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Old 06-03-2010, 11:16 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Dressing Room Depression

Last night I had a family event to go to and realized I have nothing in the closet that fits well enough to look decent. Quick trip to Kohl's had me in a fit of panic - it was the first time in my life I had to shop in the Plus Section - Size 18 - I am only 4'11". My family has a history of diabetes, after 13 years of marriage my husband and I have decided we want to start a family.... this cannot go on anymore!!!

About 3 years ago I did WW for 12 months and was down from 180 to 145. I now top the scale at 210. WW worked for me but I can't spare the money atm plus I derailed there when my leader quit and I didn't like her replacement. I know I can still use the tools I learned at WW but I really need to do this on my own to make it a life change and not dependent on a WW leader.

My pitfalls are:
portion control (clean your plate mental hang-up)
trigger foods (obsessive)
hatred of exercise (have physical job, always find excuses)
love to cook (never trust a skinny one?)
low self image (i don't wear makeup, chew my fingernails)

This has to be more than just a diet for me... I need to reinvent myself and reorder my life to be a long and healthy one. I refuse to be a fat mom, if I have kids they deserve a mom who can be active and involved with them instead of sitting and watching... or a diabetes-shortened life.

Any suggestions on how to get started... what worked for you... how did you change your priorities to start losing weight?

Technical question - does FitDay work on windows mobile phones?
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Old 06-03-2010, 12:12 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hello, and welcome to the fitday forum. I started this process at 5'-1 1/2" and 244 pounds, wearing a size 24W, so a little taller and a lot heavier than you. I've also been married for 13 years, but we already have children, and I was having real trouble keeping up with them. So I was exactly where you are headed if something doesn't change. Believe me you don't want to go there, you are making the right decision coming to fitday and taking charge of your health now, before kids.

What I did to get started was to track my calories and activities for 3-4 days. I didn't diet during that time or make any extra effort, I just psyched myself up for dieting, studied my own habits, what I ate, when I ate it, what I was feeling when I did eat, when I moved, how long I moved for, blah blah blah. A good friend of mine is a nutritionist and she once said to me "it's all about habits, if you have "fat" habits, you'll be fat, and if you have "skinny" habits you'll be skinny". So after doing that I learned that breakfast was my worst meal of the day, because I would eat it like 3-4 times every morning. None of the foods were terrible for me, but I was consuming 1,500 calories before LUNCH! Nowadays I'm at about 1,500 for the entire day (most of the time). I also discovered that I was getting about 80% of my calories from carbs, which I think was probably the main cause of my obesity. I've found that if I can keep my calorie pie chart at 40% carbs, 40% proteins and 20% fats I can consistently lose weight, well provided I also manage to burn 500-1,500 calories more than I take in.

I know you hate exercise, we all do, but I hate to do dishes and housework too, but I manage to get it done all the same. You have to think about exercise like you think about other things you don't like to do, but have to do anyway, like pay the car insurance bill or mow the lawn or visit your mother-in-law. The other trick is to find exercise you like to do, like dancing, or maybe as a gamergirl you might enjoy a Wii Fit Plus or an Extreme Fit set up. It's up to you. Just start small and make a plan to increase it until you reach a good calorie burn for your journey. Also I don't know how old you are, but women in their 30's need about 30 minutes of cardio/day for a healthy heart. It gets worse, women in their 40's need about 60 min/day, especially if there is heart disease in your family (which mine has in abundance).

During your 3 days of study, go grocery shopping. Buy foods that are fresh (not in cans or boxes), get bread that is whole grain and low calorie, get lots of lean proteins, buy a food scale so you can measure your portions more accurately, and a couple of sets of measuring cups. It's good you love to cook, because that is the surest way of controlling the ingredients in your meals. Cooking also burns a few calories, which is a good thing. I always try and make sure that the food I eat takes a little effort before it gets inhaled, which if I remember correctly is a Dr. Phil-ism. Once the first couple of days are over, you will have a really good idea of where to start making improvements, and you can start to implement changes one or two at a time. My first habit to get the axe was breakfasts #2, #3 and #4. Then I started working on healthier snacks and dinners. I think one of the reasons so many diets fail is that they promote changing everything all at once, and it's just too much for people to keep track of. If you want to make life long changes, I think you need to fully understand where you're standing right this minute. You also need to give yourself time, it takes 3-6 weeks to change a bad habit or adopt a new good one.

Well that should get you started, truthfully if you did WW for so long you already know all that, but I understand needing a pep talk to get started.

Can't say about the phone question, I'm apparently much lower tech than you are.
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Last edited by almeeker; 06-03-2010 at 12:21 PM.
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Old 06-03-2010, 12:16 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I used to do WW too, and found that logging my food here on fitday is as helpful as writing it down in a WW journal. I did some research and decided that I should be taking in around 1500-1800 calories/day to lose weight and that's been working for me. It may be different for you, especially given your height. You'll also find tons of support here, it's just not in person. I think you'll find you'll like using this site.

Welcome here!
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Old 06-03-2010, 01:02 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I also tried WW a couple of times and I just don't enjoy the points system. It's a hassle to carry around little charts and I feel like it's a gimmick to "dumb it down" for people who don't want to count calories. In the end you're still counting, just with smaller numbers so it amounts to the same.

Almeeker gave you some great advice! Thanks Almeeker, I think you are doing amazing. I just got started here myself but I have gained and lost hundreds of pounds in my life. The times I have been the most successful are the times I stuck it out for a long time. I had to set mini goals for myself and avoid thinking about the long term on a daily basis.

Always just look at the next step ahead of you. For instance, I am 5'2" and I weigh 196 pounds right now. I wear a size 16 and I have made myself miserable over it. I have beaten myself up emotionally for months. My first step had to be stopping that immediately and focusing on all the good things about me. Insulting myself wasn't going to get me anywhere. Second step, I had to do something proactive about my health. I had to improve my lifestyle for myself and my own well-being. I found an exercise program that I thought I'd like. It's called Couch to 5K and it turns out I love it. Making improvements physically has helped me tremendously with my self esteem. I cannot stress enough, that your first step has to be a commitment to stop insulting yourself in your head.

Boy do I know what the dressing room meltdown is like. I bet you everyone here knows that trauma! So, you came to the right place. Check in every day, ask questions, vent, and tell us about your small victories. Every time you achieve one of your mini goals, spoil yourself to a new pair of earrings, a handbag, an article of clothing, a movie, a massage, whatever you can do to make yourself feel looked after and treasured. It sounds hoaky but you have to work on feeling good about who you are and everything you have accomplished that's good. Check out the thread What do you love?

Best of luck to you, Gamegirl, just remember you are not alone in this. There are way too many of us out here that are in the same boat you're in.... but there's strength in numbers!
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Last edited by mtlgirl; 06-03-2010 at 01:08 PM.
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Old 06-03-2010, 01:10 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Welcome, gamergirl! Dressing rooms are great for wake-up calls, aren't they? I've been there, done that! But it's great that you used that experience to motivate you to come here. You've taken the first step! Congratulations!

almeeker gave wonderful advice on getting started, so hopefully you can use some of that! Changing your priorities can be difficult, but it also CAN be done. You just have to decide what you want most. You've got great motivation...starting a family, getting out of the plus-size section, living a long and healthy life...use that to fuel your decisions when it comes to what to eat and what to do. One of my favorite quotes is "Don't give up what you want most for what you want at the moment." I think that to myself several times a day when I'm tempted to eat something I shouldn't, quit working out early, etc.

As for your pitfalls, here are my thoughts...
- Portion control: Try switching to 5 small meals instead of 3 larger ones. If you don't get as hungry throughout the day, you might not feel the need to eat a lot or clean your plate at meals.
- Trigger foods: Get them OUT of your house! Throw them away! Dump something terrible on them so you can't eat them! Don't give temptation a chance!
- Hatred of exercise: I feel you with this one. Unfortunately, it's just something you have to do to be healthy and lose weight. Start small so you don't burn yourself out and try to find something you enjoy. You may not ever LOVE working out, but you probably will find that it gets easier and it can be just another natural part of your day.
- Love to cook: That's a good thing! Just choose healthier recipes. Maybe a reward for losing a certain amount of weight, working out a certain number of days, etc. could be a new healthy cookbook? Find healthy alternatives for some of your favorite dishes to make (try the Hungry Girl cookbooks if you haven't...they're awesome!)
- Low self-image: I also feel you on this one, and I think most of us do. That's part of the reason we become overweight to begin with. The only advice I can give is to celebrate your success as it comes. Seeing the number on the scale go down, your clothes fit better, your endurance improve are all great self-esteem builders. Set goals, then work hard to reach them. You can do it, and we're all pulling for you!

Best wishes as you start your journey. Check in here for support and let us know how it's going. You can do it!!!!
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Old 06-03-2010, 01:31 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Not much to add about the nuts and bolts of how to do it, but your question of changing priorities resonated with me. I have an answer but it will take some work. First, I have to admit a professional bias...I am a shrink...but I really, truly believe that in order to make a commitment to taking better care of yourself, you have to believe that you are worth being a priority. Now I am not saying that you are a head case or anything, but most women have self-esteem issues in some form or fashion and are used to giving, giving, giving to others, often at the expense of ourselves. Changing to a healthy lifestyle will take time and effort, and if you don't believe (consciously or unconsciously) that you're worth that, it won't happen. So my advice would be to try to journal your feelings in that regard, maybe check some related books out of the library, or if it really hits you hard, see a counselor and explore it a little bit. I think doing it for your (future) kids is great motivation, but they're not here yet and you are, and you deserve the best you can get all on your own.

This has me thinking of one of my favorite quotes: "What you feed grows; what you starve dies." Feed your good habits and your commitment to yourself, and try not to give the negative excuses a chance to get any bigger. Good luck!
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Old 06-03-2010, 02:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I feel your pain. Today is my first day on fitday. I also love to cook and love to eat. I also deal with portion control issues.

I am taking the approach, "One good decision leads to another." I invited myself on a walk this morning with friends from church. They were talking about it, and I asked if I could invite myself. It felt really good (and I do not like to sweat!).

As far as the self-image issue goes, I suggest that you go get a new haircut, buy some inexpensive make-up, and give yourself a make over. But, just losing weight and changing on the outside will not improve your self-image, you have to make changes on the inside. Tell your husband that you need his help. If he can tell you how pretty you are and how much he loves you daily, that can help your self-image.

Good Luck and know that I am on this journey with you!
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Old 06-03-2010, 03:54 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Gamegirl, I also thought I hated exercise. Turns out I LOVE it, I just hadn't found the right exercise. I've been really succesful with step aerobics classes, zumba classes, and hip hop class. If I get on a machine (e.g. treadmill, elliptical), I get bored and quit. For me the classes are really fun and I can't really quit in the middle of a class. Find something you enjoy doing and you might end up really liking exercise.
Also, there can be ways to enjoy cooking and still lose weight. Different things work for different people. For me, I don't do well with the 5-6 small meals. I need a big dinner or I'll eat tons of snacks late at night. There are tons of great websites with lower calorie recipes that taste like they're high in calories. Also, there are tons of "makeover" recipe websites. That's where they take a dish typically high in calories and fat, and make it over to be healthy. They still taste delicious!
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