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wolfedrev

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CW: potential weight loss

My fiancé is a SSBHM who weighs somewhere around 550-575 pounds. He works from home on a standard weekday 8-5 schedule. While he is not a feedee, he is an inveterate snacker. In the 4 years I’ve known him (3 together), he has gained 150 pounds.

I love his luscious, soft, round, cuddly, handsome body and make sure he knows this. However, his mobility and size issues are beginning to seriously impact his happiness. He grunts in pain every time he stands and is winded when walking from one room to the next.

Yesterday, he took a bath in our jacuzzi style tub and was nearly unable to get out. He wasn’t stuck from size, but from an inability to stand. There is a bench in there he uses when showering, but we got this tub specifically because can fit in it for a bath. It took 15 minutes and lots of crying and swearing for him to get out, and the relaxation of the water jets was totally undone.

We then went to have dinner with friends, the first time we have seen friends since quarantine. He usually wears sweatpants or gym shorts around the house, but wanted to wear khakis. The pair that fit him at Christmas did not fit only 5 weeks later. Then he was barely able to get up the 6 (steep) stairs at their house.

Today, his office chair (rated to 650 pounds and only 4 months old!) broke while he was playing an MMORPG, causing him to fall on the floor. I was asleep, but thankfully I heard him yelling for me. It took 30 minutes for him to get up from the floor. He was uninjured, just sore- but now he is stuck sitting in a camp chair that, while reliable, is too low for his desk.

He runs online games all but 2 nights a week, too, so he spends the vast majority of his time sitting in that chair. This same thing happened only 5 months ago, and it caused him significant shoulder pain while we waited to get the new (really crappy!) chair that broke today.

What little time we spend in the living room (about 2 hours a day on weekdays, more most weekends), he is in a recliner that is stuck at half-recline. We were saving for a new, higher weight rated recliner, but that money is now perforce going to the 800lb-rated, 7 year warrantied office chair we hope to get soon.


He is doing a low-carb diet, but no exercising. His weight has still been creeping up. He has had lab work done, and his testosterone and thyroid levels are fine. While I love his size, I know it is affecting his quality of life very negatively, and want to help him regain his mobility as much as possible. He is also outgrowing clothes, and they are expensive to replace. I gladly act as caregiver for both him and his elderly mother, but that means that I don’t work outside the house right now, so money is tight.

Problem is, he is unable to lift more than 15 pounds (botched surgery long ago), and his knees are so shot that doing much of any walking is agonizing. He wants to join a gym with a pool, as that will allow him to regain his stamina. But between his type 2 diabetes and my type 1 diabetes, he doesn’t feel safe doing that until the whole COVID thing calms down. (Our area never really went into lockdown and still has HUGE numbers of new cases.)

To be more clear, weight loss is something he would like, but he views it as more of a hopeful side effect of just rebuilding his stamina and regaining some mobility... because he would like to be able to fit in a car to drive again, especially if I am hospitalized again like I was 7 months ago (diabetes is stupid).

Until he does feel safe going to a pool, does anyone know of any exercise type things he can do at home that don’t require walking or standing?

He is also very down on himself as a person because of his inability to do much to help around the house. I am perfectly glad to do basically everything and reassure him of this whenever the topic comes up, but it doesn’t help much. Before his divorce 15 years ago, he was a stay at home dad and took delight in keeping the house tidy. Other than offering constant reassurances and making sure he remembers his psychologist video chat appointments, is there anything else I can do to let him know that he is loved, valued, and just *enough*?
 

loopytheone

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There are certain exercises you can do whilst seated. Those are usually targeted at the elderly or arthritic but I have found they are useful for people with other joint issues like the pain he describes. I can look into finding some resources about it, if you like? I don't have any links or anything off the top of my head, but that might help.

It is odd that with a low carb diet he is gaining weight so fast though. I know his hormones have been checked but could some of it be related to fluid retention or edema? Just a thought. Especially if he is diabetic.

I would absolutely agree with them about not risking going out to a pool and stuff in the current health climate though. It sounds like you would both really struggle with getting that virus, and it isn't worth the risk.
 

agouderia

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How old is your boyfriend? Because that plays a significant role in assessing which level of mobility can be reached and which methods might be helpful.

Loopy's point regarding fluid retention with an extremely sedantary lifestyle is an important one that should be checked is addition to deciding on measures to increase mobility.

While I personally believe that swimming is the "heal all" solution to almost everything in life - I have trouble seeing putting that into practice under the circumstances you describe - regardless of Covid19.
If your boyfriend already gets winded going from one room to another - how high a hurdle is getting into the car, driving to the pool, moving around on the grounds there before climbing into the pool itself and out again, and that 2-3 times per week to have an effect, going to be in reality?

Before targeting that, some major stamina needs to be rebuilt. Having a certain level of experience in the circle of family&friends with knee surgery/knee joint replacement - I would look into the small scale home equipment that exists to help rebuild leg muscle (mainly thigh muscles with support the knees) in the context of such treatments. They are designed to be used while sitting or reclining - and after some muscle and stamina has been rebuilt, you can look into next steps. There certainly are options to buy such devices, which aren't all that expensive, used online.

Love and acceptance are important in such a process - but in the long run they alone will not compensate endless physical and extremely reduced life options for most people. Good luck!
 

wolfedrev

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There are certain exercises you can do whilst seated. Those are usually targeted at the elderly or arthritic but I have found they are useful for people with other joint issues like the pain he describes. I can look into finding some resources about it, if you like? I don't have any links or anything off the top of my head, but that might help.

It is odd that with a low carb diet he is gaining weight so fast though. I know his hormones have been checked but could some of it be related to fluid retention or edema? Just a thought. Especially if he is diabetic.

I would absolutely agree with them about not risking going out to a pool and stuff in the current health climate though. It sounds like you would both really struggle with getting that virus, and it isn't worth the risk.

He does have significant fluid retention/edema and is on furosemide for it. He jokes (not unrealistically) the the hourly bathroom trips give him more exercise than most anything else. We live downstairs, and his mother lives upstairs, so he tries to go upstairs for us all to eat together on the nights he isn’t running a game- about 3 days a week.

if you know of any good seated exercise resources, those would be absolutely wonderful.
 

wolfedrev

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How old is your boyfriend? Because that plays a significant role in assessing which level of mobility can be reached and which methods might be helpful.

Loopy's point regarding fluid retention with an extremely sedantary lifestyle is an important one that should be checked is addition to deciding on measures to increase mobility.

While I personally believe that swimming is the "heal all" solution to almost everything in life - I have trouble seeing putting that into practice under the circumstances you describe - regardless of Covid19.
If your boyfriend already gets winded going from one room to another - how high a hurdle is getting into the car, driving to the pool, moving around on the grounds there before climbing into the pool itself and out again, and that 2-3 times per week to have an effect, going to be in reality?

Before targeting that, some major stamina needs to be rebuilt. Having a certain level of experience in the circle of family&friends with knee surgery/knee joint replacement - I would look into the small scale home equipment that exists to help rebuild leg muscle (mainly thigh muscles with support the knees) in the context of such treatments. They are designed to be used while sitting or reclining - and after some muscle and stamina has been rebuilt, you can look into next steps. There certainly are options to buy such devices, which aren't all that expensive, used online.

Love and acceptance are important in such a process - but in the long run they alone will not compensate endless physical and extremely reduced life options for most people. Good luck!
He is 51, so that mid-life metabolic slowdown is definitely in place. He does use a cane, but that is more to help with going from sit to stand, stairs, and to act as a balancing aid in case he trips or the cats dart in front of him.

The stamina to GET to the pool is an issue! He is able to get up the stairs and into my car ok, and he is only slightly more winded after doing that than he is from just walking around the house. I suspect he starts panting before the physical response makes it happen, since if the cats are being adorable in view when he is waking, he seems to be less winded 😹

We actually had some of the small scale equipment you were talking about. The problem was, his legs are still QUITE strong, just from the walking he does do. He managed to break the two pieces we had because they simply aren’t designed for someone with legs as massive as his.

I am hoping to be able to find some of the very strong “resistance bands” for a reasonable price somewhere soon. There is also a state park close by with a gently sloping beach.

Some good news this morning, though- I was talking to my mom about yesterday’s fall, and she decided to give us enough money to allow for the purchase of the new office chair. (I am significantly younger than my fiancé at 31 to his 51, and my parents both still work. Despite my mom’s previous fatphobia and both my parents’ fitness craziness, both of them love my fiancé and have expressed how happy they are for us. Dad geeks out with fiancé and I over nerd stuff, and mom geeks out with ex-theater actor fiancé about theater stuff. Familial support is very nice.)
 
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fat hiker

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At his size and lack of mobility, any exercise is going to help - more muscle will also help regulate the blood sugar and lower the fluid retention a bit. One set of exercises you can do while seated is 'flyrobics' - the stuff German airlines such as Lufthansa encourage you to do while seated on the airplane, to reduce stiffness and encourage flexibility. They teach them by video, like this one:
 

wolfedrev

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There's a lot of exercises aimed at seniors with limited mobility that can be done seated as well:

Thank you, thank you, thousand thanks! Those exercises and the flyrobics both look eminently feasible. I will look at those and will look into other, similar exercises.
 

BigElectricKat

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Yeah, no.
Funny that you should be asking this now. I was just having a dialogue with someone else about this very same thing.Desk Peddler.jpg

This is a perfectly inexpensive and easy way to accomplish both goals: build stamina and lose a little weight. You can put it on the floor, sit in a chair, and pedal to your heart's content and/or place it on a table and use it to work out the arms! The beauty of this is that it's fairly cheap to buy ($20-$30 at Walmart), it's durable, and you can adjust the tension after you've done it for a while and it gets to be too easy. Also, it being adaptable gives you all sorts of ways to put it to use. Additionally, though it's sturdy it is also lightweight.

I let a coworker borrow mine some years back and he never returned it, he liked using it so much.

As with anything, you have to be disciplined in your use of it. The wonderful thing about this peddler is that it's yours; you don't have to be bothered with going anywhere to use it. You can take as many breaks as you'd like but also accomplish whatever goals you set for yourself and you can start small. I started out wanting to go 30 minutes a day. At first I was barely able to push myself to go 10 minutes a pop. But over time, I began to get better, have more stamina, and pushed myself to two 15-minute rounds. Then later upped it to three 15-minute sessions. You can start off as low as 2-5 minutes at a time.

Whatever you decide, I wish you both the best of luck.
 

wolfedrev

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Funny that you should be asking this now. I was just having a dialogue with someone else about this very same thing.View attachment 139863

This is a perfectly inexpensive and easy way to accomplish both goals: build stamina and lose a little weight. You can put it on the floor, sit in a chair, and pedal to your heart's content and/or place it on a table and use it to work out the arms! The beauty of this is that it's fairly cheap to buy ($20-$30 at Walmart), it's durable, and you can adjust the tension after you've done it for a while and it gets to be too easy. Also, it being adaptable gives you all sorts of ways to put it to use. Additionally, though it's sturdy it is also lightweight.

I let a coworker borrow mine some years back and he never returned it, he liked using it so much.

As with anything, you have to be disciplined in your use of it. The wonderful thing about this peddler is that it's yours; you don't have to be bothered with going anywhere to use it. You can take as many breaks as you'd like but also accomplish whatever goals you set for yourself and you can start small. I started out wanting to go 30 minutes a day. At first I was barely able to push myself to go 10 minutes a pop. But over time, I began to get better, have more stamina, and pushed myself to two 15-minute rounds. Then later upped it to three 15-minute sessions. You can start off as low as 2-5 minutes at a time.

Whatever you decide, I wish you both the best of luck.

That looks wonderful! The problem with the one he tried is, he can’t get his legs that close together because of both their width and his belly. It may be useful as an arm exercise activity, though!
 

agouderia

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At his size and lack of mobility, any exercise is going to help - more muscle will also help regulate the blood sugar and lower the fluid retention a bit. One set of exercises you can do while seated is 'flyrobics' - the stuff German airlines such as Lufthansa encourage you to do while seated on the airplane, to reduce stiffness and encourage flexibility. They teach them by video, like this one:


Sorry fat hiker - but that just cracks me up that you would choose an FC Bayern Munich promotional video with Thomas Müller as an example .... 🤣🤣🤣

On a more serious note wolfedrev - I was thinking along the lines of BEK, but see your point that something store-bought like that is likely to be to small and not offer enough resistance to have any effects.

Your boyfriend would probably need something customized - but that needn't be too fancy or expensive. Maybe check with local gyms and/or bicycle shops if they have any used equipment that could be adapted or combined to do the job with a little handywork.

If he's 51 and already has major knee issues - it might also be a good prep for possibly necessary joint replacement surgery. It's important to find the right timing for such procedures -rushing them isn't helpful, but waiting too long often causes irreparable damage to mobility issues.

Regarding swimming - do you have lakes or other free-water swimming opportunities around Marietta?
Because summer is not too far off, Georgia should be warm enough - and you can achieve a lot physically in a long summer with freewater-swimming regularly 2-3 times per week. You could even turn it into some kind of challenge - like for every 10 times you go swimming together, you have like a special personal event.
Entering the water with a cane or crutches often is easier on the beach than at a pool (remember that personal experience after I broke my foot) - and it mostly offers more space than a pool.
 

BigElectricKat

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Yeah, no.
That looks wonderful! The problem with the one he tried is, he can’t get his legs that close together because of both their width and his belly. It may be useful as an arm exercise activity, though!
As a matter of fact, I got the idea of using it for arms from a documentary about WLS. They had the patient just use something like this for arms in order to get his weight down before the surgery. You'd be surprised at how much it can help. I was using mine both ways initially.
 

BigElectricKat

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Yeah, no.
Another possible route for some assistance: If he is a veteran, you can check out local veterans groups or even the VA (Veterans Administration) for assistance. I've recently been able to get a few helpful connections very recently.
 

wolfedrev

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Sorry fat hiker - but that just cracks me up that you would choose an FC Bayern Munich promotional video with Thomas Müller as an example .... 🤣🤣🤣

On a more serious note wolfedrev - I was thinking along the lines of BEK, but see your point that something store-bought like that is likely to be to small and not offer enough resistance to have any effects.

Your boyfriend would probably need something customized - but that needn't be too fancy or expensive. Maybe check with local gyms and/or bicycle shops if they have any used equipment that could be adapted or combined to do the job with a little handywork.

If he's 51 and already has major knee issues - it might also be a good prep for possibly necessary joint replacement surgery. It's important to find the right timing for such procedures -rushing them isn't helpful, but waiting too long often causes irreparable damage to mobility issues.

Regarding swimming - do you have lakes or other free-water swimming opportunities around Marietta?
Because summer is not too far off, Georgia should be warm enough - and you can achieve a lot physically in a long summer with freewater-swimming regularly 2-3 times per week. You could even turn it into some kind of challenge - like for every 10 times you go swimming together, you have like a special personal event.
Entering the water with a cane or crutches often is easier on the beach than at a pool (remember that personal experience after I broke my foot) - and it mostly offers more space than a pool.
There is a state park near us (we moved to the east of Atlanta last year to move in with his mom). There’s a swim area/beach there that might work. I’ve only seen it from afar, so I’ll have to check out the feasibility of it once it opens up. Thanks!

It helps, too, that his best friend is a personal trainer. The guy was actually training him until we moved. We now live 2 hours away from him and his gym, so while having him as a personal trainer is no longer an option, he may be able to help us get some at-home machines for relatively cheap. His gym is actually targeted more towards the elderly, which helps.
 
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wolfedrev

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Another possible route for some assistance: If he is a veteran, you can check out local veterans groups or even the VA (Veterans Administration) for assistance. I've recently been able to get a few helpful connections very recently.
He is not a veteran. He’s a former stage actor who went into health insurance work when his daughter was born, which was just after the botched surgery that gave him lifting restrictions of 15lbs. He’s had 16 more surgeries in 20 years and is missing a portion of his intestines. It’s an significant contributing factor to his weight gain and an impediment to the kinds of exercise he can do- cardio only, basically.
 

Tad

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First, it is nice to meet you WolfdDrev, and heart warming to see how your devotion and a network of family and friends helps your husband.

As to ideas, I would think that at his size almost any movement is going to be burning substantial energy and building strength. So just finding fun, even silly, ways to get him moving a bit might be helpful?

One idea that I saw in a video from a ssbbw who was working on retaining her movement, endurance, and balance* was simply getting a cheap kid's ball, and kicking it against a wall. In your case maybe the two of you could kick it back and forth. Besides having him on his feet for a bit, it requires turning the body, balancing, and moving your legs in various ways. (*balance can be really important at large sizes, obviously, since falls can be so much more harmful or humiliating)

On a related note, just get any sort of small ball like a tennis ball, and toss it back and forth. Even if he is seated it will make him use his arms and torso more than just being in front of the computer, and if he stands for a while then all the benefits of that. Or if it is more of his thing, get a nerf football to throw back and forth.

Home karaoke, because singing is good breath control/development. Doing it somewhat regularly may help with his wind a bit.

Dance with him, with him seated but with his hands reaching up to you, while you dance. He's still expected to move to the music, however.
 

wolfedrev

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First, it is nice to meet you WolfdDrev, and heart warming to see how your devotion and a network of family and friends helps your husband.

As to ideas, I would think that at his size almost any movement is going to be burning substantial energy and building strength. So just finding fun, even silly, ways to get him moving a bit might be helpful?

One idea that I saw in a video from a ssbbw who was working on retaining her movement, endurance, and balance* was simply getting a cheap kid's ball, and kicking it against a wall. In your case maybe the two of you could kick it back and forth. Besides having him on his feet for a bit, it requires turning the body, balancing, and moving your legs in various ways. (*balance can be really important at large sizes, obviously, since falls can be so much more harmful or humiliating)

On a related note, just get any sort of small ball like a tennis ball, and toss it back and forth. Even if he is seated it will make him use his arms and torso more than just being in front of the computer, and if he stands for a while then all the benefits of that. Or if it is more of his thing, get a nerf football to throw back and forth.

Home karaoke, because singing is good breath control/development. Doing it somewhat regularly may help with his wind a bit.

Dance with him, with him seated but with his hands reaching up to you, while you dance. He's still expected to move to the music, however.
Thank you! Those are fun suggestions, and since we both enjoy being ridiculous and silly, would feel so much less like “work” than the other exercises. Those are still good plans, of course, but these sound fun. Thanks!
 
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Tad

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Thank you! Those are fun suggestions, and since we both enjoy being ridiculous and silly, would feel so much less like “work” than the other exercises. Those are still good plans, of course, but these sound fun. Thanks!

I'm not saying that any of those will provide the benefits of, say, regular swimming -- but hopefully you can incorporate both, you know? A little more regular activity through goofing around, and some more planned, intense, activities.

One additional thought: since he used to be in theatre, possibly instead of home karaoke instead do some play readings together? Still going to demand breath control and maybe gets him to sit up a bit straighter and so forth? (so long as he wouldn't see that as pandering or something)

Also, being in my early 50s, I can attest that even at under half his weight, it certainly can be hard to get my butt up off the computer chair and out for a walk. Transitions just seem to be more effort than they used to be, and the instant energy to 'just do it' is not there anymore. Best of luck on helping him deal with the twin challenges of general aging and his size.
 

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