Starting is the not the hardest part to changing your body! Getting serious is the hardest part!!! I have a neighbor/friend who has finally gotten serious about changing her body. She wants to get in shape and eat better and get stronger and look better. She has wanted these things since I met her 8 years ago. Well she is serious now. She is taking steps towards getting in shape. She is using her Wii Fit in her living room a few days per week to build her cardiovascular fitness. She has committed to signing up for a gym in August after the kids go back to school. I am so proud of her!! What made her finally get serious? A work trip to a tropical locale where she will be in a bikini for a week.
After I had my first son, I gained 40 pounds. I could not lose the last 15 pounds. I exercised half heartedly and ate relatively well. I remember whining to my girlfriend, an ex-Olympic caliber swimmer. She said, “Don’t worry about it. You will get serious and the weight will come off.” I felt like I was slapped across the face! But, she was right. I did, I got serious and lost another 7 pounds before getting pregnant again…and again. After my 3rd son, I was serious. I had five months before my niece’s wedding and I needed to fit into a tight, form fitting bridesmaid’s dress. This was the trigger I needed to get serious about changing my body…and I pulled that trigger hard! It was not easy, I had three kids under the age of 3 1/2. I took my youngest into the garage with me in his car seat and let my two older boys -1 1/2 and 3 1/2 play in the yard or in the garage. No way was I ready to leave my infant in some gym’s child care facility so I just made it work. I mixed high intensity calisthenics with low weight/high repetition movements. I did sprints and walking lunges across the street – the sprints were no fun in the beginning with all that baby fat jiggling around my butt and my gut. I did compound movements combining a leg calisthenic like squats or lunges with an arm movement with weights like a shoulder press or a curl. What I did was basically move my body intensely and under as much strain as I could stand for 45-60 minutes a day, between feedings and diapers! (I posted a video clip on our YouTube channel called “Garage Workout.”) I ate whole foods and dropped the butter and most of the sugar. I did it! Five months after giving birth I rocked that dress!
I stayed in great shape for years and competed in many difficult races and events including a marathon, the Tough Mudder and a bunch of other smaller races. But I wasn’t really as confident as I hoped at the swimming pool in a two-piece. I told myself that this is just the way a 43 year old woman, in fantastic shape, looks. My next trigger was when L challenged M and I to get up on a stage in front of hundreds of people in a two-piece. The trigger worked again and I earned my abs and my confidence. My kids love it because we have spent most of the summer either at the pool or the beach. My husband loves it because he likes my confidence and my body. But I didn’t do it for my kids or my husband, I did it for me because I like the way I look and the way I feel. You should try it!
So, stop and think about why you should get serious. What will be your trigger? If you need an event, find one or plan one. If you need a visual cue, buy a bikini. Think about what you need to get serious and do it…get serious! Losing weight, gaining muscle and looking good is not easy. Its hard work. If you have small children or a job and a family, it may seem impossible. But there is time in your day if you are serious about changing! Wake up earlier, work out during naps, or at the park or during your lunch hour. When you decide to get serious, you will find the time just like I did! Take before pictures today and imagine the after pictures in 6 months!