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....how to get fitter when you are extremely UNfit?

(157 Posts)
GreatFuckability Sun 01-Jan-17 02:16:58

I don't even know where to start!
Context- I'm 36, I'm a size 22 and I'm incredibly unfit. To complicate matters I have a back problem which really limits what I can do without pretty significant pain.
Nevertheless id really like to try and get fitter (and lose weight ideally, but that's really a secondary concern to me).
There are so many fitness things out there and I really don't where to begin. The idea of joining a gym terrifies me, I've seen the way people on social media talk about clueless fat people and its enough to put me off for life, plus my income is really limited anyway.
I do really like to swim, but again financially I probably cant afford it often enough to make a huge impact.
I know I sound like I'm making excuses, I'm not and I'm really open to any suggestions you can think of, because I really do want to do this.

DailyFail1 Sun 01-Jan-17 02:22:21

Just going for a gentle walk for 30mins a day and restricting your diet should enable you to lose a lot (and perhaps maintain it too). That's how I permanently lost 4 stones. Still slightly overweight but have maintained this weight for 3 years now.

JaceLancs Sun 01-Jan-17 02:24:54

My local leisure centre does a gym n swim membership for £20 a month
There are ladies only swims for those who are less confident
For gym pick a quiet time of day and honestly no one will take any notice
I have asthma and arthritis which limits me quite s lot but have worked out what I can do n what routines suit me
I try and swim once s week and gym 1-2 times
Also doing slimming world - but I need to tone up and get fit as well as diet
I do understand as I have another 5 stone to lose - but if is doable just set yourself small targets and increase them as and when you feel comfortable

JakeBallardswife Sun 01-Jan-17 02:25:26

I'm the same. Are you me? Tomorrow I walk!

GreatFuckability Sun 01-Jan-17 02:32:01

I think my biggest problem food wise is portion control rather than what I'm eating. I don't drink, and I'm not a fan if sweet things, though I do love cheese. I definitely need to have smaller portions though. I did SW before and lost a decent amount (than I damaged my back and it all went back on). I do tend to eat my feelings blush.
So, in terms of walking is it more important to do a certain distance or to walk fast for a specific amount of time. I do have a treadmill, that's been neglected for a long time. So I can do that in the privacy of my house.

GreatFuckability Sun 01-Jan-17 02:33:48

Jake! I wish you luck! I'm sort of at the pound where I'm too embarrassed to be seen exercising because I'm so hopeless, but I recognise I need to fight back for my own sake.

QueenMortificado Sun 01-Jan-17 02:36:01

I've seen the way people on social media talk about clueless fat people and its enough to put me off for life

The only people who even watch people at the gym or judge them are utter dicks. Most people don't give a shit what people are doing around them and if they do notice, well everyone had to start somewhere once!

I'd recommend a mix of walking and weights. You can burn lots of fat just from walking. Download a steps app and set a target of 3000, then 7000 then 10,000 steps a day. There are lots of easy weights programmes too that use body weight exercises, ie press ups, squats, lunges etc. You can do circuits of these for a few mins at a time, rest, go again for however long you can manage. (Lots of programmes available online, check Kayla Itsines or Joe Wicks Body Coach). The brilliant thing about these is that you can see the improvement on the very next workout, it's great.

So you can easily start at home. Don't get hung up on running or anything like that, short bursts of intense exercise and then lots of walking will help massively.

However, you really can't out train a bad diet. Is there one thing you can focus on to give up and swap for something else? Ie pledge to give up cakes but swap for lean protein which will help build muscle?

It's hard but you can do it. Honestly, most people won't give you a second glance. Good luck OP!

TheOldestCat Sun 01-Jan-17 02:38:52

Hey, happy new year and great from you - you're at the start of it all! I was you 18 months ago - unfit and unsure of how to begin. So I just started running/walking. Out on my own, listening to podcasts, trying to run and walk for a bit, seeing how it went. Gradually, the walking/running morphed into to jogging and after a year I did a 10K. I am now hoping t do a half marathon in the spring.

This might not be for you, with your back problem. But I couldn't afford a gym so this worked for me.
My advice, whatever you do - start small. Don't aim for perfection, just up your levels. You can do this long term. The first few weeks I hated it, then I got it - I'll never be a natural athlete or (in my mind) a 'proper runner' but I LOVE running now and get sad when I can;t get out,

Good luck x

Itsallgoodimtold Sun 01-Jan-17 02:39:54

You could do yourself a daily tick chart, e.g. walked up and down the stairs ten times. Also, instead of doing a strict diet completely cut out cheese just for one month. If it makes a huge difference you might be inspired to continue

BlackeyedSusan Sun 01-Jan-17 02:40:34

walk. walk a little further each time. (park further away in the car park. walk up the stairs etc) find a reason to walk more. walk faster. walk faster back to the car or upstairs etc so you get out of breath...

I hate exercise and can only increase what I do by walking further or faster or more often. I am still struggling getting motivated though so better luck than me..

DailyFail1 Sun 01-Jan-17 02:42:32

I think while you start out it's important to focus on time spent walking rather than speed or distance as you need to create a habit. I struggle with portions too, so use My Fitness Pal and track and weigh everything I eat. I usually aim for 1400 calories net (ie after exercise).

QueenMortificado Sun 01-Jan-17 02:43:07

I read something which was "whatever you do, do something. A small bit of exercise is better than no exercise"

I always think of this before I workout and it usually helps me to force myself up and at it as I think "I'll just do a bit". But then I inevitably end up out instead doing a full workout!

Fwiw, I find the treadmill deadly dull and much prefer putting on my trainers and just heading for a wander in any direction for an hours walk. Makes a real difference.

Out2pasture Sun 01-Jan-17 02:44:16

could you hire a personal trainer to come to your home?
you would be amazed at exercises that you can do in privacy.
I had a trainer many years ago who put together an exercise routine using elastic bands all done while sitting in a chair.
she would walk with me and eventually got me to a walk and run.

SparkleShinyGlitter Sun 01-Jan-17 02:46:10

Take no notice of social media, then people are cocks!

Start light walking and bud it up over time. Start off with a 15-30 minute walk and build that up

With food make small changes for example if you have sugar in tea/ coffee cut that out 1/2 tea spoon at a time
Try a fill 1/3 of your dinner plate with veg/salad.

Download an app such as my fitness pal an track your calories and exercise. Seeing it all add up can rely help

Best of luck to you lovely

GreatFuckability Sun 01-Jan-17 02:59:18

Ah thank you so much for your kind words!
Logically I know that most people won't care about me in a gym. They are there to exercise and not to take the piss, but I guess emotionally I'm not....i guess thick skinned enough to be able to just go 'fuck it' and go. At least not right now. I know there is no way right now I will be able to make myself do it, so I figure I need something else to get me started and maybe down the road ill be more confident.
I like the idea of even setting goals of walking up and down the stairs/walking further from the car, that feels doable. I'm going to draw up a list of things tomorrow.
I user to quite like the treadmill. Stick some telly on and just walk. When I'm feeling braver id like to do some outside walking (though I live rurally in wales, so ita hilly and my back is not a fan of hills. Perhaps I should move, where's flatgrin?? )

GreatFuckability Sun 01-Jan-17 03:00:44

Personal trainer is way beyond my budget right now. But thank you!

Italiangreyhound Sun 01-Jan-17 03:01:59

GreatFuckability can you get a trial gym membership and get professional advice on what to do based around your back? If swimming is best can you join a pool rather than a gym?

I'm going to walk once a week with a friend. I also do a marital art (badly!).

Agree with SparkleShinyGlitter "Take no notice of social media, then people are cocks!"

I'm starting healthy eating today! Message me your top tips and we can support each other!!!! thanks

glitterazi Sun 01-Jan-17 03:10:23

I'm in the same position, as I am so unfit and fat lately I'm wondering where to start!
I know what to do though and where to start. Don't start off too ambitiously.
Start off slowly. Then build it up. You don't need expensive gyms. Go for walks.
I'm 5"3 and 13st which is the heaviest I've ever been, and feel so crap and heavy with it.
I know why I'm the size I am though. Wine and far too much food! Plus zilch exercise.
Tomorrow heralds the start of a new outlook though, as I refuse to end next year at the same weight I am now.
I can feel my health starting to suffer.
Add gentle exercise to start off with. All is exercise and gets you moving. Walking,then walking and upping the pace and walking really fast.
Always taking the stairs instead of the lift.
Dancing to your favourite music is always a good one with me.
Just get moving and eating healthily. The rest comes naturally.

Archduke Sun 01-Jan-17 03:11:49

Well done OP on wanting to make changes that will make a fantastically positive impact on your life, health and well being.

I agree with all of the above posters. Start walking, it's free, it's healthy, it will release endorphins, which will make you so much happier. Although a treadmill is convenient for wet days there is nothing as good as a walk in fresh air. Download an step counting app, get Audible and listen to novels whilst you walk (Stephen Fry lost masses of weight doing that) or download some good podcasts or music - whatever interests you.

Can you hook up with a friend? I find a walk with a mate for an hour gassing the whole way does me a world of good. Once you get a bit fitter and start losing weight you might like to start a C25K - there are really friendly supportive threads for exercise and losing weight.

Finally remember that exercise will be of enormous benefit but it's really food that you need to be mindful of - can you try to think about food as nurturing and nutritious rather than as a way to swallow your feelings? Treat yourself kindly, do not punish yourself with either a strict diet or with unhelpful food choices but think about being kind to your body with healthy and nutritious meals.

Good luck OP you can do it. Make 2017 the year you really take care of yourself. flowers

Archduke Sun 01-Jan-17 03:16:33

Oh, also, there is a woman who walks past my house every day. She started about a year ago, very overweight and clearly found walking slow and uncomfortable. In the past year she has kept going and now looks and so obviously feels fantastic. She has lost an enormous amount of weight, she is still walking it's obviously something that she has built into her day and just does it.

I find her hugely inspiring.

TrillKitten Sun 01-Jan-17 03:16:57

You can do this OP! Even a small change is going to matter loads if you keep it up. Far better than a massive change you end up quitting in Feb smile
If you use buses, maybe get off one stop sooner and walk the extra block difference. If you frequent places with a stair / escalator option, pick the stairs once a day. Screw the gym, start with the small things and keep them up. We believe in you! smile

glitterazi Sun 01-Jan-17 03:20:09

Oh, also, there is a woman who walks past my house every day. She started about a year ago, very overweight and clearly found walking slow and uncomfortable. In the past year she has kept going and now looks and so obviously feels fantastic. She has lost an enormous amount of weight, she is still walking it's obviously something that she has built into her day and just does it. I find her hugely inspiring

Aw, that's lovely. Good on her, and also you for noticing! Perfect example of how perseverance rules, and yields results. No quick fix shit, get stuck in and it will happen!

Italiangreyhound Sun 01-Jan-17 03:24:08

Archduke excellent posts, inspired.

flowers

ColaSpangles Sun 01-Jan-17 03:26:39

It is hard to make the start OP. I know that only too well. Try and pick what you like - walking to the shop once a day instead of driving maybe? I find I eat healthily but too much because I love savouries! I'm going to try to change a little at a time too. Good luck, I'll be doing the same mission! Xx

DailyFail1 Sun 01-Jan-17 03:29:14

You can do it. Suggest a good sports bra though because when I was bigger walking made my boobs hurt. Bravissimo and M&S do good ones.

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