Living healthy as a busy Mom with two little boys

Can’t is a choice August 9, 2012

Filed under: Motivation — fitformyprinces @ 10:42 pm

My Dad told me once that having children was a very humbling experience, because you get frustrated with how they are behaving and then realize that those negative traits came from yourself.  I didn’t quite get it at the time since I was a very young adult when he said them, however now that I have kids of my own I can definitely see the wisdom in those words.

I have struggled for years with the “I can’ts”  I can’t do this, I can’t do that.  Ironically, not on major stuff.  I’ll set really lofty goals for myself and work hard to achieve them (like running that marathon back in 2007).  But my inner demon will convince me on smaller things that I can’t do it and so I stop.

Each morning the boys and I take the dog on a walk.  Well, really it’s more me taking everyone on a walk.  The boys are strapped in the double jogging stroller and I’m also holding onto the dog’s leash when we go.  Well on this particular morning we were about 4 blocks from my in-laws house when it started to rain.  I started heading back once it started to drizzle and when that got heavier I started to run.  I haven’t run at all since I finished C25K last fall and since the weight has come back on it’s not exactly an easy task to do while pushing about 90 pounds in the stoller (30 pounds of stroller, 40 pounds of “C”, and 20 pounds of “B”).  I made it about 2 blocks before I needed a breather.  Once I started walking, “C” said, “Run, Mommy!” and I said “I can’t”.  Then I realized what I had done and I knew that was not a legacy I wanted to pass onto my son so I told him that Mommy was wrong, that can’t was a choice and I started running again and didn’t stop until I made it to the driveway.

See I had two options that morning, (1) believe the ‘can’t’ and keep walking or (2) do it and show the ‘can’t’ who’s boss.  I choose #2.  And hopefully through my lead, my children will choose 2 also.


A lesson to pass on….. August 1, 2012

Filed under: General musings,Motivation — fitformyprinces @ 11:38 pm

I’ve been very blessed in my life to never really know hunger.  Now, I know that a lot of that is due to sacrifices made by my parents to ensure my needs were met.  I know my Mom has mentioned that when we were really little that she had to sell things to make ends meet.  I would never say that my childhood was privileged from a financial point of view, but I’d argue that the poor in America are substantially better off than in the rest of the world.

I remember visiting my Grandparents when I was really young and Grandma would fill our plates with spaghetti.  It didn’t matter that my sister and I were 4 and 2 years old.  We got a full plate just like all the adults….and we were expected to finish it too.  My Grandma insisted that our plates be cleaned before we could get up.  So we finished.  And my 2 year old sister promptly vomited the spaghetti up onto the floor.  Her tiny stomach could just not handle that much food.

Too often, we teach our children that they must clean their plates before they can leave the table or have dessert.  Now I get the point.  I have a devious persistent 3 year old who would like nothing more than to eat dessert and no ‘real’ food.  And I find myself falling into the same trap alot by insisting that he finish his main course before moving onto eat a fruit snack or ice cream or something like that.

One thing I’ve learned along the way is that it’s ok to throw something away.  I mean, would you rather the junk be in the garbage or in your body?  Don’t get me wrong, as a stay-at-home Mom finances are much tighter than they were when I was working and I’m not wasteful with food at all.  But, if I pull something out to eat and a partial serving satisfies,  it is ok for me to toss the rest (assuming I can’t salvage it to keep for later).

Tonight I started teaching that lesson to ‘C’.  I took the boys to our local county fair tonight and after C went on a lot of fun rides he was wanting ice cream (and why not).  So being the indulging loving Mom that I am, I bought a single scoop of vanilla with rainbow sprinkles (the most important part).  I stood there with the baby on my back for over 20 minutes as he slowly ate this scoop of ice cream.  Then I told him he had 10 minutes left and he would have to throw out whatever he didn’t finish.  To my surprise, 5 minutes later (and only half the cup eaten) he declared that he was all done, got up, and put the bowl in the trash.  I was so proud of my little guy.  I’m hoping that he can remember this so that he won’t face the same weight issues in his life that I have faced so far.


Firm Express Plan July 29, 2012

Filed under: The Firm — fitformyprinces @ 10:12 pm

Finally, I have finished The Firm Express plan.  Sheesh … I had started it back in October 2011 right as I was returning to work from my maternity leave.  Then one thing turned into another and I took a too extended blog absence and gained back all the weight I had lost while on maternity leave, plus another 15 pounds.

Anyway, as I said in my previous post, I’m back.  I started back on the diet and exercise bandwagon on July 1st with this program.  Now, according to the Firm Express you can see results by only doing three 20-minute sessions per week.  Let’s just say I did not follow that.  I ended up working out almost every day.  Every single day except 2 or 3, I walked my dog while pushing the boys in the double jogging stroller for between 35-70 minutes.  Then I did the Firm Express video on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday each week.  On three of the remaining days each week I’d do another exercise DVD that I have (it rotated) for 20-45 minutes.  So I definitely worked out more than this program says to.

So what is it?  Basically they break the 30 days down into 4 cycles.  Each cycle has 3 workouts.  One to be done each of 3 days that week …. a cardio, sculpt, and cardio/sculpt dvd.  Each DVD contains a 20 minute workout that includes a brief warm-up and various exercises (depending on type of workout) with four “bursts” intermingled throughout the workout.  What is a burst?  Well in a nutshell it’s interval training.  So you go all out for 8 seconds on whatever move it is that they’re having you do, then you tap it out for 12 seconds.  Repeat this 4 times and you have one burst.  This is based on some university study that found that high intensity activity for 8 seconds followed by a 12 second recovery is optimal for fat loss.

Pros – I like that the workouts are only 20 minutes.  Let’s face it …. most everyone is extremely busy and sometimes you can only find 20 minutes to get in your workouts.  That is possible with this system.  I also liked the bursts.  I was a believer in interval training before these workouts and I do believe they work well for fat loss.  I also like that you don’t repeat a workout at all the whole time you’re doing the program.  This is good for me since I tend to get bored quickly with workout DVDs.

Cons – I found the instruction a little hard to follow at times.  I’m pretty coordinated and found myself falling behind quite a few times.  Also, I’m not sure where they got their success stories from on their website, but I did not find my results coming really close to that at all.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy with the weight I lost in just 4 weeks, but I did not see the inches gone at all close to these people, plus I was doing much more activity at the same time.  I know that advertising success stories are not typical, but these just seem so out of whack for me.  It’s possible they lost this while on the program…. I just don’t see it happening one time through the system.  It does say int he book that if you’re not to your goal by the end of 30 days to just start over and keep repeating the 4 weeks until you get to goal.

The results:

Measurement                Start     End     Difference
Arm                                 15           14         -1
Chest                              36.5       35.5     -1
Waist                             45           44.5     -0.5
1″ below belly button  51.5        50        -1.5
Hips                                47          46         -1
Thigh                              29         25.75    -3.25
Calf                                 17.75     17.5      -0.25
Weight                           213.0    201.2    -11.8

So in total I lost 11.8 pounds and 8 1/2 inches.  I’m definitely happy with that progress.  I mean, other than someone competing on The Biggest Loser, who wouldn’t like losing almost 12 pounds in a month?

Would I do this program again?  Probably not, at least not in its entirety.  I’ve lent the DVDs out to the home health care worker who comes at night to help my mother-in-law get ready for bed.  She saw me do most of these workouts and said it looked right up her speed so hopefully she sees great results from it.  When I get them back I”ll probably pop in one of these DVDs every now and then just to mix it up and keep things interesting, but I just don’t see this program being the end all and be all for me.

Next up …. Jillian Michaels’ 30 Day Shred.


Hello again….. July 21, 2012

Filed under: General musings — fitformyprinces @ 3:59 pm

Wow … talk about a long break from blogging.  November 2011?  Very bad for me.

It just goes to show you how true it is that a working Mom is a hugely busy Mom.  When I returned to work after my maternity leave in October I pretty much fell off the face of blogging earth.  Life has certainly changed a lot in the past, what 8 months?

The good:  My family is all in good health.  The ‘princes’ are now 3 1/2 and 1.  “C” is pretty much nearly potty trained (insert the Hallelujah chorus) and “B” runs around like a pro.  Also I’m now a stay at home Mom (cue up the chorus again).  Staying at home with my boys has been a lifelong dream of mine and I am so lucky and Blessed to be able to be there for my kids.

The bad:  I’m not living with my husband anymore.  No we’re not ‘separated’ in the sense that troubled couples do that.  However, in order to free me up to stay at home, my husband accepted a new job.  We currently have two houses on the market (PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE SELL!) and so he has signed a year’s lease in a small apartment that is just not suited to our size family (two adults, two kids, two cats, and a large breed dog).  So where are the princes and I?  We’ve moved in with my in-laws.  Yes, I know I have this listed under ‘the bad’.  They’re not bad, just the whole thought that I’m in my mid-30’s now and living with ‘Mom and Dad’ again.  Sigh.  Not how I planned for my life to go at all.  However, a couple of years ago when my husband was entertaining another job option I told him that I would live anywhere if it meant I could be a stay at home Mom.  I never in my wildest dreams (or worst nightmares) thought it would mean living with his parents and not with him.  But overall it’s a win-win for us.  We get to save money (once these houses sell) so we can have a decent down payment for a new home in his new job location (Raleigh NC) and I’m here to help my in-laws since my Mother-in-law came home from the rehab center on June 1st after having her stroke just over a year ago.  I cook, do some light cleaning, and help with transferring my MIL when needed.

The ugly:  Blogging wasn’t really the only thing I quit last November.  I pretty much quit all exercising and watching what I ate.  For several months.  And I gained all the weight I’d lost back plus another 18 pounds.  : (   I started back at exercising and eating well on July 1st and weighed in at 215 pounds.  That’s nearly what I weighed when I was in my third trimester with each of my pregnancies.  How embarrassing.

But …. better to turn around and start working in the right direction than saying what the hell and continuing on my path of self-destruction.  I do have to set an example for my kids and I want to be able to play with them.  And I’m not able to do either well at over 200 pounds.  Luckily here I am just 3 weeks later and I’ve already lost 11 pounds (plus whatever I lost this week …. weigh in day is tomorrow) and I can feel my energy level higher than it has been in awhile.

As far as exercising goes I restarted the Firm Express system and have one week left.  I neglected to take before shots (since I’m living alone now and don’t really feel like asking my father-in-law to photograph my fatness in a bathing suit) but I did take measurements.  I’m hoping that I’ll have lost 15 pounds total by the time this is done.  I definitely want to re-do the 60 Day Slimdown by Lindsay Brin along with Couch to 5K that I did last summer, but since my treadmill did not follow me to the in-laws I’ll have to do all my runs outdoors….with kids in the double jogger.  So for my sake, and their’s I”m going to wait on doing that until the summer weather cools down a smidge.


A new day November 7, 2011

Filed under: General musings — fitformyprinces @ 2:16 pm

Wow, life has been chaotic.  It seems as though my house has been in a constant sickness since the middle of October.  The week after I started back to work from maternity leave my oldest son “C” got a virus from the new daycare.  I got sick two days later.  The head cold was fine, but the two weeks of chest congestion afterwards was just plain awful.  I didn’t exercise at all during that time as I wanted to make sure I got better. 

Then I had just started back again when I got pinkeye.  I did try and workout with that, however, since my doctor prescribed an antihistaime eyedrop (which cost me $90 copay I may add, Ugh!) it was causing a drop in my breastmilk pumping supply.  Breastfeeding B until he is a year old is very important to me, so I stopped working out entirely until my supply could come back up.  Antihistamine’s can dry you up so I pumped myself full of water and avoided exercising as it would dehydrate me. 

I was all set to start exercising again over the weekend, but then C got another virus from daycare.  Croup this time. 


But, on the positive side.  Even though I have not exercised pretty much at all in the last 3 1/2 weeks (save 2 separate times) and probably eated my weight in Halloween candy, I have not really gained any weight.  I weighed myself today and I weighed 172.8 which is great considering I weighed 172.6 the last time I weighed in right before C got sick the first time.

This is a new day and a new week.  I am cutting myself off from candy and starting to track my calories on My Fitness Pal again.  And I *will* exercise tonight.  In fact, I’m planning on starting Firm Express over from the beginning.  I did finish 2 of the 4 weeks, but I don’t feel I can accurately access the program results if I don’t finish all 4 weeks in a row.  So, I will start it over tonight.  I am also going to continue my One-Hour Runner program.  I won’t be 10K ready for my Birthday on Thanksgiving, but that is ok.  I can run a 5K and will be proud of that.  It will be my first running only 5K since before I got pregnant with C in spring 2008.  Just finishing is accomplishment enough. 



Down for the count October 24, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — fitformyprinces @ 10:21 pm

Life sure is funny sometimes.  I was getting into a bit of a schedule going back to work, taking care of 2 kids, 2 cats, 1 dog, and a husband, plus getting my workouts in.  It was starting to feel routine.

Then I got a phone call from my oldest son’s daycare 10 days ago saying I needed to pick him up since he had a 103 fever.  That started it.  I was so busy taking care of my ill son (and trying my best to keep my 3 month old away from him) that I didn’t work out that night.  Over the course of the last 4 days we have all gotten what I’ve started referring to as the viral crud.  It started (at least for me, I can’t speak for my husband or oldest son) as head congestion for a day, then sore throat for a day, and then chest congestion that will not quit.  I have been coughing so much over the last week and a half.  I have wanted to work out, but I have heard that if the cold is in your head that you can (provided it’s not too an intensity where you have trouble breathing), but that if it’s in your chest to rest.  So that’s what I have done. 

4 years ago I ran a marathon while suffering with bronchitis.  Yeah … it was stupid.  And I suffered for it.  Instead of getting over it in a few weeks, I ended up sick for months.  The marathon was the beginning of December and I didn’t start feeling better until late February.  Needless to say, I listen to my body now and rest when I have a chest cold.  So even though I have felt like a total sloth, I have rested. 

Today I did workout again.  I completed Week 2 of Firm Express, the Cardio + Sculpt DVD.  It felt good to get back at it.  Tomorrow night I’ll try running.  I still have a little bit of congestion in my chest but it’s much better.  We’ll see what happens when I try to run though.  I’d like to be able to do it nonstop, but if I end up having to walk for periods I’m ok with that.  Something is better than nothing.

On a positive note, I haven’t gained any weight back while I have been waiting this crud out.  I was completely surprised because I haven’t exactly been watching what I’ve been eating very well.  Yet another reason why breastfeeding is a beautiful thing.  : )


I’m still here ….. I promise October 12, 2011

Filed under: General musings — fitformyprinces @ 12:05 am

I started back at work on October 3rd and getting a schedule down has proved to be quite challenging.  But I am still finding (rather making) time to work out.  I had plans of working out early in the mornings before work, but after waking at random times in the night with both boys (I expect to wake up with the baby, but my 2 1/2 year old has been waking several times a night again after starting daycare), I just couldn’t bring myself to wake up early.  So, I am instead, working out once the boys go to sleep, which isn’t my preferred time, but better to do it during a non-preferred time than not to do it at all.

I also started Firm Express on October 3rd as well.  I’ll post a review of those DVDs once I complete the 30 day program.  So far so good, though. 

One great thing about going back to work is seeing coworkers again who I haven’t seen since early June.  Their reactions to my slimmed down figure has made me even more motivated to keep it up.