I’ve written about some of my past fitness…decisions before, but thought I would touch on it again. Growing up my mom was a dietician so I knew about healthy eating and exercise, but like all adolescents didn’t REALLY grasp the importance (and even had a phase in high school where I pretty much ate 2 chocolate chip cookies a day…and that was all). For me “health” and “weight” was synonymous.
Fast forward past college, I was getting married to my now husband, and I met some people through instagram and got caught up in the Herbalife movement. Now – it wasn’t bad. I ate really clean, I exercised, I learned more about nutrition than I ever had in my life, and even did my first fitness competition. It was a period of incredible growth for me. That being said, an MLM is not for me and the more I learned about nutrition the less I wanted to drink really processed soy based shakes. Not hating on the company (I still have friends who do it who are in great shape) just that it ended up not being a good fit for me.
Then I was doing competitions with REALLY strict diets and A LOT of workouts. It wasn’t good for my mental health (or my marital health – its hard when you’re at the gym all the time, can’t eat/drink together, and your spouse doesn’t share your interest. Props to couples who rock it, but it wasn’t for us). It ended up making me a bit obsessive with my weight and then eventually totally burned out on exercise. It sucked all the fun out of it for me.
Introducing what I will call “current life stage”. I found Barre Code – which for me personally was more than a gym – it was a mentality shift. They really focus on strength and power, and not on body image or weight. I also met a bunch of ladies who eat well 90% of the time, workout regularly, and then go get pizza and margs. My kind of people. It really helped me changed my mindset from “eat less to lose weight and do tons of cardio” to “eat with balance and workout to become stronger”.
Want the proof? I weigh 22 pounds LESS my second pregnancy (my kids will be exactly 1 year apart so I only had 3 months of not being pregnant in between). Now, I also try to avoid meat and dairy now (I’m not vegan just wary) and I exercised very consistently this pregnancy, but a lot of that is my current mentality. I want my WHOLE FAMILY to be healthy and active, not on a diet and running all the time.
I’m not sharing this as an attempt to say “do what I do – I’m the best and all the other things are wrong”. No. What I’m trying to share is that it is a JOURNEY. It took time for me to start to really like myself and my body. It took time for me to find what healthy and balance looked like for me. It took doing things that didn’t work for me, to really appreciate what did. And I will probably change again in the future because…it is a JOURNEY. So don’t be so hard on yourself. Don’t get frustrated. Try something new, strive for balance, and find a girl gang that makes you FEEL GOOD. I’m here if you need me.