The Fit You

Love Your Body. Love Your Life

Tag: happiness

Valeria’s Easy Weight Loss Hacks

 

Valeria is  a Russian model, 27, two children, and a long history of taking excellent care of her mind and body.  I adore her ❤

One of the main purposes of this blog is to show women how ridiculously EASY and SIMPLE losing weight can be when you have the correct knowledge and advice.  You DON’T have to stop eating carbs, or start making complicated meals that are super high in fat.

Losing weight should be a relaxing, simplistic, lifestyle change that fits into your already busy routine.  It should be something SUSTAINABLE over the length of your entire life!  I don’t promote the most popular diet fads or pills for weightloss or weird supplements that mess with your hormone production.

None of that.

Just simple, easy, kind of “lazy” ways to change your life so that you start seeing and getting the body you feel strong and comfortable and proud in.

And these tips are so easy & true.  I’ve been implementing the “hacks” she mentions since about 2009.  So that’s almost a DECADE of knowing these things work for maintaining a fit and beautiful body you love.

  • Eat on small, salad-sized plates- you psychologically see the plate with TONS  of food and you feel more satisfied and are less likely to get seconds
  • Fill up HALF of your plate with veggies (greens – dark leafy greens especially – are GREAT for this).  I’ve consistently lost the most weight when I was practicing this daily habit.
  • Chew your food… chew it slowly and take your time to eat.  It’s been proven you digest better and that your brain is able to understand more correctly when you’re “full” and need to stop
  • When you do eat out, always order your dressing or sauces on the side.  Yes!  I don’t bring my own usually, although I know women who do that… it’s too much work for me and this is about “lazy fitness” 😀  But just ordering it to be “on the side” that way you can carefully “dip” your food into the high calorie, high fat flavor, you WIN big time in not smothering your food in that stuff!
  • Detox water – I used to do this with lemon, but her recipe is much better (and she promotes making a big batch to keep in the fridge – yea I totally do things like that)

Hope you enjoyed her tips as much as I did!

Remember… losing weight isn’t really that hard… a TON of what you need to do to even begin is just slightly alter what you’re already doing.

Stephanie

Advertisements

Meal Prep Your Way to Fitness

IMG_6198

One of the things I’ve found to be really helpful in maintaining a healthy diet while avoiding bad food in a crunch, is to simply meal prep.

It’s too easy to reach for something on the go – namely fast food – when you’re pressed for time or stressed.  Turns out the Boy Scouts were right in their motto:

BE PREPARED!

Just taking the little bit of extra time to portion out your healthy meals and some handy-dandy snacks you’ll find makes life a lot easier for you!

IMG_6177.JPG

Super healthy greek yogurt cups homemade with blueberries & strawberries!

I always try to cook a big dish either on the weekends or Monday night, and have a second or third, smaller option, that way dinners for the week are completely covered!

So. Easy.  It’s. Ridiculous.

IMG_6176

Left: Breakfast Eggs & Chorizo Mix to eat each morning without having to cook!  Just scoop into a couple of tortillas, microwave, add salsa and GO!

AND it saves so much money!

 

IMG_6172

$$$$$$$

Think about how much people pay to have healthy, pre-portioned meals like this delivered, and yet if you do it yourself, you can save hundreds a month!

Seriously, we’ve saved so much through doing this… and it’s all super healthy food that tastes amazing, too!

***

It also makes it easier for your husband if he’s trying to stay healthy as well, to be able to just reach in to the fridge and grab an already perfectly portioned, prepped meal in one  container.  There have been countless times my man has thanked me for doing this for him ❤ his favorite part is that I know just how much of everything to portion out, that way it’s filling and meeting macros but not over-loading.  

It’s the perfect portion control, because everything is right there and you’re discouraged from getting “seconds” – which would mean eating another day’s MEAL!

So…

Meal Prep… to borrow the famous Nike motto:

JUST DO IT!

Stephanie

Article on Staying Fit Being One of the “Best Gifts” You Can Give Your Husband

fit couple

I’m pleasantly surprised how much traction this “staying fit” throughout life – even during and especially after having children – is gaining in our culture.  It’s still a somewhat taboo topic that seems to inflame many people wanting to deny that weight and healthy body size matters, but it makes me happy to see more people writing about it in a positive way.

Here is an article with a title I couldn’t have picked better myself (so elated!!):

“STAYING FIT FOR YOUR HUSBAND IS ONE OF THE BEST GIFTS YOU CAN GIVE HIM”

This is undeniably true, and yet, sadly, we just are not “allowed” to talk about this – or write about this – without people being offended at the simple truth.  Men are visual and love to see their wives looking sexy and thin.  Being fit and in shape makes them less likely to feel tempted all the time by other women, or to look at porn even, according to my husband!

Give the article a click, it’s a good, balanced read.

It reminds me of after my husband and I had our first baby, my husband, in a moment of brutal honesty, actually thanked me for not letting myself go.  He really appreciated it. ❤

 

So yes, I agree, staying fit for your husband truly IS one of the “best gifts” you can give him. 😉

Tracy Anderson’s Post Pregnancy Workout Review

IMG_4376

I wanted to talk some more about the official postpartum workout I chose to do this time.  I really didn’t do any kind of specific immediate postpartum workout with our first baby 7 years ago, or with our second just 2 1/2 years ago.  I did “workout,”my husband even trained me at the gym and did workouts with me at home, but nothing this well-structured for helping your body to go back to normal after being pregnant for 9 months.  Tracy has moves especially designed to get your muscles to come back to skin and to get that flap of skin (where the belly left) to disappear.  They are remarkable and get results fast.

Our bodies really take a beating during pregnancy, everything seems to move around – your hips, your pelvic muscles, your abs, and even your spine apparently along with sometimes your ribs.  It is just insane!  Tracy mentions these things in the video and gives actual specific workout moves/techniques that are supposed to make everything go back to normal.  It really works according to women who have done it and stuck with it.  And I’m amazed how incredible it feels – it’s hard but in a good way, I can actually feel my abs waking up and responding better each time.

Tracy Anderson’s Post Pregnancy DVD (link to buy)

Since I’m still kind of in a fog of sleep deprivation and it’s hard to write thoughts out well, here are some easy-to-read bullet points about the workout dvd you need to know:

  • It’s 49 minutes, which honestly… it’s a little too long for my “ideal” workout, but it’s so worth your time.  There are workouts out there that are 20 or 30 minutes and then you’re done for the day – I did that for our first baby, but it took a YEAR to lose the excess weight.  And my body was still better served by this woman’s “Metamorphosis” workouts I did **after** that… everything got tinier and I developed leaner dancer-type muscles with Tracy’s workout moves than with anyone else’s.
  • It’s HARD. I mean really pretty hard, especially that first time you try it after having a baby.  Even if you were active, it’s just a very strange feeling to experience how stretched out your muscles got during those 9 months.
  • It gets miraculously easier each time you do it!  I was amazed there were 2 positions/moves my muscles just would not respond to that first time, and then miraculously they did a tiny bit the next, and then MUCH better the next, and so on.  It’s like your muscles’ take time to establish those electric connections that make them move again… so weird, but Tracy mentions that as well when you’re doing it with her.
  • It’s totally safe to do this even if you had a c-section.  Just wait until your doctor clears you for exercise because this definitely counts as exercise.
  • She does all the moves with you.  I really respect a trainer who does Each. Repetition. With. You.  Most don’t… Jillian Michael’s will do a couple of examples and then stop and coach you through.  Tracy does every single move that she’s asking you to do – which for me is extremely motivating and makes me take her more seriously.
  • Speaking of repetitions… each move or exercise she has you do, has like 1,000 repetitions each.  I’m only slightly exaggerating here.  It’s what makes it so hard, your main muscles go into exhaustion phase, and you’re forced to use the lesser used, smaller/supporting muscles you never knew you had. Scientifically this works to make everything pulled in tighter and smaller – literally giving you that dancer’s body most women covet.  I’ve experienced this effect with her before after my first baby – after trying Jillian Michael’s and losing the weight, but still not being able to fit into my old clothes.  Her workouts were why I didn’t have to buy a new wardrobe.
  • You really need to buy this thing.  It’s so cheap, and again, it’s gone out of print ( is that the word you use for dvds?) before.  It’s so valuable, and yet I got mine I think for $8.00 online.
  • I should have said who this woman is 😀  She is a celebrity trainer that has worked with Hollywood clients for over a decade.  She’s a little strange (like you’d expect anyone from Hollyweird to be), and wears really skimpy outfits, kind of an exhibitionist really, but her workouts work.  It is a crime that you can get her teaching and training right now on dvd for so cheap.  Access to her personal training or special gyms in New York is a fortune!  And yet regular moms have access to her dvd for almost free (seriously)?!  Again, wise women will take advantage of this.
  • It’s only for women who really want to work hard.  Or find the time.  It’s not for women who make excuses and remain overweight.  You can make ALLLL the excuses you want, but in the end, it’s only you, your attitude about life, and your will or desire to make the changes you want.  No one’s going to force you to take your health seriously, it’s a choice you and only you can make.  Or you can continue to make those excuses.
  • She tells you to start it RIGHT AFTER you’re cleared for exercise.  Most American women just don’t workout right after they’re cleared, and then complain about how unsexy or fat they feel.  So the women who use this are the ones who really deserve the body it gives, because it is hard work but feels so good.  Be different.  Be a woman who chooses NOT to gain too much weight during pregnancy, and then be a woman who chooses to make her body strong again after she’s had her baby.
  • It’s actually relaxing if you do it at night.  I can’t believe how good and relaxing it feels – I mean it’s a workout and it’s painful, but somehow it feels so slow and nice that I’m ready for a hot bath or shower after, some chocolates and then to sleep.

And the best thing of all???  The endorphins and sense of feeling so accomplished and happy after you’ve completed another workout.  It’s simply taking care of yourself.  Like brushing your teeth, except the work and difficulty gives you a sense of healthy pride for persevering through the pain or desire to give up.  And spiritually it makes me more thankful to God for my health and strength He’s given me.  It makes me feel like I’m being a better steward of this body He’s given me instead of neglecting it.

Get it and enjoy it!

Stephanie

Fantastic Workout Moves for Diastasis Recti

I don’t believe I’ve had diastasis recti, but I’ve known a couple of friends who have that were plagued by it for months.  It is not fun to have delivered your baby 6 months ago, and yet have a bulge as though you’re still 6 months pregnant!

But you don’t have to live like that, there is real help out there and exercise techniques that will pull your stomach in and even close the gap between your ab muscles.

This woman’s workout video is perfect, and I’m amazed she still has a 2-finger gap even though she looks incredible.  It just goes to show how hard it is to get back to normal sometimes.

It’s not easy.  It’s not for the faint-hearted.

If you want a good body after it growing huge with pregnancy, it’s something you really have to work for.

Just like anything good in life.

Stephanie

7 Great Tips for Getting Your Body Back After Baby

This woman’s video is GREAT for some important tips to try out when losing the baby weight after pregnancy.  She goes over pretty much everything I’ve done or tried at least once and it worked for her personally (and me too), but she does mention that this may not work for everyone.  It really is true that some people respond better or not at all to some tweaks in their diet or exercise routines – basically, you have to do the research for your own body type (it’s out there! I’ll post some on things like that after the baby) and figure out what you should even be eating for your genes etc.

Ashley’s Tips:

  1. Work out – She works out everyday and started working out just a few days after having her baby.  Nothing too hard or crazy, mostly just walking and prenatal workouts which are safe even when you are pregnant.  Even with my 2 c-sections, walking as much as possible (as much as I could do without over-doing it), really helped me heal faster and lose the fluid easier.

Once she was past the healing phase, she ran and did other things that **worked for         her body.**  One of these I saw in her video is the “Barre Method,” it’s basically what         I’ve done before using Ballet Beautiful or even Tracy Anderson’s Method.  Those          workouts are extremely hard and not for the faint-hearted!  But the results are beyond fantastic, I mean, you’re doing the same workouts the Victoria’s Secret Angels do when you do the Barre Method or Tracy’s Method (which is barre, pilates, and dance for 30 minutes straight).  Many women’s bodies respond very fast to barre-type workouts as well, so it may be good to try it out.  If you’re completely new to working out though, try something less hard at first like a Jillian Michael’s 20 minute workout video – it will still be hard but it’s so short it’s over before you know it.  That’s how I lost the weight with the first baby.  It took longer with JM’s 20 minute workouts, but it was doable and didn’t kill my motivation and my husband even did it with me to encourage me!!

2 . Use a Belly Bandit after having your baby

So Ashley recommends using one of the belly bands (specifically bellybandit) to kind of squeeze everything in again.  I do think these work, although I only used it with my first baby.  With the second baby, I used compression panties (weird I know, but they had the somewhat same affect).

With our first baby, even though I gained 45 lbs compared to only 23 lbs with the second, I was still pretty active – walking all the time and for long distances on our college campus, going up tons and tons of stairs because we worked for our apartment agency we were living at during that time.  Basically, I gained quite a bit, but I was also very active which seemed to help my body be stronger.  When my doctor did my c-section, he was so surprised that my abs were that good that he took the time to sew up every layer.  Apparently that’s not normal, as even the nurse who was attending the surgery told me during recovery that she’d never seen him do that before, and that I “looked really good in there.”   :O  great, but yuck!

After I recovered for a day he came by to see me again to check in on how I was doing, and he brought me a belly wrap, telling me it would help shrink the uterus back to size and compress everything out.  It did seem to help quite a bit and I was so grateful!

This time I’m thinking of getting another band like she mentions in her video, or going full-out this time and wearing a corset like this:

41u41BAyzVL._SX342_

I figure if I’m going to do a wrap or band again, better to be serious about it – and from the reviews, this one is extremely intense – but again, it seems to really work!

3. Breastfeed if you can

I’m not so sure about this anymore – whether it helps or hinders women to lose the baby weight.  I’ve known quite a few moms that have sworn that breastfeeding caused them to keep the weight on – but some of them also admitted that they were still ravenous and ate all the time as if they were still pregnant.  For me personally, breastfeeding did seem to cause me to slim down fast – or it was the fluid.  The strange thing is that breastfeeding really does seem to make you hungrier, and I did eat more than usual even though I was burning so many calories my body still looked amazing.  So when I stopped breastfeeding, I gained a bit of weight almost immediately due to probably not altering my eating habits that had been set for a year.  I was also grieving my dad at the same time and going through depression – those also contributed to the lack of exercise and lack of eating healthy (I just didn’t care anymore).  But being so used to being able to eat anything while breastfeeding is something to be aware of – you may have to alter your food intake after you stop.

4. Get more sleep!

She mentions how she aimed for just 30 minutes extra every night and that really helped her lose the last of the weight as she was so rested.  It is so true that being stressed, sleep deprived, or anxious keeps you generally from losing any weight – it can even make you *gain* weight to not sleep enough.  Your body produces a hormone called orexin when you’re extremely tired that actually makes you hungrier, causing you to potentially eat too many calories when you don’t need them.  I know with our second baby, it was just such a peaceful transition for our family – when I was breastfeeding during the day, it literally felt like I was resting on a cloud – the hormones of breastfeeding are like a high and actually relax you!  My husband had to go back to work after only 5 days with that baby, but somehow the transition from 1 to 2 kids wasn’t that difficult.

Because of his police schedule and the danger of his job, I felt it critically important that I be the only one waking up with the baby all night, allowing him to get his much needed sleep and rest.  He’d get a full night’s sleep and then let me sleep in for 2-4 hours in morning when he’d watch our kids for me since he went in later.  This was only possible because of his weird schedule, but wow did it feel so different from our first when both of us were trying to share baby responsibilities, and he had to be up in the morning as well.  This time he’s taking off for a whole month ❤ ❤ ❤ but I’m still planning to exclusively breastfeed during that time, so I’m going to keep the baby all night and he’ll watch her in the morning so I can rest up again.  It felt so incredible to both of us last time to handle it this way – why mess with something that’s working?!

5. Drink more water

Definitely!  But everyone probably knows this….  If you feel like you’re retaining fluid, drinking more water helps to generally flush it out.  I snack on ice and crave it like it’s candy, even when I’m not pregnant.  So drinking a few liters of water (has to be iced) a day is normal for me.

6.  Try a vegan diet

LOL!!!!!  As if!!!!  Just kidding 😀 – she is right on one thing, eating more fruits and veggies and less dairy and meats does help most women’s bodies lose weight.  She mentions that her body fat pre-vegan was at 23%, versus getting to 15-16% body fat with her vegan diet.  I have to say, that’s impressive, but I’ve also seen women get those results from maintaining a mostly keto diet style (opposite vegans for the most part), or even just tracking their macros and carb-cycling (what I’ve done).  Macro tracking is just keeping track of the proteins, carbs, and fats you eat every day or even weekly.  It’s a little annoying, and shouldn’t be obsessed over, but it does work and the benefit is that you can still eat things that aren’t on a specific diet like “vegan” only foods or “keto” only foods.  You have more freedom when you’re tracking the proteins/carbs/fats, and I always do at least one cheat day so that I can eat things I normally wouldn’t eat throughout the week.  It really is just whatever works for you.

Hidden Tip!!!  Dry Brushing!

She adds in a random tip not numbered that doesn’t go with being vegan that I know of LOL….  She “skin brushes,” otherwise known as “dry brushing.”  This really does work for many women, I’ve seen results from women in my fitness group that are mind-blowing how well just simply dry brushing can tighten and firm loose skin (really loose skin!).  It is very strange that simply dry brushing your loose skin areas can have that great of an affect.

Another thing that is very much like dry brushing only more intense, is “needling,” or using something called the “derma-roller.”  It works by using needles that you literally roll over your loose skin areas creating tiny injuries that cause your body to produce more elastin & collagen in those areas.  I remember when they first came out for this type of device for the face (using tinier needles), my husband and I laughed about it because it sounded like a torture device.  But you know what??  It actually works!  Both for your face and for apparently your tummy! Click here to read just one woman’s response with it.  I’ve seen the same results more than a few times with the women in my fitness group.  It’s legit.

7. Give it time!

Very true, I thought I’d never lose the weight with the first baby, it was just dragging on and on and on.  We were in the gym several days a week at first and then switched to home workouts, and yet it still took a whole year.  Just be committed and willing to try new things.  And just don’t give up!  I’ve often seen it take women a couple of years if not 3 years to get to the place where they want to be with their bodies and there’s no shame in that at all!

Everyone’s body and genetics are different and respond to different things.  It is crucial to find out what your particular body and genetic makeup responds to best, but it may take a year or two to even figure that out unfortunately, especially if you weren’t at all athletic to begin with.  Starting from scratch like that is hard and you HAVE to give yourself time to try all kinds of things to see what works and what doesn’t.  It’s more than worth it though.  Every woman I’ve talked to that lost significant amounts of weight even when it took years has said it was the most important decision of her life to keep with it.  Being overweight affects everything about you and your life, so it’s no wonder there are so many women who feel as though it completely changed everything for them when they get the results they want.

Stephanie

Pregnancy & Postpartum Comparisons

We finally got some good belly/body shots fairly recently, and I cannot wait to not be pregnant anymore – we are SO CLOSE!  Everything is easier almost immediately for me once the baby comes out.  I don’t tend to gain very much weight (the first was a little too much at 45 lbs, second only 23 lbs (perfect as it was able to be completely lost within 2 weeks time), and this time about 25 lbs.  I gain a lot of fluid with pregnancy it seems, with even the first pregnancy I lost about 22 lbs in the first 2 weeks, yet still had 23 more to go.  It seems I regularly have gained about 20-25 lbs of baby, fluid, placenta, extra blood volume, etc with all 3 pregnancies so at least it makes sense with consistency.

First picture has been up before, it was literally the DAY before our 2nd came out.  Second picture is only 9 DAYS later.  I don’t think it’s possible to lose fat that quickly, hence my theory that it’s mostly fluid + baby+ placenta + blood volume, etc.

I wish I could find the pictures of our first baby (the pre-and postpardum transformations), you would really be able to tell the difference of what it looks like when you still have 23 pounds of fat to lose.  It took me almost a year to lose that measly 23 lbs as well, since my body clings to fat like we’re in an ever-present famine (from my mom’s Polish genes that are more prone to diabetes and being overweight very easily).  Like I’ve said candidly before at this blog, it is hard for our family to not gain weight.

So… I cannot wait to get our little girl out so that I can get back to feeling healthy and active and of course cuddle her and kiss her sweet face!  At this point, even trying to sit in the right way is so uncomfortable and hilarious.

This is 37 weeks:

pregnant with sophie 37 weeks

So ready to workout again and lose the weight!  It’s amazing how only a little extra weight makes every day life so much harder.

Until the baby girl arrives….

Stephanie

Last Trimester – It’s Almost Over!!!

bikini 2015 a

I’m not naturally a thin or “fit” woman.  That may come as a shock when seeing how I am in *this* particular picture, but pretty much all my life I’ve struggled with being able to gain weight extremely easily.  The benefit of that has been finding multiple ways to make it easier to maintain a good shape and keep healthy though!  According to my sweet 1/2 Polish, 1/2 Irish grandmother, for the women in our family, it was normal to gain weight with pregnancy, and then just never manage to get control over it after that.  Being very overweight after having kids was just accepted for them… but not really.  It wasn’t accepted emotionally… and definitely not with any kind of happiness.  In a major way, it’s like living defeated.

bikini 2015

My mom was so good about letting me know how hard it was to live with excess fat on your body weighing you down… literally.  The way she explained it when I was a little girl, was that it felt like carrying around sacks of potatoes and trying to actually do life that way.  Recently, when my oldest (6) son and I were out buying some supplies for his new little kitten, I had the chance to really demonstrate this lesson to him about weight gain and how awful it is.

We needed to get kitty litter, and so went to the aisle where it was stored and I let him look around at the different kinds and showed him the prices and weights to find the best deal.  When we settled on a 25 lb box, I picked it up and placed in on the floor and asked him if he’d like to see how heavy 25 pounds is by trying to carefully lift it off the ground.

He was excited and was amazed how heavy it was to lift!  It was easy to explain to him after that how being overweight by even just 25 pounds is literally carrying that amount strapped to your body all over, making your life that much more unpleasant and difficult.

This is a major part of why I don’t like pregnancy – and especially the last trimester of it when you start truly gaining and growing bigger!  Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE having babies, and I love feeling the baby kick and roll over inside me, but dealing with the weight gain and nausea and feeling like a bowling ball is trapped inside your gut throwing you off balance… yea, it’s just not something fun or easy to go through LOL.  Thank goodness it’s only for about these last 3 months when it’s really that hard.

I’m at 30 weeks now, only about 7-8 more to go!!

Looking forward to giving birth and getting active again immediately!  With both of our prior babies I healed insanely fast from the c-sections, and was able to walk (which helps you heal faster actually) only a few hours after the surgeries, and feel almost normal 2 weeks afterward.  Being strong and fit throughout your pregnancy is so necessary for things like this!  And if you’re having a c-section, make sure you get up and walk and be a little active as soon as they allow you to.  

38 weeks pregnant

Yea… I don’t know about you, but to me, this just LOOKS painful to be protruding that hugely, LOL!!!  This picture above was me at 38 weeks pregnant with baby #2, just a few days before he came out.  I look almost just as big right now, maybe a tiny bit smaller.

This next picture is right at 6 months after baby #2… I was basically eating very “clean,” almost a keto type of diet concerning the actual food choices (but not actually following keto), and working out 3-4 days a week to the Tracy Anderson Metamorphosis DVD set which focuses on dance workouts and intense pilates mat workouts to tone and define muscles.

6 mos after nathan

So… all this to say… just because you have bad genetics and every woman in your family struggled and could never lose the baby weight after getting pregnant, it just doesn’t have to be your story too!

We have so much more information now that they sadly didn’t have 😦 , like how much you really should gain for pregnancy… what kinds of foods to eat that alter your pH balance or that could cause you to flair up with inflammation, how to recognize and diagnose allergy sensitivities, and on and on and on.

You can do it!  You can get the body you’ve always wanted!  All it takes is the desire and knowledge of how to get there.

Stephanie

 

 

40 Years Old & 4 Children – What Your Body Could Look Like

Wendy

This is an awesome woman in my fitness group that allowed me to share her picture along with her encouragement to us.  She is 40, and yet looks better than probably most women in their 20’s!

I always hear the excuse that it has to be your genes or that you’re rich to be able to afford to get the body and fitness level you want, but in almost every case I’ve seen – the people succeeding in their goals are the people who admit they want change, and then actually DO it.

Here was her encouragement to us that I love having the privilege of sharing here:

No excuses:

When you wanna reach your goals as much as you wanna breathe! Early morning workouts are a good foundation for the day…especially when the payoff is lean muscle, mental clarity, stress reliever, feeling confident in your own skin, seeing 💪🏼‘s and just makes ya feel good! 😎

STOP MAKING EXCUSES!

STOP DOUBTING YOURSELF!!

Get up, move your body and make it happen! It doesn’t have to be weights…it could be 30 minutes of stretching, HIIT, body weight exercises, yoga, but do something each morning for 21 days (takes 21 days of consistently doing something to make it a lifestyle).

💡Keep a journal where you log your workouts and how you felt doing them! You’ll also find putting in early morning work will make you think twice 🤔before grabbing life taking foods!! 🌭🍕🍟🍰🍫🍩🍪

Side note: I’m a 40 year old mother of 4…it can be done!!! We got this ladies!!!

I don’t know about you, but this woman was incredibly motivating to me being pregnant with our third baby (and hoping to have at least one more)!

Don’t make excuses, go after what you want wholeheartedly and passionately.  And take care of your body, it’s the only one God’s given to you!

 

Stephanie

Confronting the Insanity of Our Culture Head-On

insane fitness model

Something that I’ve never seen before is starting to come to light in the internet world of blogs and articles and talking head figures.  Apparently, it’s not enough to claim over and over again, that “any size,” woman can be healthy, that curves make a woman more realistic or relatable to people… I’ve come across a fitness model who has decided that she feels extremely guilty over using her fit body to sell women things for the fitness industry.

But she doesn’t just feel bad about selling “bad” things that don’t give real results (false advertising – something people SHOULD feel guilty for), this poor woman actually feels bad about her **success** in her fitness goals.  She feels guilty that her body looks so great that other women (she thinks) sees it and feel bad about themselves.  She takes their issues with their own self-esteem and their own responsibility to take care of their bodies and be responsible for their own fitness levels, and places all that responsibility onto herself and then feels guilty for it.

Her blog post is here.

I do feel sorry for this woman…  and I get it that she doesn’t want to “hurt” people, the problem is though, that the people who she’s talking about are actually hurting themselves.  Her fitness has little to nothing to do with their decisions to be happy or sad. Reading her post comes across as a form of projection of all her shame for being a cover model onto women who (in her own mind) see her, and are “miserable,” because of her existence.  There’s something very off mentally with that kind of shame.  First off, it is not someone else’s responsibility for another woman’s decisions in her life to get fit or stay overweight and unhappy.

Blaming fitness models for remaining overweight or unhappy (and this goes for any life situation) is bad overall for one’s mental health because it completely takes away that person’s individual control over their own life decisions.

Not to mention it’s just pure insanity on her part. 😦

Imagine if Olympic Athletes were apologetic in their athleticism.  If after winning medals, they went on “Apology Tours,” to apologize to children everywhere (or people in general), who they deemed would never be great enough to achieve their level of sport success?  What if they apologized that only the best athletes were able to go to the Olympics, and told the kids who were average or not athletic at all that they felt so ashamed of their successes because of how it must *negatively* affect all those kids?   First off, it’s incredibly insulting to tell all these random people (or children) that they’re just never going to be as good as you are.  It may be true, but making it a point to tell them is neither graceful or nice and kind.  Olympic athletes should rightfully feel no shame about their success, even if most of the world’s population will never go on to achieve their medals and fame and glory.  It would be entirely inappropriate for them to talk to children in that way – apologizing that they may never be good enough or achieve their level of athleticism.  They are an inspiration to children and people everywhere for a reason – because it is such a magnificent thing to behold when watching them compete or perform…  and if everyone was able to be an Olympic Athlete, it would no longer be the Olympics.

Now imagine if great musicians (past and present) felt ashamed of how great they were (either naturally or through hard work of perseverance) just because they may have made “normal” people feel bad about themselves when they take up piano lessons?  Imagine if they wrote lengthy, self-absorbed posts about how bad they feel for being so good, about how sorry they are to all those children who will never be quite as good as they are?  Again, just entirely inappropriate and insane for someone to behave that way.

Just as insane as a fitness model apologizing extensively for being her best and using her talent in fitness to inspire other women out there or to make money.  There’s nothing kind about telling people you’re sorry that they’ll never be as “great” at something as you are.  It comes across as fake and lacking genuine compassion or understanding.

***

It’s things like this that I want my children being exposed to, so that they can see through the lies and quickly get to the truth of what is going on.  Especially our coming daughter – I want her to have compassion for people who may feel bad when they see a fit model or are failing in that area of their life as far as being fit and healthy; but I never want her to feel ashamed of her personal achievements and success in her life.  Obviously I don’t want her to look down on others, but I don’t want her to devalue or cast shadow over her own shining light just because other people may have a bad attitude about her success.  I want her to set a good example, to be that shining light that motivates others.  Haters or miserable people will always exist… the only way to avoid them in life, is to do nothing and become miserable yourself.

We should never feel ashamed about succeeding in an area in life like being proud of our children, proud of handling our finances well, proud of taking care of our appearance, proud of doing well at work, proud of having a great marriage and being happy, or proud of using our talents (especially for God!), and yes, it’s even ok to be proud of achieving our highest level of personal fitness and feel great about (proud of) our bodies.

When someone who is successful in any of these areas feels a great deal of guilt and shame, psychologists would say there is a problem their in their mind that’s not healthy or good.  It’s certainly not godly to have false guilt or false shame about your achievements or being able to enjoy your life inspiring others.

So let’s be women who are proud of our achievements, even if they are “great,” and rare talents.  Let’s not be ashamed over gifts God’s given to us to use for His glory, and let’s not hide of our lights under a basket so that we never offend anyone or make them feel bad about their own life choices.

Every person has control over their own decisions, and you can only help the women who actually want to have that control – not the ones who may look at your success and use it as an excuse to remain unhappy in their own life.

Stephanie