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Fat Chance

I was obese and then overweight. I had a million excuses for not losing and maintaining my weight. It doesn't matter what you call your fat, but it is a health hazard and you know it.

Fortunately I survived congestive heart failure.
My cardiologist told me 57% of those that have had a heart attack don't even continue to take their medication after the first refill! While, close to 80% make no significant lifestyle changes.

I was faced with real life that day in ICU.

As it turns out, slim chance, and fat chance have the same meaning. But one is healthier. If you think you can't lose weight, you probably won't. You are welcome to make excuses like I did.

As my friend Anna always says, "I'll see you at the funeral."

Here is my list of excuses.

I don't have time. - If it was going out to dinner you probably would. Look you have time for lots of things, you need to schedule it. If working out is not in your calendar, it is unlikely that you'll win at this game.

I still have time. - You may be young enough where your food and lack of exercise is not a problem, but for most it doesn't work forever - especially past 40. Yeah, I know about your grandmother that drank a case of beer and smoked 3 packs of cigarettes a day, only ate fried food, dated 5 men at a time and lived until 145. Let me know if you make it.

Everyone in my family is fat. - Why is that? Could it be diet and exercise?

It's a cheat day. - Get out your stones and excuses about shaking up your metabolism blah blah blah. The truth is that cheaters are in the group of roller coaster dieters, from which nearly all of them eventually gain back the weight they lost the other 6 days a week.

I have kids. - Yeah, so take them for a run. I take my kid walking, riding bikes, rollerblading, running every day that it is nice enough to do so. We plan vacations near bike trails so we can ride. When she was a baby, I just put her in the front pack, or bicycle trailer. My YMCA has kids care as well.

I'm too busy. - Well, health is a choice; it might be time to make it.

The dog/kangaroo didn't eat it. - If you are full at the restaurant, you'll be tempted to eat whatever you bring home before lunch the following day. If that is the case, leave it.

I don't know what to do. - I don't know about you, but most of us here do not have degrees in health and nutrition. MFP is a good guideline for the amount of food, and balance of what we call macros: carbs, protein and fat. Here's a tip, if it is low-cal junk food, it's still junk food. Cardio which is truly healthy is when the heart rate goes above 120. This requires walking at 3 mph or possibly higher.

It's too hard to lose weight, I've already tried. - You are correct, and you've proved it. That is why you need to forget dieting. You make changes you can do for the rest of your life.

I can't afford healthy food. - I will agree that a variety of healthy food costs more. Here are some tips for saving money. Drink only water, it's free. Many grocery stores have fruits and veggies that are discounted because they are past fresh: you can buy 6 apples for a dollar, 2 peppers for half a buck, and 3 bananas for even less. Over all I find them to be a good value. Brown rice is the same price as white and better for you. You'll be eating less, usually 3-4 ounces of meat or fish. You can buy packaged ham and cheese in bulk and freeze it. The same is true for some fruits and veggies. Frozen food isn't horrible, and most canned food can be rinsed to reduce sodium content.

It's too late.  - I'm already _____ years old. - Yup, and tomorrow you'll be that plus one day. I don't get it.

I'm afraid of failure. - I have met a few folks on MFP that have a lot weight to lose (me I was close to 100). It is a daunting task, and it takes time. Read the Success Story forums and friend those folks who have done what you need to do. I find it inspiring. On average, those that work at it can lose 40-100 lbs in a year. (Yes, I am sure there are some with medical reasons who cannot and I am not talking about them.)

I'm afraid of success! - Being obese for a long period of time becomes a way of life. We set up our enablers, buy cars, furniture and even our personality changes to accommodate our physical state. I sat with a guy the other day that could not fit in the booth at a lunch place. It was sad. Then he ordered a 3000 calorie steak bomb. 

My significant other doesn't care why should I? - Most mature adults are smart enough not say "I would love you better thinner!" I suppose there are some that have spouses that like them in an unavailable state, but for the most part, our health is our concern. Losing weight has many benefits other than just looking and feeling better.

I can't exercise, there's no place for me to walk. - We need to start where we stand. The goal is eating well, and getting in three 30 minute cardio session a week in which we get the heart rate over 120. You can walk in place, by home gym resistance bands, and an array of other things. I bet you can find a treadmill on Craigslist for cheap! Just Google "clothes rack."

I love to eat. - Yup, me too. I am just enjoying eating better, and less.

I do a lot of traveling for work and find it hard to stick to my weight loss plan. - It is not an easy task to eat out all the time, but many places I have stayed at had a refrigerator and a grocery store nearby. Once you learn how to eat, you can make smart choices.

I've heard that running puts me at risk for knee problems and arthritis later in life. LOL, that's BS. But you can try swimming, use the elliptical or riding a bike.

It's just one. - One breakfast muffin is equal to two 30 minute cardio sessions.

It's the holidays. - So?

I don't cook my own meals. - It's hard to control what others do. I make meal plans with my wife. We don't like all the same things. Communication helps, and filling up with a large snack before meals is also another option. If you eat half a bag of baby carrots, you are probably not going to chow down on the fried chicken.

Well, those are the ones that I used. How about you?

Thanks for the votes and comments, I very much appreciate them.

102 votes + -


tberrycastle wrote 51 months ago:
I can relate to most of these and love that you have compiled this list of reminders. One I have heard is "I can't exercise because of my immobility, injury, etc." But I have also seen articles on "Chair exercises" so there goes that one ;-)
BexB42 wrote 51 months ago:
I have thought of many of those excuses as well. When my sons were younger, the park and walks made them tired, so it was a given to do activities, not sit in the house all day. Now my teenager has a gut form sitting down and making his choice. Think it is impossible for them to gain weight? This fella gained 45 pounds over an eight month period simply from being inactive and eating junk food in high quantities. He has the equivalent of a beer gut at 17. Do we settle? Nope, with the move, we will be routing ways to and from school in excess to build stamina for walking. If you don't have time for your or your kid's health, be aware it is a CHOICE. ;) The blogger is not being a meanie, it is pure fact.
nexangelus wrote 51 months ago:
The one about the cheat day does not add up, if you do some research, those who take a break from dieting for a couple of days for refeeds or a couple of weeks for a diet break (eating at maintenance cals) actually are more likely to succeed in losing the weight and in keeping it off...than rigid, non-flexible also keeps hormone levels where they should be (leptin, ghrelin, insulin, etc)...other than that, great blog!
dsjohndrow wrote 51 months ago:
@nexangelus the world is made up of cheat days. There are no less than 12 days a year when folks celebrate and often over eat. I am not an advocate of diets that you go on and off of. With my groups, a cheat day was too many calories and it quickly turned into cheat week and cheat lifestyle. in any case, I understand the science behind cheating. It's that most folks head for trigger foods and then it's game over.
debk0718 wrote 51 months ago:
Excuses are easy, action is not. Sadly I have a dear friend that won't even attempt to help herself. I've struggled my whole life, and sure I'm not always perfect, but I get right back to it. Eating healthy for me has been the easy part, it's putting myself on my calendar that hasn't been easy. Thanks for the reminder of the many excuses I've come up with in the past as well. Always great to read your blogs!
Laura80111 wrote 51 months ago:
Bottom line just being lazy, because all you have said takes work and determination. Thanks once again for inspiring me to be better.
Peacelily70x7 wrote 51 months ago:
Took me a life time to find what works and then sticking to it.. Good blog!
gormaniacally wrote 51 months ago:
Mine? I'm just too stressed, I need to take some "me" time....which usually meant melting into the couch for some re-run T.V. me time. Come on girl, nobody needs to see Jersey Shore again. The Jersey Shore is never a reason to skip the gym. You can't have GTL without the G. I wish I could tell past me, just exercise dummy, you'll sleep better and feel better."
lunatamara wrote 51 months ago:
Thank you. This was just the kick-in-the-ass I needed.
christydyson wrote 51 months ago:
you are funny as shit! Love it and dead on! My kangaroo ate it
PapaJay357 wrote 51 months ago:
Amen Brother, Praise the Lord and pass me my sneakers and a water bottle! Simple and easy are not always connected in my magical mind. Pissed with myself, almost had to ask for a seatbelt extender on yesterdays flight for work. That same 20lb's I've lost three or four times did not magically reappear out of thin air. The good news was the 8K steps working the trade show and some great contacts. One day at a time, just for today, the same way I beat the other vices. Thanks for keeping it real and for the boot to the back side. You are one of my heroes. ~ Peace
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Haha, thanks for that so funny and so very true.
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