Updated: May 27, 2020
Girls be hating. Mommas be inspired. My grandmother telling me to go eat a burger. Social media criticising. Love notes. Lots of chitter chatter. I posted a before and after "weight loss" photo a couple days ago and my world exploded. Ps I originally posted the photo back in November and decided to re-share it to my story this week after a few people made comments like "but you were never big." No I may have never been obese, but I defiantly had weight on post babies. I shared the photo as proof, but more importantly to inspire people and justify my daily check-ins. I'm sure people who follow me often roll their eyes... once they see my morning check in selfie in our at home gym or on my walk. Oh and then theres my smoothie, then some meal prep...hate me if you want. But I get so many messages from women, lots who are moms after posting those check-ins telling me how I help them stay on track and inspire them to start taking better care of themselves- I get those messages like every single day, from random people who I don't even know. And honestly, those check-ins are one of the biggest things that has helped me stay on track this past year!
Yep its been almost a year since I took that before pic, June 2019. One full year after having my second baby, Scarlett. I gained 50lbs during both of my pregnancies. After each baby I kept about 30+ pounds on. During those post baby days, I'll be honest I knew I had some weight on- but in my head I didn't have that much on. Like when I looked in the mirror taking all those selfies for the boutique, I never ever felt fat- I felt proud of my mom pouf, but I also felt I needed to hide it. I had the pose/angle down path. But every morning when I went to get dressed, to put on my jeans, leggings or any garment of clothes really, I also reached for my super high waist granny panties. You know like the compression things, I wore them nearly every single day...no joke. I didn't think there was anything wrong with that. I wore them to work at the hospital. Around the door with the youngsters. Like every single day I wore these ugly, unflattering super high waist shapeware underwear. Why? Because it helped with my insecurities and made me feel better. So in my head I was thinking I had probably 20ish pounds on. I NEVER and I mean NEVER step on the weigh scale. You may not believe me but we bought our first scale last fall. I'm serious. The reason behind that is a whole another story that I may share another time. When I had my first weigh-in for our Fit Nurse program last summer, it was the first time I stepped on the scale since the weekly weigh ins at the OBGYN with Scarlett, and I was in shock. My Fitnurse coach, Rebecca has the exact numbers but I was 40+ pounds heavier than what I had thought. That was a huge eye opener, believe me. I'm not saying that these weights are unhealthy in any way. Please don't judge me and say "my god I wish I was only your post baby size." Everyone has their own goals. Their own story, body type and comfort zone, so please don't judge me or take this in any rude way. I'm just saying I was heavier than I had thought. So the fitnurse program started and am I so glad I joined.
I mentioned in my Insta story that I'm not one for these quick fix programs. Let me explain that a little better. Its not that Im not interested, or that I don't believe they work- I mean I started a 30day program last year and look where I am today. I just mean that if you are starting your own fitness journey do some research. What Program are you starting? Is there anyone (and I mean like a real life person- not a gym bunny) you can chat with who has already completed the program? Will the program help you in the long term...Will you build new healthy habits that you can maintain? Will you learn about nutrition thats sustainable? Will you learn how to keep activity in your busy schedule after the program ends? Will you learn how to be mindful? How to stay in control but not deprive yourself of things you truly love and enjoy? I was never interested or really understood all those calorie counting, label reading programs. If they work for you- girl you do you and giver- but they aren't for me.
First things first, Stay Accountable
Find a friend. A go-to person or a group to keep you on track and accountable. I truly think my "checking in" on social played the biggest part in my success this past year. You need someone counting on you and in return, you need someone like minded and encouraging to keep you going! A place you feel safe and comfortable to check in. Ask your Bestie. A coworker. Someone who inspires you on social?
Maybe you feel you don't have that one person- so join a group! There are lots of free & empowering private Facebook groups! I remember after our Fitnurse program was over. I kinda felt confused on what to do next. I can't recall exactly, but I'm pretty sure thats when I started checking in each day on my Insta/facebook story. You've all seen it. First you didn't pay attention, but a couple weeks later it really started to catch on- heck we have our own private accountability group with over 200 ladies! If you don't know where to start, just ask!
Set Goals & baby steps
Do it. Ask yourself what does your healthy life look like? Are you 10lbs lighter? Are you able to run 5km? Are you able to fit in your pre-pregnancy jeans? Are you able to go outside and play tag with the kids without feeling like you're going to have a heart attack? What does a healthier you look like? Once you figure out what the "new" you looks like, start jotting down simple, easy to track steps. If you have 10 small steps, thats great! But for now just focus on one step at a time. Then once you feel confident that you've mastered that step add another.
Heres what I mean:
My Initial goal: 20 pounds lighter.
I knew I had to start exercising and change my diet- not start a diet, but really pay attention to what I ate. I also knew that If I made a huge adjustment and tried to change both of these simultaneously, like cold turkey, I wouldn't keep it going- I'd feel too overwhelmed.
So my 1st step: Move my body. I decided I would aim for 30mins five times/week. Once I hit that for a couple weeks, I changed it to move my body for at LEAST 30 mins EVERYDAY! And by god I still aim to do that everyday still! I also aim for 10,000 steps a day! Do I hit it everyday- while working from home- not everyday. But I started off at 8000 steps and worked my way up!
2nd step: Work on my nutrition.
Be Mindful- You are what you eat!
Anyone treating Covid like a vacation? As I write I‘m eating an oreo...just one tho- I promise. Your on a covidcation. Eating and drinking all the crap its like a mini holiday/party in your kitchen every single night? Yea I'm not doing that lol. Don't get me wrong, we've been having date nights and appy nights at home but were far from on vacation. I‘m not going to rant on all the fab diets out there that are a bunch of crap lol. I will tell you tho that I have not cut one thing out of my diet. I have certainly cut back- but I haven't cut anything out that I'm "not allowed" to have. I'm a firm believer that if you deprive yourself from something you truly enjoy, you'll never feel satisfied. Like I remember times when there would be a bag of chips in the cupboard and I would want some sooo bad, but I had to be "good." I would go eat the banana, the grapes, the crackers, the cheese...then cave and still eat the chips because I wasn't satisfied. Now I eat the chips straight up, but I'm mindful on the size of bowl I take out and I really try to listen to my body. Usually after a small handful I'm completely satisfied. Could I eat more? Yes I certainly could, but If I'm not hungry why would I? Don’t deprive yourself and go cold turkey. Everything in moderation and try your best not to over indulge.
I've said this many times. I'm not a food or fitness expert, theres trained well educated people out there for that. But basically; eat 3 means a day. Choose healthy snacks. Eat when you're hungry. Stop picking at the youngsters plate while cleaning up supper- your full and satisfied, stop eating the scarps ( thats the one thing I'm still trying to work on). Eat the protein, the vegges & fruits. Watch the crabs. Don't cut the carbs- what kinda crazy person are you going to be 3 weeks in without some sort of bread or pasta? Your going to be the person that slips, over indulges and eats the whole goddam pot of spaghetti... I know it. Don't go cold turkey. If you havent had a veggie in a whole year, well don't think your going to have a salad and only a salad for lunch starting today and everyday for the next year and fell full.... be realistic and make small changes that you can work on and really feel accomplished.
Track your progress!
Yep print a calendar, use your phone. If you have a fancy watch with apps track it there. Theres nothing more rewarding than seeing a stack of weeks, then months with "XXX" showing you hit the steps you set for yourself. I have the basic Fitbit- totally works perfect for me. I may upgrade at some point. But the app is perfect, tracks what I need, when I need it. But also on my fridge you'll find something like 11 single sheet calendars. A blank calendar I've printed from google and have used every month to track my progress. I decided to keep them. I've tracked walks, yoga, squats, bootcamp classes- you name it!
If I miss a day or if you have a well deserved rest day-don’t fret, jump back in tomorrow!!!
Drink The water
ALL the water. Put down the bottle of diet Pepsi- have one glass with supper if you got to (remember the issue with dropping things cold turkey?) I was addicted to pop while I was pregnant with my kids- like diet Pepsi was in my blood. It was sooooo hard to cut back. My intentions were never to cut it out totally, but here we are! We had some takeout a couple weeks ago to support a local charity...ordered the pop, I couldn't drink it. Instant bloat, and honestly it tasted like crap. Legit I was tickled pink, so excited- I never crave it anymore, but I couldn't wait to have it and I ended up pouring it down the sink.... hate me if you want. Drink the water. Some people say 1/2 your body weight, others say drink your WHOLE bodyweight.... believe me thats hard. I aim for 4-5 big bottles a day, ps I count my smoothie and 1 coffee too!
Anyone still with me? I'd say I lost most people after I said drop the pop. #holla I’m no fitness expert. Healthy lifestyle expert... I’m just a regular mom who wants to be a milf... I want to be healthy for my kids. Sexy for my hubby. Feel comfortable in my own clothes. Go commando if I want to- burn all those shape-wear underwear. I want to look in the boutique selfie mirror and not feel I have to suck in and take 20 photos in the exact same dress before I capture the one that hides my imperfections. I want to be outside... all the time. I want friends (even if most of them are legit social media friends that I have never met) who have similar goals in my circle. Who keep me inspired and accountable. I want to be able to eat a bowl of Doritos with a can of beer on a Friday night or have that piece of ice cream cake on Saturday as a treat and not feel guilty, defected or ashamed. But feel proud that I’ve worked hard and a little treat really doesn’t hurt anyone.
** PS I AM NO FITNESS EXPERT. I HAVE NO FORMAL NUTRITION BACKGROUND. DON'T TAKE WHAT I SAY AS EXPERT ADIVCE. This is just my personal journey and what has worked for me. I'd also recommend trying these extra few things over time- I really think they have helped me over the past 11 months with my success- I've wrote them before so its kinda like a broken record! Get up one hour earlier and take that time for you. Go to bed a sensible hour- you need rest. Try to set a routine, especailly if you have kids. Make you and your health priority. Do something you love- like read, write, listen to some inspirational podcast or bloggers! Do something that makes you feel good; help a friend or your community!
Best of Luck, I‘m rooting for you!! As they say *nothing is guaranteed- personal results may vary ;)