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08-31-2012   #1 (permalink)
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Default Changing how you eat / exercise.

Last week I had a usual 6 month doctor check up and they took blood to check on everything. I got a call today saying that my Cholesterol is high and that he wanted me to start focusing on exercising. Now I've never had to deal with these problems in the past, I used to could eat anything and not have to do hardly any exercises.

So how do you guys eat / exercise?

How would you recommend someone like me who eats fast food (and salad's occasionally) and who is a couch potato to change my eating and exercise habits?

Calorie wise I'm eating under the normal # that I'm supposed to be taking, it's WHAT I'm eating that's causing me problems. I'm a very picky person when it comes to food, I still have yet to find any fruits that I like to eat and the only vegetable that I've found that I will eat like "normal" are green beans. And I'm one that always has a Coke, Coke Zero, or Tea with every meal.

What can I do to change my lifestyle? I have tried before to start exercising and I always fall back into being a couch potato because I lose motivation of doing the same exercises they taught us in college P.E. over and over.
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09-01-2012   #2 (permalink)
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You do it. It's as simple as that. You get off your couch and do something about it.

There's endless possibilities for food out there, you will find something you like. Ask your doctor what they recommend or see a nutritionist. if you have to. I can't really give you advice on food; my diet is extremely plain and nearly the exact same every day. I don't think most people like that. :v that and I dunno anything about cholesterol and what you should eat to lower it.

With exercising, it's just trial and error until you find something that you don't mind, or even like doing.

For my own advice from experience, cut out all junk food. All of it. Don't have any of it for any reason whatsoever and never make excuses for yourself. Not to sound like an after school special, but the only exercise you'll ever regret doing is the one you didn't do.

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Originally Posted by Mega
Now I've never had to deal with these problems in the past, I used to could eat anything and not have to do hardly any exercises.
Also, no. That is why you're dealing with this crap now.
 
09-01-2012   #3 (permalink)
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All that coke is gonna screw you over at some point too. `-`

Basically cut out on junk food AND processed foods with those preservatives/sweeteners that lock all the nasty things in your body. You will have to learn to like fruits/vegetables and find ways to prepare and cook them in ways that you like them. Not only that but you also need to up your metabolism so your body is up for taking in the normal/healthy calorie intake. Building up metabolism is pretty easy with cayenne pepper or cleansing foods (like cranberry juice, lemonade... just get the stuff that doesn't have corn syrup in it).

Exercise itself doesn't have to be a chore... You can exercise for 20 mins a day, 3~4 days a week and you should be set. However don't do those one body area focus exercises. Do something that works your whole body (like doing stair sprints, resting to catch your breath, repeat... Jump rope also works your whole body, and you can sprint up hills too). Don't push yourself when you're too out of breath to continue. Stop to catch your breath, maybe stretch a bit in between, and try again. Oh yeah, and always stretch before a workout too or else you may hurt yourself. On top of it all try to devote yourself to changing your lifestyle, and by engaging in exercise that you find fun. If you have money to afford it you could even go to a sports club (I intend on going into boxing when I get more moneyz).

There's a lot of true and false information on the internet, so try to be careful if you're doing google searches for more information.
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09-01-2012   #4 (permalink)
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It's your own priorities.
If you really want to change, then you'll make an honest effort. Try different fruits, do stretches now and then, go on a walk, take the stairs and not the elevator/escalator anymore etc.
If you make excuses then you probably are just a lazy bum. No time to cook? No time to shop for vegetables? Enjoy your heart attack and obesity.

Drink more water. Tea isn't that bad for you unless you drink really sweetened teas. Try green tea or something. Cut down on cokes. If you have one every day, cut down to every second day, then to once a week etc (don't buy big 2Ls).
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09-01-2012   #5 (permalink)
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I cut out soda and lost 5 pounds in a month without changing anything else in my lifestyle, forreals.

And I feel like you answered all your own questions, you just said you like none of the answers. I stopped eating junk food and now I have whole grain chips/crackers with hummus for snacks instead (I also do carrots with it as well). I like running on an elliptical for 20 minutes a few times a week as well as I have ankle/calve (spelling wut) issues and running on anything else gives me major pains after as little as 2 minutes.

I mean, I think you're older than me (?) Get a grip on your health is all I really have to finish with.
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09-01-2012   #6 (permalink)
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You need to cut out high fructose corn syrup and partially hydrogenated oils. High fructose corn syrup has been connected to obesity and other weight related problems and partially hydrogenated oils are a main source of Trans fatty acids which cannot be burned by the body and increase the amounts of "bad" cholesterol and decrease your "good" cholesterol. You can still have soda, but it should not have high fructose corn syrup, nor should you be drinking diet sodas as they contain sweeteners that are also bad for you.

Finding fruits and vegetables that you like is hard, I know. I'm extremely picky and don't like most vegetables as well. Part of the reason you may not like any is because you're eating them "normal." I'm not entirely sure what you meant there, but it sounds like you're just cooking them and then eating them. Try adding a little butter, some pepper, or just try incorporating them into meals rather than eating them solo. As Dare mentioned, hummus+carrots is really good (not to mention both are pretty good for you too). Broccoli and hummus is also really good. I feel like you just haven't tried veggies so you don't want to eat them.

In terms of eating meat, white meat (chicken, turkey, fish) is better for you overall than red meat (beef, duck) since red meat has more cholesterol and fat. Good for you on trying to eat salads, however if you buy them at fast food joints, you're better off just not having them. Most fast food joints use iceberg lettuce which almost completely water and has little nutritional value. Additionally, salads can end up being doused in dressing which doesn't help much either. If you have a salad, go for butterhead or romaine lettuce, or better yet spinach.

If you want to be healthier, that doesn't mean cutting out all fast food; some fast food restaurants are better than others. It'd be wise to cut out the really big unhealthy chains like McDonald's and replace them with chains like Panera, Chipotle, or Noodles & Company. While eating only the latter won't help you (an entire Chipotle burrito is actually basically a whole day's meal worth of food, split it in half/quarters and eat it across multiple days or get a bol and split it across days as well) they're better for you than McD's.Also don't eat those "diet" microwaveable meals because they use sodium to compensate for less "flavor" ingredients.

Not all exercise has to involve the donning of running attire and then proceeding to run a triathlon, you can get an acceptable work-out just walking around with a backpack (obviously with some stuff in it) or some weights. I know you play League, so how about when you die you do some kind of physical activity while waiting to respawn?

How successful "diets" are all depend on how much effort you're willing to put in to actually changing your lifestyle. If you're not willing to change, the diet is not going to work.
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09-02-2012   #7 (permalink)
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Just jogging or running the treadmill a few hours a week is enough exercise to at least keep your heart pumping. Find a buddy and make it fun! Converse and talk and laugh and people-watch while jogging indoors or outdoors and use each other to keep yourselves motivated.

As far as eating goes, just be adventurous. There's a bunch of different kinds of food you can cook and eat that are a lot healthier than what you describe is your diet so far. If that doesn't really suit you too much, try eating a small bowl of salad before every meal. The extra water inside the leaves will help curb those cravings later and you'll eat a smaller portion than before. That's one of my main points when trying to lose weight -- portion control. Every now and then go ahead and treat yo'self (HAH Parks and Rec) to eating that huge burger, but only after you've had yourself a bowl of salad and only eat half of it for lunch while saving the other half for later. That's really the key, especially when eating out at a restaurant where they give you such huge plates of food.

It doesn't really sound like you want into the whole muscle-building experience, so don't stress too much about lifting weights. One of the better ways to be fit and heart-healthy is just to make sure you don't fall behind in your cardio. Look into taking something like a kickboxing class to help keep your blood going while also getting some fun, stress-relieving activity in. Maybe go biking two days a week for a good 45 minutes each session with a friend? Offer to walk dogs in your neighborhood for a small fee and let them force you into walking and jogging around town! The best way to keep yourself motivated while exercising is to be creative and make things fun.
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Last edited by kuyaBaka; 09-02-2012 at 07:30 PM.
 
09-02-2012   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks everyone for all the comments. It's going to take me a while to get adjusted to eating "healthy" foods. Yesterday I still ate a peanut butter sandwich for lunch with a few pringles and milk. Then dinner I went to Subway and ate a turkey sandwich (not very filling, but I take it that you have to wait for your stomach to adjust to not eating as much food!)

I've already drank like 4 bottles of water in the last 2 days which is more than I've drank in the last 2 years haha. My parents are also wanting to try to start eating healthier because they're pretty much in the same boat as me, so we're going to try to start eating better together.

Also I just walked 20 minutes on our treadmill (which was completely hidden under books and stuff being hoarded! `-` Mom) and by the time I finished my legs felt like jelly and I sucked down another bottle of water x_x;

Tomorrow me and my parents are going to try and sit down and look online at things we might want to eat/drink/snack on and try to make a "menu" for our family to pick from.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I do have another question though, what kind of green tea do you guys drink? As for restaurant tea here, yes it's loaded with sugar~ THIS IS THE SOUTH! lmao.
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09-02-2012   #9 (permalink)
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Portions are always tricky to get used to since restaurant portions are, usually, significantly larger than an average meal, that's why if you do eat at restaurants you should eat half or less there and take the other stuff home. (That's what I do at least.)

Also important with a diet is to not quit eating certain foods cold-turkey. The problem with this is that if you do happen across a situation where you have to eat your problem foods, you're likely to overindulge. The goal, rather, is to wean yourself off of them. Eat a peanut butter sandwich once a week, then once every other week, then once a month, then once every other month, then hopefully by then (or even before?) you'll have found a substitute that is better for you. (Of course, peanut butter and bread isn't terribly bad for you since there's a lot of protein and good fat in peanut butter.)

I can't really give you advice on green tea since I personally prefer sweetened iced tea, but I can recommend to you Honest Tea brand teas. Most of their teas are either unsweetened are very lightly (like 6g of sugar per bottle rather than the 20+ of other brands) and are organic. Or you could just brew your tea yourself if you really wanted to.
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09-03-2012   #10 (permalink)
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Buy green tea and make it at home, either using teabags or loose leaves.

I drink three different kinda at the moment, a loose leaf one sweetened by the flowers 'Sweet Osmanthus' (IMO it doesn't make it sweet at all but that suits me), another loose leaf one called 'Gunpowder' (named because of the way they roll the leaf) and an organic bagged green tea.
You can sweeten it yourself using honey or a little sugar if you can't stand the bitter taste. Personally, I drink it unsweetened, but I like it that way.

You can also drink bagged green tea's that have flavours added, such as blueberry/pear etc (or at least you can buy it here in UK) and still get the health benefits from it. As for brands etc, I don't know what you can get over in Americaland, but I'm sure there will be a fair selection in any food store.

If you're drinking tea in a restaurant can't you ask them not to add sugar/sweeteners and then add it yourself? Here, we get the drink as it is without sugar and then can add it if we like, unless you're getting a flavoured drink that they use syrup for.


If you're interested in green tea for the health benefits it provides, but don't like the taste etc, you can always take green tea supplements, which has all the ''good stuff'' in a tablet. My mom takes them since she doesn't like the taste of the tea. But you should speak to your doctor etc before taking them (eventhough they're not harmful, I'm just reading that off the bottle :P)
You can also break the tablets and use the powder inside to make it into a tea, but I find the taste is really off, lol
 
09-03-2012   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mega
Thanks everyone for all the comments. It's going to take me a while to get adjusted to eating "healthy" foods. Yesterday I still ate a peanut butter sandwich for lunch with a few pringles and milk. Then dinner I went to Subway and ate a turkey sandwich (not very filling, but I take it that you have to wait for your stomach to adjust to not eating as much food!)

I've already drank like 4 bottles of water in the last 2 days which is more than I've drank in the last 2 years haha. My parents are also wanting to try to start eating healthier because they're pretty much in the same boat as me, so we're going to try to start eating better together.

Also I just walked 20 minutes on our treadmill (which was completely hidden under books and stuff being hoarded! `-` Mom) and by the time I finished my legs felt like jelly and I sucked down another bottle of water x_x;

Tomorrow me and my parents are going to try and sit down and look online at things we might want to eat/drink/snack on and try to make a "menu" for our family to pick from.
Sounds like you're on the right track! Just keep it up and in your next check-up you'll see a significant improvement in your health.

If I could make a suggestion on foods, build a plate knowing what you need for the rest of the day.

If it's for breakfast, you're going to want to start with some proteins and fiber to get the day going: eggs with toast, peanut butter with bread, a bowl of yogurt and granola with a small baggie of toasted nuts to-go.

For lunch, you can think about some of the more filling options like maybe a grilled sandwich (try for chicken or fish as the main protein) with some lettuce, a slice of cheese, and some tomato with just a bit of mayo if you prefer. Pair that with a small bag of chips (not too greasy -- Sun Chips are a delicious choice!) and a nice tall glass (bottle) of cold water and you're good to go! If you have more time to cook, maybe make a bit of Spanish rice with half a grilled chicken breast cut into strips, with some salsa and shredded lettuce. Delicious, easy to make, and satisfying.

Mid-way through you'll probably be a bit hungry again so have a low-calorie granola bar or a small bag of treats (more nuts, maybe some small vegetables, crackers and peanut butter) and drink water throughout the day to help keep you satisfied.

When it comes to dinner, you might want to be more mindful about the calories you eat since you won't be very active afterwards so start with a salad (don't douse it in dressing; I usually enjoy mine dry with some mandarin oranges sans the syrup for the extra sweetness) then finish off with a small portion of grilled fish or chicken and some steamed vegetables (I usually pair carrots with fish). Do a little pan-seared Swai fillet (affordable and delicious!) with some lemon and just a bit of butter and that'll do the trick!
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09-03-2012   #12 (permalink)
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An easy trick is to water load. When you're craving but it's not meal time yet, just drink water. If you want a snack, just drink water. If you think you're eating too much, just drink loads of water beforehand. It helps quell the hunger and cravings. And it's simple to do!~
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09-04-2012   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Torikakae
An easy trick is to water load. When you're craving but it's not meal time yet, just drink water. If you want a snack, just drink water. If you think you're eating too much, just drink loads of water beforehand. It helps quell the hunger and cravings. And it's simple to do!~
Just know when your body actually needs nourishment. If you're going to be doing a lot of things, maybe it's better to get some extra food in you. I've done that water loading thing before while also portioning my meals (bad combination if your body is still getting used to it) and it wasn't very comfortable for me. The water loading idea is what makes eating a salad as an appetizer a good idea -- the leaves and vegetables have a good amount of water in them to help ease your cravings while you're eating, making you less susceptible to over-eating.
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