By: Hannah @efficientmomlife
So there I was. Over 100lbs overweight, stuffing my face with an entire frozen pizza while feeding my 9month old the purest baby food I could find. My son was reaching for my pizza and it hit me. I am going to pass down all my horrible eating habits to my son. It was inevitable that eventually he was going to be eating the same meals I was eating, the same snacks and drinks. I needed to get a grip on things. I needed to do it for my son, I needed to do it for myself and for the mom I wanted to be for my son.
I went through my kitchen and got rid of all the crap. I was disappointed with how much I had let myself go and how much processed junk I was actually consuming. I had frozen corn dogs, chicken nuggets, taquitos, pizza, fruit snacks, and granola bars. 90% of the food in my house was processed crap.
The worst part was that I knew better. My whole life I had dealt with my weight. I was always the chunky kid. When I got to be a junior/senior in high school I was fed up with it and started learning how to take care of my body from my best friends mom. She taught me about natural health, proper food choices, reading food labels, controlling my urges to eat all the junk and how to love and nourish my body.
My best friend and I started running every single day. I started making better food choices. I started saying no to processed food, no to sugar and not snacking so much. I lost quite a bit of weight. Back then, I didn’t ever weigh myself, so I have no clue what I weighed or how much I lost, but I knew that I felt good and was never going to give in to my urges to eat ALL the food ALL the time.
I stayed on that healthy path for quite some time. I absolutely refused to eat junk food, fast food or buy anything overly processed. Until one day, I was in the taco bell drive through with a friend and he insisted I try some sort of apple dessert. It was euphoric. It tasted like chemicals but my brain loved it. That one bad decision lead to another and another. It took a while to gain any weight, so I used that as an excuse as to why it was ok.
Some weeks and months I would eat really healthy and other weeks and months I would eat doughnuts, pie, panda express, wing stop, all of it, all the time. Then…I got pregnant. I did really good in the beginning. Staying active and eating healthy. Then, the last half of the pregnancy got the best of me. I was constantly hungry and tired and emotional. I easily gave into cravings. I felt awful because I knew this was a crucial time to be taking care of my body.
Every time I went to the doctor for a checkup, I couldn’t believe how much the scale said I weighed. All I could think about was how I needed to gain control of my eating sooner than later. Then, I’d get a craving, I’d get hungry and whatever was available I’d eat. This continued until that moment when my son reached for the pizza I was stuffing my face with.
I knew I had to put away all the excuses I had been using for several years. I wanted to be a fun, active mom. I didn’t want to be afraid to take my son to the beach because I was too ashamed to be in a swimsuit. We lived right on a river and my son LOVED the water. I wanted to have energy to keep up with my son as he was beginning to walk and knew he’d only become more and more active. I wanted to run and play with my son without feeling embarrassed or ashamed.
I knew I had to get back to my healthy habits. After cleaning all the junk food out of my house I loaded up on healthy, fresh food. I ordered a series of DVD workouts and a treadmill.
Everyday for months I hid in my house running on the treadmill and working out to the DVD’s I had bought. Eventually I got tired of hiding in my bedroom running on my treadmill. I got tired of the workout DVD’s. I had them memorized. I felt like I needed something different.
Eventually people started noticing that I was losing weight and asking me how I was doing it. Instead of hiding what it was I was doing, I started joining ladies in workouts, running and walking together. We formed different workout groups. Ladies came and went. We would workout to DVD’s until everyone was sick of them, then we’d find something new to do.
That’s when I discovered HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). That’s when my fitness and health journey went to a whole new level. I would do different types in my living room, outside and eventually was able to use our local high school weight room. At one point we had 15+ women that were showing up. We all loved that we got a brutal workout that only took 15-45minutes of our day. We were all moms that struggled to fit in a good workout away from our kids. Often times, we’d have no choice but to bring our kids to workout with us.
Getting in a solid workout in a short amount of time was key for all of us moms. Since the workouts were different every single day, we didn’t have to worry about getting sick of them either. These workouts also took our endurance and strength to another level. We were incorporating strength, agility, endurance, cardio, speed…everything into one quick workout. It was the best I had felt since high school.
I saw myself and all the ladies that joined, not only improve in their health and fitness but we all gained a sense of confidence. The workouts made us feel good about ourselves, we felt accomplished and it energized us for the day. It was something we all looked forward to each and every morning.
I was starting to do things that I never had confidence to do before. Trying new things that I would have never tried because I would have been too embarrassed. I was able to keep up with my son. My son and I were becoming more adventurous and active together; going for bike rides, hikes, runs, walks, kayaking and skiing. These were all things I would never have been able to do, or not as easily, with the 100+lbs I had on. Learning about HIIT and then incorporating it into my everyday routine completely changed my life.
If you are feeling stuck in your health and fitness journey or if you are like I was, 100+lbs overweight and you keep telling yourself you need to get started…I highly recommend checking out HIIT. You don’t need a big gym, you don’t need a ton of equipment and more importantly, you don’t need a ton of time. My son stayed home from school this morning because of a cold. Instead of skipping my planned workout, I created a quick HIIT workout that I was able to do in my living room while my son rested on the couch. It’s honestly that simple. And the stronger you get, the more you can push yourself.
I would guess that at this moment, you are thinking of all the reasons that can’t be you; I’m too weak, I’m too tired, I don’t have the time, I don’t have the energy, I’m not strong enough. You aren’t alone. I was stuck in those same thought patterns at one time too. And I’m here to tell you, if I can lose the weight and keep it off, you can too. I didn’t do anything that hasn’t already been done before. It’s all up to you and one single decision.
Choosing the lesser of two pains. It’s painful to change your bad habits. It’s even more painful to be overweight; not being able to do a long list of things because your too big, too tired, it hurts, etc.
Make time in your day…whether it’s during a commercial break, your lunch break or waking up 20minutes earlier each day, MAKE time in your day to move your body. Don’t over complicate it. Commit to 10mintues a day, then 15, 20, 30 or maybe even 40minutes a day. Make it fun. Make it a habit. And don’t give up.
I hope that this has inspired you whether you are 10 years into your health and fitness journey or if you haven’t even start your journey yet. If you haven’t started yet, I hope this gives you the courage to start.
Cheers to real life health and fitness!