Exercise! - Exercise or diet

View Full Version : Exercise or diet

06-19-2005, 07:32 PM
I posted this on the Exercise thread but I wanted to post here as well.

Hi all. I joined this group several months ago but have not been very active so I am trying this again because I am very desperate.

I have always been overweight for the most part but since 2000 I have gained 100 pounds.

What can I do??? I need major help here. Please give me some advice and suggesstions at what I can try to do here.

06-19-2005, 10:38 PM
You are not doomed to being overweight. You just have to make some changes. I know it is hard financially to be healthy. Face it, it costs more money to stay healthy than to stay overweight. I can't afford the seperate foods either and there is only three in my family. Your family can benefit from eating better. Start working veggies into your diet. Take your kids for a walk with you or set a time to do your exercise tapes and tell them you have to do it. I told my husband that things were going to change around here because i need to lose the weight. He suprised me and said good. You can do this. I"m here for you. It is hard but well worth the effort. :) :grouphug:

06-20-2005, 09:51 AM
Jamie - congratulations for making this commitment to yourself. I firmly believe in making small changes - this is not a short term fix, but improving the rest of your life, and your family's. With 4 children you want to be there for them and set a good example. Take it one step at a time. I recommend making the first change to exercise exvery other day, then go for 5-6 days a week. You have the walking tapes, use them to fit your lifestyle. Get up earlier (yuck) or make the time while children are napping or in their "down" time - let them see you doing it and making it a priority. I found scheduling exercise in my Daytimer like a meeting or doctor's appointment helped. Do this for 30 days until it becomes a habit. Then add the 2nd walking session, or mix up the 2nd session with a weight session. Mix up tapes and try many different ones. If you have kids, you should really look into Netflicks for renting DVDs - make one of your 3 choices an exercise DVD - they have a huge selection and you will find some you like and some you don't. Experiment.

Next, try making some food changes. Start by trying to eat a good breakfast 5 of 7 mornings. Or cut soda or snacks. Make your dinner plate 1/2 veggies and 1/4 meat and 1/4 starch. There is nothing wrong with lettuce, cucumber and tomato salad - I eat that a lot! I am a very picky eater, and that has not changed. I actually prefer the term "discerning".

Make small changes and you will change your lifestyle. Make swooping, large changes and you will be destined to fail, and beat yourself up, when it was the breadth of the changes, not you, that failed. Keep a record and find what works for you and what doesn't. Some things you may come back to as you get stronger. I never thought I could give up burgers or bacon, but now the thought of either is not appetizing. My family is still pretty shocked over that :lol:

It all comes down to the lesson I am sure you use with your kids: Choose your battles and you will win every time. You can do this - keep us posted.

06-20-2005, 10:58 AM
Face it, it costs more money to stay healthy than to stay overweight.
I'm not so sure about that. It may cost more food-wise (but not by much really), but in the long run, health-wise, you'll save much more on ailments and doctor's fees to treat the high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, bad back, knee aches, etc. etc. etc. that can all come from being overweight. And your family may lose you sooner than need be. So which cost is really the highest?

It may cost just a little more for whole wheat pastas and breads, but for your health, the cost is worth it. That's one change you can make since you eat any kind of breads and you like spaghetti. Whole grains are better for you than white flour. But you still need to learn to eat those in moderation, by putting more of the veggies on your plate and less of the starches. There were quite a few veggies you like, and you like fruit. Both of those are good for you.

Try opting for low fat, I prefer to not go fat free as we need some fats in our diet, over full fat items. Get 2% milk, cottage cheese, and cheese products. Try yogurts. Now here's the thing, you say you don't like certain foods, and yogurt may be one. But when I decided to lose weight, I absolutely HATED yogurt, but knew they were good for you. So I just kept trying different brands, until I found one I liked. Turned out, I never found one I like. I had just tried them so much, that the taste grew on me. Now I eat any of them. :lol: It's kinda like my mom swearing blue cheese was an acquired taste. I just never wanted to acquire it. LOL

Stop keeping issues to yourself. Tell your husband how your feet and ankles are hurting. He needs to understand that this is something you're taking seriously, and that it could get more serious, and perhaps even more costly, if you don't do something about it now. Maybe he and the kids won't take well to having THEIR diets changed over to whole grains and such, but you can try it gradually. If they won't, then they won't. You'll just have to do like me and my hubby...have separate shelves in the cabinet for our foods. LOL He's on a high fat diet, but then he needs to GAIN weight.

Like Squiggly mentioned, get up early, or you can get the kids involved. Even the daycare kids. They have PE in schools, start one for your daycare. ;) My daughter's old sitter used to march the lot of them on a hike to the store where they could all get one piece of candy. Maybe you can have them all get a carrot stick. LOL Do you sit down to cartoons or movies with the family? Stand up and march in place while watching them...and add in those hand weights while you march.

06-20-2005, 03:18 PM
I want to echo what everyone has said here. Congratulations for realizing you need to make a life change, and good for you for committing to it. It really is the first step.

Also, I have to agree with almostheaven -- I don't necessarily think it's more expensive to eat healthy foods at all. A ready example: this weekend we went to pick up something to throw on the grill. It would have been a gut instinct at one time to grab three steaks (for the Man, Miss Thing, and me). They would have been rib eyes, of course, because they're the yummiest. It probably would have run us at least $15 for just the meat, and that's a very conservative estimate.

Instead, our local grocery store had boneless, skinless chicken breasts on sale for $1.99/lb. There were four huge breasts (hee! I said huge breasts, and I find that funny because I have the mentality of a 12 year old) in the package (a total of about $6.00) which could be split into two servings each. With a side dish and a vegetable, I think it probably was less than $2.00 for each of us for dinner. We grilled the whole package, so we not only saved money but had a healthy alternative for 3 nights' worth of dinners at the ready.

Money-wise, I've started to scour my local grocery ads and plan my shopping trips. Planning not only helps in the money-saving realm, but also keeps me on track with WHAT I'm buying. And I'm sure you've heard it before, but the perimeters of the store usually contain the healthiest, freshest foods. You'll usually find your fruits, veggies, meats, and dairy along the four walls. I've found that in changing our eating habits, I'm a largely perimeter shopper now.

I was also worried that I'd have to cook two separate dinners each day, but you know what? I don't. I cook healthy, yummy meals that everyone can enjoy. Period.

I've never been a huge vegetable lover myself, but I found all sorts of ways to make veggies work for me. I love a good stir fry. Mashed cauliflower (and I thought I HATED cauliflower) with a little lowfat cream cheese and a shake of parmesan is delicious and far from vegetable tasting. Zucchini sliced the long way and grilled is delectable. Play around, try stuff. The worst that can happen is that you decide not to make something again.

And most of all, have fun. Realize that this is a happy change you're making, and it doesn't need to be a struggle. Sure, some days will be harder than others, but just remember you're doing something good for you, your body, and your family. It makes it totally worth it.

06-20-2005, 03:55 PM
Baby steps is what it takes. If you try to make all the big changes at once, you're doomed to fail. So maybe this week you drink water instead of soda or juice, and say walk 1 or 2 days. That doesn't seem so overwhelming. Then the next week you keep doing that and maybe start making your portions smaller, and add another day of exercise. You can start looking for new ways to make your favorite things. Like you I LOVE spaghetti. But you can make it with fewer calories by using super lean hamburger or even veggie crumbles, leave out the oil and use a little beef boullion to cook the onions and other veggies. You can put it over spaghetti squash to really save on calories. And as for the rest of your family - hey, you're the mom and the cook! and most likely the shopping. If you cut them back gradually, and start with small changes in the meals, you'll have them eating more healthily too. :D

It took me years to learn that I need to kind of "back into" making a lot of these changes. THe most important thing that has to change is your outlook! Stop looking for reasons you can't do this and start thinking of things you can do. You've made a good start by deciding that you want/need to do this, and coming here :)

06-20-2005, 06:18 PM
There were four huge breasts (hee! I said huge breasts, and I find that funny because I have the mentality of a 12 year old) in the package
LOL Are you sure it was a 12 year old, or just the mentality of a man? :lol:

06-23-2005, 12:10 AM
I think I might be the only person in the world to disagree with the others on here about this... but I'm horribly poor, and for me, just having something other than ramen noodles is a treat. I definitely can't afford the nice whole-grain foods, fresh fruits, etc.

But I've found that it doesn't matter in my case. I don't gain weight from what I eat (and I don't lose weight when I do change my diet). I gain weight when I go from a physical job to an office job, and go home every night and plop myself in front of the computer. When I do get moving (on a regular basis, mind), the weight melts like a snowman in July. I think it has something to do with metabolism. As you exercise more, your metabolism will speed up, and the poor eating habits won't have as much of an effect on your weight.

Though, when you are able to eat healthier foods, I would urge you to do so, not because of weight loss but because of your overall health.

06-23-2005, 12:37 AM
Lunameow, I've been at the ramen, pinto beans and potatoes stage before. Where it was a decision to either pay the electric bill or eat this month. But truly, you can change the menu at a low cost. While whole grains cost more, you should be eating less of them. Less of the starches and breads and such altogether. So the difference in price will be made up in the lesser consumption. And fresh vegetables and fruit aren't as expensive as some think. If you're really at the ramen noodle stage, I doubt it would apply to you in that you probably don't buy a bag of chips. But many people do. And compare a bag of apples (which will go much farther than chips) to the price of that bag of chips. And oh...don't forget the cost of the dip with em.

But if you do purchase popsicles or chips, any junk food at all, replacing them with fresh fruits and veggies, which will go farther and are more filling, is a better choice. Consider the price of a number of packs of ramen compared to a bag of carrots too for instance. Cook the carrots and consider how many meals they will make compared to how many meals of ramen you get for the same price.

If you get the microwaveable dinners, now those will definately run the food bill up in terms of going with say Lean Cuisine over Budget Gormet. But if you cook, there are savings to be found in buying healthier. On the surface, it doesn't always look that way I'm sure.

06-23-2005, 02:03 AM
A big bag of generic brand brown rice costs maybe a buck fifty, and will give you a bunch of meals and a heck of a lot more nutritional benefit than ramen noodles. Add to it any of these low cost options in any combination, and you're actually doing something GOOD for your body -- and you won't get hungry as quickly as you do after eating a bag of ramen noodles:

---> Beans or lentils
---> Scrambled eggs (ala fried rice)
---> Onions
---> Carrots
---> A package of frozen spinach (.75?)
---> Garlic (cuz garlic's good with just about everything in my book! ;) )

Use your imagination and you can broaden your meal options to include something actually healthy! It doesn't have to be all mac and cheese or ramen.... Look for "wasteful" foods that can be sacrificed -- like soda, if you get it, as most Americans do -- how much money is spent on something like that when it could be applied to chicken on sale day?

06-23-2005, 10:07 AM
I just wanted to add one thing about healthy food and costs . . . Frozen veggies are a lifesaver if you're watching your budget. You can get a big bag of frozen vegetables way cheaper than fresh ones, and it will provide food for quite a while. Canned veggies are pretty cheap too, but I prefer frozen. Frozen peas are a lifesaver, I use them for SO much -- snacking, an easy veggie addition to just about anything I cook, or an icepack for sore wrists! :lol:

06-23-2005, 01:53 PM
Paperclippy, you're so awesome! I came back here to say the VERY SAME THING -- I actually thought about it when I woke up at 4 in the morning :dizzy: -- but lo and behold you've got it covered! :high:

06-26-2005, 06:50 PM
I have been poor in my life. Now that I'm older I look back and see how I made silly decisions in the ways I thought about food and feeding my family. I remember one time we had an extra $10 and we all went to Burger King. This was probably 1972. If we had gone to the grocery store, we could have bought lettuce, tomato, cheese, bread, fruit -- probably enough stuff for two or three days. When I did go to the store, I would buy all the starchy stuff that was on sale -- 4 boxes of mac and cheeze for $1, etc, cookies, chips, etc.

Now that my children are grown I realize what a disservice I did to them. They are now adults who won't eat vegetables, fruit, drink water, etc. We pass these things on from generation to generation.

A lot of it is a matter of mindset. Lunameow, you said you couldn't afford "the nice wholegrain foods, fresh fruit, etc," as if only people with money deserve and can afford the nice things. Well, it isn't true. An apple, a tomato, a carrot, a bag of rice, as Sarah said, these things are affordable if you look for them. It's easy to grab a box of mac and cheese, but it's more creative to mix a bunch of good stuff up with brown rice.

Like WaterRat said, you're the Mom and you're the cook. You can do this if you choose to. There are a lot of great ideas here. Baby steps will get you there!

Dinah ;)

06-26-2005, 08:59 PM
I was so poor at one time, I couldn't even afford to pay attention.

No, seriously. LOL

My staple diet was help from the food pantry my dad operated, along with bags of pinto beans cheap, ramen noodles or mac & cheese when they were like 4 for a buck, cheap bags of potatoes when they were on sale. However, I also would buy the $4 box of freezer pops. Really good deal, but a bag of apples would have gone farther and been healthier. Not as many apples in a bag as in the large box of pops. But you eat one apple then see how many pops it takes to make your tummy feel just as full as that apple. ;)

I loved bread too. Could sometimes just make a meal out of white bread. Could've picked up wheat bread at the pantry. Probably not a lot of people even wanting it and no doubt some most likely had to be thrown out...what a waste. Could have had an apple and filled up and just ONE slice of the wheat bread. So even if I'd paid for the loaf, I'd have eaten less of it and saved in the long run.

Looking back, yeah, there's always choices we could've made different if we'd thought about it. A lot of the hardcore truth is though, being that dirt poor, it makes it hard to think of spending anything over a $1 on something as being thrifty. You look at prices before you look at health. And you don't think of the longrun, but you're living month-to-month and thinking of today. If we'd had someone point this stuff out to us when we were in that position, would we have still made a concious effort to change our lives then? Who knows.

07-10-2005, 05:29 AM
Interesting thoughts, Dinahgirl, except a) I'm not a mom, so I'm not overly concerned about my food choices ;) and b) cooking isn't something I do. Even if it were, I don't currently have a stove (hey, I did say I was dirt poor), so "creativity" doesn't always work. And for what I'd spend for a couple of tomatos, I can have an entire week's worth of meals in ramen noodles. So, yes, being poor can have a huge effect on how you're able to eat. When my grocery budget for the week consists of $5 in change that I found in the bottom of my purse (don't laugh, it's happened to me), my priorities will always be getting the most food for my money. And that usually doesn't factor in $3 for a loaf of wheat bread.

Heh. I can even remember a time not so long ago when my "meals" were saltine crackers, and if it was a good week, peanut butter to put on them. But those were back in the $1/week grocery budget days. Thank dog those are over.

07-10-2005, 06:21 AM
I think you could do WW.. then you could eat the foods your normally eat, you just have to make sure you don't go over your points. That, in addition to walking and lifting free weights should help a lot.

07-13-2005, 12:06 PM
Just to echo a few others--frozen fruits and vegetables are a LIFESAVER for me! I am entirely too busy to go grocery shopping more than once a week (often, it's once every two weeks), so when I buy fresh produce, it goes bad way before I have a chance to use it. However, I have found that the frozen stuff, pound for pound, is no more expensive than the fresh. I buy frozen spinach, broccoli, diced onion, sugar snap peas, peaches, strawberries...my freezer is insanely full, but it's worth it!

On the ramen noodles--like Sarah said, try a huge thing of brown rice. When I was in college, my friend and I used to make our own ramen wannabe stuff by just cooking up some plain noodles or rice (which we did in a hot pot or microwave since we had no stove) and then adding boullion (sp?) cubes--still yummy, plus you cut out some of the sodium found in the ramen that can cause you to retain water. You could also try seasoning the plain rice or noodles yourself--I know I get all of my seasonings at the dollar store (Dollar Tree--onion powder, garlic powder, parsley, paprika, Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper, etc...), so they even fit into my college budget, plus a jar of seasoning seems to last forever--even if you use it every day, it'll be weeeeeks before you have to buy more!