Getting fit in my 50s

Hi everyone,

Newbie , just joined this evening. I wonder if anyone else has had this problem, I gave up smoking 4 weeks ago, and started a diet and exercise regime 2 weeks ago, but Im just not losing the weight. I have been very good with the diet, everyday I do 30 minutes of intense power walking on the treadmill combined with weights, oh yes I am post menopausal , mid 50s. What can I be doing wrong ?????? Please somebody help.

28 Replies

  • Hi Pixielady,

    Welcome to the Weight Loss NHS forum. It's difficult to say why you're not losing any weight yet on your diet and exercise regime, but maybe it's the effect of giving up smoking - which can I understand cause some weight gain at first - but I don't know the specifics of that, but maybe those effects are counterbalancing with your exercise and diet so you're not yet losing weight. I would suggest keeping at it, and hopefully you'll start to lose weight soon?

    But maybe have a look at our Welcome Newbie thread, to see if any suggestions by members of the forum regarding their own experiences might be helpful to you:

    Many of us follow the NHS 12 week plan, which is really good and does get some great results. Have a look at our Monday group weigh-in sessions (detailed within the thread) to see our weekly 'stats'. Some great weight loss.

    Wishing you success.

    Lowcal :-)

  • Hi Lowcal,

    Thank you for replying, I wonder if it is related to the ususal weight gain related to giving up smoking. I have been so very strict with the diet, and forced myself to do the workouts. Trouble is it used to be so easy pre menopause, I am starting to realise that perhaps I have to accept it is giong to take longer and be tougher.But I am so determined, I will get there however long it takes.

    Pixielady, :-)

  • Hi Pixielady,

    The fact that you are determined will see you through. I have no doubt of that. You sound really motivated and that is half the battle!

    I hope you have a lovely weekend.

    Lowcal :-)

  • Well done on giving up smoking - not an easy thing to do. A lot of ex-smokers replace their smoking habit with an eating habit, so take care you are not inadvertently snacking more than you used to?

    Swap milky teas and coffees for fruit or herbal teas, (or black coffee, but take care as that can aggravate menopausal hot flushes). Fill up on protein and fruit and veg, cut back on sugar and fat, keep carb portions small. Above all, keep yourself active - run up and down the stairs twice as often as you used to, hoover energetically, do a bit of digging in the garden (don't put your back out though) and plan some outdoor activities with friends and family. All of this busy-ness will keep you away from the food too, so has that as an added bonus!

  • Hi Dartmoor Dumpling,

    Thank you for your reply, I say with pride that I haven't allowed myself to pick or snack to replace the ciggies. I can't explain where I have found the discipline from but something has just clicked at last, I know I was harming myself with the smoking and the inactive lifestyle. I am realising that given my age , 54, and having gone through a very early menopause it is not going to be as easy to achieve my targets as it used to be.



  • Glad you haven't turned to many do!

    Having reached age 61, hopefully I can encourage you to know that once the hormones have settled down again, (and they will), losing weight and getting fitter is not an impossible task - there are many folk who post on here who have turned their lives around, post age 50.

    The worst thing (for me anyway) is keeping cool - my temperature control just does not work like it used to, and sometimes I want to stick my head in the freezer! However, it is not as bad as it was and I have learned to avoid coffee, which triggers a heat surge.

    Good luck!

  • First of all congratulations on giving up smoking and big respect for even thinking about dieting so soon afterwards! I stopped a year ago and yes weight has crept on but it's taken me until now to do something about it! Have you put your stats in the BMI calculator to determine how many calories you should be having a day? also I find it really important to weigh everything (not guess portion sizes) and write everything down t make sure how man calories you are having. Sometimes it takes a couple of weeks for the diet to kick in so don't despair, hang on in there.

  • Hi Caz28,

    Thank you for your reply. I knew I was harming myself and something just clicked, I am not missing the ciggies at all, and not picking at sweets or cakes to compensate. But am now realising I have to work twice as hard as I used to, to achieve what used to be quite easy to shift a few pounds. Admittedly this time it isn't just half a stone or 10lbs, it's 3 stone. Eeeek !!

    I haven't looked at the BMI calculator yet but will do that as soon as I finish replying to all of those that have offered support to me on here.

    Thankyou for your support, I will keep you posted as to how I am doing.



  • Hello

    Just stick with it !! It can take a couple of weeks for things to settle down 😕 Like others have said check your BMR and make sure you are eating the right amount, watch portions carefully and then the weight will shift 😊 Good luck,

  • Well done Pixielady for giving up smoking and sorting the weight out, hang on in there!

    I'm 54, and I find it so hard to shift the weight. Tried so often and failed, but this time round am losing the flab. it's slow in coming off!

    But my knees were hurting so bad , and already losing a few pounds is making a difference. Like previous posters have said, increase your activity levels, and monitor everything you eat, at least for the first couple of weeks. I find apps like my fitness pal really useful, lots of hints and tips, and you don't feel judged.

    Also, I think you have to look at it as long term changes to your food and activity levels. This way we wont regain the weight after.

    All the best to you, and be kind to yourself, your doing really well :)

  • Thank you Hoochy,

    I am determined to lose this weight and get healthy again, so Im not giving up. Realising now it is going to be a tougher task than I initially thought, but I will do this, I have 3 stone to lose, there are definately no if's about this, it is a case of how long it will take. I aim to have reached my goal by this time next year.

    Agian thanks Hoochy

    Pixielady :-)

  • Hi Pixie, when I gave up smoking the weight just zoned in on me (okay food zoned in on my mouth!). I think you are being very ambitious doing both at the same time. So double the pressure, double the expectation. Like others I did it one thing at a time, stopped smoking, then weight down to a sensible weight (it went up big time), now I am on the next leg and getting it down to the weight I want to be.

    Maybe you should have just one aim - to get healthy. Each week (or day) if your not smoking and eating healthy you are kerrrrching gold medal winner. Make the important number the ZERO cigarettes.

  • Hi SandyJJ,

    Thankyou for your reply, I am surprised at how easy I am finding it without the ciggies, no desire to pick one up at all. I think my age, 54, my bad health, the waiting for a mammogram result and learning of a friends mother who at 50 has been diagnosed as terminal, was dragging me by the hair away from my belief that the way I was treating myself was acceptable, and was the kick up the bum I needed to sort myself out.

    I used to be very active in my job, I used to do aerobics, and use the gym but in changing my job I really let all of that go, having to stop the HRT, has all contributed to the weight gain.

    But I WILL GET THERE !!!

  • Are you following the NHS diet plan? Don't forget, if you have a lot of weight to lose, you can consume more calories per day than 1400. If you don't eat enough, losing weight is harder. Using the BMI calculator on the main page: will give you the number range to aim for, just enter in your details and it calculates your own personalised calorie requirement.

    I am in my mid 50s, post menopausal and I find I need to exercise a fair bit more to lose the weight, I aim for at least an hour a day (spread out if necessary). I have lost nearly 6 stone since starting the NHS 12 week plan last September, so it can be done!

  • LotToLose,

    A massive well done you !!!!!! WOW, That is fantastic. I will do all that you have suggested, thankyou.

  • Thanks Pixielady, I am sure you can do it. Oh, and I forgot to say - flippin well done on packing in the fags!

  • Hi

    I'm a few years older but I started spinning some years ago. I did it to improve leg strength and stamina for skiing. It's a really good workout and the group and loud music plus a shouty instructor is a great motivator. A few weeks ago I reduced carbs too because of diabetes- my trousers are now too loose! Reduced input and exercise will work - give it time.

    Good luck

  • Hello there TCR888,

    Excuse my total ignorance but what exactly is spinning ??

  • Indoor cycling. We have 20-25 bikes at a time. Really good music and the instructor has a plan. Work out of the saddle ie ride up hill so you increase the tension in the fly wheel. It's really good. It suits me - I leave home at 5:40, get warmed up and start at 6:00. Finish at 6:45 and home in the shower at 7. I don't have to choose the program or the music and I book a week in advance so I'm committed

  • Welcome Pixie, I don't have very much to add to the above except drink lots of water.

    Congratulations on giving up smoking, I gave up twenty years ago in my early 30s and put on a little weight but am so glad I gave up. Once you get in to 50s it does get harder to lose the weight so it's definitely a jog not a sprint so don't be disheartened.

    Best of luck

  • Bunty65,

    Thankyou for your suggestion, I will do. :-)

  • Hi Pixie

    I gave up smoking last September, instantly gained 12lbs, so started to take control of what I ate and, little by little, the weight is coming off. Basically stopping smoking changes your metabolism and therefore while you are dieting your body is almost fighting itself both to lose and gain weight at the same time. Persevere it's worth it. Measuring yourself and keeping records is wonderfully motivating because sometimes the inches start to shift before the scales. Good luck.

  • Thankyou Jan48,

    I will persevere, and of course be patient.

    Thanks again

  • You didn't say how much you have to lose and how many calories you are consuming, but unless you are very tall and/or heavy, I think you need to aim at 1200 a day. After 50, going higher might mean it doesn't work consistently and you'll get discouraged.

    I think being post-menopausal shouldn't prevent you losing weight. I'm in the same situation, and I actually weigh 2 stone less now than I did before menopause. So it can be done.

    Also, keep up the exercise and do more if you can. Good luck!

  • Hi MEBXYZ,

    Thankyou for the reply, I have 3 stone to lose, not been counting the calories as yet. I have been eating mostly vegetables, very few carbs, cut sugar out of my tea & coffee.

    As I have said to everyone who has replied to me, I realise it is going to be harder this time, just didn't realise it would be much much harder.

    I'll keep at it though. I will get there. !!!

  • I am nearly 58 gave up smoking 30 years ago been teetotal 15 years was advised by my doctor to lose weight started 1st April and have lost 1 stone I use fitnesspal and a calorie controlled diet thevapp links to a pedometer as i walk for exercise i have been reducing my calorie intake by 100 calries a week my targer is now 1300 but aim below that

  • Stick at it pixielady, it is possible :)

    8 months ago, I quit the cigs and embarked on a healthy eating regime. To date, no cigs and 5 stone down! :)

    You can do this! :)

  • Thankyou for the encouraging words Moreless. I'm going to stick at it. Congratulations on your achievements . I've 3 stone to lose so I've a way to go.

    Thanks again 😊

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