My diet is terrible and I do no exercise and I don't know where to start. Please help!

(26 Posts)
Tanice Sat 19-Dec-20 21:30:18

I'm not massively overweight but I eat absolutely dreadfully. I always have but now that I'm 56 I'm fearing for my health. It doesn't help that I don't like cooking.

Also, I do no exercise so am awfully unfit. I need to change this completely and ordinarily I would probably have gone to the gym and got a programme drawn up for me. I've done this in the past (but not stuck to it) but, of course, this isn't an option now.

Please give me ideas on where/how to start. At the moment it just feels like an insurmountable problem sad. Thank you.

OP’s posts: |
CovidConsult Sat 19-Dec-20 21:32:43

Baby steps.
Cut out the crap, eat salads (buy readymade if affordable, to get into the habit of eating healthier stuff) and make a point of walking every day.

SantaMonicaPier Sat 19-Dec-20 21:36:11

Have you considered something like the Joe Wicks 90 day plan? That made a huge difference to me as it gave me both diet and exercise structure and motivation during the earlier part of lockdown

Aquamarine1029 Sat 19-Dec-20 21:36:44

I think the obvious first step is your diet. Fresh foods, fruit, veg, lean proteins, eggs are all good choices. Drink only water or tea and avoid processes rubbish. You may not love to cook but it's something you need to just deal with. It doesn't have to be complicated or time consuming.

RedSoloCup Sat 19-Dec-20 21:43:23

Do couch to 5k - there is a great fb group so supportive 'couch to 5k uk'.

I started in April and fittest I've ever been and it does inspire you to eat better.

Tanice Sat 19-Dec-20 21:50:09

Thank you for the answers. I can't do running - 4 dc have seen to that - but I can certainly do some of the other things suggested. I'll have a look at the Joe Wicks thing flowers

OP’s posts: |
larrythelizard Sat 19-Dec-20 21:50:55

Don't try and do it all at once, maybe set yourself a new goal every week. Like to start with, drink more water and eat your 5 a day. Maybe moving on to 10k steps a day and/or no snacking. And gradually increase that way?

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LoopyLoulley Sat 19-Dec-20 21:53:51

I usually have more motivation in the morning. I sometimes start by choosing one meal a day to work on (for me breakfast) and make that meal healthy but filling. Once I'm used to that I find it easier to work on another part of the day because I've given myself a positive every day to give me motivation. Also figuring out what your biggest downfalls are. For me that's being alone, when the kids are at school or in bed so those are the times I really struggle with. Sometimes I brush my teeth early with my daughter so I can't snack when she's in bed.
Also I've started a Couch to family fitness thing by Our Parks (?) because that one is 9 minutes long and I can find I can regularly commit to that. I'm really anti exercise!
Right now I'm eating rum truffles to drown out the joys of tier 4 so it's a work in progress.

ChristmasTreeFairy5000 Sat 19-Dec-20 22:02:50

Start slowly instead of trying to do everything all at once and then giving up. Also instead of looking at everything you 'should' be doing, look at what you can do. You don't want to/can't run, can you get out for a walk? Can you do a workout online you enjoy? The most important thing is to do something you enjoy, then you will stick to it. There is no point doing something because it's what you 'should do'. You will get miserable and give up.

Same with what you eat. So you don't like cooking. Have a look at healthier alternatives you can eat of what you do like. I know it gets a bit of a bad reputation, but I actually think Slimming world is a really good starting point for someone trying to eat a bit healthier. It has loads of things you can make quickly if you need to, but that are that bit healthier. My DH diet was shocking, hardly eats any fruit and veg etc. But even he could do slimming world and was able to eat a bit healthier as a result.

Tanice Sat 19-Dec-20 22:08:12

Thank you so much everyone. It's so helpful having suggestions of how and where to start. Are there any YouTube videos anyone can suggest of a short, all round, indoor exercise routine?

OP’s posts: |
ChequerBoard Sat 19-Dec-20 22:08:12

You can do it OP. I am 50 and have lost 10.5 and kept it off for the last 18 months. If I can do that, anyone can.

Small changes changes to start with, cut down on the crap - biscuits, chocolate, crisps etc. Being in the right headspace is crucial, I would suggest starting your new way if eating in earnest in the New Year.

The think that help me the most was adopting the use of a food tracking app. I use it every day (except my birthday) and record everything I eat and drink. I set myself a daily calorie and carb limit and through trial and error, I now know what works for me i.e. if I eat below this number of calories and carbs I will lose weight this week.

Over time I have moved to one meal a day. I much prefer this, as I can have a good sized dinner and a 'dessert' of fruit while still staying reasonably low calorie.

Tanice Sat 19-Dec-20 22:09:56

@ChequerBoard - you've lost 10.5 stone? That's an incredible achievement. flowers.

OP’s posts: |
ChequerBoard Sat 19-Dec-20 22:11:19

Yes, sorry 10.5 stone

BogRollBOGOF Sat 19-Dec-20 22:18:28

Break it down into stages such as:
2l of water
Add a couple of portions of fruit/ veg
Daily brisk walk

Add in something else as you get comfortable with the previous stage.

Healthy food doesn't have to be complicated and time consuming. Things like stir fries and pre-prepared vèg help. My DCs are sensitive to texture so I grate veg or blend it into sauces, again easy to do and reduces cooking time.

Joe Wicks can be hard going, I find his style pulls me around easily. I like Mr Motivator (12 mins, new youtube video each week) and yoga with Adriene. You can make a difference with 15 mins each day.

fucknuckle Sat 19-Dec-20 22:26:13

download My Fitness Pal and spend a couple of days logging what you eat at the moment. this will give you an idea of what the problem areas are (heavy lunch then cooked dinner, a secret biscuit habit) and you can then set goal to work towards.

i weighted myself on 20 november and cried with absolute horror. i’d lost any motivation to look after myself (been shielding mostly since march, live alone, poor mental health) and was living on takeaways and chocolate. i ran a ‘typical’ day through the calorie counter and i was horrified to see that i was eating in excess of 3,500 calories a day.

well. that was the wake up call. i need surgery that i had been asked to lose weight for last january. then the world went to shit and i just sort of gave up.

since 20 november i have logged every single thing i have eaten or drunk. i’ve lost a stone and a half and already feel so much better. i have a LOT of weight to lose (was actually being referred for bariatric surgery in order to get the first op done as it’s a progressive condition and we don’t have forever to wait) and was convinced i couldn’t do it. i have arthritis so i’m fairly immobile, i take three different meds that make you gain weight and then it’s difficult to lose it.

turns out, if i just do the right things, i can lose weight by myself.

i eat a lot of fresh veg now (i’d forgotten how delicious broccoli is!), i cook myself a meal once a day. i eat a lot of stir fries with pepper, mushrooms and chicken, just no noodles. grilled pork loin with cauli, carrots and broccoli. i have a plain porridge pot for breakfast, cold meat and cottage cheese for lunch. my nighttime meds make me hungry so i have a healthy snack in the evening to tide me over.

it’s brain training, i just have to ignore the reward centre that keeps whining on about being hungry and why can’t we have fish and chips.

and if i can lose the weight myself and stick to it, i don’t have to have the bariatric surgery. i’m setting smallish goals, 3 stone at a time. i’m having xmas day and boxing day off, but that’s it.

i’m a recovering alcoholic (7 years sober in April) and it’s like the switch that flicked when i got sober has flicked for my eating. i’ve had a lifetime of eating disorders so have to be careful i don’t start restricting, but the app shouts at me if i don’t make 1000 calories a day!

start small, work out the problem areas, make a plan and stick it out. i order the same food each week with my shopping as it’s easier for me to know what i’m going to be eating and there’s always some flexibility with actual meals.

all of which is a very long-winded way of saying you can do this, OP. one thing at a time, one day at a time. if i lose 2lb a week for a year, by next christmas that’s 100lb off. my suitability for surgery kicks in about halfway through that number so slow and steady wins the race.

(oh my god i am looking forward to roast potatoes tho. and cheese. CHEESE!)

dudsville Sat 19-Dec-20 22:26:54

For a savoury fix make a huge plate of roasted veg. It is really tasty and helps you get more veg in your diet. I can't think of a veg that doesn't roast well.

And like the pp, have a big bowl of fresh fruit, like a kiwi, satsuma, pear and banana with a dollop of Greek yogurt for a sweet fix. These things plus eggs for breakfast make for a filling and healthy diet.

I say these things as if I do them often. I do but not consistently. The pandemic has been tough but I've been really going for it on the fruit and veg front for a few weeks now. Good luck op.

Hazelnutlatteplease Sat 19-Dec-20 22:28:39

Are there any YouTube videos anyone can suggest of a short, all round, indoor exercise routine?

Yes!!!! Search in You tube "fitness blender low impact" any of them will be a good start.

Tanice Sat 19-Dec-20 22:33:12

@fucknuckle you've done so well since November. Congratulations on being 7 years sober, and good luck with your weight loss. Thank you for taking the time to reply to me.

@dudsville - thank you to you too.

In fact, thank you everyone.

OP’s posts: |
crosshatching Sun 20-Dec-20 00:30:57

Focus on introducing good habits so they start pushing the bad ones out. Start by going out for a walk every day for 30 minutes. A good veggie soup is basically a salad warmed up and blitzed. Small things like that, all best of luck to you.

EmmaStone Sun 20-Dec-20 09:38:57

Try to get out for a walk for a minimum of 30 mins a day - the fresh air and being around nature is a tonic for the soul. Perhaps suggest meeting a friend to walk with you?

Target getting your 5 a day every day, plan out how you can do that (eg fruit with breakfast, salad at lunch, up veg intake at dinner).

Would you consider seeing a personal trainer? Whether you do a course of 12 or something, or see one once a month, being accountable to someone, and knowing you're wasting your time and money if not keeping up the work in between is a real motivator for me. I've been seeing my PT for years now, I go fortnightly, and even though I exercise fairly regularly etc, knowing I've got my session looming keeps me exercising in between, otherwise I know I'll be beasted 😂.

Ask yourself why you've not done it up til now, what has changed that will make you start changing habits? It's incredibly hard to just wake up one day and decide you're suddenly going to start exercising or eat healthily. What are your barriers, and how can they be addressed?

BestestBrownies Sun 20-Dec-20 09:52:35

Stop buying the junk food. If it’s not in the house you can’t eat it, and if you get a craving you have to go to the effort of a journey to the shop, which is usually enough to put you off.

2 eggs scrambled in the microwave on a slice of seeded brown toast is a super healthy breakfast even the least skilled cook can manage. Ditto porridge + frozen berries (also microwaved).

Soups at this time of year (buy them ready made if you’re that terrible at cooking).

AtleastitsnotMonday Sun 20-Dec-20 19:12:06

Apart the nutritional benefits of having 5+ fruit and veg a day, one of the biggest advantages is that when you have to get that much (or more) in, you naturally push out other (usually less healthy) things. But you are focusing on what you can have rather than what you can’t. Same with drinking more water.
Could you post an example of your daily meal plan. I expect there are several small changes that you could make which you wouldn’t notice too much.

Geordieoldgirl Sun 20-Dec-20 19:21:07

I have enjoyed doing Pahla B’s free keep fit classes on You tube. There are many, many different classes. There will be something for everyone. She is lovely , very upbeat and encouraging. Her slogan is ‘Make peace with your menopausal body’ and she advises moderate exercise to promote weight loss.

Twinkie01 Sun 20-Dec-20 19:23:23

Stop eating processed food and start couch to 5k. Do 30 day shred too if you can face it.

SlothWithACloth Sun 20-Dec-20 19:25:16

The nhs live well place isn’t a bad place to start.
Start with eating your 5 a day and going for a walk. Then make other adjustments when you can.
www.nhs.uk/live-well/

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