I am sitting here just about ready to cry. The batteries of my scale are dead, so I cant' be sure but I'm pretty sure I weight around 225 right now. I know some people can handle that weight but it seems to be really affecting my health. I'm always "out of breath," always tired, feeling lazy all the time, just struggling with everything. It reminds me of how I feel when I'm about ready to have a baby- just wanting to sit on the couch because everything just seems like so much effort.
My resting heart rate yesterday was 104. I know that is a bit higher than normal. My arms and legs are constantly falling asleep when I'm sitting or lying down.
I just feel terrible all. the. time. and I cannot go on like this. I have 4 kids. We homeschool. I need to be healthy enough to take care of them and teach them and keep this house running efficiently.
I don't even know where to begin. I know I need to eat healthy foods and get some exercise in, but how much do I need to do today? How many calories do I need to be eating to get this weight off ASAP.
It doesn't help that my daughter's father(estranged) is now in a nursing home after having had 3 heart attacks and 3 strokes in just the past few months. He had a horrible lifestyle- lots of alcohol, smoking, chewing tobacco, junk food.
Yes, I've been here before. Yes, I've dieted before. Yes, I weigh more now than ever. I need to do something. I am desperate and terrified. I do not want to end up like my daughters father. My kids need me.
09-13-2010, 12:28 PM
Take a breath . . . . deciding to make the change is the best start.
I don't know a lot, or anything really, about home schooling curriculums etc . . . but could you use that to your advantage? Make nutrition something you all learn together, cooking, learning what foods are healthier choices, have an hour of physical activity be it a walk together just checking out nature, playing some games outdoors etc . . . just doing something to incorporate your kids into a healthier lifestyle - not a diet - and have it be second nature.
I know all to well wanting the weight of ASAP, but I've learned you'll do more damage than good that way for sure.
:hug: Keep strong, keep breathing . . . you'll figure out what's going to work best for you and your kids :)
09-13-2010, 12:41 PM
Websites like sparkpeople.com and fitday.com are great places to start on figuring out calories, exercise etc. But my first advice is DO something. NOW. Don't wait until tomorrow. That is the biggest thing I have learned in my first 30 pounds. It won't matter if you mess up RIGHT this second, but it will matter if you don't start again right after you mess up.
Maybe start by drinking more water. Going for walk. Honestly little changes do add up, and a lot of times they start the ball rolling for BIGGER and BETTER changes.
You can do it! I know you can!!! :D
09-13-2010, 01:37 PM
:hug: to you, Kathy
It sounds like you have had your Aha moment! It is so scary but it can be the turning point in your life. You know the need to change.
Please don't worry about getting the weight off ASAP, start working on developing a healthy lifestyle and the weight will come off.
How do you start? Posting here was a great place to start. I recommend going to the goals section (http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/goal-199/) and reading some success stories to get some ideas. Look for posts by RockinRobin and Lori Bell. There are also many others who give great advice but those two immediately come to mind.
Make a plan, decide if you want to calorie count, go to some place like Weight Watchers, use a low carb diet, or etc. There is no one right way to lose weight. As you will hear often here, we are all an experiment of one. Pick one that sounds right for you to start with. You will tweak as you go.
Make a shopping list of healthy food and go buy them. I remember one posting here where someone asked where to start. One answer was to start with the grocery store sales circular. That made so much sense to me.
Clean your house of all the junk that will tempt you.
Know that you can do this! I am sure that you will get many responses with ideas of how to start. Get excited and remember this day. The day you changed your life. I think that the main thing is to believe you can lose weight and to just start.
I look forward to more posts by you!
09-13-2010, 09:03 PM
Kathy, first of all, HUGS! It's difficult for anyone to realize how much their weight is ruining their lives and how much they have to live for. I think many times I've been discouraged because it seems overwhelming how much weight has to go and how long the journey seems. But the two things that kind of encourage me, is 1.) that time will pass irrespective of whether or not i act on my weight, and I can either do something now and end up with a better quality of life or I can stay as I am and be as miserable months (or years) down the line; and 2.) that even if I stay at this weight forever (worst case scenario), if I eat right and exercise, I'm at least doing something for myself and treating my body with respect and will be miles healthier and have a better quality of life than doing nothing at all.
Ok that's my 2 cents worth of "philosophical" advice. Now for the practical stuff. Someone has already suggested how to find out how many calories you should be eating (you can also google BMR Calculator and find out what that number is and then subtract maybe 500cals from that figure to get the number of cals you should eat to create a deficit). Also, it would be good to start planning your meals in advance so that when you go to the store, you have in mind what to buy to make healthier meals. Also start trying to think of ways to incorporate exercise. If you're really sedentary now, then even a 20-minute walk around the neighbourhood will make a difference, and by the time your body needs more than that, you'll be fit enough to do more than that and incorporate more exercise. There are a lot of eating plans around, so you may want to think of what may be best/ most convenient/ most easy to stick to for you. Calorie counting is usually the easiest I think, at least whilst you try to figure out if any of the low-carb or low fat or other eating plans would work for you.
Again, that's 2-cents worth of long term advice. Sometimes when I've fallen off plan and gotten into a rut where I've maybe gained some weight back etc and I'm really in despair (like you seem) and overwhelmed, I KNOW I need to feel like I'm doing something about it immediately and want to know what to do now:
The next minute is the best time to re-start your plan. That might mean putting the unhealthy snack down, pouring the rest of the half-drunk can of coke down the sink, packing up your kids and taking them on a walk in the park or a bike ride or even on a walk to the library/grocery store/book store/ whatever you have in your neighbourhood that could form a nice outing. Do it today, not tomorrow. Or you could do an exercise DVD. A good investment is Leslie Sansone's Walk Away the Pounds or any of her walking dvds. They're a good start and they're pretty quick and easy and don't require much space; I did them for a couple of weeks to get myself into a semblance of shape before I started working out. Force yourself to get up today/now and put in at least 20 minutes, just 20 minutes, you can do it! And then you can sit down and pat yourself on the back for actually actively taking steps to do something about your health, not just because your children deserve a healthy mom, but because you deserve to be healthy and feel good and happy with yourself first and foremost. Also, your next meal, maybe you don't already have something super healthy planned, but what you do have is probably measuring cups and spoons. The great thing is that most foods tell you what an actual serving size is, so don't eyeball it, actually measure it. Portion control changes a lot, even in foods that aren't particularly healthy. And it's something you can do, today from your very next meal or snack.
Each moment is an brand new opportunity to change your life and like a new beginning. Let whatever has already passed this morning or your last meal or whatever go. And then start right now, decision by decision, meal by meal.
You can totally do it, Kathy!!!
09-13-2010, 09:33 PM
Thank you all so much. I know I can do it. I know that right now I'm afraid I'm going to have a heart attack and die so I'm afraid to put just about anything into my mouth. I know why I'm fat- fast food and sugary junk. I know which foods are bad. I'm afraid to even touch them now. I have moments where I am just convinced that one more bite will be the straw that broke the camel's back and my arteries will just clog up and kill me.
Yes, I realize I sound like a lunatic, lol, but that is how afraid I am. I cannot count calories- that makes me crazy and hungrier.
I've tried south beach before but the limits make me crazy too. I end up eating things loaded with artificial sweeteners and then end up with headaches. I think right now I need to focus on lowering my cholesterol and increasing my fitness. I have a feeling that if I only eat food that is good for me, exercise lots and eat to lower cholesterol then there is not way I can not lose weight.
09-13-2010, 10:49 PM
Kathy , I think to get started focusing on eating healthy and daily exercise is a good beginning. Basically when I started I gave up things like fried food, chips, sweets (cookies,cakes,ice cream) and most bread other than wheat bread on occasion. If fast food was my only choice I would get a salad if I could or kids meal instead of a combo meal.
Try to keep your food to the rule that the food either needs to have come from the ground (like fruits and veggies) or have had a Mother (one Jillian Micheal's sayings from her book). These basic changes lead me a great start of my weigh tloss and I was able to build on it in time.
As for exercise I started my journey just by walking outside either at the park track or my neighborhood. I committed myself to 1 mile or 30 minutes 3 times a week and built up after a few weeks. Being a busy Mom to six kids myself it took some discipline to get out the door and go but my family was supportive and the small break was good for my mental health too.
Oh by the way I am also in Alabama . I know if I can change my life anyone who wants to can. You don't have to have a cook, trainer or gym membership, you don't have to join a weight loss group , you can learn and discipline yourself to get focused . And you always have the Chickies here to support you. I hope this helps. My health and future with my children have been my drive to get control over my lifetime battle with obesity.
09-13-2010, 11:07 PM
Kathy, you have gotten some great advice and I just want to say, YOU CAN DO IT. You really can! Just start, do something and never give up! Time can be your friend :)
09-13-2010, 11:20 PM
Crash dieting has its own serious health risks, so you can't solve the problem by refusing to eat. Also, "ASAP" thinking often is the death of successful dieting. It makes crash dieting seem so appealing and the crazy hunger it can cause can make sticking to the diet virtually impossible. The "failure" to stick to plan gets labeled "self-sabotage" and you start to feel hopeless and helpless. It becomes an endless cycle of rapid weight loss and even more rapid weight gain.
Don't set yourself up for failure by expecting perfection (and defining perfection as not eating). You don't have to start small, but there's nothing wrong with starting small either. Regardless of how big the changes yo attempt, you need to to fight is the urge to think of all eating as "bad" and crash diets/not eating as "good." You've got to unlearn the concept of "blowing it" (as in I blew it so I might as well eat everything in sight until tomorrow - or Monday morning when I can start fresh).
If you're overwhelmed, starting small makes the most sense. Choosing one change that you're pretty confident you can do without much difficulty. Make it challenging enough that you'll feel good about doing it, but not so difficult that you set yourself up for failure. Try it for a week, and then add a new change.
No food is healthy in a vaccuum. Lettuce isn't healthy if it's all you're eating. Dietary fat isn't unhealthy if you're getting a good balance of fat and aren't eating an excess amount of it.
Focus on progress rather than perfection. In my experience,people are more likely to abandon weight loss attempts because they feel like they're failing, than because they actually are. It isn't that they aren't losing weight, it's that they're not losing fast enough - so they give up (ensuring that they won't lose any at all, and almost inevitably regain).
Slow loss is better than no loss, and you have to keep that in mind above all. When you try to make too many changes, it can feel like change is hopeless, and you start thinking "what's the use, it's just not worth the effort." You need to be in this for the long haul, not just so long as the weight comes off rapidly - because no matter what you do to lose weight, there will come a time when it slows down. If you can't handle slow loss, you're going to give up when the going gets tough, so be prepared for it from the very start (even if you do choose a plan that results in fast loss in the beginning).
It's hard not to enter panic-mode, because it's the way many of us have been taught to look at weight loss. We have to unlearn a lot of the crap we think we know about losing weight and especially maintaining that loss. Losing weight is sometimes the easy part, it's the day-to-day keeping it off that is so difficult. For most of my life, I was either rapidly losing or rapidly gaining. It's been hard to look at weight loss any other way.
When I started this current weight loss journey, I couldn't even take a shower standing up. I needed to use a shower chair and I needed to use a shampoo/conditioner combination because I didn't have the strength to raise my arms to lather and rinse my hair more than once. Just taking a shower would sap my strength for a good part of the day.
I've still got a long way to go, but I can do so much more. It's almost miraculous, but I couldn't "exercise" the way most people think of it - and it's really easy to think that if you can't exercise, it's hopeless to try. Or worse that it's not worth the effort if you can't do more than five minutes of movement. If you can't do five minutes, then do what you can do. If it's only one minute, do one minuted until you can do more.
All movement is "exercise" so no matter what movement you can do, you will get stronger if you do what you can, and push yourself until it's challenging, but not traumatic (if it's too unpleasant, you're not going to want to do it again). So you want to push yourself a little past the time you want to stop - but just a little further, not to the point that you never want to move again. It's going to take a while to find the right amount. You're going to overdo it sometimes, and find yourself sore in muscles you didn't know you had, and that's ok - but focus on learning what you can do "reasonably." If you feel like you're in self-imposed prison, you're going to want to escape.
This is hard. There's no way around that, but there are ways to make it easier and even fun. The more you can make it enjoyable, the longer you're going to be willing to do it. Finding low-calorie, healthy foods you enjoy and finding ways to move more doing things you like (or would like to learn to like), the longer you'll be able to stick with it. And that's far more important than rapid weight loss. Rapid weight loss is motivating, there's no doubt - but if you lose motivation when weight loss slows, the rapid weight loss was for nothing (or worse, yoyo dieting may be harder on your body than getting and staying fat). So look for long-term changes, not ASAP tactics that can be impossible to sustain.
I think you'll find that it gets easier, and you will build confidence as you have success, especially if you focus on progress rather than perfection.
09-24-2010, 05:32 PM
Thanks so much for all the helpful advice and kind words. I've come back to this thread several times since I posted it and the encouraging words always lift me up.
09-24-2010, 06:45 PM
I'm sure you've already gotten tons of good advice already but I just wanted to say that there's TONS of good stuff to combine weight loss and homeschooling (DD is just a toddler but we're considering it, not sure yet at this point). Your kids could learn a lot about fractions/multiplication and even chemistry cooking. Yeast is interesting the way it grows! Let them experiment with food on their own too. Why does water boil quicker when salt is in there? Stuff like that!
Ditto when it comes to exercise. You could teach them new sports, talk about the human body and calories with them. What sugar, veggies, fruit etc do to the body. Why we need calories, protein, fats etc. There's so much to learn there! Have them help calorie count with you and maybe the whole family could keep food journals (ok, I don't know your kids' ages but those who can do that is...).
As to where to begin. Well, I'm someone who has to exercise a lot to keep my motivation. Are there some sort of sports that you can involve the whole family with, like basketball or soccer? Even something more simple like tag...
My big weakness is sugar so I just gave it up cold and all artificial sweeteners. I also stopped eating processed food and started to make everything from scratch (like pizza crusts, bread, etc. ). It was a gradual process but the food even tastes better now and I love the example that I'm setting for DD. DH and I go running most days and DD's really showed an interest and loves running along side of me (ok, not when I'm really running but when we're going for walks). Maybe every week you can start something new that will help you along your path to loose weight.
ETA: I don't calorie count either and I've always had steady weight loss!
09-24-2010, 07:28 PM
Aww I just want to give you a hug!
I replied to your fatigue post first, but see you added some details here :)
First - you can get thru this. You can. I have been there, and if I can do it you can too.
It is SO hard to start. So I suggest you dont try to make drastic changes, especially since your health seems to be a little bit of a struggle.
Start with the food, it will help your energy and your mood and will help inspire you to make other areas of improvement.
The eating doesnt have to be perfect, but maybe try to just make a few better choices a day and go from there.
Like start eating a good breakfast to start your day off right.
Egg white omlette or oatmeal with berries and flaxseed oil is actually yummy! And that way you can start every day knowing you made at least ONE better choice to move in the right direction. Help with energy levels too :)
If you need a bit of support, you can private message me too.
Dont get discouraged. It IS overwhelming but you can definitely get past that!
09-25-2010, 05:35 AM
I also replied to your fatigue post, and now that I see your resting heart rate, I thought I would suggest again that you read up on sleep apnea and see if you can relate.