypyramid? And my next question is perhaps not appropriate for here but..
I have maintained about 20? (i have no idea where i was when i started) pounds of weightloss over the last 8 or so months. I recently decided that my goal was to loose 10-12 more. Putting me in the 143-145 range. I feel like i have been particularly aware and making healthy choices this week,(after quite the indulgent weekend i must admit) but alas... im gaining, almost one pound per day this week! WTF? I bought a bike last weekend, and have biked to work-home for lunch, back to work and back home for three days all this plus the walks i take... WTF. Could someone please help? Or if this is not the place to put this point me in the right direction... Thanks. Everyone have a great day.

Mrs Furious said...

AshinMT,
interesting.... hmm... okay I'm going to put some thought into this.
I've got to get the kids going but I'll be back during nap time!

Perfectly fine for you to post this question by the way. :)

Mrs Furious said...

AshinMT,
okay first things first... are you about to get your period?
secondly I would not freak out... sometimes the gain from an indulgent day or two will show up a few days later... and then smooth out just as quickly.
I would just keep doing what you are doing...be good this weekend... and then see where your weight is at next week.
If you are close to getting your period my weight will often rise a couple of pounds before I get mine... and then I'll get my lowest weight of the month a couple days later.
I'll look for a site for the weight with body frame....

Mrs Furious said...

AshinMT,
I found a site. Go HERE.

AshinMT said...

Mrs. Furious,
Thanks so much for the site about weight to frame, its a confidence booster and some motivation when you are about where you should be.
And about my question- Yes, im supposed to have aunt flow visiting today (your a psycic), although she wont show till saturday because thats how she rolls. I think half the reason i am stressing is because around this time of month i am also usually at my lowest. (I was NOT pleased to expect my lowest weight on the scale and see the highest), but i had read some where when you are exercising your body holds onto all your water to take care of your muscles (the added biking?) so you should take a day off.. bularky? Im not sure. But thanks for the advice. Its another uphill day from here (office mates brought Baklavah (sp?)... Have a good one.

Sherry/Shay said...

http://www.icb2001.com/What_You_Should_Weigh.asp

This website says to measure the distance between the two prominant bones on the outside of the elbow. If that's the case, I have a medium frame, which is actually true. If I measure from a small bone to the elbow, it's an inch and a half and would mean I have a small frame which isn't the case! This is nuts!

Mrs Furious said...

Sherry,
Now I'm confused.
Go with medium.
1.5" seems way to small...

carla said...

INTERESTING!!

Id never seen this.

thanks.

MizFit

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