Being 60+ But Move and Feel Like age 80+ Most of the Time!

Monday, March 28, 2011

I didn't really become obese until about 15 years ago when I was going through my divorce after 26 years of marriage to my college sweetheart . . .It was the beginning of a slow weight gain due to not really caring about myself anymore (depressed) and falling into really bad unhealthy habits. It was the first divorce in my family and I didn't find much comfort or support from my Mom and Sisters and I sure could have used some. They made me feel like I was less of a person being single and unattached plus I had three teenage sons to fully support as their Dad hadn't worked the last 10 years of our marriage. . .

I wasn't really slim even 15 years ago but weighed about 170#s but being tall I think I still looked pretty good in clothes and I then I didn't have any healthy problems and could get around well. For one of my sons college graduations I had to walk the length of a couple of football fields and I sure didn't have a problem doing that. But, now I wouldn't even try doing that as it would be so hard doing with a walker, huffing and puffing the whole way. . .plus my back and knees would be killing me and I'd have to sit down every couple steps or two . . .

Today I weigh 273# and that is after a 21# weight loss with SP. Yes, I was and am not very far from the dreaded 300# mark.

Before I retired, due to poor health, at age 61 I worked for 25 years for the City's Recreation Department and with my weigh gain I must have weighed around 250# then. . .I would always get embarrassed and hate it when they had to take my picture for our Quarterly Recreation Classes Brochure as I sure didn't look like I had taken any of the wonderful exercise or activity classes we offered--I was morbidly obese by then and didn't look nor could I participate in many of the exercise classes as before I retired I was barely getting around with a cane. . .my walker came later.

While working, I would get up around 5:30 am and Diet Pepsi started out my day with usually no breakfast. I would come home for lunch as my office was only 5 minutes away and drink more Diet Pepsi and not eat. I usually got home at night around 6 pm and was ravenous and would start eating all the junk food I could stuff in my mouth as I was so hungry and couldn't wait until I prepared dinner. I would eat a huge dinner and within a couple of hours I would go to bed often with an unhealthy snack in hand. I drank Diet Pepsi's all day long . . . My only exercise was doing housework and walking around the grocery stores or good old Target. . .I was a couch potato for sure and it showed!

When I retired I was up to 260#s and by that time I had two bad knees, a weak back, diabetes, and a slew of other medical problems. I looked puffy and fat and really got so I didn't really care about keeping myself up anymore--and to think I was the one that used to not go outside without makeup on and my hair combed in case a neighbor might see me. I now wear shifts and loose dresses thinking maybe it hides some of my fat but there is no disguising it when you weigh almost 300#s!

As a result of becoming morbidly obese I go around the house in a walker as my back and knees are both bad and it throws off my balance and I can't stand long unaided. If I'm going out for a short time with a friend and I know it won't involve me taking steps or stairs I usually can manage going with my pronged cane. I have turned down lots of invitations to go somewhere because I'm scared that there will be too much walking involved or steps/stairs that I'm afraid to even try. This is definitely not the retirement I looked forward to. . .I imagined myself taking exercise classes such as Yoga or Tai Chi and going on lots of great Senior Trips. . .Now, it's just easier and safer for me to stay at home--at least that seems to be my mental attitude now.

I do feel older than I am as I'm not enjoying life nearly as much as I could. I'm missing out on so many things. . .When my sweet 2 year old Grandson takes my hand and wants me to play on the floor with him I can't--as I know I couldn't get up again. When he was a baby I couldn't walk around with him in my arms and I longed to be able to do that! I want to be healthy to do things I haven't been able to do in too many years . . .

I would think my sons would be concerned about my weight but they never say a word to me about it. I know they want me around as long as possible so they must pray for me to get healthier and slimmer. . .My oldest son, age 37, is disabled and I feel very guilty thinking about possibly not being here for him as long as I want to be. Nowadays he helps me as much as I help him. . .I depend upon him to help me do things around the house . . .

I am responsible for my weight gain and know there are no excuses for gaining all the weight as it is my fault--no one force feed me but me. . .Now it's up to me to make healthy choices every day to be the best and healthiest me I can be . . .Being fat is no fun and it could kill me!

I am so glad I accidentally found SparkPeople. Even though my weight loss is slow and a work in progress I'm finally doing something about it. I usually stay pretty close to my calorie range but my weak area is doing exercise and I know it would make me more mobile and speed up my weight loss. So, that is my goal to join the 10 minute a day exercise Team and do that much and more. I do want to be a success story and get the life I dreamed about . . .It's Up to Me Now but I know I'm on the right track and will be successful--I just have to be patient--it took me 15 years to gain all this weight but I know it'll take me a fraction of that time to lose it all.

I sure appreciate all your support and the motivation you give me. I thank the wonderful and inspiring and dedicated Team Leaders--You are doing a great job! So, it's my turn now to meet these Challenges Head On and Be the Best and Healthiest Me I Can Be!

Hugs to All,


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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Jill, I certainly relate to your blogs! Chris
    2977 days ago
    Hi Jill, great blog. Thanks for sharing. That is my life in a nutshell. I put on a lot weight after divorce. My fault but could not help it. Paying the price now.
    We are both trying that is the main thing and you have come a long way since you have started.
    I know that when I opened up to myself in my blog a while ago I feel like I started to heal. I understand the feeling you have not able to do things with the grandchild. I am getting better with being able to do things with them now and they know. But still have a long way to go. I would love to be able to kick a ball around with them one day.
    take care
    Wendy emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3097 days ago
    Hi Jill, loved your blog, I too gained after my divorce, and then My health went down the tubes, I have one knee replacement, awaiting the second....We all have to deal with things in our lives, but I have put mine behind me and now enjoy life with my 2nd husband..We will do this..it just takes time to un-do all those bad habits we've developed! emoticon

    Keep up the good work my friend! I'm rooting for you all the way!

    Hugs Elaine emoticon
    3114 days ago
    Jill, you are such an emoticon person and a remarkable woman.Thank you for being there on my blogs all the time. I could always see myself in you, and now that I just read your bio-blog I know why. I guess it's all relative; Your twos look really good compared to my threes. We all have what we have for the moment. It's the change that we are working on that's important.
    I couldn'nt run with my little grandson either, so we played with his little cars on a loopy track that I set on the end of a table and he loved it, especially the undivided attention that went with it! I taught him tabletop card games such as Go Fish from when he was little and we had a great time. Being with you is probably enough for him. Just change games often enough to keep him interested. Of course your sons don't complain about your weight. They don't see it, they just see your love! All the best, dear Spark friend. emoticon emoticon
    3117 days ago

    Comment edited on: 4/8/2011 3:05:31 PM
    You are doing a super job. Just do the best you can and make the most of each day the Lord has given you. Slow and steady may not win any races, but at least we will cross the finish line!!! You are in my thoughts and prayers.
    Blessings and hugs,
    3123 days ago
    You wrote a beautiful, honest blog Jill and I enjoyed reading it. You have a plan and I know in time you will get the results that you desire. All the best to you. Have a great week. emoticon
    3126 days ago
    emoticon Your story is so similar to mine, that I had to read your Page. You have come a Long way, and the best is yet to come!!
    Thanks to Curves, and SparkPeople my life has completely changed in the past 2 years. I know you will soon be able to play on the floor with your Grandson.
    emoticon With that 10 minute Challenge you will soon be kicking a lot of extra baggage to the curb!!
    3126 days ago
    emoticon boy, in so many ways it felt as if I were reading my own story, though not divorced...but life does have its ways of throwing curve balls at you....but the weight does creep up on us and I too feel as I am over 80, though I've seen 80 year olds who had so much more energy than I do...bad knees, bad back, and it does take a toll on one.....but I can see a change in you .....a great change......much more positive attitude and a 'go get it' attitude than when we first started talking.....I know emoticon because you are an emoticon determined strong woman...who can do anything she sets her mind to do.....just look at what you've accomplished already...... emoticon emoticon
    3126 days ago
    I'm so glad to see that you are writing in the past tense. Just keep it that way. You are doing great, so keep up the good work. It's better to do just a little and be consistent than to try to do too much and injure yourself even more. You know your body best. Take care of it. emoticon emoticon
    3127 days ago
    Thanks for sharing your story! Mine is similar. Losing weight will not magically make all the problems disappear, but it does help you be able to do more things and have less pain. You will do this! Cheering you on! So what is your plan tomorrow?
    3127 days ago
    With all you have been through, it's terrific to see you're trying to turn things around and become a new, healthier you!! Congrads on the weight loss. Keep at it, with persistance and patience it will pay off...

    I too have trouble with exercise because there's always pain somewhere in this body of mine. On my last dr visit I discussed the non-exercise issue with him and requested physical therapy. I figured PT could show me what things I can and should do to help. Perhaps this would be something you may want to check out with your doctor? Just a though....

    Best of Luck my Sparkfriend

    3127 days ago
    Jill, the sentiments expressed by others so eloquently are what I feel too. YOU have really come a long way since you and I started talking a few months ago. I hear Positive statements, and YOU have lost. YOU are in there sparking and working to reach your goals. My friend, YOU can do it! I know you can! Have a joy filled day, Karen emoticon
    3128 days ago
    Jill , just facing your weight head on and laying it all out there is a great way to start to unburden yourself of the pain that is carried around by being obese.
    Now that you have addressed the problems, and I am sure you know what you weakness are, you can work on them.
    I have noticed a more determined Jill these past few months.
    That's what it takes, strength and determination.
    You have to want to be healthy and fit more than anything else.
    Congratulations on the pounds lost.
    When I read your story, it sounds like me a year ago. The only difference , I drank Diet Coke, non stop . But not any more.
    Once the weight left, the back ache left too. I could walk, even on the bad knees. Although now I am getting a replacement.
    We we like too peas in a pod.
    Jill you can lose all that weight and feel so wonderful. Work as hard as you can. You want to enjoy those grand children.
    I believe in you. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3128 days ago
  • CAZ5346
    Jill, there are many, many sparklers who are glad you stumbled onto SP. You are always there with a hug, smile and most important, a kind work of encouragement. You are an awesome lady who will keep on losing because you have the will to do it. Great blog.

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

    3128 days ago

    You and I are in the same boat. You have lost 21 pounds while I have lost none. Be proud of that. You are motivated. These dentures have caused me pain and depression and that led to eating chocolates. I'm afraid to step on the scale. Your blog has re energized me. I'm tired of feeling eighty. I'm 69 and it is now or never. Thanks for this open and honest blog. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3128 days ago
  • GRITS46
    Jill, what a poignant story of the changes that have taken place. When we reach 55 or 60, it's time to start thinking about healthy vs. anything else and yet circumstances can send us in the opposite direction. I'm so proud of you for realizing the changes you need to make, and for the 21 lbs. you've already lost. And you can do it! Together, you and I (close in age, both with some disabling joints, etc.) will get with the execise program doing what we can according to our bodies and we will eat healthy and track our food, TOGETHER!!! That's what SP is all about -- TOGETHER, TEAM WORK, PEOPLE CARING FOR EACH OTHER! I love it, and I love you!

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    3128 days ago
    emoticon for sharing. 21# woohoo emoticon I loved the 10" challenge- I had to do 1 minute tnen 2...now I can do the whole 10" at one time most days(we are 23 degrees so my arthritis is its own challenge. ) emoticon and my emoticon emoticon
    3128 days ago

    Comment edited on: 3/28/2011 2:50:45 PM
    Wow look at what you have done so far! Great start and progress - you will be there again with more news soon and I look forward to reading more about it. I hope I can blog the same loss you have also. Take care of yourself - by the way I could just barely do anything and went to Tai Chi anyway - met a leader that goes slow! There is chair Tai chi also - so you can still do it. I can keep up with the class and my neighbor who is over 300 pounds can now do it. Keep thinking positive and do a little bit each day - the good thing about the Tai Chi is that it helps with balance.
    So I'm looking forward to hearing about when you get to all your dreams again. emoticon emoticon
    3128 days ago
    I appreciate your sharing, Jill. I'm sure it is painful. Few things...

    1. Stay on track with your exercise. Regular, daily if possible.

    2.Watch your diet, seek the help of a nutritionist if possible and STICK WITH IT!

    3.Read the blogs of people like EMMABE1 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage.a

    She and others who overcome tremendous obstacles to improve and lead others will inspire you.

    4. Think back 15 or more years and how you felt in your body. Visualize and experience that feeling in your mind. Realize that it can be yours again. Visit this place every day for 5 minutes. Enjoy being back in that body. no walker, no aches and pains. Imagine playing with your Grandson o the floor in that 170 lb. body. This can be your motivation to become healthy.

    5. Good health is not a state, it is a lifestyle. You learn to ENJOY that lifestyle and disregard your old lifestyle of inactivity and poor diet. Don't reject it... that will just give it more power. Ignore it because those unhealthy habits deserve NO attention. Focus on the good.

    Think about this, Jill. And act.

    Anyone else? Join in and let's help Jill enjoy her amazing life.

    Stay strong,
    3128 days ago

    Comment edited on: 3/28/2011 1:03:33 PM
    At our age (I will be 60 in Nov.) it doesn't become cosmetic to lose weight, but a dire necessity. I too am a single mom to a teenage son. He is an athlete and his mom is a slug! BUT, I want to feel healthier, and have him be proud of me. I am sure proud of him. I would like to be there when he graduates from college, gets married, has his first child, etc. Since I was an "older" new mom to start with, I have a deficit to overcome. We can do this!!! It may have taken 15 years to put the weight on, but it won't take that long to take it off (maybe only 5 years!!!).

    PS - I was 165# when I got married (I'm only 5'5") but my divorce & custody battle put 60# on me.
    3128 days ago
  • EVELYN5877
    At about 200lbs I have about 70lbs to loose, I think its great that you are so determined to beat this. I don't know if this will help or not, feel free to ignore it. I have dieted half my life, although I was thin as a girl and in my twenties, I'm 60 now. I have tried everything, and although I always lost the weight, within a year I'd be heavier than when I started. I was widowed last year, and felt that the tomorrows were running out and I needed to do something to control this once and for all. Then I found Paul Mckennas' I can make you thin' book and hypnotherepy CD. It revolutionised the way I felt about food and myself. The CD reinforces it. Finally I am steadily loosing weight! I eat what I like, when I'm hungry. I actually now believe I will be slim again! Hope this helps. Good luck.
    3128 days ago
    You are going to make steady progress, Jill. We are all in this together, and you know you can do this. You have the motivation. I'm inspired by your progress.
    Twenty-one pounds is a great achievement.
    Keep at it. Just keep at it.
    3128 days ago
    Twenty one pounds! That's amazing! Facing those demons is hard, and I admire you for that. Maybe you can't walk far or do alot of physical things yet, but you can do things to show yourself love and make yourself feel worthy. Don't think your life has to wait until you reach a goal weight. You are so much stronger than you realize! emoticon
    3128 days ago
  • BETHV10
    I have no doubt that you can succeed. It won't be overnight as we all have put it on over many years. The only thing that matters is that we NEVER give up. Life has a way of sometimes beating us up to where we just get so tired of trying. However, you have 3 wonderful sons that need you and love you as well as a grandson. You deserve to be healthy and enjoy your retirement. I don't really like to exercise either, but I try to do something everyday. Every little bit helps us. emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3128 days ago
  • SHELLEY147
    Before I read your blog today, I wrote my own version of an overdue blog. :) I loved how honest and open you were...you WILL succeed on your journey Jill!! ~huge hugs~
    3128 days ago
    You are off to a great start by recognisin yourself and not making excuses. Yes you can do it with sp and friends help. I look forward to future blogs telling us of your progress.,Ree emoticon
    3128 days ago
  • SAGE150
    Baby steps. Start with what you can do and slowly and safely challenge yourself with new things each week. If you can't complete a task, do half and start from there. You can do this. It might be helpful to look upon it like gradually training for and actively participating in the marathon of your life. You can't afford not to change if you want to be around to enjoy your own life and spend quality time with your family without such physical limitations.

    You can do this!

    Sage (from Emotional Eaters)
    3128 days ago
    Hi Jill, thanks for a great blog post. Very inspiring.
    emoticon and you will.
    3128 days ago
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