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SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (243,907)
Fitness Minutes: (41,124)
Posts: 26,620
2/8/13 6:06 P

I was a caregiver for a LOT of years but I found the opposite to you. I always had time to eat healthy. When I was doing the caregiving for work, it was very easy to get in the exercise because I was physically on the go all the time, using all my muscles. When I stopped working at this, but was still doing a lot of caregiving (family) I still got exercise - I got walks in and a 1hr Pilates session per week. Unfortunately because of serious health issues in the family, those Pilates sessions have been on the back-burner for 18 months, and so have my 'formal' walks. Also, my own health issues caused a huge decline in 'formal' walks. In it's place I got/get my walks in by putting my groceries and laundry away one at a time. I love laundry so don't have a problem there :-)

As far as food is concerned, I have always bulk cooked healthy soups/casseroles/pizza, and frozen them in single serve containers. This considerably saves time for when we are busy and/or tired. It also ensures that we eat healthy and balanced. Another positive is that it actually saves money because we can take advantage of specials on meat and veges, AND it saves power/gas costs because you are only using one lot.

The other thing I will suggest is that you weigh and write down the foods you eat during the day and when you have time, enter them ALL into the nutrition Tracker. This will help give you the motivation to stick to it. You can see where you are going, and it is a reminder WHY you are going there! It really DOES work :-)

Unfortunately the only person who can do this is YOU. YOU need to find what motivates you. Perhaps you can find that 'motivational thing' by going to the Motivation tab in the drop-down menu in the "Articles & Videos" section in the toolbar above.

Good luck and take care,

Good luck,

MOONSTREAM SparkPoints: (41,180)
Fitness Minutes: (83,371)
Posts: 877
2/7/13 5:48 A

Snoopy, I can just tell that you are a giving, caring person :-) I heard someone once say to remember that when you are on an airplane and they are giving instructions for how to use the oxygen mask that if you are with a child, you need to put yours on before you put on the childs? Hard for a caregiver to think of self first - believe me I know. But each time you DO successfully make time for exercise, eating healty, etc. tell youself that you are taking care of yourself so that you can be a better caregiver to others. The 1 thing that has FINALLY helped me have a breakthrough is the 10 minutes a day exercise streak. I found that just committing to a minimum of 10 minutes of SOME exercise every day has helped me remember daily that I must focus on my "me" time too. Hope this helps and hang in there! You're here on SP which is already a terrific step in the right direction.

BETHS60 Posts: 566
2/6/13 9:24 P

Can you put the baby in a stroller and walk for a little while every day? (or at least every day that the weather cooperates) It is so good for little ones to be out in the fresh air.

ACHIEVE2012 SparkPoints: (5,176)
Fitness Minutes: (7,786)
Posts: 137
2/6/13 2:20 P

Hi SNOOPY1960,

You say that you know what to eat and what not to eat… But you cant stick to it for more than a few days…

Ask your self.. what if you did!!!! What if you stick to the plan for more than a few days??? It wont be easy to do with being a caregiver, kids, being a nanny, how you do it is a different story, but just think what if you did stick to your plan??

Maybe you wlll be some pounds lighter, move more easily, keep up with the demands 3+1 kids, be more energetic, enthusiastic, be a even better caregiver, you will be more present in the moment… Endless possibilities in how your life will improve… Visualize how much better things will be if you only stick with your plans…Maybe that would be motivating for you to follow the plan.

Its not about doing more, it about doing efficient, doable small steps. Walking 3 times a week is great! You may want to vary your speed in that walk. Not only for variety but also that way you can simulate interval training which helps to burn more calories. Or find different paths that have more slopes, different surfaces, etc…. You could add more exercise if time and energy permits.

As for eating, make small changes and only a few at a time. So that those do not become overwhelming.
Hope this helps..

ARCHIMEDESII SparkPoints: (195,897)
Fitness Minutes: (292,213)
Posts: 26,970
2/6/13 11:42 A


It's always been difficult for "caregivers" to take care of themselves. That's because they spend the day taking care of everyone else. They don't ever seem to have the time for themselves. They are expected to be selfless. But you know what ? If you want to be around to take care of them, you have to be a little selfish and take care of yourself. Because what happens if you get sick ? Who takes care of them ?

That's why you must take some time for yourself when you can. Their health is dependent on you. So you must take care of yourself.

You don't have to do a lot to be healthy. As I've said in past to anyone who will listen to me,"Don't look at good health or weight loss with an all or nothing mentality". If the only healthy thing you did for yourself today was drink 8 glasses of water, that's still a step in the right direction.

Here are some simple things you can do to be more healthy. Eat 2-3 servings of fresh fruit and veggies. drink 2-4 glasses of water. take a 15-30 minute walk. eat a high fiber cereal. eat whole wheat bread instead of white.

Here's a listing of some more simple things you can do to make your day a little bit healthier.

30BEFORE40 SparkPoints: (505)
Fitness Minutes: (480)
Posts: 72
2/6/13 10:25 A

If we could find the answer to that, we would all be our ideal weight! Don't worry, you're not alone in this. You take care of so many people, you need some tender loving care for YOU. Even if it's you that has to do it. Try giving yourself tiny little rewards of things you would like. You DO deserve it!!

PCVCHRISTINE SparkPoints: (21,364)
Fitness Minutes: (57,082)
Posts: 135
2/6/13 12:14 A

I'd kind of like to draw a distinguishing line between "I have no self worth" and "I just can't seem to 'take care of me'", as I would consider these to be two very different things (the reason that I want to make the distinction is that I think the two situations require different responses). You might have meant either one (or both). But I don't think that the inability to "take care of me" is //necessarily// caused by a lack of self worth, so much as a tendency to put other people's needs above our own. And that's something that many, many of us do, whether it's because we find yourselves in the role of caretaker or we're in a 'helping profession'. It sounds from your brief post like you might fall into this category.

An essential thing to remember if you feel like this situation fits you is: You cannot be at your best for others if you are not taking care of yourself. You just cannot be "on" 100% of the time, with your husband and your kids and the baby that you're caring for if you're not also investing in yourself. Therefore, one of the best things that you can do for your family is take the time and energy and effort that you need to take care of yourself. For some specific ideas of things that you can do for yourself, try googling "caretaker self care", and you should start to get some ideas.

Beyond convincing yourself that you need this, you're still facing the challenge of having a very busy (maybe overwhelming) life, in which it probably isn't easy to fit all of the little healthy practices that would benefit you. SP has a lot of good articles on fitting health/fitness into a busy lifestyle, but I think first you have to accept that you're never going to have the time unless you make the time. Unless you schedule the time (whether it's your walk several times a week, or an weekend afternoon to make healthy lunches for the upcoming week, or an evening bubble bath to de-stress). You have to make the time.

Now, for deeper issues of self-worth, it might be worth it to sit down in a quite place and do some journaling or an inventory of your different identities -- the roles that you play to different people (mother, wife, colleague, daughter, etc.), what you mean to the different people that you mention, what motivates you to take on those different roles and responsibilities, and you (and others) get out of your relationships, etc. Just do some free form writing of these different things until you start to view the complex picture of what you mean to those in your life. Just quickly looking at your post and your profile, it seems to me that you're a pretty important person to the people around you.

SNOOPY1960 Posts: 1,687
2/5/13 10:05 P

I want and need to lose this weight so badly but I just can't stick to it day after day. Long story but I have no self worth. I just can't seem to "take care of me " . I take care of my DH who is disabled, ,my 3 kids and I am now a Nanny to a 9 month old baby. I get out 3 times a week and walk for about an hour but I think I need to do more.

Believe me,I know WHAT to and WHAT NOT to eat. I just can't stick to it for more than than a few days.

Ugg....what can I do ????

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