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AIBU?

Do you think it would be easier to lose weight if you had more time ?

268 replies

kitchenlover · 06/01/2024 12:11

I am really really struggling to sort myself out with this.

Are these all just excuses though ?

I have lost weight successfully in the past, but I've also been exhausted by the whole thing.

I need to be super strict and spend around 2 hours in the gym a day, ( 5 days a week at least ) in order to see a change in my body. It's exhausting.

I have a full time job, two preschool aged children and a completely absent H, due to his work.

I also suffer from a condition which causes fatigue. So I start off with less energy than most people anyway. That is not even taking account the fact that I do all night wakings with my kids.

I just can't do all of this AND spend the time shopping/ meal prepping and going to the gym a lot.

How do people manage ? I really need to get back to a healthy weight and the only way I can see this happening is if I just don't work for a bit. I can afford to do this and yes I posted about this the other day. However I keep thinking- what if I take some time out from work to sort myself out and then I don't even manage to lose weight ?

Am I just making excuses ? How do people with so many responsibilities do it ??

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Gowlett · 06/01/2024 13:49

Eating much less. I’ve had success with that.
Walking everywhere. That’s worked well, too.

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CharlotteRumpling · 06/01/2024 13:51

No. And I am menopausal. I don't go to the gym. I just eat well and walk everywhere.

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Watchkeys · 06/01/2024 13:53

What does your 'slow and steady' weight training look like? As is, what split do you use re muscle groups, how many sets, how many reps, how much rest?

And how do you think that extended cardio sessions will decrease sagginess as you lose weight? I don't understand the link there. You'd be better to just do the weight training, so that your muscles grow as you drop fat, rather than LISS, which will decrease your stored fat with little change in muscle size, i.e. sagging skin.

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WaltzingWaters · 06/01/2024 13:54

Try doing HIIT workouts. Even 15/20 minutes a day, 3-4 times a week and you’ll see a change. It’s also something that can be done at home using YouTube videos with the kids around (that’s how I do it!).
That combined with a decent healthy diet and it’ll help massively.

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kitchenlover · 06/01/2024 13:54

minipie · 06/01/2024 13:48

Do you actually want to be a SAHM, or are you only considering it due to burnout?

Be warned that what you may plan as a short “break from work” can easily turn into long term SAHM or low key jobs that work around the kids, especially if you have a husband who “can’t” be around to do much. I speak from experience. Consider whether this is what you want long term, or whether you actually want to maintain your career (which may require your DH to rethink his).

No I don't want to be a stay at home mum.

I can't do this anymore though. I hate myself. I'll do anything to look better again. That's how desperate I am. I cannot continue this way. Something has to give. I will take the consequences if it means I can finally be some version of myself again. I know I'll never be the same as I was, but I know I can get to a point where I'm not overweight.

In an ideal world, I could just do this while NOT needing to have a work break. But I just don't think I can do it.

I can see myself getting back into work. I've seen colleagues have career breaks and come back in. I don't think while my kids are this young, my career is going to take off even more- whilst also maintaining my sanity health and my H job. Something has to give. I am not enjoying work anyway at the moment either, which doesn't help.

I'll get back into something once I've sorted myself out and feel ready.

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kitchenlover · 06/01/2024 14:03

Watchkeys · 06/01/2024 13:53

What does your 'slow and steady' weight training look like? As is, what split do you use re muscle groups, how many sets, how many reps, how much rest?

And how do you think that extended cardio sessions will decrease sagginess as you lose weight? I don't understand the link there. You'd be better to just do the weight training, so that your muscles grow as you drop fat, rather than LISS, which will decrease your stored fat with little change in muscle size, i.e. sagging skin.

Let's say a circuit is three to four different exercises. I'll do 12 reps 3 times of each exercise and I'll have a rest between after having done 1 set kind of thing.

So 1 set might be 12 sets of squats, then 12 step ups, 12 sumo quats or whatever. I'll do that, have a small rest ( maybe 2 minutes ). Then I'll repeat that 3-4 times.

After I have finished 1 circuit of specific exercises, I'll have a rest for a bit. Maybe 5 minutes. Set up different weights etc and start a new circuit of different exercises.

I do a few of those per session to target different muscle groups.

I start the gym by walking for 10 minutes on the treadmill or cross trainer. Then I do the circuits for 45 minutes maybe, depends how much energy I have. Then I finish off with cardio, just to get my calorie burn up. Sometimes I'll just end up walking and walking if I'm really tired and can't give it much power. This is what my personal trainer taught me years ago.

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WeKnowFrogsGoShaLaLaLaLa · 06/01/2024 14:09

OP, how over weight are you, actually? How much do you need to lose? I'm asking because so much of your posts scream low self esteem / extreme mindsets, that I'm wondering if either your view is skewed, or you are verging on an ED.

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PandaBreedingProgramme · 06/01/2024 14:11

When I'm at my slimmest it's because I'm eating the least, not because I'm exercising the most.
2 hours a day in the gym?! Totally unnecessary.

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kitchenlover · 06/01/2024 14:12

WeKnowFrogsGoShaLaLaLaLa · 06/01/2024 14:09

OP, how over weight are you, actually? How much do you need to lose? I'm asking because so much of your posts scream low self esteem / extreme mindsets, that I'm wondering if either your view is skewed, or you are verging on an ED.

I'm so embarrassed. I don't want to share how much I weigh.

I'm definitely overweight, towards the higher end of that scale.

People describe me as overweight too. I had to be checked over a few months ago for something and the paramedics wrote on my file ' risk factors '- ' overweight '.

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kitchenlover · 06/01/2024 14:14

I'm disfigured. My face is also not the same anymore because of it.

In fact, my face probably bothers me the most, as I just don't see myself anymore in the mirror at all.

It's not just ageing. It's weight on my face and neck. It's horrendous.

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QueenBitch666 · 06/01/2024 14:16

Personal trainer at least once a week
Exercise at home in your lunch break ( dvd or YouTube )
Log everything you eat on my fitness pal including exercise

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Tzimi · 06/01/2024 14:20

kitchenlover · 06/01/2024 12:11

I am really really struggling to sort myself out with this.

Are these all just excuses though ?

I have lost weight successfully in the past, but I've also been exhausted by the whole thing.

I need to be super strict and spend around 2 hours in the gym a day, ( 5 days a week at least ) in order to see a change in my body. It's exhausting.

I have a full time job, two preschool aged children and a completely absent H, due to his work.

I also suffer from a condition which causes fatigue. So I start off with less energy than most people anyway. That is not even taking account the fact that I do all night wakings with my kids.

I just can't do all of this AND spend the time shopping/ meal prepping and going to the gym a lot.

How do people manage ? I really need to get back to a healthy weight and the only way I can see this happening is if I just don't work for a bit. I can afford to do this and yes I posted about this the other day. However I keep thinking- what if I take some time out from work to sort myself out and then I don't even manage to lose weight ?

Am I just making excuses ? How do people with so many responsibilities do it ??

I find it really hard to lose weight when I'm working, as like you, I get super- tired. I do the low carb diet plus running & resistance at the gym, but this makes me very irritable while at work, & I get into arguments with people...

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AgnesX · 06/01/2024 14:20

Two hours daily in the gym sounds extreme.

As someone who has a condition and can't do that, changing your diet helps more.

That, and the summer, and being out and about (so that food isn't a focus) works for me.

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PriOn1 · 06/01/2024 14:21

Well, I don’t think two hours at the gym daily is feasible with any kind of normal life involving full time work and friends and family.

I’ve often thought that not having to work and being able to afford personal trainers and a chef would make it much easier to lose weight, but I’m not super rich and it’s never going to happen.

Is it possible to lose weight without spending so much time? Well yes, obviously.

Is it harder? Yes.

But it does sound like you are super hung up on body image, which will take up a lot more time than just dropping a few pounds.

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Mariposistaa · 06/01/2024 14:22

kitchenlover · 06/01/2024 12:35

Yeah but if I don't go to the gym and do weights and cardio, I will just end up all saggy. I think you definitely need to combine a good diet with weights and cardio, as you need to maintain muscle mass.

You’re right but you don’t need to be there for 2 hours. I am a super fit competitive swimmer and I don’t train that much each day!
Cut all the crap from your diet. No alcohol. Drink only water. Swap an hour in front of the tv for an hour of youtube zumba or similar.

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kitchenlover · 06/01/2024 14:22

@Mariposistaa I don't drink alcohol thankfully !

But I do eat crap sometimes.

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Mariposistaa · 06/01/2024 14:24

kitchenlover · 06/01/2024 14:22

@Mariposistaa I don't drink alcohol thankfully !

But I do eat crap sometimes.

There you go! Oh and give husband a kick up the arse (doing it alone will burn a few calories, and then he needs to give you time to work out).

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bryceQ · 06/01/2024 14:26

What do you actually eat day to day? Surely that's where the change has to come

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LonginesPrime · 06/01/2024 14:27

I think you should start with therapy and managing your stress-levels first, OP.

I'm neurodivergent and I've found CBT has been really helpful to combat some of the black-and-white thinking that holds me back (e.g. I don't want to lose weight that way, because I can't have saggy skin, and there's no point in going to one gym session this week as I might not be able to fit another one in, so why bother?, etc etc).

You sound hugely stressed and exhausted, so I would focus on how you feel and your energy levels first as opposed to worrying too much about losing weight specifically - it will be so much easier to deal with all the logistical stuff once you're feeling more positive as it sounds like you're in a situation where actually losing weight seems like an impossible goal currently.

Also, I find that focussing on what I'm doing (e.g. sticking to my planned meals, getting my steps in, doing one workout) and making those small things the actual goals (rather than whether I'm actually losing weight) makes it much easier to feel positive about my efforts.

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AutumnLeaves5 · 06/01/2024 14:29

Buy some dumbbells and do at home strength workouts. Caroline Girvan has some great free strength workouts on you tube and those with eating correctly can make a huge difference.

Also worth getting a walking pad/treadmill - 15 mins before starting work, same at lunch and after work. Or use it in the evening whilst watching Netflix rather than sitting on the sofa.

Even if you have to buy all of that it’s still cheaper than ongoing gym membership or giving up work.

If you wait for a 2 hour gap to exercise it will never happen, chunk it down and make it non-negotiable.

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mynameiscalypso · 06/01/2024 14:29

I agree that some therapy might be helpful. You sound really down on yourself. You deserve not to feel the way that you do.

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username268 · 06/01/2024 14:35

Hi OP. The need to lose weight shouldn't take over your life. 2 hours in the gym with all your other commitments is not sustainable. I've fallen into a similar mindset before. I did 10km runs and weights in the gym every day without seeing the results I expected. It's easy to think when progress is slow (or non-existent!) that you need to do more, but this is so far from the truth! Diet is more important if your goal is simply weight loss. If you can afford to leave work to lose weight, you can afford to hire a personal trainer. It sounds like you need help designing a program that works for you and your lifestyle. (Remember you don't even need to step into a gym, you can easily lose weight and tone your body at home without equipment). Please be kind to yourself. It is very easy to lose weight when you follow a plan. There is so much misinformation out there. Change does not happen overnight. You don't need to deny or punish yourself. :)

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WinterSalad · 06/01/2024 14:36

I think the problem isn’t weight, or work, or the gym it’s that you’re overloaded and aren’t able to put yourself up the priority list as things stand.

Could you afford a night nanny? I think everything would feel easier with proper sleep. Or a sleep consultant if your waking child is of an age to sleep through.

Could you outsource meals? Literally just pay someone to stock your kitchen so you don’t have to think about it. If not would it help to just follow something simple like eggs for breakfast, soup for lunch (just buy something veg heavy) and then 7 healthy tray bakes you rotate for dinner. It’s a bit dull but it reduces the mental load.

Could you have an exercise bike or treadmill at home and just use it for slow, steady movement if that’s what you do at the gym.

You said DH can’t do more because of work. Is that time limited so he will be back to parent more at a future point so you could short term take a secondment or reduce hours? Is it something like oil or military (away for x weeks, back for y time) where he could fill the freezer with batch meals and let you get more rest when he is home?

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rookiemere · 06/01/2024 14:37

I'm 53 and menopausal and managed to lose almost a stone last year ( sadly have put on a few pounds over Christmas which I'm now working on).

I cut out all sugars and most carbs. I make my own lunches and breakfasts now for work which takes up a bit of time and organisation.

I actually do less exercise than before. I looked at what I was doing and cut out anything time consuming that wasn't really delivering benefits- zumba I'm looking at you - focused on getting my 10000 steps in per day by walking part way to work and did a couple of focused weight sessions and classes per week, oh and parkrun because I enjoy it.

I am certainly not perfectly toned, but it's a relatively easy routine to maintain and doesn't feel crippling. 2 hours a day in the gym is ridiculous and too much for both your body or you to sustain long term.

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kitchenlover · 06/01/2024 14:41

I think the food is a comfort / stress reliever.

It's become my friend. It's all pretty stressful with young children. It's become my coping mechanism.

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