looking to start

I am new and want to start being healthy for once in my life. I will be 50 this year and I am obese and miserable. my body is falling apart and my attitude sux. I am willing to take all the advice I can get and try as much as I can. I am ready to start just please help me figure out where and how to do that? I am katy from Texas, United States and happy to hopefully be a part of a new community.


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20 Replies

  • Hi and welcome Katy :)

    I've just turned 59, am obese and as happy as could be! I started on my road to health and happiness 9 months ago and my entire life has changed for the better. I know, that now you've found us, your life is going to improve in leaps and bounds too :)

    Let me direct you to the Pinned Posts section to the right of your screen. Starting with the Welcome Newbies thread, work your way through all the information, inspirational stories and motivational challenges. Follow the link to the NHS 12 week plan, download the sheets and sign up for the emails.

    Next, sign up for the re-boot challenge, the kilometre zero challenge and any of the other challenges that you wish :)

    Join us in the monday group weigh-in, the latest thread can always be found in the events section, to the right of the home page.

    Be active on the forum, as that's where you'll get constant support and motivation.

    All that's left to say is that I wish you all the very best :)

  • Welcome Katy! By all means take all the advice and try as much as you can, but don't get overwhelmed; focus on one or two things at a time, that you enjoy so they become new habits.

  • Hi Katy 😀 welcome to this very friendly forum. To start have a look around the site read through all the 12wk plan (not just wk1) as will give you great ideas you can implement straight away. The main thing is check your bmi, scary I know but this will give you your min and max calorie allowance for the day. Don't go over this, make better food choices and weigh out your food to get correct portion sizes and drink more water but mostly have fun. Join in and you will succeed. Good luck. Claire x

  • Hi Katy you're never too old to start. I hit 57 this January and over the past couple of years have gone down from a size 26 to a size 18. I've taken a bit of a break from trying to loose weight for a few months and concentrated on fitness instead. I completed the Couch to 5k a couple of weeks ago so age really is just a number. I can recommend the My Fitness Pal app (free to use) to help you keep track of how you are doing. It can calculate the calories in your own recipies for you too. The more really tasty healthy recipies you find the less you'll crave the bad ones (Hairy Dieters books have delish recipies). Good luck you can do it!

  • Hi Katy I had a very good friend who said forget the 40's they aren't what they're what they are made out to be (fabulous) but the 50's are when life begins. If you are obese, take things steady with a few changes at a time, don't beat yourself up if you have a bad day, we all fail at some time or other. Remember we all want the weight to disappear over night, be realistic accept it will take time, look at the achievements and have faith in yourself, attitude of mind is stronger than physical fitness in the early stages, do a bit more exercise yes cut out unhealthy foods, but also treat yourself, watch a tv programme the other day with someone who never vegetables, scientist have found out, if you eat something you dont like every day for a week then and think this is doing me good, the brain starts to accept the food and it becomes more enjoyable. Your mind is the most powerful tool you have, you can think yourself happy or unhappy, take each step one at a time, we are all in the same boat. Good luck, ps I live in Birmingham Englands 2nd city

  • Very positive advice FINTY well done. I saw that programme wasn't it broccoli that he ate.

    I now live about 30 miles from Brum it's a wonderful city with brilliant people, I was born and bred in London.

    I'm going to try the advice you have given. Thank you, that was a brilliant post.

    Good luck Katy, this is a great site for support.

  • Hi Katy,

    I wish you the best of luck with turning your weight around. My advice (having lost 27lbs myself so far, with about 11lbs to go):

    If you are actually obese rather than just overweight, at first you should find that fairly simple changes will make a massive difference, so start there.

    For example:

    - don't drink fizzy drinks, even the diet versions. Stick to plain water, tea and coffee;

    - use sweeteners rather than sugar;

    - eat three meals a day - do not snack, even healthy snacks. While some people swear by 2 healthy snacks a day, I personally think snacking is a very bad habit to get into. I think your system needs a bit of a rest between meals, and snacking just means you are constantly digesting and pumping out insulin all day which is not good for you;

    - eat 2 veg portions with lunch and 3 with dinner minimum. If you don't like vegetables, treat them as medicine and get them down you somehow. They really do fill you up; Put them on your plate first, they should take up about half the plate, and then add your meat/fish etc and potatoes, rice etc on the other half;

    - stick to fruit as a dessert, if you like a dessert;

    - keep a sensible portion size for starchy foods like bread potatoes, burger buns, rice etc. Personally I love my starches, eat them every day, and could easily eat a whole loaf of bread on my own if I didn't restrain myself. But you can easily take a lot of calories on board with starches, so you need to keep it modest - 2 thin/medium slices for a lunchtime sandwich, not a big wodge of french bread, for example, 1 or 2oz of pasta or rice, or 4oz potatoes with your main meal. That way you get a decent taste, but you don't go over the top.

    - with vegetables, boil, bake, steam rather than fry, as they will absorb a lot of fat if you fry them. Likewise fish should not be fried. On the other hand, there isn't a big difference in calories if you fry an egg, steak or chicken, as they are limited as to how much extra fat they will abosrb. For example, boiled egg, 80 calories, fried egg 120 calories no matter how much fat you fry it in.

    Finally, get as active as you can. If mobility is a real problem, can you start with arm exercises, then build up to standing up for as long as you can, then walking when you're ready?

    I really think you will surprise yourself if you try these things at how quickly you can start shedding weight. As you get nearer your target you will need to be stricter, but eating as much as you can while still losing weight is the way to go. If you're losing weight, then what you are doing is working!

    Hope this helps!

  • Thank you for all this information I really find this helpful so I'm sure Katy will. I'm going to get my daughter to read this also MEBXYZ. Thanks again

  • Hi there Katy from Texas, be miserable no longer ! You will find lots of friendly, non judgmental support on this site. Great advice from the others regarding the NHS 12 week plan. I have lost my weight and am maintaining, but many others are starting out just like you 😊

  • Hi katy6860, It is a good idea to start your final weight loss journey at 50, as your skin is likely to be elastic enough to recover totally. Just to cheer you up, I lost my 63lbs to get to goal in my 60's. And we certainly have older people than that losing well. The good news is losing weight is like running your calendar backwards. I feel younger now than I did 15 years ago! So you can not only lose the weight, but you can turn the clock back too by losing your excess. Win, win! See you around on the forum.


  • you all have been so helpful and generous to me! thank you so much! I started out yesterday by writing down everything I ate and was surprised. I measured out breakfast cereal and wow. a serving is like a normal 3 spoonfuls which I found funny. anyway, I did well until supper time but I still managed to not eat any sweets. I am trying to do at least one healthy thing at a time. I am counting my calories and was going to try to drink a veggie smoothie for lunch instead of food but what do ya'll think? I am not sure that is the way to go for me. I rather like food. thanks again for all the help!!!

  • Hi katy6860,

    Well you did have a great first day. Well done, you've proved you can do it. Now just repeat!

    By all means try your smoothie. Especially if you are having problems getting veg into your diet at the beginning . If you are going to get away with having smoothies, it will be at the start of your journey, though they may not be so helpful later.

    I used to have one before early morning exercise, when I first started my successful weight loss journey. Now I am not such a fan of smoothies. I think they are one of those fads like "eating clean" etc. They aren't always as filling as a meal. I always needed a second breakfast after the exercise!

    You would find the same veg served as a soup or a salad, much more filling. The whizzing up that is part of any smoothie making, breaks down the fibre cell walls in the veg and fruit. This means that our bodies take up the sugars in those ingredients more easily. It is as bad for you as drinking juice is - as bad as having the same amount of full sugar soda or Coke. Just as full of easily digestible sugars that your body rarely needs.

    The amounts used in smoothies can cause you problems too. It is so easy to drink much more than you would eat whole. And, although lots of veg and some fruits are recommended for a healthy intake, they still contain kcal and people can chug down massive portions as smoothies and so slow down their weight losses. Nature has packed our veg and fruits with lots of filling fibre which helps us feel full as it is bulky. It slows down the digestive take up of the goodness in the veg and fruit, so we stay fuller for longer. Fibre also Spring cleans our insides!

    So finally, the occasional smoothie, instead of a meal for convenience once or twice a week, should be OK. But I would not make them a feature of your daily intake. Because there would come a time when they would slow or stop your weight losses.

    Second warning is, if you are having them ready made, really check the nutritional information in terms of kcal, sugars and fibre. Manufactured ones should be honest about what the processing has done to the veg. But ones made just before you drink them will probably show incorrect nutritional information, as they probably just list the ingredients' contents before they are whizzed up. Also beware of ingredients such as dried fruit, honey, and anything ending with ...ose, like sucrose, lactose etc. These are other names for sugars, which might properly occur in some foods, but which can also be added to sweeten.

    Hope this is helpful. I mean all this information, so you can make your own decision. Let us know how you get on re the smoothie question.


  • I am so glad to hear all that. as a meal replacement, smoothies are the pits. I tried but found I was shaky and hungry and very unsatisfied. I agree that the fruit and veggies I put in the shake would have been much better to just eat. it was not a premade one but still I agree the sugar content could have been too high. thanks again for the advice I found it so helpful and relaxing to know I was not wrong after all.

  • Interesting what you found with the reaction to your smoothie, katy6860. Confirms all my prejudices! I always feel it is worth learning to eat real food in a healthy way. Just by tweaking which versions of sliced bread etc I use, I have been able to eat in a way similar to the rest of the family while losing weight. This has made it much easier to manage the social aspects of healthy eating. Good luck with day 3. Hope it's as easy for you as day 1 was.


  • well, I am not keeping track of calories as well as I should but I am writing down and measuring everything I eat. also, I am forgoing the smoothies for now. I have been 3 days without sweets and I feel pretty good about that. the only sweets I have eaten have been apples and small ones at that but I am hoping the fiber is good too. I got out of work late midnight tonight so I ate light but could not sleep. I already feel better about myself and am hoping it lasts a while. I am prepared for the ups and downs as I know the downs are coming but at least for now I am up. thanks for all the encouragement!

  • Healthy food choices and gentle exercise I think is the way forward. Reduce fat and carbs in my diet. No booze ar all. thank you for your kind support to me.I am 62 and determined to change my shape as I am embarrassed about what I have become. I don't want to jeopardise my long term health. I have started losing weight and doing exercise. . I was tired all the time I am not now. I have far more energy I thought it was old age. It was obviously being lethargic after drinking booze and all the extra work my body was having to do to maintain my excess fat and move me around. Please do it do it for yourself and take no notice of people who are not supporting you.

  • exercise and portion control is by far the way to go but when I finally let go of being embarrassed about how I look is when I finally decided to change how I eat. I want to be healthy and if that means being skinnier (not thin) than so be it but I will never be model thin Thank God!!!! I am too old (49) to care what other people think about what I look like or if they like it or not. my husband wants me to get healthy but he loves me just the way I look. as soon as I decided I love me too, that is when I decided to be healthy. it is so liberating not to be embarrassed around thinner people because I am bigger than they are. now I am myself and realize people really like me because of who I am. I am a funny, generous, kind person people can count on and I love me too. it is a great feeling I have to say. so never never be embarrassed about yourself cuz no one else is.

  • Thank you for that it was just catching a reflection of myself putting sun cream on in a window that shocked me. It wasn't vanity I had no looked at myself for a longtime. I too want to take control for my health. I am already feeling healthier and wanting to do more. Good luck to you

  • Good luck on your journey to happiness, support is here for you.... I know that to be so true.... My personal life is tough st the moment ... But I'm giving 100% to do this, there are days I think I can't , but 90% of the time I go out and make that step to change my life

  • Good luck and keep goingI think if we stay positive look forward it's a win win for all sorts of reasons. I have saved loads of money already as I haven't been buying wine or beer!! I will use it for boat ihire when we go on holiday

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