Down another 3 lbs. - All I do is lose!
Weigh-in's on Friday now instead of Saturday. Should be okay.
I ended up missing my swim on Wednesday due to my brother having some financial issues he had to work out that day, so it infringed on our swimming time. I'll be going tomorrow afternoon to make up, then back to my Monday / Wednesday schedule. The walks continue as well.
So... yeah, now to dissect our new member's post:
DrNonookee wrote:I've only been at this a week, and I already feel a lot better - not just physically, but in the sense that I also feel a sense of accomplishment for getting up off my rear, putting my mind doing something constructive, and getting it done.
Excellent - you're at the beginning of something very good. One quick warning, it's easy to be super excited at the start then get burned out rapidly. Just make sure to pace yourself, take a break every once in a while, and keep it interesting - listen to music, take different routes (if you're walking through your neighborhood), etc.
(Walking / Arm Curls) - Is this a good area to be in given that I'm just starting out, or should I push it more?
Great start. Another thought would be swimming, though it is a "public" activity, it's a lot less embarrassing than going to a gym. It's a great high-resistance, low-impact exercise. I know exactly what you mean with the gym thing too - it's why I've been shy about going to my work's facilities. No harm with that, though. The best thing to start with at your weight is low impact stuff. Walking is great, arm curls are just fine too. Consider possibly picking up some lighter arm weights - 5 or 10 pounds, maybe - and just use those while you watch TV or during loading screens in video games. You can do a lot more than 20 curls w/o tuckering out with a lower weight, and it'll help build a bit of muscle in your arms too.
Unlike a lot of folks on here, I'm not trying to lose weight - it's more or less a lost cause.
I'm about to say something really harsh, but I think you can take it - this is a terrible mind set. Absolutely terrible. I can say that with certainty because that has been my mindset for the past several years. I am quite similar to you - I also weighed 400 lbs., but I'm tall (about 6' 4") and carried the weight relatively well. I didn't look humongous unless I was sitting down - I carried the weight pretty well. I'm speaking in the past tense since I'm now down 43 lbs. past my starting weight, and that has been only over the past six months, with 16 lbs. of that being lost just over the past four weeks (since I really started dieting).
My secret? Fucking knock off some of the super high calorie stuff, and eat more veggies. It's really that simple:
1) Soda was a huge, HUGE problem for me. I was drinking three 20 oz. bottles a day, plus X cans at home (varied based on how many cans I had in my fridge... ugh). At the beginning of the year, I began cutting that back, from its horribly high number to two bottles a day, to one, to one diet, then finally to zero when I began my diet. I tried going cold-turkey in the past and failed every time - the headaches were terrible, and the cravings were worse. Since officially quitting I've not had a drop of soda, though I've had my share of "man, I could go for a Mountain Dew" times, I just push it aside and drink water instead. Water, water, water - it's key. Drink water, and tons of it. If you need something sweet or not water, try low-sugar water flavoring stuff (Crystal Ice or the like), low-calorie Gatorade, or fruit juice. I've been drinking an 8-oz can of V8-Fusion every day - it's not bad flavor, and it's a serving of fruits AND a serving of vegetables in one.
2) Cut back on snacks. Candy, chips, greasy finger foods in general. They're tasty and cheap, but they're not good for you at all (should go without saying). I used to have between one and three dessert type things a day, from candy bars to brownies to cakes to pies. I knocked that shit off. Now, I will occasionally have ONE cookie or ONE doughnut if the craving is there, but I keep track of its calories and count it vs. my calorie count for the day.
3) Fast food. Just... no. I used to eat McDonald's, Taco Bell, and whatever else two to three times a week. I cut it back drastically, and since I started my diet I had Taco Bell once (damn Pathfinder group, pressuring me). However, I ordered less than I normally would, I looked up the calories beforehand, and I tracked that shit.
These were the three things I started cutting back gradually to the point of elimination (soda) or near-elimination (candy and fast food) since January. I lost 27 lbs. without even thinking about it. It was just gone. I didn't exercise, I didn't do anything else different besides cut this stuff back.
Going on a diet doesn't mean you can never have the stuff you want ever again. It just means you have to be conscious of what you're putting in your body. One thing I've found is rather than thinking, "what could it hurt?" think to yourself, "what could it help?" - that greasy burger will fill you up, but so would a turkey sandwich... and the turkey's gonna be like 1/3 the calories almost every time. And instead of having an extra large milk shake, why not get a small? Instead of five cookies, have two. That sort of thing.
Anyway, beyond those basics, when I started my exercise / diet routine, I cut out the big 3, then I started counting calories and eating more vegetables and fruits. Right now, I take in less than 2000 calories a day and get an average of 4 servings of both fruits and veggies a day. Not as many as I should be getting, but you gotta take it slow. Staring at a "dinner" of cabbage and brussell sprouts is painful if you just had Burger King the night before. Have a little veggies with your meals at a time, or try those V8-Fusion juices. Buy a bag of carrots and snack on 'em while you watch TV, or try your hand at some cooking and do something with vegetables you wouldn't normally do. I make a bad-ass zucchini + squash sautee, it's delicious. As for calories, you can go higher than 2000, but I'm sort of "super dieting" - I've not been perfect, but I can average 1500-1800 calories a day with little issue, and no, I'm not starving myself or eating less. It's just a matter of WHAT you eat.
As for exercise, I do what you do, plus swimming 2x a week. I walk an average of 3 miles a day, to and from work (1.5 miles each way). If you're looking for exercise encouragement, you should join Fitocracy
and join our Katawa Shoujo group. We're all bros, and it's a great way to track exercise and keep yourself motivated.
(Walking) - Are these things a good idea, or are they more harm than good?
Just do what you gotta do. As long as you've got a good pair of shoes you should build up endurance sooner than later. Of course, losing some weight will help exponentially, but as you are just take it slow and work up endurance / muscle. Stretching is also a good thing to do. Don't go overboard, but stretch your calf muscles and your ankles.
how *exactly* does one stretch the legs for exercise? Like, what positions, for how long, etc?
Check the first post in the thread for Emi's running stretching guidelines
. You don't have to do most of these, but the calves and ankles stretches would be good. Just follow the directions on there.
(Every other day) Am I right in thinking this?
Yes and no. Resting for a day is usually more for people who do stuff like hardcore running, big weight lifting, etc. - when you're doing low-impact exercise like walking it's not a huge deal to go two days in a row. However, if you feel any new pain or you feel like you should take a break, definitely do so. Better to spend a day resting than to hurt yourself from overexertion.
I walk pretty much every single day, sometimes twice a day, and I'm on my feet all day at work. You get used to it, and I don't have any problems besides being tired by the end of the day.
What's the best time of day to work out?
Whenever it works best for you. It's difficult to go from working out to bed immediately after - your blood is pumping and you're more alert so it's difficult to rest. Some posters on here laid out their routines not too long back, and one mentioned doing their exercise a half hour to an hour before bed, to give time for a shower and a little relaxation. It's best to give yourself some amount of time before sleep to unwind.
Just some questions from a curious geek hoping to feel a bit better about himself, break up the monotony of sitting in front of screens all the time, and maybe meet some cute fitness girls.
You got it in you to make yourself better, man. Your whole life is ahead of you, and if you decide to get in shape it's something that you will benefit from for the rest of your LONGER life.
If you got any more questions, let me know.