Water aroebics works wonders. I've recently been diagnosed with osteoarthritis of knee. Except I'm 42 for crying out loud! I highly suspect it's related to my taking Prevacid for 5 years (the reason I'm here). Anywho, the water aroebics and palates are very easy on your knees. Look up the pilates website and order the ring and video tapes. I joined 24 hour fitness for the water aroebics. It's worked wonders for me and I'm not a small woman myself. I also joined Jenny Craig about 3 weeks ago and I've lost 12 pounds already. You need a combination of soft excercise and a diet plan. Jenny or Weight Watchers are very helpful. Especially Jenny since you have to follow a daily meal and calorie plan. I know a 65 year old woman with rhumetoid arthritis and she doesn't look or feel a day over 45. Her words ring in my head daily..it's all in what you eat.
Jenny Craig and WW are great, if you remember the programs are teaching you how to eat for a lifetime, not just while you're losing weight. My Mom did Jenny Craig and did extremely well, but once she hit her goal weight she didn't keep up with the extreme portion control she needed to maintain, and gained it all back.
Anyway, if you can't afford JC or WW, there are some free online calorie/exercise tracking tools. A good one is on the Lance Armstrong web site.
IMO, cycling is a good exercise even if you have knee problems. Before my father-in-law had his knees replaced, cycling was his main form of exercise - walking was too painful. His doctors encouraged him to keep it up and as a result his surgeries went very, very well. He still cycles, and can now play golf and dance with his lovely wife without pain. He's the poster boy for successful knee surgery. :)
Water exercise, like Smith says, is also a great option, maybe something you can alternate with cycling as part of an overall fitness program. Very, very light weight training with something like a nautilus machine could be doable, as well, with your doctor's advice.
Good luck, and I hope you feel better soon.
Thanks Smith and Carol for the suggestions. But the problem is i am getting 2 totally different suggestions from the doctors. The one i am doing Yoga with says dont do any excercise like walking or cycling that uses the knee extensively. The orthopedic doctor says i should be cycling. Plus i have a desk job with long hours in front of clients. So its not really easy to manage to eat at regular intervals or exactly the kind of stuff that these diets would suggest. I am still looking for a doctor who completely understands the situation.
Hmm. I would ask both doctors about the conflicting information you're getting. My inclination would be to go with the orthopedic surgeon's advice. He probably specializes in knees and only knees, so he knows what he's talking about. Not exercising the knee at all sounds wrong to me.
My Mom had knee surgery, and a friend of mine also has knee problems and they both do the water exercise classes. It's a full body workout and the water supports your weight so you're not putting a big amount of stress on your knees.
I agree, it's hard to plan when your schedule's crazy, but I think at some point you have to make a conscious decision about putting your health first. Once you do that, you'll find a way to manage it. When you do get a chance to eat, it'll be all about the choice of what you eat, and that takes a conscious decision too - not just grabbing what's quick and easy. Plan ahead so that when you grab your snack or lunch, it's something that's good for your body.
I forgot to mention that I got to my goal weight on WW without strenuous exercise. Took longer, and took a lot more self-discipline on my part. :)
FWIW, when I held an office job outside the home, I found it a lot easier to follow an eating plan. Now that I work from home and I'm near the kitchen 24/7, it's a LOT harder to maintain my weight where it should be! :)