Well, I had my physical last week and learned a lot about what may be slowing down my weight loss. It helps to have a doctor that’s so easy to talk to and so thorough. My appointment was no different from any other physical I have had over the years; accept the nurse is well, a little different. Nurse “Newbie” had me get on the dreaded scale and to my surprise I was under 160, 156 to be exact. She continued with the rest of my vitals including my blood pressure which she did last. Nurse Newbie took my pressure and it was very high (my blood pressure is always well within the normal range). The first time she took my pressure it was 164 over 80 or something crazy I told her I never have had any issues with elevated blood pressure. Nurse Newbie told me “close your eyes and think happy thoughts let the weight of my day just melt away”. I think I rolled my eyes, not positive but I am pretty sure I might have. She left the room and the machine took my pressure 3 more times over the span of 7 minutes. When she came back I was scrolling on my phone she told me that my phone may have elevated my pressure. GIRL, I will wait for the doctor.
Dr. C came in and continued with the exam she was concerned about my blood pressure but would have me come back in a few weeks to re-check my numbers. She asked about my concerns and I almost begged her to HELP me with this weight loss slump. I told her I am exercising, eating whole foods (meaning fruits, veggies and whole grains), not a lot of processed food, drinking water, etc. She told me I was being way too hard on myself! She gave me the cold hard facts:
As women age the harder it is to lose weight. Your body doesn’t burn fat and calories like it used to (duh). The metabolism also slows down as we age (believe me I know). What I didn’t know after age 20 your daily energy or ability to burn calories drops about 150 calories a decade; you lose muscle mass and gain fat! This change becomes evident when you hit 50. If I could burn 2,000 calories when I was 20 , now that I am 50 I maybe only burning 1500 calories per day (that extra 500 calories is weight gain). Weight loss for women over 50 doesn’t just depend on the calories that are ingested each day but also on the level of your activity. The ideal formula is to exercise enough to burn 500 calories per day to lose 1 pound per week. The most shocking thing I learned was this may not be enough, as we get older and I quote “you have to make DRASTIC changes like: no bread, rice, pasta, and or very little to no refined sugar”. I may have to give up something every year as I get older. She said that’s why old people don’t have a lot of variety in their diet they had to give up everything. YIKES! I was reminded that I am menopausal which affects your hormone level and your body is trying to adjust to the changes that may cause weight gain or very slow weight loss. Oh yeah I did get a parting gift during my visit; a referral for my very first colonoscopy! OH JOY! Don’t get me wrong I am grateful for each day I am given but the struggle is real.
The good news is by losing weight slowly (yep that’s me) you will more likely keep it off because your body doesn’t have to try and adjust to rapid weight loss (rapid weight loss isn’t a good thing) you are prone to gain it all back and then some.
Do you ever get frustrated with this whole aging process? How do you combat the aches and pains while working out?