Working on losing 100 pounds (at least). Tips to stay motivated?

stugatz

Kingfisher
I need to start this thread with a little bit of weight history, as I've yo-yo'd a decent bit since late high school - this began due to the fact that I was an army brat and we moved so much, it began to get to me. Each new state we moved to I saw as a "clean slate" and I'd go crazy trying to become a cool, suave fit guy.

In 2003, I was sick of being a dumpy high schooler who got bullied (about 185-190, 5 foot 8) and one summer during a move obsessively lost weight through starving myself and exercising compulsively. I lost at least 30 pounds in the 3 month period this way, bottoming out at 155 or so. It was unhealthy, but it worked.

I'll list the rest of the times my weight went down and up, as I recently took down my history of it and was quite alarmed myself, as I'd actually forgotten how often it had happened.

2004 - I flamed out in high school cross country and got lazy, getting back up to about 170 by the time I moved again in my senior year of high school.

2005-2006 - I had a particularly bad breakup toward the end of senior year that cost me my entire social circle. I lost all hope and completely let myself go, gaining over 100 pounds in the space of a year. (I think I topped out at 290.)

2008-2010 - After working a couple of retail jobs after high school, I start at community college, bringing my lunch daily and using the college gym. I start losing weight again, and it escalates when I move a state over for university, resulting in me being around 190 by 2010, back to my "dumpy" high school weight.

2011-2015 - Put on a significant amount of weight when finding a job I was miserable at during college, but I was too afraid to leave it. I got depressed and shot back up to 260 by 2015, little by little. I more or less hovered around that weight for the next four years.

2019 - I had a particularly bad breakup (again) which motivated me to lose weight again. I lost 20 pounds in the summer of 2019, getting into the high 230s, but I soon found a job working as a bartender at a restaurant, and got too busy to keep hitting the gym. My diet slipped, and by the end of the year I was up to 250.

2020 - COVID-19 and lockdown resulted in the whole restaurant getting fired, and me collecting a PPP paycheck - then unemployment when the PPP ran out. I got bored and gained weight again, and shot up to 275 by July.

Due to family financial problems, I have just moved in with my uncle, and am newly motivated (yet again) to get healthy, but go all the way and get back down to at LEAST 200 in the not-too distant future. I am also now in my early thirties, and know very well that if I don't turn this ship around permanently before I hit 40, I will have done permanent damage to my body (if I haven't done it already). I am already back down to 268.

Ultimately, it boils down to this - I initially lost my weight in high school because I was a disaster with women, and wanted to be better. I was still a disaster when I lost the weight, leaving me just one bad breakup away from giving up and letting myself go. The weight loss almost felt like it didn't matter, and my confidence suffered immensely as a result.

As I am in a new city at the moment, I yet again have a clean slate - however, I know right off the bat that motivating myself with what it will do for my dating life isn't the right way to go about it - that's only worked in a tenuous fashion. I just don't know how else to motivate myself to get healthy and stay there, as "you'll get diabetes and heart disease" seems like it's too far off in the future to matter.

I don't like being a big dude, and yes, I feel like nobody takes me seriously most of the time, but I think I'm just so used to it at this point it doesn't sting anymore. However, becoming a fit stugatz was always something on my bucket list that I've wanted to achieve - especially in these troubled times.

It's strange facing a goal like this when you've just about done it before, and the result wasn't what you thought it would be. I don't know how to put this feeling into words.
 

kel

Pelican
My tip is to focus on getting fit and strong. You'll get lots of advice on workouts, here and elsewhere, but the essential thing is to lift heavy and consistently. I suggest you don't even look at a scale for the next year. Seriously. Focus only on going hard in the gym - increasing the amount of weight you can lift over time (which will be a lot and quickly first, and then gains diminish) - and eating nutritious but tasty food (eggs, beef, etc. - eat reasonable portions, but don't try to just eat seeds and powders and shit).

Do that for one year. The first six months you're unlikely to lose any weight. Well, you'll lose ten or twenty pounds, but then you'll stall, and maybe gain some back, and if you're hyper focused on that number on the scale that will be discouraging. Similarly, your body won't look all that different for the first six months, so don't focus on that either. Focus on two things you can actually control immediately and consistently:

1) eat a calorically reasonable about of nourishing, tasty food
2) lift heavy and increase resistance as much as possible

Any goal besides those two will just lead you astray. Focus on the process, focus on those two things, every god damn day, and weight loss and body recomposition will happen as a side effect. Seriously, do not pay attention to the scale for at least one year. Throw it away, get it out of your house, don't let it be there to tempt you.
 
I'm about the same height as you, at my heaviest I was only a little lighter than you were at your heaviest, and I'm about 10 years older.

Following a keto diet has been a huge help for me for a few reasons. Once you get into ketosis your energy levels skyrocket and so you feel a lot more motivated to exercise. You lose a lot of weight fairly rapidly--although at first its a lot of water weight--and so that helped me stay motivated to stick with it because I could see results. On top of that it forced me to seriously cut down on the amount of alcohol I drink which further improves energy levels. Its also given me much more clarity of mind than before. Buy some keto strips and test yourself when you wake up, in the middle of the day, and at the end of the day. Head over to https://forum.bodybuilding.com/. Its not just for gym rats, there's a ton of info for people like us.




If you're not working, try to get any job you possibly can, even if you're doing call center work from home. Working means less time eating.


I just don't know how else to motivate myself to get healthy and stay there, as "you'll get diabetes and heart disease" seems like it's too far off in the future to matter.


My maternal grandmother developed type 2 diabetes by her early 40s and never took care of herself after that. She lived into her mid 80s, and for the last 20 years or so of her life she was a physical wreck. She had one of her toes amputated, she was almost totally blind, incontinent, and ended up having a quadruple bypass. It was really sad; she endured a lot of hardship in her life, so I suspect she tried to find solace in food. Seeing what happened to her was definitely a motivation for me. 10 years seems like a long way off, but trust me it will come a lot sooner than you think. If you have family or friends who have weight-related health issues, think about them.

I also had a lot of mental and drug issues that needed fixing, and once I worked through those losing weight became a lot easier. If you have anything similar, then taking care of that should be your first priority, but worked on at the same time as losing weight because for a lot of people those things are intertwined.

Kel is 10000000% correct--ignore the scale. The best measure of how well you're doing is how your clothes fit.

All the best, and God be with you.
 
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Tactician

Kingfisher
Gold Member
There's a lot of great advice. I'll add:

1. Get lots of quality sleep, especially if you start lifting. If you have trouble sleeping, I strongly recommend quality magnesium. I'm a fan of "Natural Calm ionic magnesium citrate power," but cheaper stuff works especially if you take it with food. You'll sleep like a baby.

2. Drink tons of water (tea or flavoured stuff is fine. Avoid sugary drinks). This will help immensely with fat metabolism.

3. Consistency trumps proficiency. Understand that you want to change your lifestyle & identity to maintain an ideal weight for the rest of your life. It's easy to go really hard at first & end up feeling overworked after a few months. As such, I suggest you set an EASY minimum for workouts or diet that you will ALWAYS do & can fall back to if you push too hard & need a break. Without steroids, the difference between going really hard in the gym vs moderate effort is only a few % extra muscle growth. There are big diminishing returns.

4. If you're going to lift, I'd suggest getting really good at a handful of big compound movements & do those first before doing smaller movements like bicep curls. Stay relaxed & take your time to learn proper form. Understand you'll be doing this for a long time, so don't be in a rush to lift heavier. Also, it is generally better to lift a weight in a controlled, but explosive fashion vs grind through with a weight that is too heavy for you.

5. Lastly, know that we all want you to succeed & you definitely will because you're going to make a basic plan & stick to it. At the end of the day, it's just thermodynamics, so you're gonna get there. Drop us a post now & then :)

edit: p.s. Oh yeah, avoid fructose. It makes you feel like crap & is metabolized in a horrible way. Get some Vitamin D, especially thru Sunlight when available. It makes you feel awesome.

double edit: And from now on, 'fat-stugatz' is dead. You have to think of yourself as 'Fit-Stugatz' so that when you go to the grocery store & see some sugary garbage, you'll say, "Fit-Stugatz wouldn't buy this!" Or when you want to slack off, you'll say, "Fit-Stugatz loves exercising" & it'll be completely natural. It's kind of like a 'what would Jesus do,' but for health.
 
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TheMaleBrain

Kingfisher
Gold Member
There's a lot of great advice. I'll add:

1. Get lots of quality sleep, especially if you start lifting. If you have trouble sleeping, I strongly recommend quality magnesium. I'm a fan of "Natural Calm ionic magnesium citrate power," but cheaper stuff works especially if you take it with food. You'll sleep like a baby.

2. Drink tons of water (tea or flavoured stuff is fine. Avoid sugary drinks). This will help immensely with fat metabolism.

3. Consistency trumps proficiency. Understand that you want to change your lifestyle & identity to maintain an ideal weight for the rest of your life. It's easy to go really hard at first & end up feeling overworked after a few months. As such, I suggest you set an EASY minimum for workouts or diet that you will ALWAYS do & can fall back to if you push too hard & need a break. Without steroids, the difference between going really hard in the gym vs moderate effort is only a few % extra muscle growth. There are big diminishing returns.

4. If you're going to lift, I'd suggest getting really good at a handful of big compound movements & do those first before doing smaller movements like bicep curls. Stay relaxed & take your time to learn proper form. Understand you'll be doing this for a long time, so don't be in a rush to lift heavier. Also, it is generally better to lift a weight in a controlled, but explosive fashion vs grind through with a weight that is too heavy for you.

5. Lastly, know that we all want you to succeed & you definitely will because you're going to make a basic plan & stick to it. At the end of the day, it's just thermodynamics, so you're gonna get there. Drop us a post now & then :)

edit: p.s. Oh yeah, avoid fructose. It makes you feel like crap & is metabolized in a horrible way. Get some Vitamin D, especially thru Sunlight when available. It makes you feel awesome.

double edit: And from now on, 'fat-stugatz' is dead. You have to think of yourself as 'Fit-Stugatz' so that when you go to the grocery store & see some sugary garbage, you'll say, "Fit-Stugatz wouldn't buy this!" Or when you want to slack off, you'll say, "Fit-Stugatz loves exercising" & it'll be completely natural. It's kind of like a 'what would Jesus do,' but for health.
I'll add a few as well:

1. You are responsible for your actions - focus on actions and not just on "measurable goals". Let's say you want to lose 10 ponds a month. If you don't (let's say you lost only 5) this might send you spiraling toward food (as comfort).
What should guide you is your actions.
2. This does not mean you don't track and measure weight. You do.
However, if your actions don't get you where you want to be - change them.
3. Tell everyone - this creates a commitment momentum. Therefore you won't back down, because your brain is now faced with (unreal) social pressure.
4. Walk. A lot. Staying active is not just lifting. Make the habit to be "less lazy" and walking from place to place. Climb the stairs (unless it's a 40 floors building). This will also help your metabolism.
5. According to what you have written, there is (at least some) correlation between food and hardship in your life. Suggest getting professional help on that. Understanding root cause and maybe substituting it for something else may help.


Good luck
 
Every single comment I've read above is value packed.
I particularly agree with Kel because of how focused he's narrowed the process. Makes it workable.
From experience, I find that approach works for me too. Don't overcomplicate the process.

I'll add :
1) Input some variety of physical demand apart from lifting from time to time. Get some calisthenic type routine going when the weughts are unavailable or you feel yourself getting jaded. Shadow boxing ( number of solid follow along routines on YouTube) is a great way to get some cardio. I've invested in a pair of inexpensive gymnastics rings as well. A cheap tennis ball for eye hand coordination.
Your body will work to shed pounds and reallocate muscle and joint/ bone development according to the input demands you place.

2) I made the mistake of being very evangelical with my food intake previously. Maybe it works for some. ( carnivore vs keto vs vegan).
I think making sensible choices with food is the best way to go. Natural and minimally processed.
Lot of vegetables and some seasonal fruit, decent amount of protein from eggs, seafood, poultry and meat. Add some spices like turmeric, black pepper, cinnamon, and so on. Stuff that doesn't give you
chronic inflammation is a good indicator.
Eating with the above in mind made it easy for me to undergo periods of fasting because I simply wasn't hungry and yet still very functional.

3) Cultivate healthy relationships with people.
Family, small circle of good friends.
Listening to David Goggins might work for some people ( I highly respect the man for what he's accomplished) but in the long term, being around genuine good people in your circle will give you a strong internal drive to become your best version.
 

Zagor

Robin
Results will keep you motivated. You just need to push for a couple of months until you see some gains, and then you will just snowball from there.

I suggest going keto. Keto is living life on easy mode. As you personally have a lot of excess body weigth, once you become keto adapted and able to tap into that energy source, you'll feel as if you have endless amount of energy. I literally couldn't sleep at night because I has such an abundance of energy. It's a spectacular feeling. Though that tails off once you get relatively lean.

The biggest obstacle with ketosis is getting into it for the first time. You'll feel like shit for about two weeks, there's no way around it. If you can muster enough willpower to get you through that period you're set for success. When I was getting into keto I was reading a lot of literature about it at the time and therefore I was dead positive that what if was doing will yield great results. I was trusting the process and that made it so much easier.

During the spring lockdown I lost about 6 kg body fat in two months using the combination of keto, intermittent fasting and fasted training. And I was normal weigth before i started, I just went from normal to shredded. I suspect that I lost even more body fat because I probably gained some muscle at the same time. I have no metric to confirm that other than my eyes, and the fact that my lifts went up as well.
 
Whatever you decide for diet and exercise remember: little and often over the long haul. Your weight has fluctuated. You don't want to set unrealistic goals you can't maintain and be stuck in a cycle of losing weight only to gain it back. Set goals that are small and attainable and it's ok if progress is slow.
 

Chains of Peter

Woodpecker
I'll share a meal plan I used to lose 20 pounds in 2 months. Follow it religiously.

Breakfast: 1/2 avocado, 1 fruit, 3 eggs.
Between: handful of raw unsalted almonds
Lunch: 1 fruit, 6 oz portion of (turkey, chicken, fish), green salad
Between: handful of raw unsalted almonds
Dinner: 6 oz portion of (turkey, chicken, fish), 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
Optional: 1 banana, 1 tbsp. peanut butter.

**Try to fit your eating into an 8 hour window.
**Avoid sugar (candy, soda, fruit juices), bread, rice and pasta.

My exercise plan included using a Stairmaster prior to breakfast (4 min on level 4, 1 min on level 12 every 5 minutes until you hit 250 calories) and a 30 minute walk prior to dinner. I was also training Muay Thai at the time, so my activity level was much higher than the baseline prescribed by the diet. If you can't access a gym (or don't want to because of the stupid Virus rules) then maybe you can swap it out for a 1 or 2 mile walk, depending on your level of fitness.
 

bacon

Ostrich
Gold Member
I was fat before. Did all the wrong things. Drank lots of alcohol, sugary drinks, ate lots of carbs and didn't exercise. This was about 8 years ago when I was at my peak weight.

Today, I have visible abs. My lifestyle might seem extreme but it works for me. First, I don't follow a diet where I measure my food. I also don't go to a gym.

All I do is eat once a day. Most days it's a large portion of meat, think several hamburgers or an entire chicken. I do dabble in carbs by eating pizza or asian food but usually only twice a week.

I only drink water and black coffee.

While I don't go to the gym I do hundreds of pushups, lots of bodyweight squats and lift dumbbells. I got in better shape during the lockdown.

Let me give you some motivation. You are morbidly obese at your weight and height. If you do not take action now you will suffer from health complications and or reduce your time on this earth. There is no perfect diet or gym program. You just have to find a system of eating and working out the works for you. You need to develop good lifestyle habits and stick to them everyday, don't even look at ice cream until you hit 200 lbs. Good luck.
 

FullThrottleTX

Woodpecker
It's good to try different things and I've done all diets.
I remain a thin guy.

Carnviore: easy to maintain, works really well, no constipation. But you need to build in occasional cheating for sanity. Steaks for most meals are expensive...
Paleo: easy to maintain but makes me constipated. I get lots of digestive issues with the fiber.
Keto: hard to maintain, hard to get the right nutrient balance, constipation...

Carnivore is the ultimate solution for most guys. I eat two ribeye steaks a day and eggs occasionally. If I eat out, I might get raw sushi, hamburgers, bbq or something. I'm not religious about it, but I pretty much have 80% of my calories being beef.

The fasting is a fad and it'll throw you off track if you mix a diet with fasting.
If you eat enough calories (easy to do on Carnivore), you can do two meals a day without fasting and upsetting your metabolism and hormone levels. I guarantee if you fast your testosterone will drop like crazy unless you're consuming a lot of calories prior.

After you eat most of your calories in beef, most other foods no longer seem satiating, including junk food.
That should be a tell that you're on the right track. You don't need willpower when you're pounding down ribeyes cooked in butter.

You still have to watch your calories no matter what diet you're on, but I don't spend a ton of time focused on it.
I just know if I eat two ribeyes I can't have bacon or something like that unless I ran a marathon or something that day.
 
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bmw633

Robin
I need to start this thread with a little bit of weight history, as I've yo-yo'd a decent bit since late high school - this began due to the fact that I was an army brat and we moved so much, it began to get to me. Each new state we moved to I saw as a "clean slate" and I'd go crazy trying to become a cool, suave fit guy.

In 2003, I was sick of being a dumpy high schooler who got bullied (about 185-190, 5 foot 8) and one summer during a move obsessively lost weight through starving myself and exercising compulsively. I lost at least 30 pounds in the 3 month period this way, bottoming out at 155 or so. It was unhealthy, but it worked.

I'll list the rest of the times my weight went down and up, as I recently took down my history of it and was quite alarmed myself, as I'd actually forgotten how often it had happened.

2004 - I flamed out in high school cross country and got lazy, getting back up to about 170 by the time I moved again in my senior year of high school.

2005-2006 - I had a particularly bad breakup toward the end of senior year that cost me my entire social circle. I lost all hope and completely let myself go, gaining over 100 pounds in the space of a year. (I think I topped out at 290.)

2008-2010 - After working a couple of retail jobs after high school, I start at community college, bringing my lunch daily and using the college gym. I start losing weight again, and it escalates when I move a state over for university, resulting in me being around 190 by 2010, back to my "dumpy" high school weight.

2011-2015 - Put on a significant amount of weight when finding a job I was miserable at during college, but I was too afraid to leave it. I got depressed and shot back up to 260 by 2015, little by little. I more or less hovered around that weight for the next four years.

2019 - I had a particularly bad breakup (again) which motivated me to lose weight again. I lost 20 pounds in the summer of 2019, getting into the high 230s, but I soon found a job working as a bartender at a restaurant, and got too busy to keep hitting the gym. My diet slipped, and by the end of the year I was up to 250.

2020 - COVID-19 and lockdown resulted in the whole restaurant getting fired, and me collecting a PPP paycheck - then unemployment when the PPP ran out. I got bored and gained weight again, and shot up to 275 by July.

Due to family financial problems, I have just moved in with my uncle, and am newly motivated (yet again) to get healthy, but go all the way and get back down to at LEAST 200 in the not-too distant future. I am also now in my early thirties, and know very well that if I don't turn this ship around permanently before I hit 40, I will have done permanent damage to my body (if I haven't done it already). I am already back down to 268.

Ultimately, it boils down to this - I initially lost my weight in high school because I was a disaster with women, and wanted to be better. I was still a disaster when I lost the weight, leaving me just one bad breakup away from giving up and letting myself go. The weight loss almost felt like it didn't matter, and my confidence suffered immensely as a result.

As I am in a new city at the moment, I yet again have a clean slate - however, I know right off the bat that motivating myself with what it will do for my dating life isn't the right way to go about it - that's only worked in a tenuous fashion. I just don't know how else to motivate myself to get healthy and stay there, as "you'll get diabetes and heart disease" seems like it's too far off in the future to matter.

I don't like being a big dude, and yes, I feel like nobody takes me seriously most of the time, but I think I'm just so used to it at this point it doesn't sting anymore. However, becoming a fit stugatz was always something on my bucket list that I've wanted to achieve - especially in these troubled times.

It's strange facing a goal like this when you've just about done it before, and the result wasn't what you thought it would be. I don't know how to put this feeling into words.
I read your story, and you seem to be using food as an emotional crutch. That needs to addressed before you can maintain a healthy weight.
 

BCBingus

Newbie
I've gained and lost quite a few pounds over the years. I tried calorie counting a couple years ago. I ate whatever I wanted but tracked all the calories I was taking in. I went from 195 to 175. If I wanted to eat more, I'd have to exercise. While I did lose a good 25 pounds, I gained it back when I slipped up that summer because it got too hot for me to work out.
This year I tried the Keto diet and honestly, eliminating carbs and sugars from my diet has been tremendous. My hunger pangs go away when I'm on keto and I have one large meal in the middle of the day. Because it's so protein rich and fatty, I'm simply... not hungry, and by the time I am hungry, it's close to noon that next day. Maybe if I get munchy I snack on some almonds or a cheese stick. In 2020 I went from 198 down to 163. Because it's the holiday season I'm being a little lazy, (and I am not a doctor of any sort) but keto has been an amazing diet for me.
 
OP, in your post you mentioned that you just lost your job due to COVID and that you weren't able to find time to work out during your old job. For the short term, if I were in your shoes, I would find myself a full time manual labor job. A few ideas off the top of my head are working for a moving company, a tire shop, or doing roofing. In all of those jobs you'll be forced to bust your ass and you won't have time to overeat. You're still young as well and most of these kind of jobs aren't all that hard to find. When you aren't at work hopefully you can find the time and energy to go for some runs too.

Best of luck.
 
When I hear you say you got bored and gained weight... you have to make going to the gym a positive association in your mind so that when you're bored you go workout. You have to want to be there, and to get that flowing you have to start by scheduling visits to your new 'temple' -- and make a promise to yourself each time to follow through under penalty of your own conscience. We know the pain of admitting you are not living up to your potential, your post is an honest first step in the right direction. When your scheduled gym time arrives, just get dressed and go. Last minute temptations and doubts will creep into your mind if you linger. As you are dressing and walking/driving and your mind is looking for any excuse to procrastinate/ditch, remember to ask yourself: are you meant to be comfortable? What do you want more, to be comfortable in the fleeting moment or to be able to look back from your deathbed on a life well-lived and goals achieved? Remember that the pain in the gym is actually you coming closer to your goals, you could imagine each trip as a brick in the wall between yourself and sleepless nights of regret and agony. I write this as I prepare for a workout myself and looked up a related quote from Marcus Aurelius that reminds us that our nature demands of us a healthy body:

“At dawn, when you have trouble getting out of bed, tell yourself: 'I have to go to work — as a human being. What do I have to complain of, if I’m going to do what I was born for — the things I was brought into the world to do? Or is this what I was created for? To huddle under the blankets and stay warm?' So you were born to feel 'nice'? Instead of doing things and experiencing them? Don’t you see the plants, the birds, the ants and spiders and bees going about their individual tasks, putting the world in order, as best they can? And you’re not willing to do your job as a human being? Why aren’t you running to do what your nature demands? You don’t love yourself enough. Or you’d love your nature too, and what it demands of you." - Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

 

MikeV12

Newbie
Fasting is great for losing weight.
I fasted for 8 days and lost something like 23 pounds. Of course you'll gain some of it back once you start eating but if you dont gorge it is effective. Ever the OMAD (one meal a day) diet would be helpful
 
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