Okay, so this site is ever evolving. I figured I’d also add in women’s health and fitness from the mommy perspective.
It’s no secret that having a child takes a toll on your body. Prior to having my son, I was actually in the best shape I had been in since high school. I was at my lowest weight since middle school and everything was on the up and up. I got back to it right after I had him and managed to maintain my weight for the first year. But then I got a new boyfriend, went back to school, went through a break up, tore all the ligaments in my foot, and all hell broke lose.
Life was simply chaos for awhile and in the midst of trying to be a full time mom, full time student, and full time employee, I forgot to full time take care of myself. I went on and off the wagon a few times with working out, Weight Watchers, etc. In fall 2011 I sustained a pretty bad concussion which took a long time to recover from. Recovered, started working out again, nothing was happening it felt like and without that instant gratification I threw in the towel.
As I approached 30 in March, something had to give. I had to stop with the excuses. This past Saturday running around literally all day with my kid and how much I hurt at the end of the day was depressing. I’m not 16 on a softball field anymore, but come on. I can’t hurt THAT bad.
In the last month I’ve started to come to terms with this. The first week of April I rejoined the gym and started fixing my eating habits. I go to the gym on my lunch, which forces me to pack my breakfast and lunch, so I’m making better choices. I’ve stopped snacking at night and have switched to drinking only water.
One month without coffee and pop…the first two weeks were TERRIBLE. Caffeine withdrawal headaches are the freaking worst! But they have subsided. (And I’m saving a shit load of money not going to Starbucks every day.)
The biggest step I’ve taken this month is being able to admit out loud not just to myself, but to others how bad it’s gotten. Since having my son, I’ve gained almost 70 pounds. Yeah. 70. And you know what? I don’t cry saying it or thinking it like I did before. I’m okay with it. I’m not okay with continuing on an upward path of weight gain and a lack of energy.
My friends and I were looking at photos around the time of my birthday at what we used to look like 5, 10, 15 years ago. We keep saying we want to “get back to that.” We want to be that girl again. But I’m not going to be that girl again and I shouldn’t be that girl again. We can’t associate who we are now with who were were as young 20-somethings. Looking back is what has been plaguing me. I look back at photos of me right after I had Jordan or from right before I had him and it makes it really hard to get motivated. It seems like such a battle and like it is hopeless.
So I put away the high school and college pictures. And I’d like to say this to my friends: a lot has changed about us in the past few years since many of us have become parents. Weight, our complexions, what we wear, how we do our makeup. But none of that matters because we’ve also changed in a lot of positive ways mentally and greater things have come into our lives than what we looked like in our Matrix/South Side days.
It’s going to be a struggle getting this weight off, but in the past month I’ve found that spark that I needed. I actually feel better. I’m sleeping better. I don’t have a 2:30 crash that warrants a Starbucks trip anymore. The weight is coming off slowly, but I feel like I’ve taken some really huge steps.
This week I moved from just going to the gym, to going to the gym on my lunch and then 15 minute kettlebell routines or yoga at home. The biggest personal growth thing for me happened today body image wise.
After my workouts, I am not the girl who is okay walking around in a towel, naked, or standing around in panties and a bra. I see all of the women around me who are in fantastic shape and it’s just intimidating and can be discouraging.
Today, I stood at the mirror in a skirt and my bra and dried my hair and fixed my makeup. And guess what. I didn’t die of embarrassment. No one gave me a weird or judgemental glance. The same familiar faces that I’ve come to know since I go at the same time every day said “hi” and smiled and chatted as usual.
I don’t have to look like any of those women and I probably never will look like a lot of those women. Mostly because my goal weight isn’t as low as their current weights. (I like my curves.) But the important thing is that I’m there and I’m doing it and I’ve stopped making excuses for myself on why I can’t.
This is an important personal undertaking and journey and I hope you’ll all take this journey with me. Having a “mom bod” isn’t necessarily the worst thing in the world. I have some battle scars as a result of creating the best thing to ever happen to me, but I need to make sure I’m healthy so that I can enjoy him for as long as I can possibly manage!