Tackling diets and weight loss first the science shows that it's nigh on impossible to lose weight quickly and keep it off. For example, around 95% of people that lose weight through calorie restricted diets (the most common of the quick weight loss approaches) are the same weight as they were at the start, or heavier within a couple of years. All that hard work just to get straight back to square one within a couple of years. They don't tell you that on the advertising! Why does it happen like this? After you've lost the weight you start to eat normally again and the weight goes on, no matter how much you exercise or how carefully you think you're eating. Most of the time it's not your fault - the advice you've been given is wrong.
Exercise regimes that promise 6 packs in 4 weeks are also an interesting one. I've not seen any scientific evidence on this, so I'm purely speaking anecdotally here, but I'm not a fan. I'm sure that if you stick to their rigorous program and work as hard as you can every time you have to work out you can lose weight and maybe even get a 6 pack - if your nutrition is spot on too. However, in my opinion there are 2 fatal flaws to these sorts of programs. 1 - They rely on the public being able to exercise correctly and push themselves to their limit everyday for a number of weeks. I'm not sure about you but I don't think I could work out that hard every day, let alone someone that hasn't exercised for 20 years. Ever heard of recovery periods? And on the point about recovery periods, a lot of people that I've spoken to that have tried these sort of get fit quick programs usually end up not completing them due to tiredness, illness or injury. That's my second point. I'd be willing to bet a fair sum that most of the time (not all) the tiredness, illness or injury is caused or exacerbated by the workout program. Working your body literally to failure.
So, a bit of science and a bit of anecdotal evidence and opinion. That's what blogs are about surely? But what other option is out there? There's one option that I see working day in, day out and all it requires is something we're getting a bit short of in our current, fast paced lives. Patience. Patience in the key. With your nutrition you need to change things slowly so that they become habits and your new way of fuelling your body becomes the normal - you can't revert back to 'normal' because you've changed what 'normal' is, rather than going on a short term diet. Fitness wise, slow steady progress will help keep injuries at bay, keep you interested and be achievable around the other important things in your life. Also, it doesn't have to be hard work to get fitter and healthier. I work out 2 or 3 times a week in the gym, play sport a few times a week (and that's not work, it's play), am conscious about fuelling my body correctly (most of the time) and am the fittest and healthiest I've ever been.
Lesson for today - ignore the pressure of immediate change. Take your time and enjoy your journey to health and fitness - you'll be more likely to succeed in the long term.