“No Excuses” (no this blog isn’t what you think)

No excuses….how many times have I ever said this or have you heard this?? A lot. I now see these words with a clearer sense of the meaning in my life. I see a lot of things different after becoming a mom and of course just getting older. There a lot of things in life that are what we can call “excuses”, but I like to now call them reasons. The reason I can’t show up to a workout some days is because I am so f**king tired I can’t even see straight. I then log onto Facebook, because that is literally the only thing I have any physical energy left to do…use my thumb to scroll. I know I am not alone. I used to beat myself up so much for missing a workout because I was tired. I had to show everyone that I had no excuses. I look back and feel really stupid for that thought. So I apologize. What I want to be for moms, women and anyone else is a real life example…trying to fit in eating healthy, exercise and attempting to raise my kids as healthy little adults.

Don’t get me wrong, there are silly reasons for not doing something. Trust me – a body in motion stays in motion – a body at rest stays at rest. Instead of having this “no excuse” attitude, I have really focused on remembering the above statement. I know that I am going to feel a heck of a lot better when my body is moving, even if I only had 5 hours of accumulated sleep. Sleep is a distant memory… so days I am just feeling unmotivated I get my butt to the gym. Days I am delusional I try to let my body rest. REST is important but so is moving your body, and you will know what you need.

Becoming a mom has taught me to love myself and understand others on a whole other level. I have SO much more empathy. I used to think “I have a baby and I am still working out and eating healthy, so everyone can do it”. WRONG. I got pregnant with my second and life changed (even more). Until I had my second I could not believe I was sooooo busy with just one babe. I really had to prioritize my workouts and cook healthy meals. That shit is hard, and it is still hard. AND I totally understand when moms OR dads can’t get it all in. What I want to be is someone to reach out to for real life advice. I am not a doctor or dietician but I am a mom, who lives this life day-to-day, and I want to share how to make this lifestyle work in your own family.

I also cannot forget my favorite quote, “I Can and I will”. I am able-bodied. I am capable. I am willing. I can move my body, I can show my girls that their mom is strong, I can show my girls that push ups and deadlifts aren’t just for men, I can fill our fridge with healthy foods. And as a whole women CAN inspire, motivate and push (in a good way) each other. Each person has their own struggles and they don’t need to hear day after day to have “no excuses”. We need to change to way we encourage. We need to help each other find our reasons. Place focus on the positive.

Find your reason(s), find your village, find those that inspire you, never hesitate to give a woman a compliment (we all go through hard shit and sometimes we need to remind each other that we got this), and most of all LOVE YOURSELF.

 

 

 

 

 

 

What is Real?

I felt I needed to blog, although it has been a long time. Kids can have that effect, in a good way, but seriously, life passes by, and things (like blogging) get put on the back burner. Nothing has changed in my life health and fitness wise, but I don’t get a chance to blog, ever! And I miss it. I miss letting my thoughts out, and even if I can reach only one or two people, and maybe inspire them, even though they have kids, or a busy job, life, commitments or whatever the circumstance, to carve out some time everyday to make fitness a priority and take charge of the way they fuel their body.

But what enticed me to write in the first place, is these crazy memes going around about body shaming, mom bods, what moms really look like after baby, and placing everyone in a category. I don’t like categories and I don’t like being put in one. If we don’t want to body shame, then why when I read these articles about what a moms body should look like after babies, and my body doesn’t type doesn’t appear there, I feel like I should be ashamed for having muscle and working out. I feel like this isn’t what is normal. Maybe it’s not, but its my normal. I feel proud of the hard work and dedication I have put into gaining strength and eating healthy. I shouldn’t feel shame after having a baby. Moms should feel proud of being able to birth a baby and look however the hell they want to after. And maybe instead of wasting time making memes and writing articles about what they think normal and real should look like, we should just focus on encouraging and motivating each other. Motherhood is hard enough, we shouldn’t make it harder then it needs to be.

I want moms to feel inspired when they come to my page. I know how uninspiring it can be to be run off your feet, not one minute to myself (yes even to pee), dark circles, baby cries, multiple night feeds, toddler demands (yes, they’re multiplyin’), and then put supper on the table. But I also know how good it feels when other moms encourage, support and compliment one another. So tonight, after my littles went to bed, I felt inspired. I reflected back on my day, remembered how lucky I am to be run off my feet by two healthy, amazing human beings. I wouldn’t change motherhood for the world, but what I would change is how women and mothers treat each other. I want to hopefully inspire other women and moms to build each other up, instead of tear each other down. Everyone has their own definition of normal and lets embrace that!

Not only as moms, but women in general, we tend to feel guilty about taking time out for ourselves, but its worth it. Putting our health first is a good thing. It can have a positive affect on our family. Everyone is happy, if mama is happy (uh huh, its true). Those days you would rather watch every version of Real Housewives, then even fathom getting off the couch and doing some squats, let alone going to the gym, need to stop. Yes I get it, its exhausting, but its amazing. A quick walk or a dance party will even do the trick. So get your body moving every day and pretty soon you will feel like a new woman!

I want to thank everyone for continuing to follow me and my journey, even when I am not blogging and just making Facebook posts. I hope to inspire all the mamas and women out there to realize that you are worth the effort to treat your own body and the bodys of your family the way you deserve!

 

 

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Scale? What Scale?

I am almost 3 months post-partum now and have no idea what I weigh. Honestly. I don’t. Sure I have a round about idea, but no definite number. When I began my journey in health and fitness, I was OBSESSED with the scale. When it wasn’t moving I was disappointed. I let the scale dictate how I felt about myself and my mood. If it was down, I was happy and when it wasn’t moving, I was sour. I still don’t know why I let this little plastic piece of crap tell me how I was going to feel for the day. How much I could love myself and how much more work I had to do. I do feel like the scale has its place, but not a very big one. A scale has no idea what is going on inside your body. Just because you are skinny doesn’t mean you are healthy. A scale doesn’t measure body fat percentages. I think it is much more important to measure fat then weight.

Like I said, I haven’t stepped on the scale for a while. I occasionally step on it to see where I am and don’t take much consideration as to what number pops up. My goal. To gain muscle. There is a myth that muscle weighs more than fat. Which is actually impossible since 5 pounds is 5 pounds, but muscle is more dense than fat and takes up less space. As you compact muscle mass into your body, the scale may go up. I personally like the look of muscle. How much muscle differs from person to person. But I like it. I like to look in the mirror and feel like the person staring back at me looks strong. I used to be so focused on being skinny, but the further I got into my journey, the more amazing and strong I started to feel. The feeling is addicting. That feeling after you eat healthy all day. That feeling and rush you get after a workout. That feeling can last all day. Health and fitness became addicting to me. The more I did it, the more I wanted it. I still do. I truly am passionate about this lifestyle.

Don’t let a scale dictate your day, your mood or how you treat yourself and your body. Use it as a loose guide to track your progress. And for the most part, stay off of it! I don’t care what the scale says. What is more important to me is my goal, which is, like I have said many times, gaining muscle and strength. And don’t be fooled by the myth that if you workout and lift weights you are going to have all of this big, thick manly looking muscle. WRONG. I am a woman. I am made up differently than a man. I will NEVER look like one naturally. If I took steroids, different story all together, but I don’t :). I have been asked many times what I do for workouts. The answer is Crossfit. I know its very controversial, but I whole heartedly believe in it. The issue of injury has come up too many times, and really, in any sport or gym, there are a lot of injuries. If you are unqualified or have an unqualified coach, injuries can happen ANYWHERE! Crossfit has taken my fitness to a whole other level. Even after a baby, I am more fit doing Crossfit than any other workout I have ever tried. It is a workout that strives to make you an all around good athlete. Not focusing on just one skill. Another great thing about Crossfit is, that the workouts are completely scalable. You can be 25 or 95, come to the same class and do the same workout, but every movement can be scaled to your fitness level. Also, every day is a different workout. You would be hard pressed to come to class and ever have the same workout (unless it is a bench mark and are seeing how far you have come since the last time you did that workout). I don’t want to tell anyone what to do but I just wanted to share, since I have been asked a lot 🙂 But, truly any workout is better than no workout at all!!

Anyways, I hope you all have a great weekend and keep those diets on track 🙂

Out of the Fog

Hi all!

So according to wordpress, I haven’t posted since May 2014! Yes, it has been over one whole year since I have blogged, and I have no idea where one year went! A lot has changed since then. I now have 2 little girlies and a new home. I thought one baby girl was busy, but now with two, it is at a whole other level! What hasn’t changed, is my love for healthy food and fitness. I am now coming out of the fog from a lack of sleep and running off my feet from the moment I open my eyes. Trust me, I still don’t get much sleep and am run off my feet from the moment I wake up, but it’s getting easier to function 🙂

After round two of babies, I still have a passion for all things fitness and healthy eating and want to continue to share it with others. I want everyone to know that this lifestyle is possible whether you have kids or not. Whether you work part-time or 12 hour days. Everyone has a story, an excuse or reason they cant live a healthy lifestyle, but they also have a reason they can. I can vouch that it is possible no matter how horrible your eating habits are now or how little time you have, IT IS POSSIBLE and so so worth it! There is always time for YOU. It might not be at your ideal time, but there is time if you make time.

I am only just a little over 2 months post partum and have begun exercising again. It feels amazing to pick up a barbell again. I am using less than half the weight I was prior to being pregnant but I am wanting to take it slow. I am dealing with diastasis recti again and lifting heavy and doing any sort of ab work will only make it worse, so that means taking it easy for a while (as easy as I can :). My goals have also changed slightly. When I began working out, my number one goal was to look fit, but as I get older, looking fit is a plus of working out. My goal now, is being fit and healthy. I LOVE the way it makes me feel. I stopped weighing myself, and obsessing over the number on the scale, and focused more on how I felt. Actually some of my jeans got tighter and shirts got smaller. Not because I was gaining fat, but because my fat was disappearing and muscle was taking its place! Once I started being happy and love myself, I started to become more confident in other areas of my life and love others more.

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10 Week post partum – time to work on gaining muscle 🙂

I want to apologize again for taking so long to post! Thanks to all of my followers who still follow me on Facebook and patiently have stayed subscribed to my blog while I took a year off to spend with my family. I promise I wont make it another year before I blog again! See you soon!

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Just A Mom

You know those days when you feel like “just a mom”. Those days you feel like when you look in the mirror you all you see is tired eyes, crazy hair and an unattractive SAHM. Those days when dressing up means putting on a clean pair of yoga pants. Where you chase around a wild little person, cook, clean and do laundry. Yes that’s how I feel sometimes. BUT then I sit down and remember, I am not JUST a mom, I am a mom to most beautiful little creature. I do look in the mirror and see tired eyes and crazy hair, but if I remember correctly it just comes with the territory, and that’s okay. Dressing “up” does means clean yoga pants, and if you are lucky you will even get to see me wear jeans. I do chase around a little person all day (it’s good cardio), I cook healthy meals for my family, I clean (which purpose is sometimes defeated) and give everyone some clean clothes once in a while. But I am lucky. I am lucky to have a wonderful husband and beautiful, sweet little girl.

What makes me have enough energy for all of this? Exercise and a clean diet. Being a stay at home mom isn’t just sitting around watching movies with my baby all day, gabbing on the phone to my friends. It is literally a 24/7 job, no weekends or holidays off. My game face is always on. Even with so many things to cram into a day, I ALWAYS find time to workout. What works best for me is working out in the morning. I put my exercise clothes on before Bean goes for a nap, and once she’s down, it’s mamas “quiet” time. Out come the dumbbells and I have one hour to myself to sweat, pump some iron, stretch and relax. Yes I said relax. For one hour my mommy duties are put on hold….every single one of them. No dirty bums to change, faces to wash or laundry to fold. After my workout I whip up a quick protein smoothie to power me through until lunch. Make yourself a priority. Make being healthy and strong a priority. Every single women deserves this.

I know, I know, not all of you have babies, but it makes no difference. If you don’t have babies, you probably have a job (I mean keepers of the home too). Before you day gets carazay, workout before work. This way it ensures that a “bad day” doesn’t ruin your workout. Trust me, I know what it’s like. You get home from work, and you “owe” it to yourself to relax for 30 minutes, which turns into an entire night on the couch, doing zip! Go to bed earlier, wake up earlier, eat a quick snack and workout. I find working out, sets the precedent for the day. I am less likely to stray with my eating habits and make excuses for skipping an after work gym sess.

Life has a tendency to get in the way… A LOT. If you let it. It is tough when you have so many other responsibilities, but being healthy is a responsibility. And the only one you can hold accountable is yourself. So stop making excuses in your head why you don’t have time, and make time. If you have to wake up at 5:30 before the rest of your fam is awake, then do it. If you have to workout after the kiddos go to bed, then do that. If you have to get a friggin baby sitter than by all means do that too. Making an hour to exercise 3-5 times a week can help keep you sane, and be an even better mama (imagine that :)), friend, wife, husband, girlfriend, daughter or whatever you may be!

Don’t make excuses for health. It goes for eating too. You have time to make healthy food if you make time. Involve your kids, involve your husband, or involve your friends. Whatever makes you do it, well then do it! If you have to cook your meals for work on Sunday for the entire week, then do that. If you want to hire a personal chef, all the power to you. The power is in your hands. Eating healthy also gives me energy. The kind I need to be an energizer mommy! Sugar laden cookies, chocolate bars, pop, donuts or muffins may give you a quick high, but will make you crash and eventually you’ll need more crap to give you that high again. Make today the day where you put you first. Make today that you decide that you will own your responsibility to take care of you the best you can. I know in the beginning you make get teased, ridiculed, asked 3,000,000 times why you are on a diet (and have to explain 3,000,000 that you’re not), judged and whatever else. But in order to be successful you have to put all of those things aside and just do you. Be the best you, you can be.

Wishing everyone a Happy Hump Day!

Falling Off & Getting Back On

It happens to all of us, we get all of our workouts in, our meals are clean, our days go as planned and then BAM. ALL MOTIVATION IS LOST. You go through the motions during your workout (that is if you even workout), you cheat on your meals (often), an illness strikes, a holiday derails your hard work or you feel completely burnt out! Does this mean you should stop? NO WAY. Trust me there are soooo many excuses why you shouldn’t get that workout in or eat healthy but there are also more reasons why you should. I get it, at the end of the day you are tired, motivation is lagging, the kids need supper and to be put to bed, and all you want to do is sit and watch tv. Been there, done that.

What gets me up and going again? Lots of things. My baby, my husband, my love for working out quickly returns, a quick reminder of how crappy eating crappy makes me feel, a good nap, a good nights sleep, and most of all support from the people around me. Here are some of the things that keep me on track or get me back on track.

1) Have a plan. If I step into the gym without a program I waste way too much time deciding on what I am going to do next. If this is you, hire a personal trainer or have one design a program for you, find a free program on the internet or write one up yourself. But don’t get into the gym and wonder around aimlessly going from one machine to the next. Have a game plan. This will help you reach your goals a lot quicker.

2) Enlist a partner. It doesn’t matter who, it can be your husband, boyfriend, friend, partner, girlfriend, wife, parent(s), kids, of even your dog. Yes, take your furry friend for a walk! Enlisting a partner keeps you accountable. There are many days when I DON’T want to work out. I have had a long night, and just want to eat pancakes, drink tea and sit and relax. But I have my husband to kick my butt into gear. We are there for each other. We don’t do our workouts together anymore, but we do the same workout on the same day just at different times. We are competitive, so I can’t let him do his workout and not do mine! Enlisting a partner keeps you accountable. Make a plan to meet at the gym at a certain time a few times a week, or attend a fitness class together. You won’t want to back out several times a week on someone!

3) Meal Prep. I don’t meal prep a lot of food at once but I do make enough for a few days at a time. I keep it super simple. Brown rice and quinoa mix, pancakes, mixed greens, have all of my vegetables and fruit washed and if needed, chopped, I make enough chicken, turkey,beans or whichever protein I choose for a few days. Don’t over think it. Eating healthy can be very simple and easy. I find when I have a few good recipes in my arsenal it helps in prepping some really yummy dishes quickly. If you aren’t able to get into the kitchen everyday, take time on a Sunday to prep your meals for the week and freeze some of them. This way you won’t be able to say you don’t have time to cook. If you are on a budget, there are some really great foods that are lower in price. Beans is one of them. Meat can be very expensive, and beans are a great replacement. They contain protein, carbs and fiber. For snacks, make your own. Don’t be that person that stands at the vending machine at 3 pm waiting for that Snickers bar to fill you up. Bring some easy snacks with you! Apples & nut butter, veggies and hummus, hard-boiled eggs, homemade granola bars, homemade muffins, fruit and some almonds, protein shake, plain yogurt and berries, there are so many options.

4) Plan for your day. If you are going to be out and about for the day, pack some snacks or a meal with you. If I have to do errands for the day and won’t be close to home I pack a lunch and snacks. Road trips are no exception. I don’t leave my meal choices up to the gas stations. I know my choices won’t be as healthy as if I pack my own lunch.

5) Surround yourself with like-minded people. I find I am most successful when I surround myself with people who share the same interests as me. I love being able to swap meal ideas, share workouts and motivation and help each other out when that motivation is lagging. Positivity is one of the biggest keys to success. You don’t need anyone bashing your journey and questioning why you are eating a certain way or can’t understand why you would want to subject yourself to exercise. Always remember why you are doing it and those like-minded friends will always be there to help remind you of why!

6) Don’t overwhelm yourself. Setting goals is great, and a must in my mind, but setting unrealistic goals is a sure-fire way to burn out. If you are getting started and you want to lose 20 pounds in one month, that isn’t realistic. Set goals that are challenging but that are attainable. Don’t start working out 6 days a week, for 2 hours a day. Start by working out 3-4 days a week for 1/2 hour to 45 minutes at a time. You want to enjoy exercise, not despise it. Choose an activity that you like, walking, biking, weight lifting, crossfit, running, boxing, bootcamp, swimming, whatever it may be!

7) Remember why you started. This is one really important. If you are burnt right out, want to throw in the towel and eat a 12 pack of donuts, just remember why you started. You started because you wanted to live a healthier lifestyle. You want to be strong for yourself, your kids, your family. You were fed up with how you felt and needed a change. You were unhappy with yourself. Your jeans weren’t fitting anymore and you weren’t going to buy the next size up. If you are having a bad day, think of all of the reasons you started.

What helps you stay on track??

I also just wanted to thank every of you for following me! I have hit 600 followers on Facebook. I remember once my group hit 50 likes I was sooo excited. So thank you so so much for your support.

 

Support In Unlikely Places

Okay, so I am part of some different fitness groups on Facebook and I love them. It is amazing to me that so many women, most who don’t even know each other, can post their struggles, triumphs, set backs, progress pictures, meal ideas, workouts, motivation and everything in between, and support each other. I know Facebook can be a “waste of time”, but honestly, in some cases, it is an extremely amazing tool for support. Women need to empower each other, support one another and love each other, and I see a lot of that going on. We struggle enough in our daily lives to have someone judge us. Especially when they have never walked a mile in our shoes. Unless we are perfect, we shouldn’t pass judgement on others. I find having these Facebook support groups keep me motivated. Knowing there are other women I can ask for advice, share my progress with and give me motivation, when sometimes I don’t have any, keeps me truckin’ on my fitness journey.

If you are looking for a fitness tool, a Facebook fitness support group can help… A LOT.

What are your favorite fitness support groups on Facebook?