I’ve gone from flat tummy, to pot belly, and right back. Luckily (I guess) I’ve experienced this as an insanely busy adult and understand how seriously difficult it is to lose weight. You know what the number one thing I learned trying to lose the weight was? The harder you try and the more you stress out about your body, the more difficult it is to lose the weight. Sounds super counter intuitive doesn’t it? About a year ago I had realized I was at the biggest I had ever been and decided to do something about it. I was only working six hours a day and did not have any extracurricular activities so I was able to spend all of my free time meal prepping, grocery shopping, and of course working out. The craziest thing was, I barely lost any weight. Honestly, I may have gained weight! Why? I was eating healthier food, but I was overeating healthier food. Because I worked out so much during the week, I deserved to binge on nachos and ice cream all weekend. My biggest problem though: I hated my body. Hated it. I overthought everything I did, I obsessed over food which resulted in me over-eating and then I would over train to try and reverse calories. I’d workout super hard one week, then get depressed and not workout the next week. I was not consistent in anything I did.
Currently, I am in class and/or at work for 12-13 hours a day (four hours every Saturday), cooking dinner every night, writing essays, reflections, and lesson plans, going to physical therapy, maintaining a social life, and still making time to workout consistently. I am actually losing fat, and losing it fast. What’s my secret? Loving myself and loving my body. Body positivity has helped me get back on track, and feel like my old fit-self again. I workout because I love my body and what it can do. I eat well because I feel like crap when I eat junk food. I love to nourish my body, mind, and soul. Self love and a few other, super simple, easy modifications to my daily habits are what are keeping me on track to a healthy body and life.
Here is a quick snapshot of my daily schedule:
- I wake up between 5:30 and 6:30 every single morning. Even on the weekend (no alarm needed, my body is used to it by now).
- I drink a full glass of water first thing. Then I wait about 15-30 minutes (depending on my schedule for the day) before even having a sip of coffee or a taste of food.
- I workout for 10-20 minutes minimum (if I have a late start day, I add another quick workout). It started as practicing self discipline and proving to myself that I can stick to it, not I feel super weird if I don’t workout. I go to www.toneitup.com and complete the five daily moves or www.youtube.com and complete either a Tone It Up video OR a quick HIIT workout video by Fitness Blender.
- Shower. Get dressed. Pack a lunch (and dinner depending on the day). Fill up my 48 oz water bottle. Fill up my 24 oz water bottle. Head to class.
- If I have a long enough break after class, i.e. if I don’t have physical therapy, I stop home to clean up, relax, refill my water bottles, do yoga, or prep some food for dinner.
- Go to work. Get home at either 7:00 or 10:00 depending on the day, and make a healthy dinner quickly, or pull it out of the crockpot.
- Do homework, work on my blog, then get the f*&k to sleep. Repeat the next day.
- Drink more water. Lots of water. Every. Single. Day. Water keeps me aware of my body’s wants and needs. A lot of times we feel hunger when its really just thirst. Every time I feel hungry or like I need to eat something, I sip a glass of water and then reevaluate what my body is telling me. If I’m still hungry then I eat, but more times than not, I was just thirsty. I also drink water throughout my meals. Not only does it slow down my eating but it helps to fill me up.
- I’m not sure how true this is, but I was once told that it takes twenty-minutes to feel full. Sometimes we eat so fast that we don’t actually feel full until its too late. I’ve learned to be aware of my body and to stop eating at the very first signal that I am full. You know that subtle feeling in your stomach you feel halfway through a meal. That’s when I stop and wait. I almost always feel super full ten minutes after I stop.
- I make sure to eat vegetables at at least two of my three meals a day. Even if I’m having a cheese burger or quesadilla, I make sure I have a side of a raw vegetable.
- I only snack on fruit and nuts. No more crackers, chips, popcorn, pita, etc. Fruit and nuts. That is all.
- My yoga teacher in college once told the class, “Any simple change in your routine will bring about a change in you.” This is SO true. I don’t push myself crazy hard when working out. In fact I only workout 10-15 minutes most days. But just making that short workout a simple change in my routine, I’ve had great results. Not only do I look better, but I feel better and more confident.
- The saying, “Abs are made in the kitchen, not the gym.” Is one of the truest things I have ever heard. By choosing healthier options the majority of the time, eating more vegetables, fruits and nuts, and by not over eating, my tummy shrinks more and more every day. My thighs do too =]!
Losing weight is hard. It is a journey filled with ups and downs. Once we learn to love ourselves it can be made easier and honestly, a lot more enjoyable. I know these tips sound way too simple, but trust me! Try them out and comment below with your story or any questions! I will respond asap! I am more than happy to help and excited to hear your tips, tricks, struggles, and stories!