How do you lose weight when there are lots of other issues?(29 Posts)
I'm sorry for the size of this post, it's going to be long and I'm no doubt going to contradict myself too, but please help!!
I am massive and miserable. I am 5'2 and, as of this morning I weigh 17st4lbs. I could cry. I have cried.
I hate the way I look. I hate how unhealthy I feel and, although I could write books on how to lose weight I am finding it so hard. I know I am heading towards T2 diabetes (runs in my family) or worse, but the hatred I feel for myself is making it really easy to put my head firmly in the sand.
I also have some other issues that complicate things. I am severely agoraphobic. I can just about get to the school if accompanied by my husband. The school is 10 minutes away. There are days when I feel unable to leave the house at all. This makes exercise near on impossible. I have home workout DVD's, but the out of breath feeling that I get and the sweating makes me feel like I'm having a panic attack. Even though I know it is the exercise, it makes it hard to do. I know I have to get over it, but I don't know how. Panic attacks are so scary that I don't want to feel like I am having one even if I'm not-if that makes sense??
I am on antidepressants (Paroxetine 20mg). Not hugely sure if these also contribute. I also have anxiety induced depression.
I have IBS. This means that eating too much salad based or veggie based meals will have me sitting on the loo for hours or generally in pain. I've had it for years and it's not as bad as it was, but fruit and veg rather that chocolate seems to trigger it badly (oh, the irony). I cannot eat eggs on their own either because of the IBS, nor can I eat wholemeal bread, pasta or rice.
I am fed up of hating myself. I am a (mostly) nice person. I love my children and want to be around for them. My husband doesn't like the way I hate myself. It's tiring to always feel down on myself. I don't see myself as worthy of new clothes because I look awful in them. I don't bother with makeup or doing my hair because it makes no difference to the disgusting sight I see in the mirror.
My husband loves me, my children love me, my mum, dad, sisters, brother, nieces, nephew and grandson love me. I want to learn to love myself.
If you got to the end of this post, thank you. I realise it sounds very self-pitying, but it really is how I feel (while hiding behind a big smile and a jokey manner). Any suggestions, or similar experinces would be gratefully received
Ok, so what foods can you eat. Maybe the exercise will help your depression. I think you need to get started. Into a routine?
As you lose weight then every other symptom might reduce a bit
Have you always been overweight?
How long have you been taking the Paroxetine and do you feel it is helping with the anxiety?
If you've been taking it a while with no significant improvement then I would suggest you return to the GP and ask about the possibility of being switched to an alternative antidepressant
I think you need to tackle getting your anxiety under control first at that seems to be the thing stopping you exercising and changing your diet
Agree with Funky sort your medication first. Make sure it's working. Second, look up the FODMAP diet, it's for IBS. I've got horrid IBS and I've been doing low carb/high fat and found my bloating and other issues disappeared (but it depends what bothers you).
I think for you though, the most important thing you can do is push through with the exercise. The fitter you get, the better you'll feel about yourself and the less anxiety you will have.
How hard are your exercise DVD's? If you find them a bit too much, maybe find some easier ones or try to do the ones you have a little bit more lightly. You might even buy some weights and start lifting, as that, while being very good, is a little less strenuous and something you can build up.
It's hard with the exercise, but just try and take it a day at a time.
C&p'd my post from the bootcamp thread...
"I have a long list of health problems and am pretty much unable to exercise (though i have graduated up to weekly hydrotherapy and some pilates). I use a wheelchair anywhere out of the house and am only awake for about 12 hours a day. Lchf works for me, and i am starting this bootcamp 8lbs lighter than last time (and thats with xmas 'off')!!"
"I will warn you though, it has been much slower for me than for others, and it can be demoralising to see people here losing loads more than you. (And extra annoying when your sister is on SW for baby weight and is a skinny minnie having just reached 'target') But like i said, it does work, it can just be a bit slower, so you just need to remember that when having a hmm day"
I will add to this, i have IBS, and following a low carb high fat diet nigh on cures it. I'm sometimes a bit bloaty from the veg, but nothing compared to my symptoms on 'normal' eating
Here's the bootcamp section link...
Thanks for your replies. To answer the questions... I can eat lean meats, white pasta, rice, bread, couscous, cooked veg (most of the time), some fruit in small portions, same with salads, onions and garlic. I rarely eat fried food.
I have always been overweight, but not to this degree. I was 10 stone for years. It's really been the last 6/7 years that it has been a big problem.
I've been taking the Paroxetine for around 7 months. It did help at first, I don't feel any difference now.
I have a couple of Davina DVD's.
I shall look at the FODMAP diet and the links some of you have put up.
Davina is quite a tough DVD. Maybe have a look for some rosemary conley on ebay - they are fun and gentle. Work up to Davina.
I am doing the Easyloss hypnosis app and really liking that. It's 4.99 (one off cost).
The Lesley Sansone "Walk At Home" programmes are also good for low impact exercise and you can take it at your own pace (lots of different ones on youtube).
For turning your white pasta and rice into low GI you could try the cook, chill, reheat method.
I was going to suggest rosemary Connelly dvds too
Have you spoken to anyone about this? Been refered to the wellbeing service etc?
I was once 17 st 1 (I'm 5'3) down to 12 st 9 with slimming world. I know not everyone likes it but I basically eat as little processed food as possible, lots of family meals made from scratch.
Exercise is good but only a minor part of weight loss.
Are you undergoing any treatment for the agoraphobia?
Just looking at the foods you eat I'd maybe structure a day of say scrambled egg with one slice of wholemeal toast and mushrooms, small jacket potato with beans and a dinner of hunter's chicken with veg.
The most important thing I would say is rid your house of temptation, if kids or hubby want treats have them out of the house. No ready made sauces, no crisps, no sweets, no fizzy, empty the house of all but wholesome good ingredients.
Hi Dol, first of all you're not self pitying, you're in a tough spot and it sounds like there's lots going on that make it hard for you. First of all I would say don't worry too much about exercise just yet. main thing will be to look at your food. You didn't get to your weight from 10 stone overnight and it'll take some time to get back there but that's ok right? Time will pass regardless. Some of what you've said about how you treat yourself isn't easy to help with but I'd start with a couple of things, small steps...drinking plenty of water, brushing your hair, add something small to each day. Look at what you're eating, see where you might be able to cut back a couple of hundred cals a day, see how that feels. I wish you all the best, my heart goes out to you
Thank you, I will have a look at the 'Walk at home'. I haven't been referred anywhere because I literally can't go further than a few minutes from my house. I was having CBT last year and was doing pretty well when the sessions finished. Then I had a massive panic attack that scared me stupid and I was back to square one.
I did try and refer myself again, but was told that there was nothing else they could do as I know all the theory and I just have to get out and put it into practice (the hard part that I find near on impossible )
I think banning 'nice' things from the house will have to be the way to go-I comfort eat and, if it's there I'll eat it.
Not2, small steps, yes, I need to do that. My DD has been unwell and, because I am in with her while DH takes DS to school, I haven't even bothered to get dressed. I do the morning school run and get straight back into my PJ's because I know that's me done for the day. It's not good.
Have you got the mind over mood book? It is full of useful exercises, based on cbt
you sound like you are stuck between a rock and a hard place.
Would it help walkinv just a short distance outside with someone else and working on just a small distance at a time?
I'll take a look at that book Owllady. I do walk short distances with DH, but, although he tries to understand agoraphobia, he does things like says 'Oh yes, we'll go to this shop and get this and this' without realising that I can just get round the block. The thought of going further makes the anxiety rise so much that I chicken out and don't go.
I don't have much family here, only my eldest daughter who works and has her own little family. The rest of my family live an hour/90 mins away. I'm trying to get a move near them (am HA), but have been on the list for 7 years already.
I know I will improve when I am nearer because my mum is retired and will walk with me, I have my sisters and brother and dad, all willing to do things with me....and won't let me chicken out!! My youngest sister has anxiety, but she's managed it better than me and didn't cross the line to agoraphobia.
I am currently doing a weekly group session of CBT about weight loss. It costs me £11. Since Christmas I have lost ten pound. Today we discussed the cycle of change.
That sounds good sole. What is it called?
Dolally if you live nr me i'll walk with you
Owl, that's a lovely offer and I wish I could take you up on it but I live in East London. Sole that sounds good, I wonder if there would be one online. I shall have a look.
I do love the support of Mumsnetters!!
Poor you, sounds tough.
I was going to suggest walking too. I've got a fitbit and find it really motivating trying to get my 10K steps every day. Now obviously it's easier when I'm out and about, which I appreciate is not easy for you. But, recently when I've realised I need to do extra steps in an evening to up my total, I've started walking around the house, marching on the spot whilst watching TV etc. Probably look mad, but it feels great reaching my target and I feel so much better for doing at least a bit of exercise every day!
Plus with diets you're focusing mainly on the negative (well I do) thinking about what you can't eat, or how many calories you've got left etc. With my fitbit, it feels like you're focusing on something postive instead, if that makes sense? Also it's a good distraction from thinking about food/feeling hungry.
So I'd say get a fitbit or use an app or whatever, and in conjunction with diet (other people have given you advice on that and know much more about it than I do), I'm sure you'll get there. Good luck.
Good idea alan, my dh does the same. He is my carer so cant go walking miles for exercise and leaving me home. He has a fit bit though and does laps up and down the kitchen. He did 26 miles of it the other day!! (He is somewhat obsessive )
Your paroxetine is a low dose (20mg) you can go up to 40 or 60mg and higher doses are recommended for anxiety so I'd ask your GP to increase the dose to see if it helps you more. Paroxetine is not addictive but it has withdrawal effects so I'd put the dose up rather than switch.
Can you start trying to put some of the CBT techniques into action again? The 'Overcoming' series of books is very good for CBT self help and I know they have one for anxiety although not so sure about agoraphobia. CBT is definitely the best treatment for agoraphobia. Maybe you could ask for telephone or computer top up sessions if they won't do face to face again.
A psychologist would say that experiencing the out of breath feeling when exercising is actually a really useful thing. You can use that feeling to prove to yourself that feeling out of breath is a normal physiological reaction with no bad consequences. Usually people feel they are going to die when having a panic attack because of the adrenaline release and that thought then makes them more anxious and so more out of breath. The idea is that if you break the association of out of breath with 'I am having a panic attack, I am dying' then you will reduce and stop the attacks in the end.
On the contrary avoidance maintains panic and anxiety. If you avoid that feeling you will become more and more scared of it, you will get physically weaker so feel worse when exercising and it becomes like a self fulfilling prophecy.
Which is a long winded way of saying that exercise will help mentally and physically so it's a really good idea to keep trying.
How about yoga? It's not exactly going to burn off hundreds of calories, but it will put you in touch with your body and what it can do.
If you do it regularly, you will see improvements in how long you can hold a pose/ how far you can stretch. And I find that makes me feel better about my (big, wobbly!) body, and to make better food choices etc.
There's a thread here for those of us who are following Adeline's free youtube videos: www.mumsnet.com/Talk/yoga/2536012-Adriene-is-starting-YOGA-CAMP-on-January-1st - in fact there's a whole 'yoga' topic too.
The good news is that weight loss really is mostly down to diet rather than exercise. Especially as you have a fair bit to lose, you might find that losing through diet alone at first will then make it easier to start exercise later on after you've lost some of the weight.
Secondly, there's no need to follow a specific meal plan or a fancy diet system. For the absolute majority of people, plain old calorie counting will make all the difference. You could try a calorie reduction over the week (use My Fitness Pal to track) or 5:2 (two fast days every week). If you check out the 5:2 forum on here, there are several posters who have lost a large amount of weight doing 5:2.
And there's no need to eat the things that don't work for you because of IBS. You mention you can eat lean meats and cooked vegetables - so you could have your lean meat with steamed broccoli and carrots, for example? Or a stir fry? What about grains like oats? Can you eat dairy? What about healthy fats like avocado, nuts? Technically, from a weight loss point of view, you could eat 1500 calories worth of Mars bars every day and would lose weight on it, although it obviously wouldn't be good for you from a health point of view!
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