As it is already well into the start of the new year, it is the time for setting new goals!! As women, we often put everyone else’s needs ahead of our own. As a mom of five, I understand this but I cannot stress enough, for you to be the best wife/mom/friend/employee you can be, you have to be the best you first. The most common mental barriers I hear from women are: “I don’t have the time;” “I have no one to watch my little ones;” “I can’t stick to eating healthy and lose weight;” “I am embarrassed to go to the gym, I have no idea what to do;” and “everyone will know I don’t belong there”.
When you don’t set aside time to make sure you are healthy and fulfilled, you cannot make others happy. You deserve to be the best you that you can be. You are worthy of being healthy and strong. We often give and do for others from the time we wake up, and deserve a small amount of that day to take care of ourselves. Decide today to make this your number one goal of 2021……to give yourself the time to become healthy.
If you have already given in to time constraints, go to bed 30 mins earlier so you can wake up 30 mins earlier to get a quick workout in. There are tons of at-home workouts you can rock in 30 mins! For moms who are caregivers to elderly parents or children with disabilities, please ask for help from your support circle. Without a doubt there are friends, family members, church volunteers who will help give you a break so you can take care of yourself.
For the greater part of the last 21 years, our one son needed 24-hour care, and I understand the struggle of having that responsibility. Often, we fail to ever take people up on their offers of “What can I do for you?” People want to help; you will make them happy to have something to help you!!! You may not be able to leave the house if you have a respite “sitter”, but you can go to another room, the garage, the driveway and do your workout. You will still be right there if needed. You will be mentally much stronger if you have that time to yourself and you will be a better caregiver.
Eat mindfully! We all know that eating a balanced diet with a variety of healthy foods and minimal sugar and alcohol is key in losing weight and maintaining a healthy weight. Instead of dropping all your sweets, all your favorite yummy foods that might not be a good choice, alcohol, high calorie coffees, and soft drinks all at once, start with the first week of setting a smaller goal.
Drink more water instead of one of those soft drinks, add one vegetable to lunch or breakfast, half the glass of wine at night or the sweets. Ease yourself into that second week of adding more water, adding more healthy choices, halving that wine again. Little by little, you will adjust to your new, healthier way of eating. You won’t miss that cookie, that glass of nightly wine, that sugary afternoon drink. Also, STOP taking bites while cooking and if you have little ones stop nibbling off their plates!!! We are all guilty of this and those bites throughout the day add up! Be conscious of it – you probably don’t even realize how often you are doing it. You will be amazed how stopping just that one bad habit will make a big calorie difference!
Start moving. If you signed up for that gym membership and only went twice or haven’t even gone yet, get going. I so often hear, “I am too embarrassed/too intimidated to go to the gym;” “I am scared I will look silly because I don’t know how to use any of the equipment;” or “I will start going to the gym when I lose X amount of weight.” I cannot stress this enough……EVERY single person at the gym was once there on their first day. No matter the level of fitness experience someone is at, they were once a beginner, once completely lost and unsure of what to do there. I promise you; no one is thinking you don’t “belong” there.
A gym is the one place where EVERYONE, regardless of their experience level, BELONGS. Every gym that is worthy of your money will have a trainer willing to show you how to use the machines. Use the free training sessions that come with signing up. They are a very valuable tool and will make you more comfortable and confident. If you have questions, ask them or another member for help. I love when someone asks and I can help them learn something in the gym.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help!!! Do not wait until you lose “X” amount of weight before you start going!!! Start going today!!! Do not be intimated or think you don’t belong in the gym. I can also promise you that the vast majority of people are way more inspired, motivated, and impressed by the beginner who is there working hard than the body builder across the room. Find the excitement in being a beginner and be humble enough to be enjoy it! Use those nervous butterflies to fuel your joy in your bravery, your accomplishment of trying something new.
Remember, YOU CAN DO THIS, YOU WILL DO THIS, and YOU ARE WORTHY OF BEING YOUR BEST SELF!