M.M. asks from York, PA on October 13, 2009
Weight Loss - York,PA
Good morning, ladies! I need some help. I have always been a naturally thin woman. I got pregnant when I was 27 and gained a whopping 80 pounds. It is not like I sat around and pigged out all day so I am not sure what caused the excessive weight gain. After I had my daughter in 9/06 I had a lot of complications. I could not work out or even get exercise for a while. I found out in 12/06 that I had a hernia from pushing so I got that corrected. Well, I have had this lump since I had that done and just had to get hernia surgery again this past June. My stomach muscles are destroyed. The summer after my daughter was born I walked with her and our dog and lost weight (and gained most of it back). Our street is not real safe to walk on because there are no sidewalks and there are some blind hills. My husband works long hours and isn't around a whole lot. I would feel SO guilty putting her in preschool all day and then dumping her in a gym daycare so I can work out. I also would hate to get home and have to load her back in the car and take her somewhere just so I can walk/exercise. I am getting really depressed with my weight! I can hardly look at myself in the mirror. I feel like I have let myself go. I do not take pride in my appearance anymore. I used to take pride in being an attactive woman. Does anyone have any suggestions on what I can do at my home or near by that includes my daughter and possibly the dog. I have a treadmill but my husband put it in the spare room in our house so when I am walking I just stare at the wall. I wanted in the basement so I could at least watch the news or something while walking but I did not win. I feel so lazy and want to be more energetic and just feel better about myself. I am so embarrassed to go in public. At work, I wear my coat all day so I can hide behind it. I just want to feel half confident again. Please help me!
E.N. answers from Philadelphia on October 23, 2009
Before doing anything, I would ask the doctor if there is something hormonally going on which is preventing you from going back close to your original weight. If not, I would highly recommend an easy workout program that you can do in your own space and time. Kathy Smith has a workout tape giving good techniques for cardiovascular exercise...explaining the reasons for the exercise (muscles being used and toned) and the correct form of doing the exercise. I found it to be just the thing at home and I made it my special time.
Or, you might try the library for iniitial resources, then when you find the one tape that you want, purchase it.
Stay away from partially hydrogenated oils, simple sugars and keep a high protein diet, if you are in good health.
I have a home-based business which can also help you in the areas of motovation.
A.J. answers from Williamsport on October 14, 2009
Hey woman, I HEAR ya! I'm sort of in your situation right now, but am totally at ease as I've been through it before and I KNOW the solution. I just had my 3rd baby 3 months ago with c-section and have not yet had the time to do the grind since healing as I am painting for a show I'm having in November as well as watching 3 kids with a dad who is gone all the time for work. I'm nursing, so the weight is supposed to be "falling right off". Luckily I already know that myth to be false (for me and my no-metabolism Irish body) so I'm not at all worried that I'm not budging yet, since I know what it takes. Like you, I am HATING myself when I have to go out and face the world like this in my big dumpy temporary post pregnancy clothes...and the months are starting to drag. Don't WORRY!!!! The human body is amazing, we WILL conquer this and you're only huge and out of it temporarily even after all the medical problems.
Like you, I've always been thin and in shape. However, I've always had to work hard for it, my metabolism doesn't do me any favors AT ALL. I've had to roll with the mysterious weight gains many times before, work like crazy to burn it off, and adjust my health regime afterwords to maintain. At this point, I'm 39, and my diet is practically flawless, healthy and natural, and I have to use weights as well as cardio regularly to lose weight and I exercise very frequently to maintain thin-ness. Whatever sacrifice and time management it takes. The only alternative is being large and tired and out of shape. It takes serious self discipline, but if you embrace the privilege of being able to have control over it, you don't feel like a victim. You also have to give yourself a break during times when you can't "work on it" and understand you can take charge again when you're able.
One day at a time, you will get yourself back. Maybe every day can't be that day where you get an awesome work out, drink tons of water, eat perfect meals and snacks to boost your health and metabolism, and go to bed early for a full calorie burning night of sleep, so you wake up feeling thinner than the day before, but it can be a day where you eat well, and accept that today you'll just "stay the same" on your long descent. Don't give up!
I went through a major mysterious weight gain phase right at age 28. I think that gain for you with your first was a life change in your metabolism as well as a pregnancy issue. I had to start cutting dairy and carbs for the first time in my life-I didnt' know what else to do, I was already active and vegetarian etc. With increased exercise and a diet revamp, I shrank back down and became a yoga enthusiast. However, in my 30's, even that wasn't enough, I needed to do advanced yoga 4 times per week, jog occasionally, and run around NYC working every day barely eating to stay thin. Now that I live in central PA with no yoga studio near by, and have had to battle baby weight, it's ALL ABOUT THE GYM!
After my first, the long cardio walks with the stroller did hardly anything. My plateau wouldn't give. I began weight training for the first time ever at a gym plus cardio three times per week-thank god for daycare there, and the weight fell right off. That is what has worked for me to this day for the last 3 years. I shrank down after my second in just a few months after gaining 60 pounds. Now I'm back up 30 pounds again and the surgery set me back and now I'm busy, so I'm huge and hating life. But in Novemebr, I'm back to the gym, and I know I'll be OK again.
You need the gym. Hate to say it. You need weights as well as cardio in a concentrated segment of time where you are not doing anything else. It's only temporary until you lose the weight, then you can maintain your good health with the walks and the baby time. It's only for a few months, don't think of it as a sad new way of life for your daughter forever. The gym daycare is fun for my kids, and when I'm not in a weight loss crisis, we go a lot less. I don't need to tell you how much happier you'll be when you lose weight, and your daughter will be happier.
Also, you've GOT to eat healthy. NO crash diets, pills, deprivation, fat free engineered food....You need healthy natural food and frequent snacks. No eating at night for 3 hours before bed. Your body will get back in shape as you exercise if you arent' putting hard to process foods into it.
I would tell you to reem your husband about the treadmill, but honestly, the treadmill at your house alone wouldn't do you much good until you're on a maintenance routine. Also, he's feeling his own stress. Get yourself to the gym with a good and thankful attitude. Stay positive. It's the only thing that works for me. Home videos and things that get your muscles and cardio would hypothetically work, it's just so hard at home to do it often enough. You need hard work 3-4 times per week to lose weight quickly. I'm right there with you, starting in Novemeber-we can DO THIS!!
As a side note, I'm shoked at how much my daughter understands about exercise and food just by watching me. You'll be doing her a great service-get thyself to boot camp!
A.S. answers from Pittsburgh on October 14, 2009
Lots of great ideas here. One other idea, you could run or walk after your daughter goes to bed. Not everyone would like this idea but my husband and I take turns running evenings after the kids are in bed.
L.B. answers from Philadelphia on October 14, 2009
Have you thought about a wii? They have some great exercise "games" for it. My 3 year old loves playing next to us while we do it. There are some really great workouts on it. The best part is you do it at home. You can still spend the quality time with your daughter and work out a 1/2 hour a day. I must confess, it is addicting.
D.P. answers from Pittsburgh on October 13, 2009
As for the weight, I think all moms have been there. I know I have not found the Magic Fix and my son is 6! LOL Yes, you gained some weight and you will find a way to lose it eventually. Get someone to move that stinkin' treadmill so it's NOT facing a wall--duh! No one would stay motivated that way!
So I have no real answers or suggestions for you as far as your weight and diet. It boils down to eat less and move more. We all know that. It's doing it consistently that counts. Try a 20 minute walk at lunchtime while you're at work. Then add 20 min on the treadmill to start?
The real reason I responded to your post is that it is sad that you are so down on yourself. Look at your daughter and see the wonder that was created and produced by your daughter! I was amazed at what I did during childbirth and I look at my body differently. I'm not saying you need to accept your weight and stop trying, but accept the strong, healthy body that produced an amazing life! Life is too short to go around with your coat on!
I'm amazed by the number of mothers I've heard say they will NOT take their kids to a pool or water park because they don't want to be seen in a bathing suit. Hellllooooo?!
That will be the day when I deny my kid a day at the pool because I'm embarrassed abut my thighs or butt! If people don't like it, they can look somewhere else.
Have you heard the expression "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving in an attractive, well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, shopping bag in one hand, martini in the other, body thouroughly used up, worn out, and screaming "WOW, what a ride!"?
If that expression doesn't inspire you, my Italian grandmother used to tell us "Oh, not everyone is looking at YOU!" LOL
Cheer up, stop stressing and obsessing and enjoy your family! God Bless!
A.P. answers from Pittsburgh on October 14, 2009
First of all-weight loss is mostly about diet. Exercise is AMAZING for you-don't get me wrong...but studies are showing more and more that it is not the key to weight loss. Time Magazine ran a huge article about this over the summer-can't remember which issue but your library should have it. So start with diet. Many people have success with Weight Watchers-the online program is really great and makes it super easy. Plus there is a supportive community there for you.
As far as exercise: What I did was get a small TV that had a DVD player in it and put it in front of my treadmill. I then joined Netflix and ordered shows I have always been meaning to watch. I highly suggest "24". SUCH a good show...It is so good and suspenseful that I will work out 45 minutes straight just to watch it. Plus it gets me motivated to do it each day.
Also-if you have On Demand from your cable there is a ton of great exercise options. Everything from 30 Day Shred(which people RAVE about-its only 20 minutes but supposedly gets you in great shape) to yoga and pilates. You could do these while your child plays nearby.
J.C. answers from Philadelphia on October 14, 2009
There are many really great exercise DVD out there. My sister has a "Walking" DVD where you walk 3 miles just in your family room. I also like the 10 minute pilate DVDs. I think exercising at home is so much easier that going to a gym and you never have an excuse not to exercise. Even if I don't want to exercise I just tell myself to do one 10 minute segment on the pilate DVD and once I do the 1st segment I am always up to doing 2 more segments. Next thing I know I have exercised for 30 minutes. The same thing with our exercise bike (which I hate) I tell myself I only have to do 1 mile then can stop but once I am on it I don't mind continuing... I also found that going to the gym requires a much greater time commitment because of the commute, packing the kids in the car, etc. and it is much easier to make excuses of why I can't go to the gym. I also loved the book Body for Life. I found it very motivational.
Good luck to you!
D.S. answers from Allentown on October 13, 2009
There is a 12 step dieting program. I don't know the name.
Go to Co-Dependence Anonymous support group in your local
Maybe you have co-dependency issues with food.
Hope this helps. Good luck. D.