My weight problem began at an early age. Twelve to be exact. I remember looking at a class photo and my thighs looked chunky, untoned limbs beneath my shorts. By the time I was 18, I was 115 pounds, standing at 5’6″ tall. Three months after I started college, “Freshman 15” kicked in, bringing me to my heaviest at 130 pounds.
I was so scared, that I began a workout routine. I lost 10 pounds by summertime and I kept that weight off for 6 years.
During my first pregnancy, I gained 24 pounds. It took me 10 months to work off that weight. Some women are lucky to be back in shape within weeks after giving birth. I had a horrible after labor experience. Labor was wonderful, what happen afterwards was not pleasant. Let’s just say I could not walk for 10 weeks.
Fifteen months later, I was pregnant with my second child. This time I gained 35 pounds. At my heaviest I was 155 pounds! After giving birth, I was down to 140 pounds. But I couldn’t lose the weight.
Two months after giving birth, people still asked me when I will be due and questions like “Are you having a boy or girl?” I was so embarrassed! After 8 months, I decided to haul my butt to the gym. Two months later, I weighed 130 pounds. Four months later, I weighed 127 pounds. Finally, my body naturally shed the last 7 pounds.
1. Eating healthy is the #1 thing you can do
It’s mostly 80% food and 20% exercise believe it or not. (see info here) The adage “You are what you eat,” is true. If you put into your body all the unhealthy foods, you are going to be unhealthy and will not be able to lose weight.
2. Drink 8 Glasses of Water a day
It’s not a lot of water. A glass is 8 ounces. A can of soda is 12 ounces. Replace the amount of soda with water. When I’m thirsty, I grab a bottle of water (usually 16 ounces = 2 glasses). Did you know…? …people think they are hungry when they’re actually thirsty. So before you grab a sandwich or a meal, drink a glass of water.
3. Eating regularly will help you train your metabolism to work better
I eat 3 meals a day + 3 snacks a day. My meals are Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner. About 1 hour after breakfast, I’ll have a healthy snack, like a banana with a glass of water. About 1 hour after lunch, I’ll have my 2nd snack, usually a granola bar (Kind Nut Bars).
After dinner, I’ll munch on something like GerberYogurt Snacks. My sweet tooth normally kicks in around dinner time. So I’ll have something sweet but healthy. My kids eat these yogurt snacks and I find I like them too. A handful is good enough and keeps me from scavenging for something else.
4. A daily exercise routine will help you maintain a healthy lifestyle
If you are not in shape, start slowly. Walk around the block, then build up to walking around your neighborhood. Get involved with a group activity at school or church. Walk on a treadmill. Start at 10 minutes a day for 1 week. 20minutes a day for week 2. Increase by 10 minutes each week until you exercise for 1 hour a day. Dance with your kids, do Zumba in your home, or play with your dogs. The idea is get active.
5. Motivation! You are your own worst enemy.
If you keep saying, you can’t do it, you are only harming yourself. You have to say “I CAN DO IT!” Also don’t let anyone put you down. Don’t let other people’s negativity affect who you are. Once you break through all the barriers, you will see how strong you have become! Physically and mentally.
I don’t have a lot of time on my hands. I probably do not get an hour of exercise every single day. But 20 minutes dancing with my kids is considered exercise. Or walking around the neighborhood with my husband and kids is exercise. Some days I’ll get an hour to myself and I will head off to the gym. Some days it’s 20 minutes on the treadmill.
The point is to not let anything stop you from exercising whether it’s 20 minutes, 30 minutes or 60 minutes a day. Enjoy your life. Don’t let something like your weight stop you from your dreams.
Note: I am not a doctor. All tips above are what works for me and are my opinions based on my dieting experiences. If you have any questions, whether you want to start a diet or an exercise routine, it is best to consult your doctor beforehand.