Losing Weight With Chronic Pain

I began having back pain ,leg pain and burning in my 20's. I am now 40. During my pregnancy of my 2nd child my pain increased dramatically. I could do hadly anything. I gained 50 pounds. My child is nearing her 4th birthday and here I sit, still with the 50 pounds. I have 2 herniated disk in my lower back, bone spurs in my neck and the nerves in my hips are pinched. All of these conditions are worse when you are overweight. Yet, it hurts to exercise, so it is a circle I continue in. I tried Weight Watchers last year and lost 10 pounds then quit. I get frustrated by how slowly the weight comes off. I tell myself things like, 'what difference does it make. I might as well eat what I want I won't lose weight anyway.'

In December my 6 year old told me he didn't want me to come to his Christmas Party at school because I was fat. He said some of the kids make fun of fat people and he didn't want them to make fun of me. My heart broke. I cried for 2 weeks straight. Then pulled myself up and decided this had to be the year that I get healthy, not only for me but my children. I started weight watchers again, joined the gym and joined this challenge. I am going slow on the gym. 2 to 3 days a week. I was doing good with eating and then went to Bunco messed up big time and then started down my self-destructive way of thinking and ate terrible for 2 days. Today I am going to eat better and drink my water. I am going to yoga later. I am very sore today so thought it might help me feel better.

This is the first time I have ever had to lose weight like this. I feel so overwhelmed. So embarrassed when I go places. I have to fight the depression that comes along with chronic pain, much less add being overweight.
I would like to find others that have chonic pain also, who can relate with the the battle of keeping positive while you hurt so bad.


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i have been fighting pain since 1988 i also have had a heart attack and open heart surgery and i am 46. i take one day at a time, a motivational speaker said, "if you can look up you can get up", just take one day at a time. i have gained over 80 pounds so i have my work cut out for me also.
write an affirmation for the day and repeat it throughout the day, like i am going to do my best today. we can do it, it will just take us a little longer

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I too struggle with chronic pain. I am now 47 and have sciatica and herniated disks in my lower back. Last year I was bedridden for two months following a particularly bad episode that was brought on by feeling strong enough to do home improvements - I wondered if I would ever walk again. I have found that walking on the treadmill and moderate weight training are the only things that work for me. After I was injured I could only walk 2-3 minutes at a time becasue of the pain. Slowly I was able to do more, and now I'm up to 2 miles every other day; I hope to get up to 3 miles daily, but it will be a slow process. I have 30 pounds to lose and have gone up and down in the same 10 lb range for a year, I know it's because I don't limit my food intake consistently. Those of us who have back injuries need to take smaller steps than others, find something that works for us and stick with it (I tried a step workout before Christmas, something I used to really enjoy but suffered the consequences for two weeks) and increase activity slowly. Try not to feel pressured to keep up with anyone else, this will only increase your depression (I know because I too suffer depression). Change will not come overnight but it will happen. Celebrate your successes no matter how small they may seem. Drinking enough water, passing up on the Happy Meal, or getting some activity each day are things to be proud of. Last year or the year before the Biggest Loser had contestants attach weights to their bodies that represented their incremental weight loss, and then drop them at barrels that represented weeks of the contest as they ran around a track. This visual example of how hard it is to carry the extra weight has really stayed with me - it clarified for me how much of a burden the extra weight is for my already damaged body.

Stay with it! Every day will have some successes and some failures, but try to focus on the successes and don't beat yourself up over the failures. Don't expect to keep up with others who are not injured - regardless of their age. They are not you and don't have your pain. You can do this for your kids and for yourself. Good Luck!!!!!!

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I may not have the same physical pains that you do, but my mental anguish is the same. I have Fibromyalgia and Rheumatoid Arthritis - those are where my chronic pain come from. All of this extra weight that I have on my body does not help those at all!

Some of us have formed a "team" to lend support and wisdom to each other. I finally made a "home" for us and created a thread. Hopefully you will join us.

The thread is here in the Other Side of the Scale and it is titled Gotta Lose! Jan 12, 2008.

I'd love to see you there, Cat!


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I'm sorry you guys have chronic pain. It is nice to hear from others who understand, because those who don't deal with pain daily have little understanding for what we go through. Thank you. Cat

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The frustration can be overwhelming. I also have several chonic pain conditions that keep me very inactive. I too fight the depression with the chronic pain and the added weight.

Today, I cancelled going to a retirement party because I was too embarrassed to sit with the many young skinny girls. I've cancelled plans repeatly because I only have one pair of pants that fit. I don't want to be labeled as the girl who always wears the same outfit whenever we get together.

I'd love to be your contact. Maybe between us we can win the war!
Lucy 49

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I have fibro myalgia, back problems, knee problems and foot problems. It sucks I know. Before I had my twins I was losing weight and there were days where I had to just push through the pain and finish a workout. With every pound I lost the better I felt physically and mentally.

All you can do it keep a good diet and do what you can with exercise. Two steps forward one step back.

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I know exactly how you feel, my 4 year old told me today that I am too fat and lazy so he doesn't want me to take him anywhere with me, he wants to stay home. It doesn't help that his dad calls me a fat cow and a lazy so and so, etc.....

I have a herniated disc in my lower back and 4 bulging in the middle of my bak. It hurts to walk, bend, turn, etc. But I keep at trying to lose the extra weight because I am tired of my son being ashamed of me as for his dad, I could care less.

I need an online buddy to keep me motivated, would you accept???


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I have a moderate curvature of my spine that has been made much worse by carrying over 100 extra pounds. I know what you mean about struggling to find some form of exercise that doesn't cause pain! I use a reclining stationary bike, although my butt gets sore after more than 30 minutes! I am also looking for time to go to the local indoor pool to swim and walk in the pool. I used to go to a pool that was shallow enough that I could walk in the lap lane. That was great because the water supports me and provides resistance! The hardest part is always getting out of the pool and feeling all the weight again! Anyway, if you haven't already, I would suggest that your doctor refer you to a physical therapist for a consultation about what types of exercise you could do at home.

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You are not alone in dealing with chronic pain. I have 4 forms of arthritis. I have had 20 surgeries and exercising can be quite difficult. Just walk if you can't do anything else. that is what I do. I also have the disadvantage of being on Lyrica which makes me gain weight. I am having a really hard time with dieting and exercising. I just feel like I am failing. But IO will not give up.

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I recently talk to a girlfriend who had similar difficulties. you want to know what hel0ped her? Losing weight. She too, felt pain when working out. She decided to undergo bariatric surgery, no not the invasive one but the less invasive on called the lapband. You may want to check into it. It took 30 minutes for the procedure. it was covered by her insurance because it is a medical necessity. I am almost certain yours would too. If you are interested in learning more about the lapband and seeing if there are doctors in your area, go to www.lapband.com. let me know what happens! And Goodluck to you! I am certain this site will help you.

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Hi Cat,
I also have been diagonosed with Fibromyalgia. I have also found myself in that circle where you
want to do something and are hurting so bad you can't bring yourself to do anything. Don't give up you can do this. I found that working out in the pool helped me alot. ( I was embarassed of course because of my size) but I did it for my health! Not sure if your gym has this available, try water aerobics or soak in a hot tub. I know you will feel great. Forget about the looks and what not. Focus on you and your health. Take it day by day. Don't overwhelm yourself with wanting to do to much at once. Pretty soon you will begin to feel better and you will begin to do more.
I also found that the pain medication was upseting my stomach. I went to a gastronterologist who
basically prescribed some of the same medication you are taking but with an antiacid. ie.Prevacid or Zantac. I found that changing my milk from regular to lactose free helped aleviate
some of the irritable bowel symtoms.
Sorry about what happened with your son and school. I know it hurts. Don't let that discourage you.
Hope some of my advice helps you! Take care and don't lose your motivation - you can do this!
Take care and be well!
Your friend inTX.

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Cat, I fight chronic pain as well. It seems to be a common thing with overweight people. I have degenerative arthritis in my knees, related not only to my weight, but my first career in nursing. I also have problems with sciatic nerve damage. Until I loose at least 50 pounds, walking longer distances for exercise will be out. But I have started a gentle program at the community center gym. I do 10 minutes on the stationary bike, 10 minutes on the stairmaster, and 10 minutes on the treadmill, followed by 5 laps walked in the pool. Twice a week is about all that I can handle right now, but when I started two monts ago, one day a week killed me. The big trick, according the trainer at the community center is to start slow, and don't try to do too much too fast.
The best thing for you to do is to bring your doctor into the game plan. Anti-inflamatory medication may help with the pain from the orthopaedic problems you are experiencing. I have also started taking over the counter supplements (Osteo Biflex, or its equivalent) which seems to help some with my knees.
Check with your local community center, or Y for a water aerobics program. It is very low impact, and lots of fun.

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I also live w/chronic pain & depression. My pain started in March of 2000 when I injured myself in the military. Keep your chin up ladies!

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