Each week these two creative and knowledge ladies choose a Hot Topic for us Healthy Living Bloggers to “dish” about.
This weeks Hot Topic is … How does your PAST influence your healthy lifestyle.
This topic reminded me that I haven’t actually shared my Healthy Living journey.
It starts a long long time ago, 2004, when my big girls were little girls and I had just started back to work. I remember watching Opera back then and she had a piece defining the AVERAGE WOMAN. She shared that the average woman was about 150 lbs and wore a size 12. I was proud that as a mother of two I was still an average woman. Sure I was heavier and softer than I wanted. Sure I was out of breathe and lacked muscle. But I was doing FINE. Then one day an OT came to the school to work with one of my students and he asked “Congratulation!! When are you due??” I don’t know who was more embarrassed him or I!! It was time for a change.
I didn’t have a clue on where to start. But what I did know how to do was to read. So I turned to Shape and Fitness Magazines. They had a ton of tips on how to get lose the weight and get fit. I used my husbands old unused weights and shed the pounds, I felt and looked great. But that was only the beginning. I still had a mediocre diet and couldn’t even run a mile.
Fast forward 2 years I was at my ideal weight of 135 lbs with a barely average diet when I had a pleasant surprise – I was really expecting a baby!!
9 months and 40+ pounds later I was back at square 1. it was now 2008. This time I started walking and the weight came off naturally with easy exercise and breastfeeding.
But I still wasn’t truly fit or healthy. We still ate a great deal of processed foods. I didn’t know enough about nutrition to truly understand the ramifications of my diet.
Fast forward again to 2009. I was a stay at home mom with 3 kids and a husband who travelled every week all week for work. I walked the baby and the new puppy each and every day. I was going stir crazy and needed a challenge, so I signed up for a surfing retreat on Vancouver Island B.C. Unfortunately I really wasn’t a strong swimmer. So I approached my kids swim coach and she suggested I take her “learn to swim classes”. I really struggled but I survived and was capable of swimming 1 km by the time I finished. I truly loved the opportunity.
Over the next few years I continued to walk and swim periodically. Finally in 2011 my biggest change came along. I joined an outdoor training class. I had only planned on participating in the boot camp workout and walking the mileage. The Instructor is an incredible woman who can motivate anyone into trying just about anything. She makes burpees fun!! In April 2011 I ran/ walked my first 5k by the end of May 2011 I had run my first half marathon. That year I ran 2 more moving from 2:30 to 2:19.
That summer changed me, I ran all the time. I also took up cross fit style workouts that fall. I loved running and lifting heavy things. I was finally FIT!!!But I still didn’t have my diet under control. I followed the mentality, I can eat what I want because I run. I thought a 5k gave me the license to loads of CARBS and Sweets.
In the winter of 2012, I was still active and felt healthy, but was in need of a challenge so I joined Amanda at Run to the Finish in the Holiday Bootie Buster Challenge. She taught me all about Vega Protein Products, green smoothies and more. I finally realized that “you can’t out run a bad diet”. Sure I looked good, but that wasn’t enough. I needed to fuel my body with good food in order to make the most of my workouts.
While my kiddos don’t love my transformation from fries and chicken fingers to quinoa and salmon. They have embraced my love of salads and are trying new foods. We no longer eat at restaurants like McDonalds (my previous favourite). I still bake real homemade chocolate chip cookies, that will never change, but we also eat wholesome meals most night of the week.
So there you have it. My transformation story. It really isn’t all the spectacular, no 100 pound weight loss, no drastic sugar addictions over come. The weight difference is only about 15-20 lbs and 6 dress sizes. The major transformation took place inside. I now know what HEALTHY looks like, I don’t exercise and eat well to look great I do it so I can have a better quality of life.
What have I learned from all this?
- Anyone can make a change.
- Being a mom isn’t an excuse to be unhealthy.
- Its the combination of a healthy balanced diet and exercise that makes me a fit mom.
- We may have to start over, life may get in the way.
- Be willing to try something new.
- I am better that average, I am extraordinary!!!
Do you have a story? What have you learned from your past?