I quit smoking cigarettes February 16, 2008, at 1:30 p.m. Since that time, I have gained a lot of weight in less than two years. To add insult to injury, I have been busier than I have ever been in my job, especially since the Obama administration got in, resulting in many hours being sedentary.

I knew I was in trouble, though, this past week when my feet got so swollen from sitting in one position for so many hours. I could hardly walk.

Years ago, when I was younger, I used to exercise to Jane Fonda videotapes. I loved exercising with Jane and knew all the routines by heart. I also used to go to Jazzercize for a while with my girlfriend, trying to stay in shape. It was like dancing and fun.

I have always had problems with weight my entire life, but right now I am bigger than I have ever been, and sitting in the cockpit (my computer) every day for extended periods of time, trying to get jobs out, has made my metabolism slow as a turtle. Of course, being 55 doesn't help either. Oh, the joys of being a woman, especially after menopause. LOL

Well, yesterday, I decided to do something about my health. I conquered smoking, and I am going to conquer being overweight. After a lot of research, I went out and bought a HealthRider H90E Ellipitical. It will arrive in two or three days.

What do you all do to stay in shape?

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Comment by Jennie Ann on September 28, 2009 at 7:56
Well, I have had the elliptical for exactly 10 days. I can only do 60 strokes/steps, whatever you call them, before my knees start to hurt, along with being out of breath. This past Saturday, I increased to 65. Man, at this rate, it will be a long while before I can do like 30 minutes at a stretch.

What I am doing is 65 steps/strokes every couple hours. I figure it's got to speed up my metabolism a wee bit. Man, I did not realize how out of shape I was. WOW!
Comment by Lois Whitley on September 24, 2009 at 17:29
Good idea to have it where the TV is. Makes the time go faster. I either take a walk a couple times a day for 30-40 minutes, or, if the weather is too yucky, I put on some oldies music and dance. My dog doesn't laugh at me, and I feel full of energy when done. Basic eating rules for me are eat what you like but in small quantities and not every day, and exercise more. I find if I split my exercise routine to two times a day, I can deal with it better. And it's a nice break from scoping all day. Good luck to you. Keep us informed.

Comment by Jennie Ann on September 20, 2009 at 6:38
Update. My HealthRider Elliptical was delivered this past Friday. Thank goodness, I had the good sense to have it delivered and put together. I would have NEVER been able to figure out how to put this machine together. Whew!

I am so overweight, out of shape, and maybe old that I cannot stay on it longer than 2 minutes before I am out of breath. Meanwhile, my 37-year-old daughter gets on it and does 30 minutes at a stretch, burning 300-plus calories.

I am not discouraged. She said she started out like me, only a minute or two. It really gets your heart rate going. So what I am doing is 60 repetitions or 60 steps every hour or two during the day.

Sixty steps is like about a minute or two, depending on how fast you go. Hey, it beats a blank. My goal is to be able to do 30 minutes without stopping by January 2010. I am going to keep doing this until I conquer it.

At any rate, I am glad to have it in my living room in front of the TV. It is right in front of me, always inviting me to step up and FEEL THE BURN. ;-)
Comment by Jennie Ann on September 15, 2009 at 3:00
Maggi, thanks so much for your kind offer to speak to me. I am going to find a time that is convenient for us both and give you a ring!

Danette, your lifestyle sounds like mine: not enough hours in the day to accomplish what needs to get done. Then you're so fatigued that exercise is out of the question. Finding the time is the problem -- a BIG problem. I totally empathize.

Kara, I remember feeling that way about eating the wrong foods. You are right. Who wants to ruin a good day of exercise by consuming, say, a nice chocolate cheesecake with whipped cream? LOL The key is making that first step of exercising. That's the hurdle I need to jump, like NOW.

LOL at Janet about "horse and buggy." I know what you mean. It's like what they say in my billiards circles: "Stop talking, and start chalking." In other words, talk is cheap, and I need to walk the walk.

Christine, you are such a cutie pie in your picture. I will bet you can achieve your goal quickly if, like me, you just take that first step. That first step is the hardest, isn't it? We'll do it together!

LeAnne, I used to love walking my Sammy dog, but he's now got hip dysplasia, and we can't go for those long walks anymore like we used to. Yeah, I could go without him, but it's just not the same, and I feel guilty. My closet spans four sizes, and I refuse to grow into the next fifth size, if you know what I mean. You sound like you've got will power and achieve your goals. Pass the will power, please. That's what I need.

Jeanese, thanks for the invite and kind words about quitting ciggies. Years ago, before the point system on WW, I lost a lot of weight. It's a well-balanced diet for sure. That's what I like about it, and you're eating real food, not something out of a box. The most weight I ever lost was when I met my boyfriend, and I wasn't even trying to lose weight. I guess my metabolism was in a higher gear during the honeymoon era of our relationship. LOL Hmm, now that's food for thought! ;-)

KJM, The Zone Diet sounds like a great philosophy. That's the key here. Those fad diets don't work. I have to prepare meals for my family too, and it is not possible to do this on a fad diet. Man, I'd shave my head bald to lose 35 pounds right now. Bravo to you!
Comment by KJM on September 14, 2009 at 22:44
I read The Zone Diet book by Dr. Barry Sears and have adopted the carbs/protein/fat balance philosphy. What I appreciate most is that I just prepare meals for my whole family with those guidelines in mind, and I have never had to feel like I am on a diet while the rest of my family eats "regular" food.

In addition, I follow an exercise program from a book called The New Rules of Lifting For Women. The workouts are short and varied, and the results are quick. I had an extra 35 pounds lingering from my twin pregnancy, and this is what finally worked for me.

Congrats on ditching the butts! You will conquer the rest of your health as well, I am sure!
Comment by LeAnne Law on September 14, 2009 at 19:17
I sit down with a good book and ride my stationary bike for 30 minutes in the morning. I try to do that at least 3 days a week. In the afternoons (while it's still nice) I walk my dog a couple of miles. I find that if I don't eat dinner or eat a really small dinner I have the best chance of losing those extra pounds. I know I need to get back to exercising if my jeans start to fit too tight. I have fat clothes and thin clothes, but they only fluctuate 2 sizes. That way I don't let it get out of control.
And I love sweets. If I have a choice of a really great steak or some homemade cookies, I'm going for the sugar every time. LOL

And watching The Biggest Loser is great incentive. If those people can lose 10+ pounds a week, I figure I should be able to lose 1. Well, hopefully anyway.
Comment by Christine (Steno Nerd) on September 14, 2009 at 17:10
Thanks so much for posting this, Jennie! Great post! :)

I've been trying to get rid of my excess weight for a while, and I REALLY want to do it FOR REAL in conjunction to finishing court reporting school.

I go to the gym, but for the whole of my summer break, which was six weeks, I was totally on "vacation mode" and only went to the gym about twice! :( Now that school has started again, I want to go to the gym at least three times during the week and work out at least for 30 minutes doing cardio and also do weights (to speed up the metabolism).

I also need to make food "boring" and stay on a routine brown-bagged lunch. This will save lots of money and lots of calories! Because main point of how to lose weight is to EAT LESS, MOVE MORE. Doing it consistently for a prolonged, prolonged time, so this is actually your new lifestyle is the HARD THING! :P BUT many people before us have lost their unwanted pounds and got to their best physical selves, so WE CAN, TOO! :)

GOOD LUCK! ...to us all! ;D

Comment by Janet on September 14, 2009 at 13:13
OMG, Jennie, that thing looks like work!!

I hear you, believe me. I've been working a lot this year, and I don't remember the last time I went to the gym. It feels like it's 500 miles away, and I have to get there by horse and buggy! Too much work to get there! That's my whole problem, thinking about going. Instead, I should just get in the car and go, without giving it a thought.

I admire your decision to do something about it. Keep us informed about how great you're feeling. Maybe I'll join you!

Comment by Lamb Lamb on September 14, 2009 at 7:06
I thank you for posting this. I work a full time accounting job during the day from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. I go to school in the evening from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. I am overloaded with homework, studying and trying to take care of my home and family. Thank God my husband helps me a lot! That leads me to the dreaded weight issue. I have been so busy with everything that I know I am gaining weight from sitting on my butt all day. I used to go to the gym at 5:00 a.m., but I now have to get my son to the bus stop at 6:30 a.m. so there's really no way for me to get to gym that early anymore. My husband has to be at work at 5:00 a.m., so he is unable to help me with our family morning schedule. The machine you purchased was the main machine I used at the gym. I used that machine for at least 30 minutes 4 days a week and I absolutely loved it! I lost weight (15 lbs) and really felt good about myself. My back side wasn't too bad either! LOL I also completely cut out all soft drinks and drank nothing but water. I LOVE food, so I ate what ever I wanted, but smaller portions. Since I've been back in school and working I stop at too many fast food places and eat junk before I get to class. I think I am going to have to follow your lead and start saving some cash and purchase one of those. I definitely need to stop these very bad habits I have. I hope you keep us posted on your progress and I wish you much success!

Have a blessed day!
Comment by Jennie Ann on September 14, 2009 at 6:51
Maggi, it sounds like you're a success story. I will try to catch up with you, so that you can share some tips with me. THANKS!

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