I’ve been debating heavily whether I wanted to write this post or not. To be honest, I’m still debating it as I sit here and type this. This subject is a sensitive/controversial one for many and for lots of reasons. So if you are reading this, just know that I’m probably curled up in the corner somewhere with my head between my legs.
Before I dive right in, please understand: I do not believe that your self worth relies on a number on the scale. I do not believe that you have to be a certain size or shape to be happy, beautiful and confident. I DO believe that each and every one of you was fearfully and wonderfully made by the hands of our creator. If my daughters grow up knowing that, then I will have succeeded as their mother.
You will never find a picture of me standing in front of my mirror half naked, showing you my new bod. Please understand I am not fishing for compliments of any kind. I’m coming to you from a mom who over the last year has faced the same struggles that some of you may be facing today. I’m choosing to write this blog post for a couple of reasons.
1. I’ve been asked so.many.times by so many different people, what I did to lose the baby weight.
2. One year ago, I would have wanted so desperately to know how another mom just like myself, won that battle.
Ok. Everyone know’s that your body changes after you have kids. I knew my hips would be wider but what I didn’t know was that I could no longer eat a bag of Cheetos in one sitting.
ARE YOU KIDDING? This is a joke, right?
I can’t have double stuffed Oreos for a snack anymore? This body is a PRISON! I had no idea that my once fast metabolism would become slower than molasses after having a baby. Like overnight! Did that happen to anyone else? I just figured I could continue to eat what I wanted because I’d burn a million calories a day from breast feeding. That’s what everyone told us, right?! Well, I assure you, Clara was latched to my breast 90% of the day and night. Breast feeding did not help me shed one pound.
9 months later I got pregnant with Quinn. After 2 pregnancies in 18 months, I was a LONG ways away from where I had started prior to having babies. The number on the scale wasn’t important. What was important was that I felt like crap. I was tired with no energy, I had no confidence, I didn’t feel good about myself, and I was always uncomfortable! My clothes didn’t fit so I wore paint-stained yoga pants from Walmart almost every day.
I reached my breaking point and decided I needed a lifestyle change. Not a diet! But a change in the way I ate-forever. I was listening to a podcast one day that mentioned this book. The Title really turned me off (talk about being blunt!) but the podcast speaker kept talking about eggs and bacon-BACON, which made me think it was worth the read.
***Disclaimer*** Before I continue, I should make something very clear. Though I do have a nursing education, I am in NO way giving you medical advice or opinions. Talk to your health care professional if you have questions or concerns. This conversation is just as if we were sitting in Starbucks and I was rambling on about this book I read and blah blah. Super informal. Ok? Ok.
I read the book. I’m not going to dive into all the details. You can read it if you wish but a lot of it made a ton of sense to me! In a nutshell, it provided history and data that suggested that maybe it’s all the sugar and carbs in our diet that’s causing us to gain weight and have health problems. Maybe ALL fats are good fats and ALL sugars are bad sugars. And maybe calories in/calories out is just a theory and not a proven fact? Just read the book. He explains it a lot better.
January 1st I paired the information I got from the book with an Advocare 24-day Challenge. Before you exit out of this post, I promise this is not a sales pitch! I do not sell Advocare and I no longer take it either. I knew I needed to really invest in something for myself to make a mental switch. I have woken up too many times and said
“Ok. I’m going to eat healthy today and every day after.”
But that only lasts until about 3pm and then you binge all of the goldfish crackers because you’re so starving! I knew that in order for me to take this seriously, I needed something calculated and something that made me give something in return-like my money! The 24 day Challenge did that for me. It helped me make that mental shift and get the ball rolling. I combined that with a low carb/high fat diet and the weight started dropping. After the challenge was over, I stopped taking the supplements but continued to be very strict with my diet.
Per the book- I didn’t count calories. I ate when I was hungry and I didn’t stop until I was full. The difference was, I wasn’t eating sugar and carbs, I was eating cheese sticks and pepperoni.
Almonds and cashews.
The list goes on but you get the idea. I started losing about 1.5-2 pounds per week in the beginning and then it gradually slowed down a bit. I’ve reached a point where I’m not trying to lose any more, I’m just trying to find balance and maintain where I’m at right now. I can splurge more now and it doesn’t have an effect, so don’t be shocked if you see me burrying my face into an Oreo blizzard! Like I said, I’ve reached a point where it’s a balancing act now.
To date I’ve lost 29 pounds and I was never once starving. I never counted my calories. I actually never even exercised! Although, I probably should have! I just tried to stay away from sugar and carbs as best I could.
“So what do you eat?”
Here’s some examples of what I eat!
Breakfast: scrambled eggs and sausage or bacon. This doesn’t vary much! I literally have this every morning.
Lunch: Egg salad, chicken, chicken salad (salsa instead of ranch), more salads, cheeseburger wrapped in lettuce. Sometimes I will cheat and have a sub sandwich but I’ll rip off the top of the sandwich and eat it like a pizza. That way I’m only eating half the carbs.
Dinner: Meat and veggies. Chicken. Salmon. Salads. Taco meat. Lettuce wraps. Turkey Loaf. I’ll still eat corn, beans and sweet potatoes but I can’t tell you the last time we had dinner rolls, bread or pasta of any kind at dinner.
Snacks: Cheese, pepperoni, turkey, ham, peanut butter, all kinds of nuts and seeds, vegetables.
Beverages: I’ll never give up my Champagne! I drink mostly water and occasionally a diet coke. I do enjoy an Americano from Starbucks as well.
If you’re in the healthcare field, you are probably wondering what my cholesterol levels are. I just had my lab work done and compared it to the same lab work I had done in 2011. Not a huge change. My HDL (the good cholesterol) is better now than it was in 2011. My LDL (bad cholesterol) is 2 points higher than it was in 2011. Nothing to get excited about. Blood pressure and heart rate remain well within normal range.
I think that’s all I have for you! Hopefully you were able to find a little humor in this post! I’ll leave you with one of my favorite quotes from one of my favorite movies…
“You is kind, you is smart, you is important.”