View Full Version : I need help to lose weight healthy

01-22-2006, 03:52 PM
:) Hi,

This is my first post. My name is Renee, I am 38 years old and I need help to lose weight. I work full time and I'm a mother of two kids (4 -5). I have very little time to exercise. I try to walk on my treadmill and work out with DVD's and on weekend ride my bike. I have hurt my knee so I can't do much because of it. I would like to know what kind of diet I need to lose weight healthy and not feel weak. I need to know also what kind of exercise I need to do so it want hurt my knee. Every time I try to exercise my knee starts hurting. I have a home gym treadmill, bike, and DVD's.

I weigh 250 and I am 5 2. The Doctor tells me my ideal weight is 115 to 130.

I would really be thankful for any help


01-22-2006, 04:35 PM
I need to know also what kind of exercise I need to do so it want hurt my knee. Every time I try to exercise my knee starts hurting. I have a home gym treadmill, bike, and DVD's.

I weigh 250 and I am 5 2. The Doctor tells me my ideal weight is 115 to 130.

Hello Renee and welcome to Team Estrogen! I am sure you will enjoy this board and its great crew of fantastic women!

First, as a warning: I invite you to read the other threads on this board about body image and another one titled "struggle". They are really important. You may not have to be down to 115 lbs to be healthy (maybe you'll never get under 140-150 and it's probably not a big problem). And going down there too fast would certainly be a major problem, much more dangerous in the short term than staying at 250. So take it easy, and remember that in any case you'll live longer and in better health if you are active and heavier than those super-lightweight inactive people.

This being said:
part of your knee problem is probably related to your weight. Running especially would seem like not the best exercise for you at this point, from my point of view, because with each step you're making your knee absorb the shock from about 2-3 times your weight. Walking is better, but at a fast pace can also cause problems at this stage. Cycling, however, is a wonderful exercise because your knees don't have to carry as much weight with your legs. A few tricks to remember:

1) Get a bike fit. You may feel shy to, but you MUST go to a bike shop where knowledgeable people work and get yourself measured. They will make sure your bike works with you, not against you.

2) SPIN THOSE LEGS. Most beginners (and many non-beginners) "mash", which means that they push bigger gears when they should be pushing very easy gears at a higher cadence. It feels extremely weird at first, but you should be spinning your legs at a rate of more than 75 rotations per minute (which means more than one per second), 90 being your goal. Yes, it feels like you're going nowhere, yes it feels like you're pedalling into air, but you have to get used to it. Mashing is THE MAIN source of knee pain (ask KSH!! she knows about this. She started a thread on this subject before.).

3) Learn a few leg strengthening exercises and make your leg muscles stronger, they will support your knee's work.

4) I'm really not sure about this, but you could consider exchanging your threadmill workout for some cycling for the moment. If you have limited time, maybe you want to focus on one exercise and learn to do it better. I wonder what others think about this.

5) Remember that you will lose some weight and then gain some. Muscles are much heavier than fat. Monitor your progress in dress sizes, not in pounds.

6) BE SLOW on the weight loss. Losing 100 pounds in less than 18 months would seem quite dangerous too me, and also a good way to make sure that you'll regain it (with a vengence) later.

7) Join www.bikejournal.com and TeamEstrogen's club on it. Logging your miles will be an encouragement (and we need your contribution!). Also keep visiting this board and keep chatting about other people, sharing your progresses and setbacks. It's a great, friendly, supportive community.

8) If you can find riding partners in your area, it's even better.

8) Have FUN. It's really important.

Again, welcome to Team Estrogen. We look forward to see more of you!

Duck on Wheels
01-22-2006, 04:50 PM
Hi and good luck! I'm also trying to lose weight. I've hit on a meal program that works for me, if I add exercize and stay honest with myself about what I'm eating and how much I'm walking, biking, spinning, etc., then I lose about 2 pounds a week. I started out by taking notes on what I was actually eating, then whittled down from there. I can allow myself to "cheat" (like at Christmas) and pretty much stay at whatever weight I've got to, then work down again from there when I'm "rested" and ready to go again.

Also, I've become a more careful shopper. I read the ingredients lists! One thing to note about this country: Virtually EVERYTHING contains high glucose corn syrup. Why? My guess is that it's cheap and adds a dose of addictive sweetness. One of my daughter's friends from Argentina had put on so much weight here that his fiancee sent him a detailed diet list, including calory counts for each item. He went out to shop and found that the same foods had almost twice the calories here. But by reading carefully, I've found some staple items that aren't marked "light" but do have fewer calories and none of that corn syrup.

And one last tip -- drink lots of water! I've discovered that often when I feel like I'm hungry, I'm actually thirsty. Now I drink big pint glasses of water and keep count so I know I'm getting at least a half gallon a day. That too has helped.

Good luck! And have fun with this!

01-22-2006, 04:53 PM
I would recommend the Southbeach Diet. Of course some diets work better than others for people, so keep that in mind.

My reasons for recommending Southbeach are that I have done the diet and lost over 20 lbs. Granted, you have more to lose, but it can be done on this or any diet, but will take TIME. Most healthy diets will tell you that you will lose 1-2 lbs a week. This is NORMAL. Losing a lot more that that (at least over time) can be unhealthy.

Another reason: you see results in the first two weeks. The first two weeks are more restrictive (Phase I) but of all the diets I've tried this one had the best food (for me) and I wasn't ever hungry. They tell you you can lose 5-10 lbs in the first two weeks, and that was true for me.

Third reason: It was designed by a Heart Dr. for heart patients-the goal of the diet was a healthy heart and the weight loss was an added bonus. Since it was designed to be heart healthy, I think it is a good diet. You eat lots of vegetables, lean meats, cheeses & dairy, etc. After the first two weeks you slowly add in fruits and whole wheat bread/carbs. You stay away from sugar as much as possible.

I found it easy to stay on this diet and still be able to cook for my family. I would cook a meal with lean meat, two veggies (or one and a salad) and then add a starch for the rest of the family that I wouldn't eat. I would be full and they would be happy. I also converted the family to a lot more whole wheat starches (we already did breads that way, but I added whole wheat pasta and rices and they didn't complain!!!)

Look around and find a diet that sounds like you can stick to it and it lets you eat things you like. I could never do Atkins because they don't want you to eat things I like (fruits, veggies, etc). I have tried low fat diets and really miss having cheese. So find the right fit, and go for it!

I agree that as you lose weight, you will probably see some relief in your bad knees. That will lead to more exercise, which will lead to more weight loss. Break it down and make a goal of small increments (say 20 lbs by summer). You'll get there!

Good luck and keep us informed!


01-22-2006, 06:09 PM
Hi Renee and welcome to TE! Lots of good info and support here.

Feel free to surf on over to the "getting to know you thread". You'll meet all of us and we can get to know you.

Grog wrote "4) ...consider exchanging your threadmill workout for some cycling for the moment. If you have limited time, maybe you want to focus on one exercise and learn to do it better. I wonder what others think about this."

I think it's a good idea.

For one thing cycling's great low impact excercise, much less stressful on the joints. You mentioned knee problems. It's important that the bike's been fit correctly and if you need info on that ask away :D Maybe some weight training and or Yoga to strenghten the joints?

Pedal Wench
01-22-2006, 06:25 PM
Welcome Renee!

I use a treadmill as my crosstraining - I'm also a hiker, so it makes sense. I don't run on it - I also have bad knees. I put it on the highest incline - 25% grade (it's a treadmill designed for hikers) and go slowly - 2 or 2.5 mph. I've built up to that slowly - important to build up slowly. If I've been off for a while, then it's 2 mph at 10%. Moderation is key.

01-23-2006, 02:34 PM
Hi Renee,

I am working on losing weight too. Last July I weighed 178 pounds. I am 5'2". I was NOT a couch potato- I was mountain biking a day or two a week, and running several days, like 40 miles a week, and competing in trail marathons and 50k's. I don't know why my weight continued to increase except I'm 47, had a child, have a (treated) thyroid problem, but wasn't eating like a hog.

I got pneumonia in July. I lost 11 pounds in a week or so. I had routine bloodwork done that showed I was 1 point away from diabetes. I knew I had to do something different. I started riding a road bike more frequently- instead of one day on the weekend, if I felt like it, I started riding both weekend days and as much after work as I could. I went from riding 30 miles with effort to 80 miles effortlessly, and an all-time high of 127 miles, with a scheduled ride next month of 186 miles. Yikes! But I have to say that with faithful daily exercise, my mileage built up extremely quickly and easily.

Maybe your husband can help by watching the kids long enough for you to get out for 30-60 minutes in the evening. I am a true believer that it must be daily, or almost daily, not a big effort on the weekends in order to work.

I also started counting calories. It seemed like it would be a lot of work, but it isn't. I use a computer program called Diet Diary from Calorie King. I have it on my Palm. I can only imagine how many thousands of calories I was consuming every day before I started counting.

I chose a diet of 50% carbs, 30% protein and 20% fat. The program walked me through a calculation of how many calories a day I would need to lose weight, then I ruthlessly cut that back! I started out at 1500 calories a day, _without_ adjusting it for how many I burned by exercising. As my weight dropped, the amount of calories I was allowed dropped to 1400, then 1300. Now if I do a many-hours bike ride, I eat enough to keep going and not feel weak, but not as much as I burn.

I now weigh 143 pounds, up from my pre-Christmas low of 141. I think I am losing at a healthy rate. I have changed my eating habits and think that I can maintain this eating/calorie-counting lifestyle indefinitely, since the software makes it so easy, and it is now ingrained. I want to end up at 120 or so, but would be very happy at 130ish. I bought a pair of pants Saturday in a size MEDIUM!! I wore a dress Saturday that I haven't put on since 2000.

I (bad me!!) do not eat breakfast. I have 60 calories of coffee with creamer and 20 calories of sugar-free energy drink. If I eat breakfast, something happens to my blood sugar that makes me very hungry a couple hours later, but if I just don't eat, I'm usually ok till lunch. If I just can't resist, I have four graham crackers for 60 calories.

I have a 300-400 calorie lunch- usually chicken or fish and lots of veggies.

I have a 500-600 calorie dinner, and because I have a bad wine-tasting hobby, (seriously, like logging it in a journal, taking notes, peeling labels, agonizing over purchases with my wine software in the aisle of Publix) two big glasses of wine. I'm sure I could spend those calories more healthily, but whatever. I take a multi vitamin, and never used to, but feel like it is necessary now.

I measure my portions. I don't exceed the one-serving amount. When BF has a cheeseburger, I have a turkey burger. When BF has filet, I have turkey filet. When BF has grilled chicken breast with cheddar on a bun, I have it plain with a salad or veggies. I can cook similar things to what he is eating and keep him happy and keep my calories low. My biggest challenge is getting enough protein.

When I ride my bike before dinner, I have a 100 calorie snack, and burn about 600-900 calories riding.

I work in a hospital, directly with people who have had gastric bypass surgery. I know it's too late when I see them, but if I could, I would tell them, whatever you do, do whatever it takes to not have that surgery. Seems so effortless- but it will eventually ruin your health.

Good luck, you can do it!!!!!


01-23-2006, 09:45 PM
Hi Renee :)

Have you tried Pilates, since your knee is hurt? It's very low impact (you do most of it lying down) and can help re-strengthen your knee, as well as help tone the rest of your body. When I had each of my girls (both by ceserean), Pilates was what I did to get back into shape. I know it's not the same as your problem with your knee, but it's hard to find any excercise you can do if you're injured in any way. :) Walking is great too, and since your kids are 4 and 5 years old, you may be able to take them with you. I know it's a rough task, I have two of my own (3 years old, and 17 months old, so I get to put at least one in a stroller :P), but it's worth a try. You could also get your husband involved, and make it a family thing. Just an idea :)

I'm sure you already know how important water is, so I won't go into that :)
Try green tea, it cleans out your body and gives you energy, without a lot of caffeine. Try eating 5-6 small meals a day, instead of 3 large ones, this will help you keep your energy up throughout the day, and boost your energy ALL day. I would suggest high fiber & protein foods, and not cutting out carbs, but limiting sugars and starches, like white bread, potatos, onions, junk food, soda, etc. It worked for me :) I hope this helps some, and good luck to you!