Friday, August 3, 2012

August Ab Challenge (with a nice long back story)

Ok, after 2 kids in less than 2 years, my body has been through the wringer. And my weight has fluctuated like CRAZY. (I can't believe I'm going to actually post numbers, but here it is. Please bear in mind I'm 5'10" and not exactly delicately built). And also... this is going to be long.

I was 175 when I got pregnant with C (newlywed pudge, not great), went down to 160 from morning sickness, then up to 210 by the time I delivered. Then C was sick and had allergies and I was on my super restricted diet to keep him healthy. No dairy, soy, egg, wheat, peanut, tree nut, fish, shellfish, or corn. I basically lived on chicken, rice, and vegetables. And I looked fantastic. I lost almost 60 lbs in 11 months, and started out my pregnancy with M at 153 (a weight I hadn't seen since high school, and I must say I looked fabulous!). But, I got pregnant, stopped breastfeeding, and started eating everything again all within a few months, so the weight came back on. Back up to 209 on delivery day. I lost about 20 lbs just from not being pregnant anymore and breastfeeding, and then I was stuck hovering in the low 190s. With zero core strength, no muscle, no stamina, no fitness at all, really. And I was constantly stuffing my face. So, from Sept 2009-Jan 2012 I was 175, 160, 210, 153, 209, and 192. That's a lot for a body to change in that short amount of time.

I decided that I wanted to be comfortable with myself and not hate getting dressed every single day because I felt like nothing looked good. Crying in my closet is not the way to start the day. But I also know that I'm a dreadful self-motivator and so I didn't want to jump into a fad diet/fitness plan I wouldn't keep up with, I wanted to take small steps to making better choices for myself. I joined (highly recommend- and totally free! Plus a free iPhone app) to track my calories and exercise. It gave me a level of accountability by having to record everything I eat, and jut gave me that extra incentive to think about when/why/how much I'm eating. For example, I did a lot of boredom eating. A LOT. As a SAHM in the house with two kids all day and not enough time to prepare and eat meals, I was snacking constantly. I ate dessert because it was there, I never said no to a candy bar or cookie, and I just ate and ate and ate. No wonder I wasn't losing weight!!I've been tracking my calories for about a month and a half, and I'm proud to say I've already lost 14 lbs! And I'm not gonna lie, I don't make super healthy choices. I still drink too much Pepsi. I still have dessert. But I am practicing portion control, and I'm eating when I'm hungry, not when I'm bored. Or sad. Or mad, or frustrated, or happy, or walking past food. If I eat a good meal and am satisfied, I say no to dessert (or at least wait a while). I'm hardly having seconds, and if I do I wait 10 mins after my first helping to make sure I'm actually still hungry and not just wanting more because it's yummy. And the best part is, my body is starting to get re-trained already! A couple times I've overeaten (aka, eaten like I used to every single day) and it gave me a stomachache. I just noticed today that I'm not itching to wander to the kitchen to find something to nom on, which believe me, was a very difficult habit to break. VERY. I went through a period of snacking withdrawals, where food was on my mind 24/7, no joke. I'm so proud to say that's no longer the case. When I'm hungry, I eat, when I'm satisfied, I stop. Simple concept, difficult execution.

ANYWAY, to finally get to the point of this post (because I'm obviously way too long-winded to be interesting... Perhaps you could use my blog entries to put children to sleep), I've been so happy and encouraged by my weight loss that I'm going to try toning up. I found this ab workout on Pinterest and decided to make August my ab month. And every day in August, I will be doing these exercises and hopefully I'll see results. And recording my progress here (again, that accountability thing). Wish me luck!
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