I feel like giving up

  • Hi everybody,

    I've been wanting to lose weight for a very long time and just cant seem to figure out what I'm doing wrong. I currently weight 159 pounds and my goal is about 135. I hate the way I look right now so I don't even like to wear pants. If a person look at me they wont be able to tell I weight that much because all my weight is in my lower body. I have really big hips and legs. My waist is small other then the tiny gut I have. When people ask me how much I weight I lie and say 140 and I hate to lie. Last week I went on a diet and didn't eat any food at all for 3 days so I could curb my appetite because when I get bored all I think about is food. I cut out all the fast food and started focusing more on healthy foods. I lost 8pounds within that week but I gained it all right back I am now eating for breakfast 1 package of Quakers oatmeal for lunch half a turkey sandwich for dinner half a cup of mixed vegetables and 1 skinless chicken breast. For the past 10days I've been walking a track for 2miles with a sauna suit on and every other day Ill try to do about 50 sit ups and 60 leg lifts. Somebody please tell me what I need to do lose weight. I want to lose at least 10 pounds by May if possible.
  • It sounds like you're taking rather draconian measures, which is never a good idea. If you're like the vast majority of people, sooner or later you'll rebel against these self-imposed restrictions and you'll be back to square one. I suggest you forget about losing 10 pounds by May. Focus on slow and steady weight loss by following a moderate, sustainable plan (for example, eating 500 calories less than you need to maintain your current weight and exercising 40 minutes 3 times per week).

  • Okay, first of all don't quit! It took me over 2 weeks to start losing so sticking it out is very important.

    Second, start weighing and measuring everything you eat, and logging it into an app like My Fitness Pal or Lose It! Weighing and measuring will help you get as accurate a calorie count as possible. You may be surprised at what a real portion size looks like.

    Third, do NOT go without eating for 3 days! This is not going to help you form better habits and be successful. What you need to do is to replace diet thinking with healthy thinking.

    Make sure you are drinking plenty of water so you do not dehydrate, especially wearing the sauna suit. (I wouldn't wear that anyway, since all you are losing is water weight and not real weight.)

    If you eat when bored (I did that and I was an emotional eater) replace that food with a 16 ounce glass of water and go for a walk, the faster the better works for me. Doing those two things greatly curbs my appetite!

    I've lost 34 pounds since 1 January of this year. So what I am sharing with you works for me! Not everyone is the same, though.

    You can visit my blog below and read more about what I've been doing and how far I've progressed so far. There are pictures there as well. After years of not being able to lose weight, I am doing it. I know if I can do this, you can do this! It just take the right mindset and support!

    You are welcome to follow my blog and to friend me My Fitness Pal if you decide to use that. My name on My Fitness Pal is RavenWolf1977

    Give it time, do not make to many drastic changes at once or you are less likely to keep them up. I think the exercise you are doing now is fine. But I would dump the sauna suit, especially if you are starting to get warm/hot weather. You do NOT want to overheat and get heat exhaustion, or worse...heat stroke. That can be deadly.

    Do make sure you take a multivitamin, especially if you have drastically cut the amount of foods you are taking in.

    Welcome to the board, do not quit and you can count on the amazing people here for help, advice, and support!
  • Eat more food, and more nutritious food. Cutting that drastically will only result in extreme hunger and likely contribute to a spectacular binge. Consistently cutting a modest amount of calories each day (I'd recommend no more than 350, but some people can comfortably cut more without facing higher degrees of discomfort) WILL take the weight off of all but the most metabolically screwy folks (of which it appears, by your stats, you are not ).

    Get a program to log your food - Myfitnesspal, Livestrong, Loseit, whatever. Weigh and measure what you're eating each day very precisely - NO EYEBALLING. Just do that, with your NORMAL intake, for two weeks to get a baseline of how you've been eating to maintain your start weight. Then you adjust your calories downward from there and observe how your body responds. Give it at least 4-6 weeks at that lower calorie level before tinkering again, as the body does not lose in a nice, predictable fashion. Then if you want to lose more quickly or are uncomfortable you can adjust up or down as needed.

    Long term consistency and dedication, day in and day out, WILL get the weight off. It doesn't take extreme dieting measures or ridiculously small quantities of food. What it does take is accountability, consistency, and most of all it requires iron clad determination to NEVER quit or give up. You WILL slip up, some days WILL suck and be incredibly hard to bear through. But your ability to brush yourself off and keep on trekking the very next meal is what will determine your success. It absolutely will happen so long as you don't give up.
  • Thank you every one for the tips and motivation. My biggest thing with eating is knowing what to eat and what I'm not suppose to eat. I'm in college and stay on campus which makes it a little bit harder since everything in the cafeteria seems unhealthy and very fatty. I can cook but I'm not sure what my diet should consist of. I gained most of my weight from eating fast food since I come from a family where nobody really cooked much.
  • Pick a plan that is easy - I love Atkins, but WW, South Beach, or even plain old calorie counting will work. With a pre-done plan the food lists are already there to help you, but calorie counting may be more flexible for your dining needs. I know I could do low carb at college without too much issue, so I can vouch for that with my old university's cafeteria, at least. That said, only you know what you will and won't stick with.

    What kind of foods do you prefer or feel good eating? Veggies? Cheese? Lean and light or rich and savory? That may help you narrow down what plans are better suited to your tastes. WW and calorie counting are the most flexible in terms of food selections, but if you need more guidance I really suggest letting someone else do the work of making a nutritionally balanced meal plan and buying a diet book instead. That can get you started and you can fine tune from there.

    Hey, even a plan like Johnson's Up Day, Down Day diet may fit you like a glove and give you flexibility with the cafeteria's food. Do some thinking and research, see what might suit you
  • Quote: Thank you every one for the tips and motivation. My biggest thing with eating is knowing what to eat and what I'm not suppose to eat. I'm in college and stay on campus which makes it a little bit harder since everything in the cafeteria seems unhealthy and very fatty. I can cook but I'm not sure what my diet should consist of. I gained most of my weight from eating fast food since I come from a family where nobody really cooked much.
    I agree with others that one of the easiest ways to start is to figure out a calorie limit, and begin counting calories for anything you eat. My Fitness Pal is a very handy online counter and app for counting calories (and fat or carbs, if you go with a low-fat or low-carb plan as well).

    I'd begin by recording what I eat for 1-3 days, without making a lot of changes first. That gives you a kind of baseline to start with.

    Almost every plan shares some basic ideas that will help you begin:
    • Eat regular meals
    • Do not snack, or if you do, plan them ahead of time
    • Don't drink your calories; cut out sodas, juices, and other sugar-heavy drinks
    • Focus your meals around lean meat, dairy, veggies, and fruit
    • Cut out sweets and sugar
    • Be aware of and consider cutting back on starches: bread, potatoes, rice, pasta, etc.
    • Increase exercise: take the stairs rather than the elevator, park farther away and walk more, etc.

    Now, as you move into working these changes into your lifestyle, you'll be able to build your meals more healthily. You may see a quick drop in the calories you intake (compared to the baseline you did above). If not, you can begin making choices that have fewer calories. This is how you will learn what works best for you.

    As to calorie limits, most women can lose slowly and steadily on 1600-1800 calories/day. I'd start with that, and see how it goes after a couple of weeks. If you don't see any changes, lower it to 1400-1600. I do recommend a calorie range, because some days are more crazy or more "hungry" than other days. Some days it'll be really easy to limit your food. Other days it'll be really hard. Building that flexibility into your plan makes it that much more likely that you'll keep to your plan.

    That being said, if you know you need to eat at the cafeteria, take a look at the menu for the week and figure out ahead of time what you can eat that will fit in your plan. If you know that you eat fast food a lot, look at the menus online (almost all of them have the nutritional info available online) for your favorite restaurants and start educating yourself about the calories of the meals. I suggest you do this when you are NOT hungry. This sort of pre-meal research prepares you for the times when you know you'll be eating out.

    Over time, as you measure and record your meals, you'll have a better understanding of what you can and can't eat from day to day to eat to your calorie limit. You'll build a "repertoire" of meals that you like that you know fit your plan.

    That's how you build a lifestyle of eating that gets you to and keeps you at a healthy weight.
  • Does your cafeteria offer nutritional facts or, at least, an ingredient list for the meals they serve? Do other students at your college feel like the cafeteria food is unhealthy? I don't know if this would interest you, but sometimes all it takes is a small group of students to make a difference. You can petition for more healthy items to be available.
  • If you don't know what to eat and want a simple plan, go to WWW.myplate.gov.
  • My daughter is in a similar situation to you (college, starting weight, she's a little taller) and wanted to lose weight as well. She's a junior and is living in an apartment but until January hadn't used the kitchen much and had continued eating poorly and gained weight.

    I'm not much of a cook, and when I cook, it's very simple and basic. She had never wanted to learn to cook, but when she started out eating better, she knew she needed to learn. I bought her "The Healthy College Cookbook" from Amazon (someone at 3FC had recommended it - sorry I forgot who)and she has diligently been making most of her dinners from that book. I've been very proud of her and she has made great strides in becoming more healthy and she's lost 17 pounds as well ! She uses MFP as well and we keep encouraging each other. Though she's done a lot better than me since January.

    I think that book helped her figure out a lot of the "what to eat" and then MFP helped figure out how much to eat.

    Seeing the "healthy eating" phase through her eyes was quite enlightening, since she really didn't know much about portions and how many calories were actually in things she had liked to eat. I had always been careful of what she ate when she was younger, but as a teen of course she strayed and it didn't catch up with her until the really stressful college years started. So now she texts me a couple of times a week on what yummy meal she has made and is having fun with it.

    She eats basically the same thing for breakfast and lunch and then varies her dinners based on the cookbook. So that makes it a bit easier to track and to plan dinners.

    Good Luck and know that as you learn it will help you for the rest of your life. There may be some challenges but now you have the knowledge. And you can build on the knowledge.