Weight Loss Support - Please help = question re DS at 15 and 264lbs

01-07-2013, 05:48 PM
I am blessed with a son. He is 6ft 3 and weighs 264lbs. He is also only 15. I have been trying for years to avoid the situation he has ended up in. However, he is stubborn, carb addicted, and is suffering fro the weight he carries. Tonight he has agreed to come and visit the gym, and to look at his nutrition. How do I help him right? I have lost 145lbs in the past few years. I never asked my family to join me, even though I knew the problem was growing with DS. What I would like is advice on how to tackle him,how to show him the right path, and how not to put him off. He really needs to lose about 60lbs, which is very tough at his age. Your thoughts would be appreciated.

01-07-2013, 05:52 PM
I'd take him to see a dietician. a 15 year old boy is different from someone who is 30 (we stop growing in our late 20s). Any dietary changes should be fairly small and being that he is a teenage boy, small changes can cause enough for weight loss. Activity is also important but sports or things like martial arts may be better as he might be more interested but who knows?

01-07-2013, 05:54 PM
Sounds very similar to my stepson, who's also 6'3" and weighs at least 250 lbs. His doctor has advised him to lose weight, his father has advised him to lose weight, but you know how it goes... he'll do it when he's ready. I don't really have any advice, just commiseration.


01-07-2013, 06:10 PM
Is it possible to maybe have one of the guys at the gym show him how to work out/lift weights? I know it might be pricy to have him join the gym with you but he'd probably much more want to work out with the guys than his mom. :) You are a good mom, it's great that you are trying to help him in any way that you can.

01-07-2013, 06:11 PM
btw, congrats on your 145lb weightloss, that's amazing!

01-07-2013, 08:14 PM
If you can swing it ($$) maybe you can get him together with a personal trainer who can also teach him something about nutrition.

01-07-2013, 08:42 PM
The only additional suggestion that I have is to make sure that the food in your house is spot on. As the mom, I'm guessing that you do most of the shopping and meal preparation? Only buy and make healthy stuff. When your son wants a snack and the only choices are between an orange and a plate of strawberries, say, then it's a win.

Easier said than done, I know... I have a 13 year old son, and this is what I'm trying to do in hopes of steering the ship. I realize that I can't control what he eats when he's not home so I'm doing my best to shape his palate by what I serve in our house.

01-08-2013, 12:01 AM
You know, boys, at that age, have a way of really clicking in and turning things around. I'm not a parent, but I've noticed that.

01-08-2013, 12:12 AM
My mom took me to her gym for the first time when I was 16. I was most certainly over 200lbs at that point, wearing a size 18 and needing a 20. I needed to lose weight, but her and the doctors telling me that just made me upset and feel like crap. I began to tune them out after a while.

Taking me to a gym was really the best thing she ever did though. She brought me to a place where I could start getting healthy. She and the gym owner helped me find an exercise I enjoyed (step classes) which helped me stick to a routine and keep going. Oddly enough, I hated weight training and spinning classes back then...and you all know that those are my two favorite things in the world now.

As I got stronger I was more willing to move outside of my comfort zone. I tried spinning again and loved it. Eventually I took up weight training too and found a love for that. Even though I didn't watch my diet all that carefully, I lost weight over a number of years through making healthier food choices and exercising. By the end of graduate school, when I was 23, I had gotten down to around 190lbs and a size 12/14. Still obese, but certainly a big change from where I had been. After I finished graduate school I started to watch my portions and lost the rest of the weight and hit goal around December 2011.

My point through all of this is that one little thing started me on a healthy journey. It took me around 7 years to finally get to a healthy weight, but I was young when I started and I'm still young now. Throwing everything at once to your son may turn him off, but by changing things a bit slower you might hook him a bit easier. Just make the emphasis on getting healthy rather than losing weight.

Help him find an exercise that he enjoys doing and it may take a while to do that. Once he finds an exercise he enjoys, he may be more inclined to make healthier choices to ensure he improves at that exercise.

It may take him years, but he's 15! Unless he has some serious medical issue he certainly has the time to build healthy habits :)

01-08-2013, 12:16 AM
my son is also 15, tall and heavyset...he's now taking a weight training class in high school and also, by helping him watch his portions at home and giving him healthier choices, he's managing to grow taller and not wider lol...he's still heavyset but not nearly as much as he used to be

01-08-2013, 09:09 AM
Big hugs. I have two boys but the oldest is only 2 so this is not an issue I have had to face.

Does he like any sports? I always hated sports at that age, but discovered I loved weightlifting/powerlifting.

01-08-2013, 10:53 AM
I have two teenage boys at home (16 and 17). When my foster son came to live with us a year and a half ago he wore size 46 pants and 3 XL shirts. My son at the time wore 42 pants and 2XL shirts.
Over the past year, I have stopped buying cookies, chips, microwave pizza and regular pop. I do occasionally buy them treats and have settled on Hot Pockets and chicken strips as a quick snack they can make for themselves. I also have stopped buying ice cream and now get 100 calorie fudge bars, which they love. I keep Cliff protein bars and fiber one bars and lots of fruit on hand when they want a snack.
My son does play football and do a weight lifting class at school but my 17 year old foster son does not get a lot of physical activity. However, in the past year, my foster son is now down to wearing 42's and XL shirts, he can wear size 40 pants but he wears shorts under his jeans (weird) so he likes them looser.
My son (16) now wears size 38 jeans and XL shirts.
Keep snacks on hand that are healthier but he will enjoy and will satisfy the sweet tooth. Pop and juice is HUGE! Switch to diet pop or water, there are so many calories in the sports drinks and soda.

01-08-2013, 11:06 AM
Thank you so much for all your responses. The advice held within is all excellent, but I am afraid the only person who can really take charge of the situation is him. As soon as he really wants to make the changes I will be able to work with him.
I hope trying the gym will help, and I certainly will not indulge his taste for high calorie snacks. One day at a time methinks.

01-10-2013, 12:31 PM
Yesterday I took DS with me to my gym. He did a trial workout, and surprised himself by how good he was. He agreed to join, and has now gone after school. I am so pleased, and hope he will continue along this vein. Somewhere, somehow, something clicked. Fingers crossed it will continue for him. Thanks again for the advice lovely people of 3FC. :hug:

01-10-2013, 12:54 PM
You know, there are a lot of mentor programs for troubled teens. I wish there was something similar set up for kids going down the wrong path health/weight wise. Maybe there is and I just don't know about it; my backwards town certainly doesn't have anything close!

That said, maybe he'll make friends with some of the young guys at the gym. If he starts to falter and you have the resources, maybe find a male trainer he could be comfortable with? Sometimes kids, especially teens, are much more responsive when information comes from a peer than a parent/authority figure.

I hope he continues to do well.