Getting Started in Spite of Valid Excuses
Wednesday, January 02, 2013
A few weeks back I went to the Dr. for my yearly checkup. I had a litany of small complaints, for all which she told me to LOSE WEIGHT.
I used to know how to do that. I knew how to eat, I knew how to exercise, I knew how to combat my Insulin Resistance and my PCOS.
But a few years later and all I have are excuses why it's not possible. I think the thing that sucks is that many of my excuses are actually valid. No matter how much I WANT to, I won't be able to lose weight like I did back then.
First off, I'm not single, I have a husband and a 18 month old daughter. My husband works nights, and we split child care to avoid daycare. So there is a definite time issue, as I am either at work, on baby watch, or sleeping.
Secondly, we are broke. Our grocery budget really can't feed 3 people (and 2 dogs) and it certainly can't do it healthfully. My husband and I eat the unhealthy processed foods, and try to say the fresh fruits and veggies for our daughter. But who has time to cook or even shop for that matter?
Thirdly...exercise...again time is an issue...not to mention exhaustion. My daughter often gets up at 5, and I'll just say straight out that getting up at 4, is not going to happen! I've tried to exercise at night...but I'm a morning person, and my Sciatica is usually pretty bad by evening.
I know these excuses don't matter. I know that others have it worse. It's just that it was so hard last time, and I didn't have all these disadvantages!
Member Comments About This Blog Post
Getting into the swing of things is hard with a little one. But at 18-months, she should be walking around - try getting down on the floor with her, using her as a weight and chasing her around (yard, park, living room). Don't worry about regular exercise, just being up and moving will help.
As for food, you might not be able to afford the best foods, but start with watching portion sizes on what you DO eat. When possible, opt for fresh veggies and fruits, but sometimes frozen is super cheap. Try for heavier protein, lower carb (better option with the PCOS). Protein doesn't have to be expensive, buy the cheaper cuts.
PM me if you want some more specific help.
1270 days ago
Wow. I cant tell you how much this blog resonated with me. Briefly - we moved back to the east coast after 6 years of living in the midwest so my husband could take advantage of a job opportunity. It made since for us because my degree is in public policy and living in washington dc is great for me. I had to quit my job though and we lived on one income for almost a year before getting a job. I have lost 50 pounds and gained it back due to life and pregnancy. I am smarter now. Stronger now and I know what it takes. I also learned more about maintaining. But here were my issues
1) We could not afford healthy foods for the WHOLE family.
2) We could not afford a gym
3) We were depressed obviously because we had to pinch every penny. It takes away you enjoyment of life like not being able to go to the movies, buy fun food to cook, rent a movie, splurge on getting a pedicure and so on and so forth.
Here is my advice in no particularly order and this is what got me through:
1) FIND food that the whole family can eat. Nothing is worse than having to rationing food because we have to save it for the child. Our son is 16 months so I know EXACTLY what you are talking about. What we did was starting shopping at Aldi which is a very cheap grocery store. Basically find the cheapest grocery store. Even they have healthy brands. The fruits and lettuce will be cheaper AND buy frozen fruits. Also SHOP IN MEALS. Do the calcuation you need for yoru family for 3 meals and 3 snacks a say for the amount of time in between pay checks. Shopping in meals WILL save you money as must people tend to over buy.
2) Run and excercise outside. Get your little one and go to an open space and RUN, JUMP, PLAY ROLL SQUAT. My little one lives this and I bundle him really good. Over the summer it was easier as well.
3) Hang up motivational signs all over your house like on the fridge in bathroom and where you wake up and see each day to remind you that things will get better, that you are stronger and capable of more than you know, that you are human and today is only about doing the best you can today. That the most important people in your life IS your family. That together and with love - you can over come anything. I made pretty little message signs in my apartment all over that really helped our self esteem as a family.
Lastly use the public library for free stuff like playdates with the child, meet other moms, dont feel alone because so many people are struggling right now.
Get a daily word book and read one entry a day with your husband or leave it out for him to read. Try and discuss it with him at some point in the day. This trains your mind to focus on what you have and being grateful than the opposite. Hope this helps.
1271 days ago
"There is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think."
All of your frustrations are valid. I know this because I share many of them with you. We can BOTH do this. You CAN find the time, if it's worth the effort. You CAN find the ability to cook healthy foods, even on a tight budget. You CAN lose weight and feel better about yourself. People do it every day. I'm telling you this, but I am also telling myself this. WE CAN DO IT.
1272 days ago
Hi there - how are you doing today?
Sorry about the length of this comment - brevity isn't my strong suit.
So I read your blog post - and you don't know me and I don't know anything about you other than what I just read and your location (Georgia) from your info page - and I had some thoughts related to your post. You can completely ignore what I write if you like. But I wanted to provide you with some alternative ideas, OK?
So on the schedule - totally understand. Life is busy and I remember the days with the babies... it is a LOT of work. But can you do 10 minutes a day? If your physical condition makes that hard, I understand. But what CAN you do? Is there something you can do that doesn't cause you too much discomfort? I've got plantar fasciitis, a painful foot condition, that makes any appreciable distance walking difficult. It is better than it was 28 pounds ago but certainly it flares up if I walk too much. I used to run intervals and could run a 5k. I haven't walked more than 15 minutes straight in a year now. So I've worked on managing my weight primarily through managing my food.
On the money issue - and it is ABSOLUTELY NONE OF MY BUSINESS about your financial situation and I just offer this up as a suggestion - do you have an Aldi nearby where you live? I know there are quite a few in the state. I shop at Aldi pretty regularly and find that I can save a lot of money by going there.
For $15.38 the other day I bought the following:
a 20oz container of raisins,
a 42oz (30 servings) container of oatmeal,
one of those long burpless cucumbers,
a two-pound container of red grapes,
and a pack of three yellow/orange/red bell peppers.
I also bought a bunch of kale (probably 3 servings worth) for $1 at the "Bottom Dollar" store - Aldi didn't have kale.
Granted, there is no meat there and that is absolutely just a few things that we would eat throughout the week, but my point with that is that I've got probably five days worth of grapes for me there (I eat about 30 of them a day), a month's worth of oatmeal (I eat it five days a week), avocados for probably four days, fifteen 1/4 cup servings of raisins (for my oatmeal), and a pretty good start to probably 5 bowls of salad (peppers and the cuke), plus six bananas. All that for under $17. If I'd shopped at the Giant Food grocery (a more upscale chain with higher prices), I'd probably get 1/2 that food for the 17 bucks.
Maybe you can't afford the perfect diet for you but perhaps you could substitute some things for items like these? Just a thought. Again, I'm not trying to pry or say "you are making bad choices", just offering some suggestions. I'm sure you are already very mindful of your dollars.
Sometimes I prep things for the week so I don't have to spend so much time each day getting things ready. I'll chop up my peppers, for instance, and stick them in a container and then grab a handful for an omelet or for the dinner meal. Helps to save time. Life can get pretty crazy sometimes so I attempt to take shortcuts when I can. My wife is an organizational genius and I've learned a few things from her example over the years. (I still have a long way to go!)
Could you do a fun exercise with your daughter? A lady here on SP talked about having "dance time" with her young child. That sounded pretty good to me! Wish I'd thought about that back when our kids were little.
Anyhow, just some thoughts I had. Not trying to say that I've got everything figured out but I hope they are helpful or at least not hurtful.
You are strong. Stronger than you think. I'm sure of that.
Make it a great day!
1272 days ago
It is hard to find time with little ones and a busy life. I try to fit in a little exercise where ever I can like squats while I'm making dinner or brushing my teeth and parking away from entrances where ever I go. As my children get older it does get easier to find a little time. Hang in there doll!
1272 days ago
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