Sunday, October 9, 2011

Life is a Journey

As a mom getting caught up in the daily grind of life is sometimes difficult to avoid. You wake up with a list of things to do and you go to bed with what seems like a list with a minimal dent in it. Having four kids, a husband, being a full-time student, part of a wellness ministry and running a weight loss coaching group can sometimes be taxing on the mind. I find days I'm very overwhelmed and crabby with my husband and children. I neglect myself, not so much eating but instead getting ready and looking nice. I will opt for sweat pants, pony tail and a hat.

The old me would cave when things got tough and the list of to do's were so long that I felt I would have an anxiety attack. I would turn to food as my comfort or I would turn to fast food as my savior for time. I felt that I had so little time and getting something fast to eat or eating out at a restaurant was helping my family. I was wrong! Instead what I did to my family was help my children, my husband and I become overweight. My son's BMI was considered obese at the age of nine. I gained fifty pounds in a year and I was miserable.

It's important as a mother to understand that not only are your children and your spouse important but so are YOU. This is why you have to work together as a family to delegate chores and responsibilities. Becoming organized together as a family can help relieve a lot of time. Life is a journey and you need to realize there are ups and downs actually far too many to even count. Retreating in a hole and taking on 100% of the responsibility in life can cause you to neglect yourself greatly. Finding ways to become more organized is important to help you become healthy and happy.

Evaluate your life and make a list of what isn't working for you. Make a list of things you need help with and sit down as a family to discuss what everyone can do to contribute. I was told once that a way to turn a woman on is for a man to run the vacuum cleaner and do some laundry. I have to agree when my husband helps me it takes an enormous load off of my mind. When we are stressed we tend to eat poorly and our bodies produce this horrible hormone called Cortisol. Cortisol is produced when the body is stressed; over time excessive Cortisol exposures increases the risk of heart disease, sleep problems, depression, obesity, memory impairment, and worsens eczema. Belly fat in women is believed to be also caused by excessive secretions of Cortisol. Excess stress also causes strain on a marriage and becoming a healthy and productive family will elevate some of the tension.

Becoming organized is important and here are a few ways to eliminate and minimize some stress;

  1. Ask for help
  2. Acknowledge how much time you waste on the internet, watching television, or doing other things that consume your time but don't help you
  3. Make a To Do list
  4. Plan meals on Sunday's for the week
  5. Shop on one specific day of the week
  6. Make a chore list for the family


These are just a few things you can do to help decrease the stress in your life. Learn to become organized, realize that you might need to sacrifice watching television so you can accomplish the things that you stress so much over. Life is a journey but you need to make small changes each day to help overcome the craziness. Being overwhelmed can paralyze a person so much that it costs them negatively when it comes to their health. I know because I was that person. I became so overwhelmed with my life that I shut down, ordered take-out and gained a whopping 50 pounds in a year. I was a binge eater when I was stressed and food was my drug of choice. You can change your life but it takes small steps to reach your goals.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Eat Cleaner and Avoid Calorie Counting

Today I was asked about calories and counting calories. All too often overeating, consuming empty calories, high fat or high sugar diets sabotage our weight loss goals. Calorie consumption comes from food and drinks and it's important to be consciously aware of everything you put into your mouth and how you feel when you are eating.



One day I was at Starbucks and I ordered my morning favorite Grande Americanno with nonfat milk and two Splenda. As I was waiting for my drink a person in the drive-thru ordered a Grande Peppermint Mocha with extra sugar. What!? I was completely shocked and a bit disgusted at the same time. The Grande Peppermint Mocha weighs in at 400 calories and 49 grams of sugar not to mention the 15 grams of fat. If you are a Starbucks or McDonald's specialty drink lover you need to reevaluate your daily calories and be sure you're not consuming a large majority of them in your beverage choices.



If you are eating clean then you do not need to count calories. Throughout my day I am constantly eating and over consuming calories is not an issue. Clean foods are low on the calorie count and it is important for your weight loss to eat. Cutting calories down to 1200 and trying to maintain your life and add exercise is a disaster waiting to happen. Not only will you be frustrated and tired your body will fight back by holding on to your fat.



The best weight to fight the fat is to build lean muscle. The more lean muscle mass you have the more calories your body will burn. Muscle is like wood to a fire and your fire is your metabolism. Without wood the fire won't burn and your metabolism shuts down. Having a strong burning metabolism is key to successful weight loss. Eating every 2-3 hours is essential for a good metabolism. Many of you have cut your calories so drastically low that you found yourself starving to death, moody, and you regain everything you lost and then some.



Losing weight is a lifestyle change. If you are not willing to make changes within your life and your families lives your success will be short lived. You cannot think of the Skinny Mom Challenge as another diet. I don't believe in DIETS and diets do not work. You have to learn from your past mistakes and work hard and making little changes every day to improve your chances of success. Instead of focusing on your calories during this challenge focus on, eating vegetables, two fruits, lean proteins, whole-grains, and healthy fats. By adding these foods to your diets and eliminating processed foods, high calorie beverages, and adding healthy clean foods and exercise will help you successfully lose weight.