My mom is 35, and well into her 200's she used to eat a lot of salt and never drink water but recently I've gotten her to stop using salt and start drinking water. She wants to lose weight to build back her self confidence again.. But the problem is she has severe back issues she also tends to swell up and turn red when she's stressed or tries to do things that have to do with physical activity. She wants to work out though, any tips on what she should do in order to start losing some weight so she can do more? Like would walking help? Its pains her but she'd be willing to do it. If she walks a bit everyday is there a good chance that she'll start losing weight?
Walking in a swimming pool burns tons of calories. My orthopedic surgeon recommended it when I was recovering from a broken foot. It's joint friendly :)
That's a great start. Baby steps so your mom doesn't burn out before she starts. Maybe after changing her eating habits, she may feel better. Best of luck, we are pulling for you gals.
Just wondering if your mom has talked to a doctor about her reaction to working out (the swelling). Does she have any known allergies? The reason I bring that up is just that a friend's husband has a rare, but real, allergy (histamine response) to heightened physical activity, particularly cardio exercise that gets his heart going strong. For some reason, his immune system goes into overdrive and makes him swell and have trouble breathing the way someone with a bee alergy would if stung. He is still an active and healthy guy, but because he knows what's happening, he's learned how to exercise safely and always carries an epi-pen. Just something to think about!
I second the suggestion of water-based exercise if she can get to a point of comfort with it. It is hard, hard, when you feel ugly in a swimsuit, to make yourself go do it, but it feels so good once you're there. If it's an option, maybe see if there are any women-only facilities or classes? Call around to instructors at different places, find out if there are other things going on in the pool during the class/session, how many people are usually around, what kind of people are typically in the class. It's a good way to help become more comfortable if you know going in that there won't be many people around, and they'll be just like you. :) If you possibly can, I'd encourage you to offer to sign up too and do it with her. Even if you don't have the same needs, just having you there as moral support might help her be more comfortable and confident. You can laugh together at yourselves - that's invaluable!
Pilates might also be good, as most qualified and experienced instructors are really strong on anatomy and can help her to adapt the movements for her back. All the movements are slow, flowy, and controlled. The idea here wouldn't be weight-loss so much as to help strengthen the muscles that support her back (and the rest of her body, but particularly these), and to build confidence, so that she has a strong foundation to build on. A lot of people do pilates as physical therapy because of its focus on anatomy and correct spine support and alignment.
If you have access to one, a recumbent exercise bike might be an option. She can lean back in the chair and keep her back still while her legs get her heart rate going. She could also add simultaneous hand-weight exercises as tolerated. It's by far the most comfortable form of cardio I've ever tried (other forms will work you harder, but it's a tradeoff). If your mom doesn't want to join a gym, have her try one out in a store for just a few minutes, just to see if it feels good for her back/is a good option for her. Be sure to adjust the seat or it won't feel right. Then look into what's available second-hand - I can almost guarantee you that there'll be some out there on kijiji/online classified sites etc for cheaper than what's sold in stores. Lots of people use these for recovery from knee surgery so they come up for sale after the recovery. The pickings will probably be slimmer in January due to all the new year resolutions, but in a month or two there'll be more available. An elliptical trainer might also be an option, as it gives the motion of walking/jogging without the impact and while reducing the weight shifts on the joints.
Hope some of this helps!!!
Susan (a fellow 35-year old :) )