Too lazy to exercise

Donovan Grant

Monday, September 24, 2018

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Dear Donovan,

I am struggling to lose weight around my tummy and thighs, but I'm generally too lazy to exercise. I bought an exercise bike but it just sits there, unused, and I also occasionally do a few laps around my community but nothing serious. I just can't summon the energy to do exercise as I'm always very, very tired. No matter what time of day it is, I'm super tired.

I am 5'4” and weigh 140 pounds. I gained 10 pounds in the last three months alone! Most of the weight is concentrated in my tummy and thighs. Also, I can't seem to give up soda, no matter how hard I try. I will not drink it for a week and then the craving becomes so severe, that I relapse. I need some advice.

My diet is now typically Jamaican — egg and plantain and coffee for breakfast with wheat bread; for lunch it's meat and rice and vegetables, and for dinner, the same. I snack on chips and nuts. My portions are not large at all, so I don't understand why the pounds are piling on. I am 38 years old and the mother of a teenager.

I am very happy that you are reaching out for help with your weight loss programme. Gaining 10 lb in the last month is definitely not good especially if you are putting it on in the tummy and thigh areas. A large tummy has been associated with many lifestyle disorders or diseases, for example, diabetes, hypertension and heart disease. I sincerely hope that these diseases do not run in your family.

It is time to take control of yourself. At times we all lose control of our diet, exercise, motivation, love of self, etc. Over the years, I have found out that a person's lifestyle at any moment can be influenced by whatever is going on around them and also what is going on in their head.

That said, I think the first thing that you should do is really take some time to be very clear in your head why you need to lose weight and be healthy. A thought might be that you want to see your teenager finish high school and university. Also, you might not like the look of your bigger tummy and thighs. In addition, you may also be concerned about your health. With these in mind you need to make some lifestyle changes pronto.

The thing I would suggest once your mind is ready is to do a nine-night detox programme to clear the intestine and even the mind. This detox programme may also help to remove some of the cravings you are having. In addition, this detox programme will also help to get the stomach down.

Based on the the fact that you do not sound so disciplined, I would suggest that you make small changes in your diet and keep making changes going forward. If you do not continue to make changes your programme will hit a plateau at some point. For the first two weeks I would suggest that you cut your food portions in half from breakfast through to dinner. Also in some cases your lunch could be cut into two portions, eating one for lunch and the other portion for dinner. In this way it might even prevent you from eating dinner too late at night. In addition, your snacks and sodas should also be cut into half based on what you normally do on a daily basis. By cutting your portions it will allow your food calories to be reduced and will force the body to use up some of the reserved fats. This is basically how you lose weight.

You might be thinking that you are eating small portions but you might be surprised how the calories add up with all the snacks, sodas, etc. However, I am a firm believer that you should not only be eating for losing weight but also to improve your health. So the aim could still be to start introducing some healthy foods in your diet, example more fruits, vegetables, vegetable juices, soups whole grains, salads etc. In addition, you should try to take your exercise programme seriously. You should at least try and do at least three days of exercise per week. This will help to reduce calories as well as give you the “feel good” feeling.

Your programme should be adjusted after two weeks to ensure that you keep losing weight. The idea is to hopefully get this programme to be a lifestyle. Also, it might also be a good idea to get yourself a support team

Good luck!

We will answer your weight-related questions

Are you struggling to lose weight or just need some advice on living a healthier life? Tell us about your health issues and we'll have nutritionist and wellness coach Donovan Grant answer them for you. Grant has over 12 years' experience in the fitness industry and is the owner of DG's Nutrition and Wellness Centre, 39 Lady Musgrave Road. Call him at 876-286-1363. E-mail questions to clarkep@jamaicaobserver.com .

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