Health/weight loss advice?

daddyjtdaddyjt Posts: 1,494
I am looking for some advice and/or personal experiences as to what works to drop a substantial amount of weight.

A brief history - I am now in my late 40's, and dealing with some back (spinal) issues. Specifically, a couple bulging discs, and one extruded disc (The one causing the major issue). Having already had a disc trimmed about 15 years ago, the consensus now is spinal fusion L4-S1. I am looking to avoid this AT ALL COST, as I have never heard of a happy outcome with a fusion. My current Dr, whom I really like, says that there is a VERY good chance that these issues will significantly improve if I drop ~100lbs. While not morbidly obese by any means, I do carry 350lbs on a 6'5" frame (A LONG way from my HS wrestling days at 185lbs!)

I have thus far avoided narcotic pain meds (I have an Rx for them, but really trying to avoid starting down that road), and tried physical therapy to no avail. I am not interested in any type of gastric bypass, due to the side effects (Not to mention, I am not heavy enough for it to be covered by insurance). I do not smoke or drink, but I am not in good enough shape to do any running (yet) - I do have an elliptical and a bowflex (Under a bunch of dust).

So here we are. Curious what has/is worked(working) for any of you, with regard to losing a lot of weight, in a healthy manner. A couple of questions:

1. Do any supliments help? Protein shakes, vitemins, etc...?
2. Adkins/high protein diets?
3. the whole craze with "cleanses/Detox"?

Thanks for reading - I value the combined knowledge base here, and appreciate any input/advice anyone may have.
«13

Comments

  • muncybobmuncybob Posts: 2,342
    Is the exercise equipment under dust because you can't use them or another reason? I have never had a weight "problem" so I guess this is like a person w/o kids commenting on how to be a parent....but, it's been my observation of others that a change in lifestyle(activity, diet, etc) has been far more beneficial than any other of the fixes. If you live a fairly sedentary lifestyle start with small changes like walking and build up the distance. With a bad back I would stay away from any high impact activity like running!
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  • daddyjtdaddyjt Posts: 1,494
    muncybob wrote: »
    Is the exercise equipment under dust because you can't use them or another reason? I have never had a weight "problem" so I guess this is like a person w/o kids commenting on how to be a parent....but, it's been my observation of others that a change in lifestyle(activity, diet, etc) has been far more beneficial than any other of the fixes. If you live a fairly sedentary lifestyle start with small changes like walking and build up the distance. With a bad back I would stay away from any high impact activity like running!

    Lol - just under dust from a lack of use. I can (and definitely plan on) using both. Thanks for the input!
  • ConradiclesConradicles Posts: 5,988
    I lost some weight by joining the gym with my wife and she encourages me to go.

    I also try not to eat much in the afternoon. Plus protein shakes are great, just check the sugar in them.

    You can do it!
  • Mikey081057Mikey081057 Posts: 7,240
    Lower your caloric intake to 1500 calories per day. Get LOTS of exercise start by walking get a bike swim do anything you can to burn more calories than you intake every day. It's not magic don't fall for gimmicks like supplements etc. you are not there yet.
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  • mdaudioguymdaudioguy Posts: 5,137
    Lower your caloric intake to 1500 calories per day. Get LOTS of exercise start by walking get a bike swim do anything you can to burn more calories than you intake every day. It's not magic don't fall for gimmicks like supplements etc. you are not there yet.
    A 350 lb guy is going to have a tough time dropping calories that low and increasing exercise at the same time.
  • ConradiclesConradicles Posts: 5,988
    Cutting out soda pop helped me too.
  • pitdogg2pitdogg2 Posts: 16,691
    Soda pop and alcohol LOTS of calories.
    Stop fast food as well.
  • scubalabscubalab Posts: 2,935
    Wife and I did Weight Watchers about 6-7 years ago. I dropped 60 pounds and was in the best shape of my life. It's just a simplified way of counting calories.

    Don't kill yourself with exercise. A very good friend who teaches fitness/nutrition classes at Penn State swears that 99% of weight loss is diet. You can exercise all you want, but if you don't eat well, you won't lose weight. I can attest. With WW, I didn't do much exercising, and the weight dropped FAST.

    Flash forward to the present, and I'm almost back up to where I was... :(

    I've done Insanity several times (and JUST started again yesterday). It will kick your A$$, and get you in shape, but it won't necessarily drop the weight. The last time I did it, I was averaging 1700 - 1900 calories a day (and burning over 1000 with exercise). I was in crazy good shape, but only dropped about 20 pounds.

    I've also done NSNG (no sugar, no grains) diets. Well, significantly reduced sugars and grains. It didn't work as well for me.

    Try starting with a low calorie diet (under 2000/day) and that should drop some pounds fast. Then get a little more aggressive with some daily aerobic exercise and even fewer calories (1600-1700/day).

    BTW, I'm in my mid-late 40s as well, and have been struggling through some lower back pain since January. It's still there, but it's amazing how much exercise and stretching makes it feel better.

    Everyone is different. Find what works for you.
  • UpstatemaxUpstatemax Posts: 2,494
    Start with better portion control and increase activity.

    Portion control will get easier as you go along. At first you’ll be hungry, then soon enough what used to be an appitizer will fill you up...

    Don’t cut too much food right away. You’ll send your body into starvation mode and you’ll naturally hold onto weight and start a bad cycle of dieting and binge.

    Fad diets don’t work for the long term. You need to take it one step at a time.

    Cutting back and eventually eliminating sugary drinks is always a good move. Increase water to help flush the system and support healthy body functions.

    Move to healthy home made foods.

    I’ve found apps like “MyFitness Pal” to be a good way to help keep you on track and teach you about food choices and being active.

    Just remember to set reasonable goals.
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  • oldrockeroldrocker Posts: 2,327
    Having a bit of back troubles myself and just not feeling good, talked to my Doc, discussed the whole exercise thing, got the green light so the wife and me been in the gym for about 5 months now. We really enjoy it.

    I can honestly say, we feel better. Have dropped some weight, built some muscle, sleep better, stress is down....

    Wife's a1c #'s are improving.

    We did change our diets some, low carbs less crap food. Lots of water.
    We haven't done anything by way of shakes, protein bars.

    FMO, I started at it easy, didn't have some unrealistic goals, now up to 2-2.5 hrs a visit, treadmill, free weights and a few of the machines.

    A bit off topic but, if you have some headphones and a phone/ipod or whatever, that works great for me, pop on some tunes and have at it.

    Only regret I have is I waited so long to get back in the gym.

    Best of luck!!

  • LegenderLegender Posts: 478
    Proper diet and healthy foods will have the greatest impact. I've used an app called 'Lose it' in the past that very much helped me track my calories to insure I stayed within my daily goal.
    It is a lifestyle/diet change and if you go back to your old ways, you will simply gain it back.

    Eating out is a killer, due to quantities and poor food choices. Eating at home and fixing your own meals is the best way to go.

    It will come off slower than it goes on, but as you feel better and gain more energy you'll get more encouraged.

    Also good if you can do this with someone. Seems to make it easier.

    Good luck on your journey.
  • thsmiththsmith Posts: 6,092
    I am your size but 2 inches shorter, SInce 1/15 I have lost 28 pounds without exercising and changing my diet except I eat breakfast at 8AM and lunch at 11-12. 2 meals a day with no snacking, not drinking sweet drinks only water. I was eating supper at 3:30PM but was still full from lunch and was down to eating a half peanut butter sandwich, I finally cut that off and have no issues. Weight lose is slow but sustainable. Blood sugar is almost in normal range ande expect my AC1 to be normal or very normal when tested at the end of the month. Good luck. Goal is to get to 250 and will take time but I did not get here overnight.
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  • rooftop59rooftop59 Posts: 6,557
    Just to conform Al's friend's claim (and others have concurred), lowing weight is primarily about reducing caloric intake:

    https://www.vox.com/2016/4/28/11518804/weight-loss-exercise-myth-burn-calories

    The data is pretty overwhelming. Exercise will not take the pounds off, because you simply cannot burn enough calories.

    BUT exercise is great for you, and you will feel better. I play noon basketball and take F-45 classes the university where I work, and I find that my workouts are MUCH better in a group setting. So I would encourage you to join a gym or crossfit type organization where they have classes you can take, and if you can do it with a spuse or friend, all the better.

    As far as diet, again reiterating much of what has been said. If you drink soda, stop, and get one of these: https://www.amazon.com/SodaStream-Sparkling-Water-Starter-Silver/dp/B00EPEALEM/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1525365655&sr=8-3&keywords=soda+water+makers&dpID=41WGymsHkHL&preST=_SY300_QL70_&dpSrc=srch (you can find it cheaper). We use ours everyday. Squeeze of lemon or lime and you get that carbonation fix. Then, stop fast food. Make a sandwhich on whole wheat bread, or even better, a grilled chicken salad. Then, reduce sugar intake. Breakfast is terrible. Sugar is everywhere: https://www.nytimes.com/guides/smarterliving/how-to-stop-eating-sugar

    Good luck!
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  • BC6BC6 Posts: 109
    I lost 50 pounds using Weight Watchers and no exercise. You have to stick to the points diligently and be patient. Because the weight loss was from lifestyle changes and not a quick fix, it took a long time. Unfortunately I've gained about half of it back because I can't shake the 'one candy bar won't hurt' mentality.
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  • afterburntafterburnt Posts: 7,098
    edited May 2018
    @daddyjt A good start is to stop eating anything that is white. This is mainly sugar, flour and any fat that is white or clear. It is also good to 86 processed foods because they will sneak a bunch of the above in on you as well as a bunch of other unpronounceable stuff that you don't need in your body. You will probably b better off eliminating all grain products even whole grains. Get your read on about high glycemic foods and inflammatory foods. Get some turmeric caps and take them everyday move around a lot and keep a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables around. You will be good to go once the thought of processed fatty salty sugary stuff grosses you out and literally turns your stomach if you do eat it.

    Drink lots of water and walk as much as you can. Park far away and zig zag :#

    PS if you do eat junk (poison) food now, you may think that once you got a handle on things that you can go back to that garbage, you can't EVER! You will blow back up and probably get scales all over your face.


    PSS also look into Ayurveda for thermogenic herbs.

    PSSS if you want to get on an exercise contraption pick out your favorite half hour (only like 20 minutes sans commercials) sitcom and only watch it on the machine. I recommend Green Acres, the greatest sitcom of all time. That will keep you busy for like a couple of years but you have to get Hulu.
    Post edited by afterburnt on
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  • Mikey081057Mikey081057 Posts: 7,240
    Cut out the sugar, potatoes, baked goods, rice, limit fruits eat healthy vegetables makes sure to include the right fats ... Peanut butter is your friend... just low or no sugar variety.
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  • daddyjtdaddyjt Posts: 1,494
    pitdogg2 wrote: »
    Soda pop and alcohol LOTS of calories.
    Stop fast food as well.

    I stopped eating out about a week ago. I have eaten lunch out for years, and I realized that I don't crave it or even enjoy it that much (except Chick Filet) - it was strictly a convenience thing. I've notice the cash in my wallet stays much longer too:-)
  • afterburntafterburnt Posts: 7,098
    daddyjt wrote: »
    pitdogg2 wrote: »
    Soda pop and alcohol LOTS of calories.
    Stop fast food as well.

    I stopped eating out about a week ago. I have eaten lunch out for years, and I realized that I don't crave it or even enjoy it that much (except Chick Filet) - it was strictly a convenience thing. I've notice the cash in my wallet stays much longer too:-)

    Forgot, you don't get to do "fried" anymore
    rpf65 wrote: »
    I’m thinking you’ve reached the point where people are afraid to open your posts.

    I disabled
  • daddyjtdaddyjt Posts: 1,494
    Upstatemax wrote: »
    Start with better portion control and increase activity.

    Portion control will get easier as you go along. At first you’ll be hungry, then soon enough what used to be an appitizer will fill you up...

    Don’t cut too much food right away. You’ll send your body into starvation mode and you’ll naturally hold onto weight and start a bad cycle of dieting and binge.

    Fad diets don’t work for the long term. You need to take it one step at a time.

    Cutting back and eventually eliminating sugary drinks is always a good move. Increase water to help flush the system and support healthy body functions.

    Move to healthy home made foods.

    I’ve found apps like “MyFitness Pal” to be a good way to help keep you on track and teach you about food choices and being active.

    Just remember to set reasonable goals.

    I only drink diet cola, when I drink pop (about once every other day). However, I DO drink a sugar free energy drink every morning... What's the consensus on caffeine?
  • daddyjtdaddyjt Posts: 1,494
    oldrocker wrote: »
    Having a bit of back troubles myself and just not feeling good, talked to my Doc, discussed the whole exercise thing, got the green light so the wife and me been in the gym for about 5 months now. We really enjoy it.

    I can honestly say, we feel better. Have dropped some weight, built some muscle, sleep better, stress is down....

    Wife's a1c #'s are improving.

    We did change our diets some, low carbs less crap food. Lots of water.
    We haven't done anything by way of shakes, protein bars.

    FMO, I started at it easy, didn't have some unrealistic goals, now up to 2-2.5 hrs a visit, treadmill, free weights and a few of the machines.

    A bit off topic but, if you have some headphones and a phone/ipod or whatever, that works great for me, pop on some tunes and have at it.

    Only regret I have is I waited so long to get back in the gym.

    Best of luck!!

    I hear you on the Ipod - the older I get, I can't seem to do anything without music... Except in the car, I listen to a lot of podcasts. Speaking of the car, that is another tough one for me. I drive a lot for work (retail district manager), and snacking in the car is HARD to avoid for me...
  • afterburntafterburnt Posts: 7,098
    daddyjt wrote: »
    Upstatemax wrote: »
    Start with better portion control and increase activity.

    Portion control will get easier as you go along. At first you’ll be hungry, then soon enough what used to be an appitizer will fill you up...

    Don’t cut too much food right away. You’ll send your body into starvation mode and you’ll naturally hold onto weight and start a bad cycle of dieting and binge.

    Fad diets don’t work for the long term. You need to take it one step at a time.

    Cutting back and eventually eliminating sugary drinks is always a good move. Increase water to help flush the system and support healthy body functions.

    Move to healthy home made foods.

    I’ve found apps like “MyFitness Pal” to be a good way to help keep you on track and teach you about food choices and being active.

    Just remember to set reasonable goals.

    I only drink diet cola, when I drink pop (about once every other day). However, I DO drink a sugar free energy drink every morning... What's the consensus on caffeine?

    It has been suggested that diet soft drinks could be even worse that the sugary ones. I would get off of them regardless. Caffeine from green tea is probably fine and even good for you but blow is probably healthier that those energy concoctions.
    rpf65 wrote: »
    I’m thinking you’ve reached the point where people are afraid to open your posts.

    I disabled
  • afterburntafterburnt Posts: 7,098
    daddyjt wrote: »
    oldrocker wrote: »
    Having a bit of back troubles myself and just not feeling good, talked to my Doc, discussed the whole exercise thing, got the green light so the wife and me been in the gym for about 5 months now. We really enjoy it.

    I can honestly say, we feel better. Have dropped some weight, built some muscle, sleep better, stress is down....

    Wife's a1c #'s are improving.

    We did change our diets some, low carbs less crap food. Lots of water.
    We haven't done anything by way of shakes, protein bars.

    FMO, I started at it easy, didn't have some unrealistic goals, now up to 2-2.5 hrs a visit, treadmill, free weights and a few of the machines.

    A bit off topic but, if you have some headphones and a phone/ipod or whatever, that works great for me, pop on some tunes and have at it.

    Only regret I have is I waited so long to get back in the gym.

    Best of luck!!

    I hear you on the Ipod - the older I get, I can't seem to do anything without music... Except in the car, I listen to a lot of podcasts. Speaking of the car, that is another tough one for me. I drive a lot for work (retail district manager), and snacking in the car is HARD to avoid for me...

    @daddyjt What works for me is not putting junk in the car or house in the first place. I keep a bag of trial mix with me at all times. A big drink of water and a hand full of trial mix will tide you over. Trail mix is calorie dense so dont over do it, just a hand full. I make my own mix from indvidual fruit and nuts from Trader Joe's. Raw unsalted nuts and no sugar added fruits.
    rpf65 wrote: »
    I’m thinking you’ve reached the point where people are afraid to open your posts.

    I disabled
  • mdaudioguymdaudioguy Posts: 5,137
    daddyjt wrote: »
    Upstatemax wrote: »
    Start with better portion control and increase activity.

    Portion control will get easier as you go along. At first you’ll be hungry, then soon enough what used to be an appitizer will fill you up...

    Don’t cut too much food right away. You’ll send your body into starvation mode and you’ll naturally hold onto weight and start a bad cycle of dieting and binge.

    Fad diets don’t work for the long term. You need to take it one step at a time.

    Cutting back and eventually eliminating sugary drinks is always a good move. Increase water to help flush the system and support healthy body functions.

    Move to healthy home made foods.

    I’ve found apps like “MyFitness Pal” to be a good way to help keep you on track and teach you about food choices and being active.

    Just remember to set reasonable goals.

    I only drink diet cola, when I drink pop (about once every other day). However, I DO drink a sugar free energy drink every morning... What's the consensus on caffeine?

    I think caffeine is one of those "it's fine in moderation" things. For me, it's morning coffee. I sleep better without caffeine after noon. FYI, good sleep will also be helpful in your quest.
  • ClipdatClipdat Posts: 8,261
    edited May 2018
    I didn't know you were from California!
    afterburnt wrote: »
    I make my own mix from indvidual fruit and nuts from Trader Joe's. Raw unsalted nuts and no sugar added fruits.

  • afterburntafterburnt Posts: 7,098
    Clipdat wrote: »
    I didn't know you were from California!
    afterburnt wrote: »
    I make my own mix from indvidual fruit and nuts from Trader Joe's. Raw unsalted nuts and no sugar added fruits.

    It's worse than that, I am from New York I only live in Kalifornia.
    rpf65 wrote: »
    I’m thinking you’ve reached the point where people are afraid to open your posts.

    I disabled
  • pitdogg2pitdogg2 Posts: 16,691
    daddyjt wrote: »
    Upstatemax wrote: »
    Start with better portion control and increase activity.

    Portion control will get easier as you go along. At first you’ll be hungry, then soon enough what used to be an appitizer will fill you up...

    Don’t cut too much food right away. You’ll send your body into starvation mode and you’ll naturally hold onto weight and start a bad cycle of dieting and binge.

    Fad diets don’t work for the long term. You need to take it one step at a time.

    Cutting back and eventually eliminating sugary drinks is always a good move. Increase water to help flush the system and support healthy body functions.

    Move to healthy home made foods.

    I’ve found apps like “MyFitness Pal” to be a good way to help keep you on track and teach you about food choices and being active.

    Just remember to set reasonable goals.

    I only drink diet cola, when I drink pop (about once every other day). However, I DO drink a sugar free energy drink every morning... What's the consensus on caffeine?

    personally the consensus from Doctors I know seem to think that the diet/sugar free stuff is worse. some of those artificial sweeteners are bad to your body.
    Caffeine can be a appetite suppressant.
  • Mikey081057Mikey081057 Posts: 7,240
    Caffeine is fine if your heart is fine.

    No soft drinks.... Coffee, water a couple of beers and a couple glasses of wine.
    My New Year's resolution is 3840 × 2160

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  • muncybobmuncybob Posts: 2,342
    Yep, ditch the soda. Caffeine won't hurt ya(in moderation) but the stuff you put in your hot beverage will. If possible, eat several times/day to keep your glycemic index in check and lots&lots of water. As has been said, do these things gradually and set goals to increase activities. Don't be continually weighing yourself. If you do things right you will feel the difference and won't need a scale to tell you.
    Some good advice in here...good luck!
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  • afterburntafterburnt Posts: 7,098
    edited May 2018
    A little resistance training is a good thing, body weight and isometric exercise is enough, no need to sling iron. At least starting out.
    rpf65 wrote: »
    I’m thinking you’ve reached the point where people are afraid to open your posts.

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  • dr1978dr1978 Posts: 299
    edited May 2018
    Upstatemax wrote: »
    Start with better portion control and increase activity.

    Portion control will get easier as you go along. At first you’ll be hungry, then soon enough what used to be an appitizer will fill you up...

    Don’t cut too much food right away. You’ll send your body into starvation mode and you’ll naturally hold onto weight and start a bad cycle of dieting and binge.

    Fad diets don’t work for the long term. You need to take it one step at a time.

    Cutting back and eventually eliminating sugary drinks is always a good move. Increase water to help flush the system and support healthy body functions.

    Move to healthy home made foods.

    I’ve found apps like “MyFitness Pal” to be a good way to help keep you on track and teach you about food choices and being active.

    Just remember to set reasonable goals.

    Glad I read some of the thread before posting, because I would have said this almost verbatim. Cutting out pop and fast food was my first step. Then I started limiting portion size and tracking with MyFitness Pal. Making sure I eat breakfast and snacking on healthy stuff like almonds every couple hours helped me from splurging at lunch and dinner.

    I'd also add to make sure you're balancing your activity between cardio and weight resistance. If you follow that and do weight training 3-4 times a week, don't be discouraged early on if you are not losing weight. The muscle gain will likely offset what you're losing in fat, but after plateauing for a period of time (couple/few weeks for me) you should then see substantial loss as your muscle increase (and associated weight increase) slows, but your newfound muscle helps burn your fat at an even greater rate. Over the long run the added muscle will continue to help burn fat and reduce inches.

    I went from 225 to 185 and have been able to stay in the 185-190 range without any difficulty. I know if I was more strict with my diet that I could easily drop some more pounds, but at this point I'm pretty content.
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