30-Somethings - What helps you get started on weight loss?

08-19-2013, 04:43 PM
How do you start weight loss? Do you jump in, get new foods, and do a complete overhaul? Or pick one thing at a time to concentrate on and change? I'm feeling overwhelmed looking at all the things I need to change. I'm feeling like it's hopeless and I'll be fat forever.

08-19-2013, 04:55 PM
One thing at a time and use the scale to motivate you. The bottom line is that small changes can have big effects early on which is all you need. You can step things up later and you may need to in order to maintain your pace of weightloss. Focus on diet first, which is 80% of the weightloss game. Exercise can wait if you don't feel able to tackle that yet.

My story went like this.

At 281lbs, my wife would complain that I would eat very late before going to bed. It took me years to realise that I was just not hungry in the evenings. So I skipped dinner. And the scale dropped 20lbs.

At about 260lbs, I decided to tackle my other meal choices. Breakfast went small. Salads were introduced for lunch. I stopped eating nuts. Then chips went. Then candy. The weight really started to drop.

At about 240lbs, I noticed my salad lunches were very large. So I cut my portion size. Weight continued to fall.

At 230lbs, a friend invited me to a gym. I joined.

At 220lbs, I decided to try running. I started off running half a mile on a treadmill. I now run 5 miles every day.

At about 210lbs, friends invited me to start playing squash and tennis.

At about 200lbs (this came a little late), I started to focus much more on my nutrition. So not just keeping the calories down, but making sure that everything I ate was nutritious in terms of protein, vitamins, fats and oils.

And throughout my journey I have never given up beer!

08-19-2013, 04:59 PM
I picked one thing and concentrated on that and when it was a habit, I picked the next thing. I find that if I try to do too much at once, I will be overwhelmed and self sabotage. I am a year and a half into my weight loss journey and have even purposefully maintained for months at a time so that I can be sure that I have made true lifestyle changes.

The way I look at is that I know that if I try to overhaul everything, I will lose quickly- but I also end up gaining back quickly and then I am back at square one.

I started with eliminating wheat from my diet because I found that it upset my stomach and caused skin problems. I did just that one thing for the first four months and lost about 25 lbs. Then I started counting calories closely and upped my protein. I did that for about 6 months and lost about another 20 lbs. In the last two months, I have built in a dedicated fitness element, and am losing again.

By building on new habits, I have found success. I hope this helps.

08-19-2013, 05:03 PM
Aww. It's not hopeless, and you can do it! The most important thing is that you choose an approach that works for you. There are a gazillion methods, theories, and practices out there -- it is absolutely overwhelming! I agree! That's why we need to do what works for each of us, individually, because on some level, that will make sense for us and it will be that much easier. There's no *right* way to approach this. You WON'T screw it up if you try one method over another, or if you incorporate slow changes over cold turkey/all-or-nothing advances. There truly is no wrong way to approach this. Several things will result from anything you do: (1) You'll find out whether it was effective or not in helping you reach your goals; (2) You'll find out whether it's an approach that suits you; (3) your body and mind will probably be healthier for it; and (4) You'll be more educated and experienced about weight loss/fitness methods. Talk about win-win! :) The most important thing is that it suits you and it is sustainable for the long-term.

On a practical note, what do you feel you need to change? Perhaps once we have an idea of where you are, we can offer some guidance. :)

08-19-2013, 05:14 PM
I think my biggest thing I need to change is food choices. I get in bad habits of snacking from my kids. They were preemies, and my son has serious feeding issues, and the therapist is happy when he eats anything and has told us flat out to feed him whatever he'll eat to maintain his weight. This ends up being chicken nuggets and waffles and couple other carb-y things. It's so hard to make 2-3 meals, that I end up eating what I feed him and it's not healthy.

I guess my other struggle is figuring out what diet to do. There are hundreds, and researching what the pros/cons, etc. are is overwhelming. I am thinking of working on just making better choices first. More veggies, fewer carbs, smaller portions and seeing what happens with that. I don't know if I need a real plan to start with though.

08-19-2013, 05:29 PM
Hi there - I am two weeks into IP and what I have found is simplicity & consistency works best for me right now; until I can get a little creative with my meals. My goal in the next few weeks is to try being a little more creative with vegetable dishes, meats and IP products so I don’t get bored. BUT, I don’t want to overwhelm myself, so like I said if I have to stay simple & consistent in the beginning, then that I will do. Good luck!

08-19-2013, 08:18 PM
Hi MyOwnRabbithole:
Starting with a few things, like you've listed, sounds like a good way to start. You can make more changes later as you feel need.

I'm at the beginning, like you. My first plan was to eat according to the government food guide. I make sure I get my meats, dairy, veg and fruit in for sure, and the carbs if I need them. So far I haven't maxed out my "allowed" carbs yet. I find them easier to go without and the veggies keep me full!

I've got kids too. I've tried counting calories and measuring but it makes me very possessive of my food, which then makes me feel badly. I want to share off my plate if they ask ( especially if its something they normally won't eat!) so I don't measure anything anymore but from much experience I have a good idea of portion size.

Start small. You'll build from there :) there really is no right way to do this - it has to work for you and your lifestyle. As long as calories in is less than you burn you'll end up a looser :)

08-20-2013, 03:04 AM
I started both exercise and calorie counting but the exercise has been flagging recently, just been feeling tired and if anythings going to give ts the exercise as iang said its mainly diet! I have given myself the target it of starting again within a month. I've been in and out of the country recently and i've struggled to maintain any consistency.

Dont worry you'll get into your own stride i'd focus on changing your diet first not neccessarily a massive overhaul, you could just look at what you already eat and work from there, i havent radically changed my food dinners are the same just smaller!!

08-20-2013, 03:21 AM
I am going slowly and changing a few behaviors at this time.

I chose to go back to Weight Watchers last month and just focused on learning the new program. I have been designing a fun and satisfying food selection based on the program and I have lost 13 lbs. so far.

I am taking it slowly and steadily, changing a few things at a time. I am trying not to be too hard on myself or too rigid. The WW program for me feels more like a lifestyle change than a diet which hopefully will make it easier to live with long term. I have so much weight to lose that at times it feels overwhelming. However, I have started to have problems with my knees and blood pressure,so that is going to help my motivation. Before, I didn't have any health issues due to my weight, so I thought that I was fine. It's different now, so I have to just keep going.

I am wishing you the best!