Welcome to our new series on weight loss. I am excited to be able to share this with you because it has been a challenge that I have personally participated in.
Over the last 8 years I have had 6 babies, one right after the other. During that time I have gained a lot of extra weight. Seventy pounds to be exact!!! At my highest, which was when I was ready to deliver I topped off at 210 lbs. For the most part, some of the weight would come off. But I remained at a steady 180 lbs for quite some time. After having a baby and nursing them, it seems I would get pregnant again before I even thought about losing weight.
It seems that losing the weight was ALWAYS taking a back seat.
Days, months, and years would go by with me feeling tired, sick, and fat. I had to decided for myself that I wanted something different for my life.
So where did I start??
I wasn’t really into wearing exercise clothing because most of my Christian life has been spent wearing dresses and skirts. But how was I going to go about exercising in a jean skirt???
That was probably one of the biggest excuses I had used when dealing with NOT losing the weight. I would use the excuse that it shouldn’t matter what I look like under my clothing. I wasn’t here to look impressive for other people. Besides you can’t exercise in a long skirt?!?!?!? I would just continue wearing my skirts, hoping that the weight would just melt off by itself without any work on my part.
Yeah…..that didn’t happen.
So I started. As a Mom of many little ones, I didn’t have the resources to be able to just drop my children off and go do as I please and have “free exercise ME time.” That just wasn’t going to happen. My husband works hard and long for our family, I had to come up with a way for me to be able to work around my obstacles.
I waited until it was almost bedtime. I nursed the baby and put him to sleep in the swing, which I placed by the front window to check on periodically. I put the other little ones into their beds and popped in a DVD. I had older children help and I put them on watch over the little ones. I was “on call” if the baby started fussing. Which he did and I had to end my walking sessions early sometimes.
We live out in the country with no neighbors in sight. I would head outside, in my long jean skirt and tennis shoes. I then would do a walk/run around my yard. We have a circle driveway and I would walk around the driveway and then do a run around my house. I continued with that pattern until I did it for a full 30 minutes. Everytime I passed the window in the front, I would peek in at the sleeping baby.
I sweated and didn’t really like it very much. I am not one to enjoy sweating, I think it is gross. But I knew in my mind that I had to work HARD for all of the years of lapsing in my eating. It was sort of a punishment for not eating correctly. I was reaping what I sowed. So I must work hard to work it off.
Afterwards, I would immediately come inside, take a hot shower, get into my pajamas, and then climb into bed. I was tired, especially after watching little ones all day but I was determined. The next day I felt so much better and was able to have more energy in my days.
I was enjoying this. Then it started to rain, A LOT. I looked so forward to walking at night and then by the time it would come we had rain. I was frustrated. So what did I do? I put to use the tools I had inside, which was free floor space. I started moving.
Most of my days are spent, getting this, or cleaning up that, constantly doing something. But I do have many times that I am just sitting, holding a baby or sitting while my children are playing on the floor. During those times is when I start taking advantage of some exercise time.
My children would watch Wiggles and I started mimicking the same dance moves as the people. Do you realize what a workout that is in itself? It is very hard to do. Don’t believe me? Try it? Plus my little ones thought it was fun having Mom, dance along.
What about if you don’t watch the Wiggles? You come up with movements on your own:) I started moving. I remember Denise Austin an exercise instructor when I was a teen say:
The more floor space you use the more calories you burn.
You just have to move!!!! It really doesn’t matter what you do, just do SOMETHING!
I would run in place, pretend I was skipping rope, would do a fast high knee march around the house, with children in tow of course. Any type of movement that you can get your heart rate moving is good. Do it with your children. Mine thought it was so great to be following Mommy around. If you have a little baby, it works at your advantage. You not only have the extra weight on your body, you have the extra weight of your baby to hold onto while you move. It is like working out double!!! Just keep moving.
When I would rock my babies to sleep, instead of sitting in a chair, I would stand up and sway back and forth in forceful paths, so that my legs would get a workout. All of course while holding baby securely:)
I also used my Moby Wrap and would attach the baby to my body and then do walking. When I had a colicky baby this was something I HAD to do. The baby would not sit in the swing so in order for me to do anything, I had to wear them. Which I did. When I was finished, I don’t like the sweat thing remember, I would come right in and shower and by that time, baby would awaken from being lulled to sleep against my body.
This was when my husband saw that I was determined to lose weight and wanted to help me out. He took me and we bought an elliptical machine. Now I don’t believe in wasting money on exercise equipment because for the most part it will just sit there. Actually I don’t believe in wasting money on anything. But if you are a determined Momma, this is a machine that I would HIGHLY recommend. It is great for your joints, you can do a light workout or make it so that you have to endure. I have had mine for 3 years, and I still use it almost every day. One of the greatest things we have purchased.
If you are serious about losing weight I would recommend doing the elliptical 5 times per week. For the not so serious at least 3 times. I like to do my elliptical in the morning now as it is easier for me to wake up and get some chores done, take care of little ones and then bring them downstairs for playtime. I then do my elliptical while they ride bikes, roller blade, or play in the corn pool. I then go up and shower and get dressed for my day after I am done.
Want to know how I kept working out and losing weight with lots of little ones??? Keep reading to part 2 to see how YOU can lose the weight also.