I’ve struggled with my weight for a long time. I can remember my senior year of high school, when I hit my all-time high of 150. Well, at least that was my all-time high then.
Thankfully, I got Tae-Bo tapes for Christmas that year. I thought that it had looked fun on the commercials, but it wasn’t until after I tried it that I knew that I loved kickboxing. Jabs, kicks, uppercuts, it was all so fun. And I was good at it.
It didn’t take long for me to shed some pounds and feel a little better about myself.
However, I quickly gained weight back, lost it again for a brief period of time in college – taking a volleyball class and a Total Fitness (LOTS of running) class at the same time will do that to anyone. But alas, I gained it back and kept gaining for a few years.
Last August, something happened. It’s the same thing that happens right before I make any big change – I got tired of how I felt. Really tired. Not just, “oh, I don’t think I like this anymore, so I’ll stop”. But really sick of feeling like a fat slob. Tired of being asked if I was pregnant when I definitely wasn’t. Ready to be healthy and strong.
So I did something about it. I emailed my friends Tony and Dustin, who were looking for testers for their new fitness program and was selected. After a few weeks in the program, I loved how strong I was feeling, but upset that I had only lost a couple pounds.
That’s when I got really serious and started eating differently – using a smaller plate and actually stopping before I felt full. I had been overstuffing myself for years – I guess I took “eating for two” to heart.
At the same time, I cut my sugar intake. Almost completely. I also upped my consumption of protein and healthy fats, along with fruits and vegetables.
I started melting.
I didn’t count calories. I didn’t spend hours and hours working out each week. I didn’t go on a low-fat diet. I didn’t do any of those things that conventional wisdom say you should do.
And, to date, I’ve lost 32 pounds. I’m stoked with my body. Have I reached the magic number yet? No. That’s 12 pounds away. What I’m mostly concerned about, though, is being healthy. And strong.
I did this with 4 small children. And yes, I gave birth to all of them. In a span of 5 years, in fact. If I can do this, believe me, you can do this. Just remember to keep it simple.
It’s all about what you eat
This is SO TRUE. Although I was getting stronger and noticing lovely muscles popping out (I have a booty for the first time ever!), I didn’t see a big difference in weight loss until I made major changes to the way I ate. What’s the secret? Balance. As in, not focusing on a ton of grain servings a day and minimal fats. I’m talking equal parts fat, protein and carbs. And the more carbs you get from fruits and veggies, the better. I could go into this, but I think Mark says it WAY better.
Make fitness part of everyday life
Walking. Hiking. Playing outside with your kids. These are all enjoyable and they burn calories. Go on leisurely bike rides with your family. Get used to moving your body and enjoying it. You don’t have to feel like you’re about to die after every workout to get fit.
Don’t do this alone
When Ian and I started working out together and making fitness a bigger priority, we started having a lot more fun. And we both stuck to it. Our dates got more active with hikes and snowshoeing and long walks. We’re also reaping the benefits in the bedroom – I feel so confident about my body now, which he loves.
Do stuff you love
The chances of sticking to something, no matter how awesome the program is, are dismal if you can’t stand it. Being active should be fun. Choose activities that you love doing. For instance, I have a great time with kickboxing. So I tend to choose kickboxing workouts or make up my own using kickboxing moves. Yes, I am a nerd like that.
You don’t have to invest a lot of money
I’ve had numerous gym memberships. They usually did nothing more than drain my pocket book. My workouts now consist of jogs, workout videos or programs that I buy or get via Netflix and lots of pushups and squats. I usually use my own body weight, but I also have a set of dumbbells and a resistance band. That’s it. I even workout barefoot most of the time. Fancy clothing and equipment just isn’t necessary.
Will you join me?
I realize that these are all simple suggestions. And that’s what a healthy, active life should be: simple. It just takes the decision to do it and the determination to persevere and create those new habits.
If you don’t know how to do this with little kids around or you don’t know even where to begin, please join me for a free webinar that I’m cohosting. Tony and Dustin (those guys that selected me for their program) from Fit Marriage have created a free webinar just for busy families.
If you’re interested, it’s going to be September 27th at 6:00 PM Pacific? You can sign up here.