I get it now. I never understood how hard the weight loss battle can be until now. Now that I’m a middle-aged mom and life is completely out of control. More to do than hours in the day mean something has to give and for us moms, it’s usually ourselves. The days of going to the gym and taking care to eat healthy are long gone. When you’re racing from one thing to the next and trying to feed a four-to-seven-year-old at the same time, it means a lot of drive-thru’s. Add travel and events to that equation and there’s a lot of added eating out and not a lot of routine in your life to make time for the gym.
The battle of the bulge hit home for me at age 44. It started creeping up on me at age 43, but by 44 there was no denying if I didn’t engage in battle I was going to lose the war.
I thought about dieting, but diet had always been a 4-letter word in my book. If I could just get back in the gym, all would be well. That was what I told myself as the next two years slipped by – busy with my daughter beginning school, after-school activities, freelancing as a designer and of course travel. Lots and lots of travel. By age 45 I had hit the tipping point. I refused to be photographed. And when I was, I was repulsed by what I saw.
I Was Convinced I Would be Overweight the Rest of My Life
The first thing I tried was tracking my calorie intake using an app on my phone. That actually started working, but the weight loss was painfully slow (half a pound a week) and every time we’d take a trip somewhere or attend an event, which was on average once or twice a month, I’d stop tracking and eat what I wanted. Undoing any progress I had made. I just couldn’t get into the habit of denying myself that beer or that dessert.
Then I tried Atkins. Even bought the book. It all made sense but was excruciatingly hard to put into practice. How could I be expected to deny myself carbs and sugar when I wasn’t at home? Easy to get rid of temptation at home, but when you’re away from home as much as we are? Not so easy. The cravings were still there and I had no will power because I had never had to develop it before.
I’ve always known I had no will power, it just never mattered until now.
We bought an elliptical trainer for our basement so we’d have no excuse to skip workouts anymore and it felt good to start exercising again, but no weight was coming off. I was still eating and drinking the way I always had – whatever I wanted – and now at age 46 that obviously wasn’t gonna cut it anymore. Could I really learn to eat differently after all these years? I didn’t believe I could.
I honestly started to feel helpless and like I was going to be stuck in this body which was so foreign to me for the rest of my life.
I needed a crutch. Something to get me over the hump fast and prove to me I could lose weight so I could stay motivated. While contemplating all the usual methods, including Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, Nutrisystem, etc., along with a few not-so-conventional methods, I witnessed a friend lose 27 lbs before my eyes in just two months! And her husband lose 100 lbs in five months! They did it by cleansing the toxins from their bodies allowing them to burn fat more efficiently (faster) using a highly nutritional cleansing program. Now that’s the kind of jump start I’m talking about!
Now I’m using the same nutritional cleansing program they are and experiencing my own dramatic results. In my first 30 days on the program, I’ve dropped 12 lbs and 17.5″! And like any program, you get out of it what you put into it. I’m thrilled with my results, but am determined to put even more of myself into the next 30 days to get even better results than my first 30. If I do that over the course of the next two months, I will be completely done with the weight loss part of this program and move into maintenance mode where I plan to stay the rest of my life.
I have one important tip that I learned from the Cowboy Ryan Cowboy Fit Zone training program, which I did for a few weeks and then had to stop because I came down with bronchitis and a nasty fever that lasted for over two months. I was even sent to the CDC with “fever of unknown origin” when it finally broke. I never got back on the Cowboy Fit Zone training program because of the usual, life getting in the way (yada, yada, yada) but, I still use the key component I learned in that program which is simply to find your target heart rate and don’t go over it when you exercise. This keeps you in maximum fat burning mode. When you exercise above your target heart rate, you are actually burning muscle instead of fat.
Cowboy Ryan has an online target heart rate calculator and that’s mostly what he is selling, in addition to motivational and informational videos that are delivered to your email inbox daily. I do think it’s worth the $10 investment as I haven’t found a similar online calculator anywhere, and I’ve looked.
The other thing you need is a heart rate monitor watch and chest strap. The chest strap is important because it is the most accurate way to monitor your heart rate. It also sends your heart rate data directly to your watch which will signal you when your heart rate gets too high so you don’t always have to keep looking at your watch. I use Polar brand and love it.
Oh, and by the way, the Cowboy Ryan Cowboy Fit Zone training program promises you can lose any 12″ in 28 days… I lost 17.5″ in 30 days doing nutritional cleansing. Yeah, baby!
With these two tools I’m on my way to getting back to my size 4 self. I hope writing this and sharing these embarrassing photos will motivate others and encourage you that there are solutions out there. You just have to find what works for you.
If you have any questions about what I’m doing, please feel free to email me at chris [at] mamabirdsblog.com and I promise to get back to you. I want everyone to feel as good as I do right now!