The Secret to Committing to Your Best Mom Body

The Secret to Committing to You Best Mom (or non-mom) Bod

I’ll never be a meal prepper. I would like to be but my reality is that I cook for a family of nine where no one eats the same thing. Making one more large meal solely for me isn’t going to happen. The thought of eating 3–4 day leftovers isn’t appealing either if I’m being honest. I’ll never give up an entire food group. I have tried and failed within one day. I also probably won’t stop eating the last few bites of my kids’ mac n cheese….but I do commit to my health and fitness in two simple ways that have changed my body….

In college, running, cardio (and bagels) only. After two kids, zumba only. After 6 kids, barre only. Last picture, after 6 kids, barre, resistance training and scheduling workouts like appointments.

FIRST, Schedule your workouts like any other important event.

I schedule my workouts just like I schedule a parent conference, my hair appointment or a doctor’s appointment. I would normally not cancel a much needed highlight or a visit with my child’s teacher so I try not to cancel on myself. I look at my calendar every Sunday and choose a minimum of three fitness classes to attend for the week…and then I write them on our master schedule and work around those times. I prefer group classes because I can change up my workout, I will push myself further and my results have been better. Lately, I have been going with my husband (because it’s as close to a date as we’ll get) or will work out with my teens while my toddlers are in the daycare.

(If you haven’t been to the gym in a while or your body has you feeling self-conscious, go anyway! I have the utmost respect for people who are out of shape but are making the effort and I believe the most other people do too!)

While walking or hammering it out on the elliptical burns calories, you will NEVER CHANGE THE SHAPE OF YOUR BODY UNLESS YOU DO SOME RESISTANCE TRAINING. This means you have to use body weight, bands and/or light weights to change your shape and tone your body. If you hate your saddle bags, walking will not get rid of those but side legs lifts will. I love love love barre classes…it’s a total body workout that is based upon the foundations of ballet, Pilates and yoga. It uses your own weight or light weights to tone, shape and burn calories. ANYONE can do this class. I taught it until 2 days before I delivered my 6th baby and it was the only pregnancy that didn’t result in being wheelchair bound because of back issues. I also love any type of body sculpting class, dance class or TRX. The more lean muscle you build, the more calories you burn outside of exercise. This is in addition to the strength, posture, flexibility, bone health and metabolic rate benefits that don’t happen with cardio alone.

Examples of various barre and Pilates classes. That is me on bottom right in my last trimester of pregnancy.

If you just can’t get to a gym, get in your workouts before the kids get up. I once worked three jobs as single mom, I understand all the reasons why it sometimes just doesn’t’ happen. Schedule three 5:30 am workouts in your living room each week. Create a library of DVDs or join a program like Beach Body. Marissa Myers, a friend in Tampa, has a HUGE following because she has 5 kids, does all of her workouts at home, posts motivational quick tips and even has a live feed of the workouts. If you can’t get to a gym, consider committing to a program like hers where there is some accountability and schedule that time for yourself. I’m going to a 6am barre class tomorrow, not because I love waking up at 5:15 am after nursing a baby all night long but because I feel better and I’m a better mom when I feel better about myself. It’s important that you carve our time for your own health and fitness!

Marissa Myers body transformation from home workouts.

SECONDLY, make smart diet choices!!!

I eat everything but I eat it in moderation and in small portions. If I want pizza, I’ll have once piece and a salad. If we’re eating out, I order off the kid’s menu or ask for the lunch portion. Stop eating three pieces of pizza or double cheeseburgers…be reasonable in your portions.

  • Don’t drink your calories.

Juices, sodas, fancy coffees and alcohol add a TON of added calories to your diet. This can add HUNDREDS of extra calories a day. I try to drink one class of orange juice in the morning and water the rest of the day.

  • Eliminate one bad food a week from your home.

Foods like chips, French fries, sugary cereals and sodas offer zero nutritional benefit and will only add more calories to your diet. You don’t need these and your kids don’t need these. Save these for treats on family dinner nights but don’t keep them in your home. A general rule of thumb is that the better and healthier foods come from the outer aisle of the grocery store where the high sugar and highly processed foods are in the inner aisles. Stay out of the middle aisles!

You don’t have to be a size 4 to be the best version of you! Start to enjoy taking care of yourself and the feeling that accompanies getting healthy. Your children, your work, the stressors in your life are the reason to work out, not the excuses. You don’t have to wait until New Year’s or the first day of fall to commit to your health, start Sunday. This Sunday. Success doesn’t come from what you do occasionally, it comes from what you do consistently.

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