Last year, I committed to losing weight and being healthier. This is something I have done on and off for most of my adult life. This time, however, it seems to have stuck. I’m down 25 pounds and have been able to maintain that loss through the holiday season and winter, where apparently all I really wanted to do was eat heaping mounds of buttery mashed potatoes and bake cookies. Lots and lots of cookies!
The one challenge that I did not expect was trying to diet with my ever-present audience: my 5-year-old daughter and 6-year-old son. I recently wrote about this struggle on HER VIEW FROM HOME. You can read the article by clicking this link: Shhhh … Don’t Tell the Kids I’m on a Diet!
I know I mainly just write about my kids and my life as a mom, but if you are interested, here is what I attribute to helping me lose – and keep off! – the weight:
Weight Watchers: I joined online, and this helped me get my portion sizes back in control and make better food choices. Weight Watchers is all about assigning points, so when you know that a food is going to take up half of your allotted points for the day, you find yourself making better choices. After six months, I stopped my membership simply to save money. And, although I don’t formally “track” my food anymore, point values still run through my head constantly when making food choices.
Having a buddy: I would not have stayed accountable if I had not agreed to “weigh in” via text message with a friend each week. Seeing that she lost weight and I didn’t motivated me to do better the following week. Simply knowing that I had to text my actual weight to someone each week was highly motivating, as well.
My husband: He decided to be healthier, too. It is so much easier when everyone in the house is on the same page. If he was eating a yogurt, I was less likely to break down and go for the ice cream instead.
My Fitbit: I am SUPER obsessed with getting my daily step-count. I love it and I hate it. I almost cried one day when I forgot to wear it, and didn’t have my step goal recorded for the day. My goal is 11,000 steps a day, and there have only been a handful of days that I do not achieve that goal.
Completing my exercise early in the day: And when I say exercise, it is mostly just walking. Sporadically, I will do a fitness video. And even more sporadically than that, I will get it in my mind that I want to be a runner and start the C25K program. Then I suddenly remember that I hate to run!
Previously, I would always find an excuse not to exercise, but last summer I started waking up early and walking before my husband left for work and the kids woke up. I actually started to enjoy the 1.65 mile hilly walk each morning (3,000 steps!). Also, it’s true. Exercising early in the day puts you in a much better frame of mind to make healthier decisions throughout the day.
Obviously, there are other contributing factors to my weight loss. For instance, I don’t eat four slices of pizza at a time anymore, nor do I eat an entire plate of brownies by myself. (I love food so much. So. Very. Much.)
I would like to lose a few more pounds, but right now I’m happy to just maintain my weight loss. It’s still a struggle. I tend to go a bit overboard on the weekends, and then feel like I’m depriving myself during the week. I know it is all about balance, but sometimes that is hard to achieve.
I’ll leave you with my favorite line from my article, Shhhh … Don’t Tell the Kids I’m on a Diet!, because I know Easter and all of the chocolaty goodness coming my way is going to be so very tempting:
It would be easier for me if I told them I was dieting – maybe they would stop offering me their treats, and I wouldn’t be tempted to eat the heads off of all of their marshmallow peeps. But for now, I will keep it a secret.
I’m embarrassed to admit how many packages of marshmallow peeps we have already gone through …
So, anyone else out there struggle with eating healthy and dieting with kids around? What are your tips?