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Weight issues - I need help


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I need help guys. I have been having issues with my weight for awhile now and am so so fed up.

 

I'm not massively overweight but I have entered the overweight category. I'm 5 foot 4 and have always been around 140 lbs. This weight has suited me although I can't remember a time in my life where I wasn't actively trying to be lighter. Having said that 140 is fine, it looks well on me.

 

But in the last two years I have put on 15 pounds putting my weight now at 155 lbs. My clothes don't fit. I feel sloppy and uncomfortable. I am pretty and look okay but this 15 pound gain is unappealing.

 

I have been trying to watch what I eat every damn day and every day I fail.

 

In desperation and needing to be accountable I joined weight watchers. Their programme is excellent and really encourages one towards healthy foods. I got on well for a couple of months, then put it all on again. I ended up leaving, then rejoined two weeks ago. And again....I am failing.

 

Its probably worth mentioning that my mother is a diet fiend and has lived her whole life on a diet. I am definitely judged by her when I put on weight. My brother actively watches his weight. His wife just lost 20 pounds and looks amazing. They all talk about food and being healthy all the time. I feel like everyone has noticed that I've gotten bigger. You know when people meet you and they say..'you look great'...well no one is saying that now.

 

I know I need to do something about this because its having a huge impact on my mood. I feel powerless and weak.

 

I have started to take laxatives so now I know I'm going into body disorder territory. I've done this a few times in my life, I never continue it - but its a sure sign that I'm not in a good place.

 

I just don't know what to do. I feel like all my will power is just...used up, completely gone. I wake up feeling motivated, I plan, I don't buy bad foods. I am organized, I keep a food journal But ...well I get hungry. And when I get hungry I have no will power. I don't reach for fruit. I look for calories man - toast, cereal, etc. After eating, I then feel so angry and sad that I gave in.

 

 

I just don't know what to do. I mean Jeez I only need to lose 15 pounds, its not a lot. What's wrong with me? I'm not looking for diet advice per se guys. I know what to do do...I just can't do it and I don't know why. But if you have any insights into my situation I sure would love to hear.

 

I appreciate any advice you can give me.

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You have to find something that is appealing enough to motivate you and give you the will power to keep your diet in check. For instance, for me having definition and being around 8-12% body fat is appealing and this is what motivates me. Mind you, it is something very specific. Just looking better or being healthier is very obscure and does not motivate me.

 

That's my approach though. Not everyone is the same but finding a specific goal or image of your body you desire is worth a try.

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You have to find something that is appealing enough to motivate you and give you the will power to keep your diet in check. For instance, for me having definition and being around 8-12% body fat is appealing and this is what motivates me. Mind you, it is something very specific. Just looking better or being healthier is very obscure and does not motivate me.

 

That's my approach though. Not everyone is the same but finding a specific goal or image of your body you desire is worth a try.

 

My specific goal is to get back to my 'happy' weight. At that weight, I feel comfortable and my clothes fit. Believe me I want it badly. Sometimes I feel incredibly motivated, like nothing can stop me....then hunger strikes!

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I think it comes down to will power......it's difficult, I've battled my weight for years.... but it took the end of a relationship to realise I'm really not happy how I am.

 

I'm no expert and I'm going to need a lot of will power, and I'm only just starting out on my journey. Best of luck to you Sunrise.

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Make sure you eat many small meals so that you don't find yourself starving. Eat lots of vegetables, fibers keep you full. Gums also help reduce hunger for an hour or two.

 

Yes, I think that's something for me to try. I tend to like big fillings meals but maybe if I eat lots of small healthy meals I wouldn't get hungry enough to overdo the big meals.

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I think it comes down to will power......it's difficult, I've battled my weight for years.... but it took the end of a relationship to realise I'm really not happy how I am.

 

I'm no expert and I'm going to need a lot of will power, and I'm only just starting out on my journey. Best of luck to you Sunrise.

 

Thanks, yeah it's a battle for many people. I'm not happy how I am. Yet will power still is at zero.

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I felt the same as you, did diets every now and then but was really unmotivated. In February I looked really big, but then I heard about Keto and thought I'd give it a try after researching extensively about it. And it was soooo easy, I lost so much and am not tired or grumpy at all, I never feel hungry and am always energized. Also, there's pretty much Keto-recipes for all kinds of food you like, and they taste pretty great too.

While the beginning of changing (about 3-4 days) were admittedly a bit more difficult, after it gets really easy and even though I was planning to only do it for like a month or so, I didn't stop because I like it so much. If you're interested into giving it a chance - make sure you know about how it works, macros and the keto flu, make a spreadsheet with the foods you eat (there's templates online; I started with one of those but then adapted it to the products/quantities I use), and then calculate your macro needs (there's calculators online). And then just type everything you eat in the spreadsheet and after a while you'll get a hang of it. And then every month or so you should re-calculate macros, since you'll be losing weight. I am rather tall, but in the last three months my pants-size went from L (sometimes XL)/34 to S/34. I cannot recommend the "diet" more, really amazing :D

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In the past sixty years or so, 'a way a living' (diet), has been warped into a million wacky eating methods.

These money/diet schemes create feast/famine cycles in your body.

 

The body thinks it's owner can't reliably acquire food on a regular basis so it learns how to store more on less and less.

 

Avoid diets.

Plan for a one to two year, "way of living" change.

Reduce/avoid high calorie/processed foods.

Prepare your own food. When eating out, ask for all sauces to come separately. (Learn how to eat without them.)

Wean yourself off deserts.

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Don't let yourself get to the point where you are super hungry because that is when you will lose the will power or motivation to eat healthy, you should have proper meals that are still healthy but fill you up. Maybe you need to introduce changes slowly, otherwise it can be overwhelming and you fall quickly back into bad habits.

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In the past sixty years or so, 'a way a living' (diet), has been warped into a million wacky eating methods.

These money/diet schemes create feast/famine cycles in your body.

 

The body thinks it's owner can't reliably acquire food on a regular basis so it learns how to store more on less and less.

 

Avoid diets.

Plan for a one to two year, "way of living" change.

Reduce/avoid high calorie/processed foods.

Prepare your own food. When eating out, ask for all sauces to come separately. (Learn how to eat without them.)

Wean yourself off deserts.

 

Thank you Lester. I agree. I think my body is probably damaged in some way from dieting since I was a child. A long term plan that is achieved over one year is probably my best bet.

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Don't let yourself get to the point where you are super hungry because that is when you will lose the will power or motivation to eat healthy, you should have proper meals that are still healthy but fill you up. Maybe you need to introduce changes slowly, otherwise it can be overwhelming and you fall quickly back into bad habits.

 

Girl1 - absolutely. I'm going to try eating when I am a little hungry rather than waiting until I am very hungry. Maybe it will change something.The thing I fear is that I know my body very well and I am aware that 'it' tends to be hungry if I eat anything less than 2000 kcals per day regardless of what, how or when I eat it. This 2000 kcal a day then puts on weight on me. Having a deficit then creates weight loss but I have to be hungry. Once hungry, all will power is gone.

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I felt the same as you, did diets every now and then but was really unmotivated. In February I looked really big, but then I heard about Keto and thought I'd give it a try after researching extensively about it. And it was soooo easy, I lost so much and am not tired or grumpy at all, I never feel hungry and am always energized. Also, there's pretty much Keto-recipes for all kinds of food you like, and they taste pretty great too.

While the beginning of changing (about 3-4 days) were admittedly a bit more difficult, after it gets really easy and even though I was planning to only do it for like a month or so, I didn't stop because I like it so much. If you're interested into giving it a chance - make sure you know about how it works, macros and the keto flu, make a spreadsheet with the foods you eat (there's templates online; I started with one of those but then adapted it to the products/quantities I use), and then calculate your macro needs (there's calculators online). And then just type everything you eat in the spreadsheet and after a while you'll get a hang of it. And then every month or so you should re-calculate macros, since you'll be losing weight. I am rather tall, but in the last three months my pants-size went from L (sometimes XL)/34 to S/34. I cannot recommend the "diet" more, really amazing :D

 

Thanks Josl, I appreciate your advice but that type of programme just won't suit me. I don't want to only eat fats and protein. I like sweets. I like bread. I like carbs. I know I need to limit these but I won't cut them out. I just don't want to live a life where my diet is that extreme.

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What ended up working for me over the years was getting very in tune with my hunger cues and differentiating between hunger and thirst. My other suggestions - quit all soda or sweet drinks including diet drinks. I believe that diet drinks trigger sugar/carb cravings. Get yourself used to plain water and drink lots of it -douse yourself in it basically. I increased my water intake over the last 2 years and now am back to the 8-10 glasses of water (plus I also drink some unsweetened/no artificial sweetener sparkling water with a little fruit flavoring). THe other things that helps me with my hunger cues is daily cardio exercise. I understand that it's mostly about food but for me daily cardio exercise motivates me to eat healthier, increases my water intake, regulates my metabolism, etc.

 

Portion control - start by decreasing portions by 1/3rd or a 1/4 and if it's a restaurant portion leave half over and take it home or trash it -better in the trash than in your body (or split it with someone or ask the restaurant only to serve you half).

 

I also dieted way too much from ages 15-25 and even beyond. It damaged my hunger cues and eating from hunger.

 

Also try to do treats in moderation instead of giving it all up. And i personally disagree with the snacking during the day - I think 3 solid but not huge meals and if you are hungry in between have something very small - one or two dried figs, a few nuts, a plain rice cake -nothing that can induce mindless nibbling. Drink a lot of water between meals. And I'd avoid things like gum or sucking candy that can also trigger carb cravings.

 

I have never done Weight Watchers and from several of my friends' results think it's a great program. I don't think any of the shakes/drinks programs are advisable because you want to make a lifestyle change. Good luck!

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What ended up working for me over the years was getting very in tune with my hunger cues and differentiating between hunger and thirst. My other suggestions - quit all soda or sweet drinks including diet drinks. I believe that diet drinks trigger sugar/carb cravings. Get yourself used to plain water and drink lots of it -douse yourself in it basically. I increased my water intake over the last 2 years and now am back to the 8-10 glasses of water (plus I also drink some unsweetened/no artificial sweetener sparkling water with a little fruit flavoring). THe other things that helps me with my hunger cues is daily cardio exercise. I understand that it's mostly about food but for me daily cardio exercise motivates me to eat healthier, increases my water intake, regulates my metabolism, etc.

 

Portion control - start by decreasing portions by 1/3rd or a 1/4 and if it's a restaurant portion leave half over and take it home or trash it -better in the trash than in your body (or split it with someone or ask the restaurant only to serve you half).

 

I also dieted way too much from ages 15-25 and even beyond. It damaged my hunger cues and eating from hunger.

 

Also try to do treats in moderation instead of giving it all up. And i personally disagree with the snacking during the day - I think 3 solid but not huge meals and if you are hungry in between have something very small - one or two dried figs, a few nuts, a plain rice cake -nothing that can induce mindless nibbling. Drink a lot of water between meals. And I'd avoid things like gum or sucking candy that can also trigger carb cravings.

 

I have never done Weight Watchers and from several of my friends' results think it's a great program. I don't think any of the shakes/drinks programs are advisable because you want to make a lifestyle change. Good luck!

 

Thanks Batya,

I only drink water, never anything fizzy and no juices. Waste of calories. I probably drink 5 large glasses of water a day plus 4/5 cups of weak tea (no milk, no sugar). Does the tea count as water?

 

I like your idea of cutting portions by a quarter or a third. I NEVER leave anything on my plate sadly so this might be a good start.

 

The sad thing is that I quite like my body. I have a good shape and nice skin. It's just that being 15 pounds over is uncomfortable and certainly heading in the wrong direction. The constant dieting has damaged my hunger cues as you said..... and my mindset. How the weight gain affects me (sadness, laxitives, panic, shame) bothers me more than the actual weight gain if you know what I mean.

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Have you spoken to a doctor about this?

 

What do you do and love for exercise and activity?

 

You seem hyper focused on food and dieting. What about stop weight loss diets altogether? Focus on health and fitness instead. Find something you care about that is motivating that is not related to losing weight or food. Example: for me, it's enjoying my body and how it feels to be strong and fit. I like breaking personal bests too- swimming a lap faster, lifting a bit more weight. I love and am grateful to have a body that lets me do these things and try new activities and to walk long distances .

 

As for food, you might want to limit contact with and have strong boundaries with those who have toxic thinking about it. Food is nourishment, pleasure, life. It's not an enemy to obsess over.

 

There are places that are fitness and health centres that focus on more of a whole person. Here they call it a wellness center. It has doctors, nurses, nutritionists, trainers, sports coaches, psychologists, the works. They not only have fitness activities but social and health services . Maybe you'd like a place like that? Bonus is you can make a lot of friends of all ages and with vastly different goals for being there.

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Thanks Batya,

I only drink water, never anything fizzy and no juices. Waste of calories. I probably drink 5 large glasses of water a day plus 4/5 cups of weak tea (no milk, no sugar). Does the tea count as water?

 

I like your idea of cutting portions by a quarter or a third. I NEVER leave anything on my plate sadly so this might be a good start.

 

The sad thing is that I quite like my body. I have a good shape and nice skin. It's just that being 15 pounds over is uncomfortable and certainly heading in the wrong direction. The constant dieting has damaged my hunger cues as you said..... and my mindset. How the weight gain affects me (sadness, laxitives, panic, shame) bothers me more than the actual weight gain if you know what I mean.

 

Yes, I'd stop the clean plate club for sure. I don't think tea counts, sadly! I love itsallgrand's advice.

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Have you spoken to a doctor about this?

 

What do you do and love for exercise and activity?

 

You seem hyper focused on food and dieting. What about stop weight loss diets altogether? Focus on health and fitness instead. Find something you care about that is motivating that is not related to losing weight or food. Example: for me, it's enjoying my body and how it feels to be strong and fit. I like breaking personal bests too- swimming a lap faster, lifting a bit more weight. I love and am grateful to have a body that lets me do these things and try new activities and to walk long distances .

 

As for food, you might want to limit contact with and have strong boundaries with those who have toxic thinking about it. Food is nourishment, pleasure, life. It's not an enemy to obsess over.

 

There are places that are fitness and health centres that focus on more of a whole person. Here they call it a wellness center. It has doctors, nurses, nutritionists, trainers, sports coaches, psychologists, the works. They not only have fitness activities but social and health services . Maybe you'd like a place like that? Bonus is you can make a lot of friends of all ages and with vastly different goals for being there.

 

Thanks itsallgrand. Yes I've spoken to my doctor about it and she gave the same advice as you. Stop dieting and focus on health and well being and gratitude for the good things that I have. I didn't follow her advice because the thought of gaining any more weight is terrifying. But I know that she and you are correct.

 

As for exercise. Ok I admit...I hate exercise. I really really wish I didn't. I am a very sedentary person and I'm not proud of it. I have two children and am studying for a masters degree at the moment. My past five years have been very academically focused. I love to read, study, watch movies and documentaries, spend time with friends chatting. I used to exercise in my 20's and early 30's. I get ravenous when I exercise and so I rarely lose weight while exercising but I guess I am more healthier when I exercise. I often begin exercise - different types -cycling, hillwalking, walking, running, weights,...and I stick at it for awhile. But, well truthfully, I just don't enjoy it. Its a huge effort and so I end up stopping and then feeling really guilty.

 

I'm sorry, I know, I probably sound so unhealthy and unmotivated. I promise I;m not unmotivated. I really do try to do the right things. I just don't stick with it. I guess I lack discipline in this area of my life.

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I think you do have to kick the sedentary habit for you and for your children. I think if exercise makes you that hungry you're exercising for too long. Do 20-30 minutes of brisk walking per day - go for 3 mph and work your way up. Listen to podcasts or audiobooks if you love to read. Chat with your friends as long as they know why you're breathing heavily. I am in my early 50s and have a 9 year old and I see what my lifestyle - often in motion/active (not in sports -just lots of walking, etc) and he knows I do cardio every single day no excuses (364 days/year unless i am very sick or not allowed to work out -in the last 2 years I skipped one extra day because of a medical procedure). You don't have to lose weight from exercising but it will help your metabolism and get you more in tune with your body and send the right message to your children. I often come up with work-related solutions when I'm power walking - I know you can't study but what about saving a couple of questions about one of your classes or a paper you're working on to think about while you're walking or running? Also I'd look into the Leslie Sansome walk at home DVDs -old school but makes it so much easier. I do it more intensely with the exercise band it comes with but start out regular and see how it goes.

 

It's ok to hate exercise. I'm sure you don't love all of your studies but you do it. I'm sure your kids do things they hate because well that's life. And if you buy yourself some good exercise clothes (I love the under armour brand) and put it by your night stand and get the exercise over with in the morning (I do) even better.

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I think you do have to kick the sedentary habit for you and for your children. I think if exercise makes you that hungry you're exercising for too long. Do 20-30 minutes of brisk walking per day - go for 3 mph and work your way up. Listen to podcasts or audiobooks if you love to read. Chat with your friends as long as they know why you're breathing heavily. I am in my early 50s and have a 9 year old and I see what my lifestyle - often in motion/active (not in sports -just lots of walking, etc) and he knows I do cardio every single day no excuses (364 days/year unless i am very sick or not allowed to work out -in the last 2 years I skipped one extra day because of a medical procedure). You don't have to lose weight from exercising but it will help your metabolism and get you more in tune with your body and send the right message to your children. I often come up with work-related solutions when I'm power walking - I know you can't study but what about saving a couple of questions about one of your classes or a paper you're working on to think about while you're walking or running? Also I'd look into the Leslie Sansome walk at home DVDs -old school but makes it so much easier. I do it more intensely with the exercise band it comes with but start out regular and see how it goes.

 

It's ok to hate exercise. I'm sure you don't love all of your studies but you do it. I'm sure your kids do things they hate because well that's life. And if you buy yourself some good exercise clothes (I love the under armour brand) and put it by your night stand and get the exercise over with in the morning (I do) even better.

 

That's really helpful advice Batya. A few months ago I started getting myself and the kids out of bed really early so we could take a walk to the park before school. Once there I would do some light jogging or brisk walking. My daughter loved it. She's very active. My son hated it. He is more like me. All the more reason to do it! To be honest, it felt great. I think I'll start it from tomorrow again.

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That's really helpful advice Batya. A few months ago I started getting myself and the kids out of bed really early so we could take a walk to the park before school. Once there I would do some light jogging or brisk walking. My daughter loved it. She's very active. My son hated it. He is more like me. All the more reason to do it! To be honest, it felt great. I think I'll start it from tomorrow again.

 

So also I would stop the mindset of "my son is more like me' or any sort of label. Kids change - for example my son who hates shopping went shopping with me twice this week and was really helpful (I am not a fan of having him go but with my work schedule and a fridge emergency had no choice). The self-fulfilling prophecy stuff is real.

 

I would find a routine that works every single day. I have a routine for during the week, for weekends, for when school is on and when it's not, for when my husband is traveling. I spend time coming up with my scheduling/routines and systems because I want to be on auto-pilot especially for those times i have less motivation/am not feeling great/am sleep deprived. I would definitely involve the kids but have a back up plan for when they don't get out of bed, for when they can't go to school that day, etc.

 

And get your husband on board to be supportive. I had to do that 7 years ago or so when I saw he just didn't get what a priority it was to me (last straw was when he wouldn't give me 12 extra minutes to shower after a 35 minute workout because he had to go meet his friend -and he saw me dripping with sweat alone with our toddler who I couldn't leave in order to shower). Now he is and I describe it as a given as if I were referring to brushing my teeth - because sometimes he needs to be available so I can leave for the 35 minutes.

 

And that's the other thing -find something you can do in 30 minutes -even 20 minutes. Something that doesn't require you to drive to a gym, to join a gym, to rely on anyone else to be available. I'm a very "nice" person and when one of my neighbors said to me one day "I see you out walking all the time and I need to get motivated - can I meet up with you and walk with you?". I fit in my workout by the skin of my teeth as it is most days so I said nicely "sorry, but I can't given my timing and schedule". Make it that much of a priority. Make it about you because it's only 45 minutes a day including putting on your work out clothes and getting outside and maybe grabbing your water bottle and an umbrella if needed. I had a stroke when my son was 12 days old. I was in great health, and I've always been slim when I was not pregnant. But I was over 40, and the risk goes up especially during pregnancy. I'd already been working out regularly since I was a teenager in the early 1980s so I was able to get back to my routine postpartum but I had to be on blood thinner for 6 months. And I recovered completely but exercise is a great preventative measure I am told.

 

I am getting on my soap box because whether or not you lose weight or even gain a little bit more getting fit and making your workout just like tooth brushing is essential IMO - I'm no expert I just read a lot - and it's also great for your mental health and mental clarity. You got this.

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