Doctors get stressed and tired and overeat too!

I am fully aware of current research, the need for good habits and change in lifestyle rather than quick fixes, but like most people, at the end of a busy day at work and the children are in bed I am starving and stressed. I exercise. I attempt to meditate. I shop on line. I have an unfilled food diary at my bed side. I have a shelf full of self help books.

So here it is. Week 1. Day 1. I am a combination of all three diet types. I am 5ft 2. Weigh 74 kg. size 14-16. My pledge is to be 70kg in 8 weeks.1lb a week. Who's with me?

46 Replies

  • Me. I'm 5ft6 78kg and need to lose 20kg by aug for my wedding

  • You are beautiful- now we need to support you getting in a beautiful dress so you feel like a star!

  • Hi TiredDoc, good you are looking on this forum, it is the best, I have tried Weight Watcher, High Fiber, Low Carbs, made up diet high protein drinks for calorie control and the only type of 'diet' (12 week challenge) it's not really a diet, it's healthy eating plan to lose some weight and learn about over eating, exercise and all the things we know we should do, would do, if only there was more time in the day, or the kids would help out, or the (for you patients) would get better. So like you I have tried a lot.

    This is the end of my week one of the 12 week challenge, and I can see it working. I have yet to start the Couch to 5k program, but am preparing to get into it. I'm 5ft weight 80kgs, size 20 and want to get back to size 14 at least. That was the size, actually it was size 12 when I felt fit healthy and could handle all the days stress and not go to the fridge to get through the night. So like you I want to get back to being healthy.

    I have found over my first week, that knowing more about the calories in the food and junk food I used to eat, helps me avoid them. I also have got a little bit skinnier on the waist over the one week, from 115 cms to 110 cms. So helping myself to avoid a heart attack.

    This forum is excellent because I can log in at night after work, and see how everyone is doing, read my messages, and email/chat to other people in the same boat.

    So well done TiredDoc, you'll do it with the 12 week challenge, good luck

  • THANK you for the motivation! I spend my day motivating others, and not so much space left for myself, I am sure so many busy mothers can relate to

  • Hi TiredDoc.

    Your welcome, your a mother, so all mothers are guilty of putting the children first and not looking after themselves, we all do it, then the kids grow up and let us know,........... what we did do was wrong, ..........and what we did not do was it is a tough life being a mother but the best job in the world. Looking after yourself means you have more energy to look after them, but like your patients, you still have to put yourself first in the health agenda, otherwise it all gets too much. Mind you, you are doing a brilliant job being a doctor and a mother, so you will have absolutely no problem doing calorie counting and sticking to an exercise plan for yourself (you don't get where you have got with poor planning), give the 12 week challenge a go and the Couch to 5k if your brave enough, even if you have to run round the garden at night when you get home, it will be good fun to take the kids along too. I had a good Week one, lost 1kg and also 9cms off my waist. In Week two I am going to do the couch to 5k run/walk program, bit worried about my knees but will give it a go. If I can't do it on dry land yet, I'll do it in the local swimming pool. Every little helps.

    Good luck and keep reading the posts in this forum, everyone is there for each other (at least that is my impression) and good luck, cheers

  • Wow- 9cm in one week, fantastic start! Got back to the gym today, hurrah!

  • I know, I am a bit please, it makes a difference. I'll try those squats and walking in the pool instead of running. Well done glad your back at the pool, I heard if you eat protein when you exercise it helps to make more muscle than fat?? not sure, but well done, how is the eating going?


  • I was a size 14 gone down to 12 in 8 weeks. Due to exercise and healthy eating. No food diaries, no stresses. And not starving. Just good old healthy eating

  • I like your no nonsense , hassle free comments. Well done you've done it without all the bolt ons.

    I have no will power. Everything I eat is healthy and I've tried to focus of portion control but if my 22 yr old son fancies chocolate while watching tv with me I just cannot stop myself sharing it!!!!! Where do you find the will power????

  • I like your no nonsense , hassle free comments. Well done you've done it without all the bolt ons.

    I have no will power. Everything I eat is healthy and I've tried to focus of portion control but if my 22 yr old son fancies chocolate while watching tv with me I just cannot stop myself sharing it!!!!! Where do you find the will power????

  • I lost 20kgs, going from obese to a healthy weight. No change in clothing size!

  • Yep I am with you. Yesterday i seemed to eat anything that didn't move! This week I am going to use fitness pal and track calories and do some swimming. Let's check in mid week and see how we are all doing

  • Yes, Amanda. I'm going to check in Fridays and once midweek, good plan. I'm planning to- eat a breakfast with healthy protein, thick soup for lunch on work days, always carry water and a sensible portion of nuts to eat before the school run( to prevent fridge raiding when I get home) and stick to my 5 times a week exercise sessions ( one will include HITT). ' headspace' meditation to start my day too. I have been doing all these things but not consistently. I also shop online and plan the weeks shop. So now 74 kg, at my heaviest I have been 84 kg and my best 65 kg. not totally fallen off the wagon yet!

  • That's the kind of motivation I need, thanks TiredDoc. Some ideas for day to day eating is always helpful. I'm off to make a batch of soup. :)))

  • Eggs for breakfast, soup for lunch, nuts for snack and a normal dinner with no evening munching working well- in 5 days lost 1kg and 5cm waist! How are you doing with meal planning?

  • Well done! I haven't weighed yet and didn't measure so not sure how the results are going, but I've had a good week so far with my healthy eating. I struggle most with lunches to be honest. Had soup 3 days but haven't had time to make more towards end of the week. I find logging on here inspirational though, so thanks so much for the catch up!

  • Hello Light1. I found some nice organic tinned soups- bought a stack and kept them at work with bowl, spoon, nuts and apples-and bottled water- seems to have solved the ' didnt have time to prepare' issue which usually is a problem (too busy doing school run and racing to work for first patient etc!)

  • I am having porridge when I get to work made with skimmed milk. Half a carton of soup around 120cal tof which I add 50g of cooked chicken. You would not believe the difference that adding the chicken makes to keeping you fuller for longer. Helps keep me more alert at work to. In the afternoon two oatcakes and a scrape of peanut butter helps me not to binge when I get in the door. Dinner chicken and veg for dinner and one chocolate biscuit that's it. Seems to be working so far. My advice keep the protein up. X

  • I'm with you both please :0) I'm 5'7" 13stones and at 61 with arthritic feet am limited with the amount of exercise I can do. I walk minimum 45 mins each day with my dog and garden regularly. (I have a garden and an allotment). I too am a mixture of all three diet types but I know I need to amend my eating habits. Really want to follow a healthy eating plan for the full 12 weeks to change my habits permanently. Sadly historically I lack will power. Hoping you guys will keep me motivated

  • Hi Light1. well done on the allotment and gardening, that is great to walk the dog, so you are fit. But I know what you mean about the healthy eating plan, just got to have one otherwise it is so easy to add on the weight. At your height and weight your not too bad though, I'm 5ft and 80kgs and 70 years old, with bad knees and feet that could do with a repair job, if only I could change the feet like I change the car tyres. But I am finding the 12 week challenge the best plan I have come across to help lose weight, and also live healthy and get some exercise. I am still working full time so have to add the exercise in at the end of the day. I wish I had an allotment to go to instead, but at the moment that's life. I will retire at the end of the year and want to be healthy to travel and do things. I am using this forum to help my will power to learn new tricks, and the new trick I want to learn is healthy eating, lose weight and healthy exercise. So have you tried the 12 week challenge yet and the Couch to 5k?

    Have fun in the garden.

  • Hi DoniMac, I succeeded with the running challenge a few years ago which, combined with a successful Weightwatchers plan, took me down to a dress size 12. That proved unsustainable however, as I find myself back at size 16 again. Unfortunately, that period of running (up to 12 miles a week) was the start of the problems I know have with my feet. Do be careful, it's great for weight loss, but terribly hard on the feet and joints!

    Will power to stick to any diet plan is my problem right now!

  • Yes, a good friend of mine- a consultant orthopaedic surgeon suggests being very wary of running. Weight bearing-Walking/ hiking/ cycling much better and careful squats and lunges to develop core and muscles around the knee joint

  • Hi TiredDoc, how are you going? Thanks for that, yes I think I will have to try something different from running. I have a few ideas to test over the next week so will see how I go. Doing OK losing weight about 1kg a week roughly with counting the calories and being more aware of what I am eating, so that bit of the 12 week challenge is going well, just got to get n exercise plan that works. I will try the pool for walking and a few careful squats and see how I go. Take care and have fun, cheers

  • Our local swimming pool has an "Aquafit" class, aerobics-in-water. It's a good workout without being hard on the joints. The water acts as a resistance, and It certainly works up a sweat!

  • Thanks Penel, I will give walking in the pool a try. We don't have any organised classes but I can use it every day, so maybe that will be a good plan. Cheers

  • Thank you Light1, yes I think that is going to be the problem for me, the knees are just not as good as they could be, but I will try something else.

    I found the same with Weight Watchers, lost heaps of weight, love the food, then bang, turn around and all that weight I lost found me, and jumped onto the hips.

    So never again, but I like the 12 week challenge because I am counting the calories, and amazed at where calories are hiding in things we just like to eat.

    But so far so good with the calorie counting, just got to get some exercise plan working, without doing too much damage, actually without doing any damage to my knees and feet. Thank you, take care

  • Have you tried an exercise that suits yet? How are you ?

  • Hi TiredDoc, yes I am getting there, not exactly started but planning. The running is out of the question, however as I am losing weight I am starting to feel more fitter, only nearly the end of week two, but I am feeling lighter (a bit). I like the idea of the week one of the Couch to 5k program, it is walk for one minute, run for two minutes, walk for one minute, so i think I could do that. It is a short burst of energy followed by walking, so I will try it at the weekend, so I don't have to go on to work that day. I have not got to the pool yet!! still got it in mind, but has not happened. I have signed up for a Pilates course starting in Feb, so that will be good for strenght.

    So tomorrow I will try the walk one minute, run two minutes and see how I go, it is not a hard running program and may work, but if my knees get sore, I will give it a miss. Then try the pool.

    The good thing is I feel I am still losing cms' off the waist and do feel lighter, I'll measure and weigh on Sunday.

    How are you going, si the gym fun, did you manage to get time to go yet??

    cheers and thanks for the reply

  • Hi TiredDoc, hope your going OK with the gym workouts. Well just finished week 2 and feel like I could have done better, but I lost 1kg and 8cms off my waist, so did something right. I tried the Couch to 5k plan, and got as far as 1 minute run, and the knees hurt like mad, your friend the ortho is correct, not a good idea to run when your 70 years old and have not run since you were a kid of 46 years old. So instead I did a 20 minute brisk walk and today did a 10 minute rowing machine session. So have just started getting into the exercise at the end of week 2. I start Pilates in Feb, so that will help build some muscles. I am working in the tropics near PNG so it is hot and this is often the reason I don't want to run, of and the mozzies, but I am starting walking at 6am, before it gets too hot. All going weel but I hope to do better food wise next week. Would like to lose a bit more than 1kg. How are you going? How are the children coping with the new (doing something for myself) mum?

  • It sounds like you had a very good start. Look after your knees!! Walking much better- walking sticks are q good to help push up with the weight in the right place over tge jt. PNG- I imagine you sweat as soon as you start to move?!

    I have been to one gym and two martial arts sessions in week 1. Week 2 started off with a blow out food wise due to being away and out of usual routine but I clocked 20,000 steps over two days ( hilly too). I have found a book ' mind over fatter' by Anna Richardson v helpful too. The nhs dont promote hypnotherapy but they do promote looking at underlying thoughts feelings and behaviours around food ( mood and eating diary) and good habits ; and this book seems to have encapsulated many of these ideas.

  • He brilliant, love the martial arts stuff, would be great to do that. yes I am making slow progress 1kg a week is OK but I would like to do better. I noticed the 12 week challenge has a 150 minutes a week exercise program, so will try that. I did get onto the Strength and Fitness site, but had problems and decided not to bother with it. Yes I'm at the top of Australia near PNG and your right, walk outside and your sweating, but the funny things is people don't lose weight with the sweating. Wish it was that simple. The book sounds good, I love the title and will see if I can find it on Book Depository, they send all my books out here. I think eating has become the easy way to deal with a lot of the frustrations and stresses we go through in our everyday life. Once upon a time there was no excess food available, so people would smoke or drink, and fight or whatever they used to do. But now it is so easy, walk into the supermarket feeling down and you can get an instant mood lift with chocolate or ice cream or something, some people drink wine some people eat food. The problem is all of it makes life pretty unhealthy, and then we get to where we are, just trying to lose all the hidden fat. But the best thing of all is, we are all doing it, everyone who gets onto this forum is doing it, so we are all winners.

    I will have a look for the book, I think I can do this 12 week challenge and will get more exercise now, just walking and rowing machine, Pilates and the swimming pool, only need about 200 minutes a week to help get the body back into shape. I'm pleased I dropped the Couch to 5k plan though, sounded great, but reality is the old knees need a bit of support. Getting there though.

    How did your weigh in go? take care. thanks for the post

  • Hi Light 1- how is progress?

  • Welcome Doctor! Healthy eating and reduced portion sizes are generally the way forward for most of us. But when it comes to getting to a healthy size, one method doesnt always fut all!

    Many people know deep down if they overeat eg if you have 6 bags of crisps every day thats easy to identify. But some of us (I am one ) who always ate quite sensibly, didnt realise as we got older, about TDEE , BMR etc and how this changes with age.

    Through middle age I gained approx 2lb per year, then suddenly I was age 62 and 27lbs overweight ! My saviour has been the myfitnesspal. app. I log my food, drinks and activity, with online support, and in the last 8 months I have lost 23lbs slowly and steadily. My BP is well down and I feel young again!

    Good luck Doc !

  • That weight loss is a real achievement- hope I can achieve even half that and maintain!

  • Thank you elliebeth. Yes my weight gain is through the extra piece of buttery toast or 2 biscuits and missing a gym session due to fatigue rather than overeating refined and processed foods and increasing age.

  • Tiredoc. I used to be just like you. After working 10 hours a day. I got home too tired, stressed, no strength at all. Just flopped on the settee, cups if teas, biscuits. Watching TV until 9 pm.

    So I devided to invest those hours from 6-8 into a gym session . No more cups of teas and biscuits, just a small amount of foofd to keep me going after a long day. But it has worked.

  • I think I've suddenly realised that wine is not my friend!! I find it all to easy to unwind at night with a glass (or three) and I can't seem to resist chocolate and sugary rubbish that I wouldn't normally eat when I do. I'm worse over week-ends. I can typically lose 4 lbs from Mon - Fri then put it all back on BIG time over the weekend. I stopped smoking 3 years ago and have put on 2 1/2 stone. I am going to try the 5:2 fasting diet.

  • Did you try 5:2? ( didnt suit me- got headachey, grumpy and felt deprived!!)

  • I am doing dry January. We were having some wine each evening with dinner. Along with healthy eating I lost 3lb in the first week and I feel fantastic. I also have a young puppy and although the other half does most of the walking because of my long hours I get out there at the weekend. I am 11 stone and 5' 2"

  • See you on the road. Good to Remember we are not on our own and that we are sharing the journey with many others. I am with you, every day is day 1

    Best wishes!

  • See you on the road. Good to Remember we are not on our own and that we are sharing the journey with many others. I am with you, every day is day 1

    'Every day is day 1 '

    thank you that's really positive and it's cheered me up !

  • I'm kind of with you but don't really do the regular group weigh in thing.

    I think we patients aren't truly aware how much work and stress you get. More targets, more "service". Yes it's great for us to get an appointment at 7pm but you need "me time" too. And how many of our "modern problems" are self inflicted?

    I self assessed with that Horizon program and the answers change but mostly constant craver. BMI too high and I broke a leg early December so activity is low, weight up but not as bad as my starting point so I'm not beating myself up. even short walks with one immobile leg is quite exhausting. Hey ho, here we go.

    Loads of goodness to you. :)

    A journey of a thousand miles starts with one step. Confucius or someone.

  • I am in. Good luck.

  • Edith- how has you Jan been

  • Hi TiredDoc

    how are you going, hows the gym work. Just to let you know about the itching I asked everyone if they had itchy skin, well the doc flew into the island on Friday and guess what, I have scabies!!! There is a lot of it in remote communities up here, but this is the first time I have had it. So the itchy skin is scabies and not related to losing weigh. Still doing OK-ish, Had to rest the knee after trying to do some jogging and making it swell up. now am back to realizing it is better to do easier walking and rowing and Pilates rather than jogging and running. So been a bit of an eye opener, because I felt so fit just losing a few kilos and over reached my ability. Now back to working within my limits, well this week anyway.

    How are you going, have you lost much weight?

  • Chin up doc, I'm with you ! :)

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