So as the title says I'm nearly 400 pounds around 380 to get a little closer, I'm 6"4-5' 20 going to be 21 so i feel like that young enough and have no idea what to do. I've tried going for runs and jogs on treadmills but at this weight my heart literally feels like it will explode at one point seeing a heart rate of around 240 I think and just couldn't go any longer and had to go sit down. I would do something a little more fun like football but I tore ligaments in both my ankles when I was younger so I don't know if this is a good idea. I was doing weight training at the school gym but there leg press only went up to around 300 and with my weight already I felt no resistance. I wanted to know about the incline/decline/benchpress but wasn't sure I should do it because I dont have a spotter and my upper body is unusually weak when it comes to benching like I can lift up trees that weigh a good amount but only bench a fraction of that. How can I start getting into the habit of an exercise routine at this weight any help will be most apreciated.

  • 6
    You lose weight not by exercising but by eating fewer calories than you burn. Since you have gotten that heavy, your nutrition must be horrible. You need to completely change it - in a good way, not starving yourself to death or eating food you hate. Think long term, this can take several years. Relearn how to eat, have a smallish and healthy deficit and maybe in addition you can work out a little bit. I've seen weight loss work perfectly well at about your weight without medical assistance, but since we are strangers on the internet, I have to say consider talking to a professional.
    – Raditz_35
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 10:20
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    You need to talk to a medical professional first, and make sure that whatever you start doing, you are healthy enough to do. They can also assist with programs, nutrition, etc.
    – JohnP
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 14:19
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    @Raditz_35 make that an answer!
    – G__
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 14:30
  • @Greg I would consider it if it was the question. Ironically it would be off-topic then. However, since I have no exercise routine or motivation strategy to recommend/I could write an answer about how you can start with any weight you want on the bench press no matter how weak you are, but other people here are way more qualified - I kind of don't want to this time and instead rather just point out the fallacy he has fallen into
    – Raditz_35
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 14:45
  • @Raditz_35 bah, technicalities! But technically correct I suppose.
    – G__
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 17:36

2 Answers 2


A few things:

1. You'll need to adjust your eating habits

The most important thing about losing weight (in my opinion) is nutrition. The reason you've gained this much weight is probably bad nutrition so I advise you to start eating more healthy foods and cut down on foods that are high in calories.

2. Working out

You won't instantly need to start going ham on your workouts. Your body will need to get used to working out. Even going for 1 hour walks will make a significant difference in not only reducing your bodyweight but regaining the ability to do both strenght- and cardio-type training.

When you've done this for a little while you can start doing more intense workouts. You'll need to find out when this point comes for you, this could be within a week or 2, but it could also take a bit longer.

3. Do something you enjoy

In order to succeed in losing weight and staying at the goal weight you might set, you'll need to find something you enjoy doing. If you enjoy cycling, do that, if you enjoy bodyweight training, do that! As long as it is some type of physical exercise you enjoy, you'll be losing weight, getting more healthy and keep going at it :)

4. Don't worry about numbers

Last but not least. I don't think you should be staring at numbers to determine if you're successful or not. If you're feeling better, you're doing great. If you like the way you look? You're doing great! There is no need to say "I want to weigh X-amount" or "I want to run 10 miles in X-amount of time" and not be happy untill you reach this number.

And the optional extra, finding a workout partner!

Some days it's just hard to find motivation. On these days it can help a ton having a partner that can get you off the couch and into the gym! A training partner can also help if you don't know how to do certain exercises properly because you can't always see everything you're doing. Because of this I'm a huge advocate for workout partners.

I hope this helps!


It's not about good nutrition or bad nutrition, the most important thing for loosing weight is to reduce calories. I would use a calorie tracking app and a kitchen scale and write down everything you eat, go 3-400 calories below your maintenance rate and you'll loose weight at a steady rate.

  • @MJB it really does not matter that much unless you decide on some extreme version of diet. As long as you eat in the normal carb fat protein percentage you are good if your focus is weight loss. And that should be it if you weight 400 pounds. Calorie reduction is the only thing that matters and works Commented Mar 19, 2018 at 12:20
  • Ofcourse it matters! Are you seriously implying that eating cheese burgers and pizza's is a good way to lose weight as long as you stay under a certain amount of calories? Yes it will make you lose weight if you eat little enough, but it's not healthy! That's what we're pointing out here.
    – MJB
    Commented Mar 19, 2018 at 12:23
  • @MJB absolutly, people try to make money by selling nutrition and weight loss as something more difficult than it is. I want to see studies that prove that eating pizza is bad for you long term health but controlled for body fat. The single most unhealthy things is being overweight and most of unhealthy effects of nutrition are directly linked to that Commented Mar 19, 2018 at 12:29
  • It's not hard to find a milion studies showing that eating saturated fat (i.e. every fastfood known to mankind) increases the risk of high blood pressure, increased cholesterol levels, several types of cancer etc. I don't think you know what I mean by "good nutritoin". I'm not saying he or she should buy weight loss shakes, thats not good nutrition. Good nutrition means eating a veriaty of natural products like vegetables, starches, nuts, fruits, and not eating to much of it.
    – MJB
    Commented Mar 19, 2018 at 12:51
  • @MJB thats why I asked for specific studies which control for weight. Which proved that these specific food is responsible for bad long term health not body fat. Even if that would be the case long term effects are trumped by short term effect of obesity, if you weight 400 pounds the goal should be to reduce weight which is done by calorie reduction. You can still switch to a more expensive 'healthy' diet but this will not make you lose weight, only calorie reduction will. Commented Mar 19, 2018 at 13:19

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