Long time fan, first time writer! My husband is tired of hearing me complain about my weight but I’m sure he’d be happy if I did something about it. When we married almost 20 years ago I weighed 140 but today I am closer to 190.
LOL I haven’t been on a scale in over a year so who knows what I really weigh? Every time I start a new program I get bored and frustrated that the weight doesn’t come off faster and I quit.
Do you have any advice for me? This probably seems like a dumb question because I know you have some serious things coming to you every day, but it matters to me. I am free to talk by email if you want more detail.*
1. There are no dumb questions, even if there are quite a few curious morons.
2. This certainly qualifies for a “serious question” so don’t minimize the impact weight gain can have on your self-esteem and your life.
Thanks for giving me more information via email. Your letter wasn’t clear on just how frustrated and depressed you are about being heavy, but I know now this is weighing (ha!) on your soul.
Listen up, sister: you need to either give up and give in or change your entire attitude about exercise and food.
You told me you hate exercise and haven’t done much of it for over 15 years. You said you gave it up when the kids were born and you felt too busy. What a coinky-dink, that’s when the weight started piling on!
I used to think everyone needed to find exercise that is fun for them. I’ve now decided that’s bullshit.
Some people just plain hate working out, and I think you are one of them because you gave me a list of everything you’ve tried and it was exhaustively comprehensive. I mean seriously, pole-dancing class? Horseback riding?
You have tried to find something you enjoy: I’ll give you that. Now it’s time to give up on loving exercise and just dig in and get the job done for the sake of your health. 50 pounds is a significant amount of extra weight to carry around.
Here’s a fun exercise: go to your gym and put a 25-pound weight in each hand. Now try to walk around the track a few times. That’s how your body feels every time you get out of bed and have to carry around those extra pounds.
You Have Time To Exercise so Stop Making Excuses
As a person who struggles with finding time for exercise I’ve found it all comes down to one thing: scheduling it as you would anything else important in your day. Like me, you work from home. Your schedule is flexible and your kids are both in high school.
You make time for doctor appointments, coochie waxing, school committees and volunteer work. Good for you! Now it’s time to make time for exercise by engaging in some good old-fashioned accountability work. You need a schedule.
Get an eraser board and put your daily exercise on it because if you don’t reverse this trend pretty soon, you will be facing a serious uphill battle much harder than the one in front of you. Find an exercise buddy to whom you can hold yourself accountable.
You think 50 pounds sounds daunting? How does 150 sound?
Start out slowly for a few weeks with 30 minutes of cardio and 15 minutes of toning work. Yoga and Pilates are great if you don’t like lifting weights, and as you get more in shape you can add to your program and make it more challenging.
Promise me this: commit to two months before you throw in the towel. You WILL see results, but you cannot be impatient and give up.
You didn’t put on this weight overnight so it won’t disappear in a day, so try to remember this is a marathon, not a sprint.
Don’t get mad at me, OK? Here’s what you told me:
I eat really healthy food and estimate my caloric intake to be around 1,200 calories a day.
I asked if you have had your thyroid checked and you confirmed it was normal.
It would be extremely unusual for a woman your height (5’5″) to be gaining weight while eating 1200 calories a day, whether those calories were made up of healthy food or crap. Calories are calories, after all.
So…I took a look at your Pinterest Page. Here are some recipes you pinned in the past 3 weeks:
- Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas
- Fried Buttermilk Chicken
- Easy Nachos (seriously, you need a recipe to make nachos, and an easy one at that?)
- Burgers stuffed with Blue Cheese
- Chicken Fried Steak with Biscuits and Gravy
- Chocolate Caramel Bread Pudding.
I’m not saying you can never enjoy the food you like in your weight loss journey, but you should focus upon healthy high-fiber meals that will fill you up with less calories.
They also give you fun stinky gas with which you can annoy your partner!
Let’s Get Started!
Visit your doctor and establish a healthy food and exercise plan. Record your calories religiously in a journal. You will be quite surprised at how quickly everything ads up.
As I mentioned, give it two months. Write back to me and give me a progress report.
Do not give up.
Read this: Afraid to Try Again.
Lest You Think It’s Not All About Me:
In closing I want you to know I understand.
I think I first deemed myself fat when I was around 8 years old, and until a few years ago I waged an eternal war against my body in an endless cycle of bingeing and laziness followed by strict strange diets and excessive exercise.
My stretch marks have stretch marks from losing and gaining the same pounds so many times.
I’m not saying I’ve totally figured it out, because I am still on a quest to build my best body. However, I do know I am always happier when exercise is a daily part of my life, even if it’s just running from the police or some Sexy Time.
Regular exercise makes you happier. Trust me on this and if you don’t, use the Magic Google Machine to confirm.
As far as food, learn how to consume for sustenance rather than for entertainment or to stave off boredom and loneliness. Eat to live, don’t live to eat, as the saying goes.
Losing this weight won’t give you a perfect life. You will still fight with your husband over who does the (cheesy, grease-soaked) dishes more often. But if you want to start feeling healthy, confident, sexy and alive make the schedule and make the effort.
As far as your husband goes, you told me he’s a good 30 pounds heavier than when you married. Why don’t the two of you embark on this journey together? Strength in numbers and all that…
*recycled but improved