Monthly Archives: June 2012

Don’t Act Your Age

 

 

Cute video, right? That’s not just a random cute little kid video. That is my good friend’s niece. I was in the kitchen, and she randomly started running circles around me. I thought it was the funniest thing, so I tried to pull out my phone as fast as possible, and record what was left of her Nascar (reverse direction) race. As I chuckled at how silly she was being, something struck me on a deeper level.

Young kids have a blast being active. They jump, they crawl, they run around; just for fun. There is no other reason for them to be active, other than the enjoyment of it. They have something built in that makes this so. Sometimes kids seem to run around with no clear purpose or end goal. They just run in circles for the heck of it. This is meaningful to all of us.

For many of us, we lose the joy of running and jumping and crouching and rolling around. Why does this happen? At what point does being active become a chore. At what point does it begin to be something you SHOULD  do, not something you WANT to do?  It’s unfortunate, but this often happens to many of us, at different points in our lives.

Our bodies are built for movement. We were made to be active. Literally!  We often (excluding injuries or illness) choose to, or at the very least, allow ourselves, to get out of touch with movement. Yes, life happens. Long days at work. Stressful situations, etc etc etc. The excuses can be endless. But be honest with yourself. Do you really prefer to sit on the couch all night after work? Do you really prefer to be in one place all day during the weekend? Or is it because you allowed yourself to get to this point? If this wasn’t by choice, but maybe more so because life happened, this is a great time to reevaluate our health and activity level.

This isn’t a nagging article about joining a gym, or a demand to start Insanity of P90X. This is a friendly reminder to take a second to remember what types of activity we enjoy. When you remember what that is, why not return to it? That basketball can be pumped back up. That bike can be dusted off. Those swim trunks are waiting for you. Or maybe venture out and find new activities you might enjoy. You don’t know until you try.

 

Let’s not act our age, and have fun being active again.

 

 

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A Modern Day Fitness Mommy

 

 

At FitMentality I try to do the best I can to share what inspires me. Foods that have helped me on my fitness path. Ways about framing the thought process concerning nutrition and fitness, that have worked for me over the years. Experiences I have learned from.

In addition to my experiences, I am constantly looking for things that motivate others to follow their own path to a fit life. I like to share ways that others have found to transcend boundaries that they have faced, that I, myself, haven’t faced. For example, getting back in shape after giving birth. This is one I can’t speak from experience.

I can’t begin to imagine how difficult it must be to get back to regular life, after having a baby, much less getting back to whatever fitness plan one had. Adding to your family can change priorities, add priorities, and overall just change life right around. But what if you want to start getting into fitness after having a baby? What if you want to get back to your fitness level you were at before you had kids? These are great questions. However, not ones I have lived through, myself. For this perspective, I enlisted some help.

Aubrey Agnes is a mother of two (5 year old boy and 4 year old girl). She is a manager at the Gap, while still being incredibly committed to her own fitness goals. She loves to share her motivation and passion for fitness, in hopes that her story may help others. This interview is based off of a conversation we had about how she juggles being a mom and also focusing on her own fitness. This serves as an example that it is possible to get in the best shape of your life, even if you’ve had babies! Aubrey’s  commitment to fitness can be an inspiration to us all.

Thanks for sharing your story with FM, we really appreciate it.

Of course!  I really want to inspire women, moms especially, because it is possible!

I used to think that I was never able to do it (reach my fitness goals).  I used to use excuses like “Im not a celebrity, Im not rich, I dont have a chef, I dont have money to hire a personal trainer”

How did you view fitness and nutrition before becoming a mother?

I danced all my high school life and four years after high school.  I was always active. But looking back on how un-healthy I was, (I) could have been better. Before and after giving birth,  I actually never was interested in fitness and nutrition.  It was the beginning of this year when I initially only wanted to lose weight.

Did you do anything in the fitness world during your pregnancies?

During my pregnancy, man, I wish I WAS active and ate healthy.  I really didn’t care if I did gain weight. I now would recommend ALL pregnant moms take care of their bodies, during pregnancy!

Describe the processes of trying to get back in shape after the pregnancies.

Well, when I first started, Google was my best friend.  I did a lot of research on 

HOW TO LOSE 20 lbs.  HOW TO GET SMALLER THIGHS, HOW TO GET SMALLER ARMS, etc.  A lot of the answers I was getting were not strength training or lifting weights, it was mostly WHAT TO EAT and HOW TO EATSo, the beginning of my weight loss, I mainly ran and focused on healthy eating.  As I progressed and was able to see minimal results, my taste buds and my body just got used to eating healthy.

It then became not just losing weight, but maintaining weight and living healthy.  Plus, Im still not where I want to be, so nutrition plays an important role. Im paying for that. Because I didn’t take care of my body before, the progress is taking a little longer.

How do you balance your time between work, family and fitness?

My work schedule changes all the time.  If I close the store I wake up at 6, get my son ready for school, take him to school, go to the gym with my daughter, pick up my son, then go to work, then home for mommy duties, and a little of ab workout before I sleep. If I open the store, I wake up at 6, get my son ready for school, take him to school, go to work, go home then take the kids with me to the gym

I always make it work, no matter how early it is or how late is.  Even on days off, I still go.  Sometimes I’ll go at night or twice a day. You have to be committed and make it happen!

Do they have care for the kiddos at the gym?

Yes! My kids loves it there, it’s a little gym area (I go to 24hr Fitness). They love going with me, and all the staff knows them!

Do you plan on instilling health values in your kids? How do you plan on doing so?

At home, they count for me when I do my ab workouts!

They are learning AND helping mommy with fitness!

Oh definitely. Health and fitness is contagious.

After really understanding how to read a nutrition label, I am more conscious of what they eat and drink.  We’ve always been a non-soda family, so that’s definitely something I will continue.  As for drive-thrus (MCD, Burger King, Jacks, etc) I have restricted us to the amount of times we eat there.  I have limited to only buying that once a week. 

They are eating more healthy, like more veggies, and eating healthy choices of protein and carbs.  However, I do allow them to eat hot dogs, nuggets, burgers, and eat some “kid” like food, because they are kids, and I would like for them to experience that. When they are in middle school, I will enforce/encourage their eating habits into healthy eating because I wish I knew this then.

What is the biggest challenge for you, on the fitness journey?

My biggest challenge was when I hit a plateau. My second month, March, the whole month I felt like I wasn’t going anywhere.  So of course, I felt defeated and discouraged.  I almost wanted to give up.  I still ran and kept going thinking “maybe by the end of March, I will see something change”  But I didn’t.

Then I did more research.  Changed up my routine.  Got off the treadmill, did stairmasters, kickboxing class, body pump. On top of that, I found Jamie Eason on bodybuilding.com and followed her Phase 2 workout plan.

Really in March, I only needed to lose 5 more lbs.  I had already lost 25 lbs.  The last 5 lbs was so hard! But I’ll tell you, I feel like I had more drastic results losing the last 5 lbs, than losing the first 25 lbs.

What types of exercises or programs have you liked the most?

My favorites are barbell squats, clean and press, and skull crushers.  Im really not a fan of any ab workouts, but Ill do them anyway!

What are your go to meals/snacks?

I usually just snack on raw almonds or fruits (limit to two a day). My ultimate fave is multigrain bread with banana and almond/organic butter.  As for meals,  I mostly cook all of my meals and prep them for the week.  So they’re all the same; baked salmon, grilled shrimp, with ALOT OF STEAMED VEGGIES.

I do the same thing. The more we cook our own food, the more control we have over what we eat.

Oh yeah, my coworkers think Im crazy.  I come into work with 5 pieces of tupperware. For the first 4 months, I was really strict.  I would not eat at a restaurant, or buy anything anywhere. All my food was cooked.

The way I see food now, is completely different than before.  Sometimes, I over think it.  But i wouldn’t change it.  I love who I’ve become.  Some people are lucky and are able to eat anything, and not gain weight, but don’t necessarily have a healthy  body.  Someone like me, can easily gain weight, but would prefer a healthy body.



What advice would you have for mothers that are trying to get back in shape afterhaving a baby?

You know what? I get a lot of people asking me for help, and I give it to them.  I tell them what I did, give them a meal plan and a work out plan. So, hoping I don’t sound blunt and rude, but you have to want it in order to make it happen.  Anything is possible, but only if you make it happen.  I am as busy as anyone else, and I make it work.  We don’t need all the money and personal trainers, we just need the heart to MAKE IT HAPPEN. I would tell all women and moms especially, we don’t have to have a perfect body, but we do deserve a healthy body!

This is one of those situations where I tell myself “You think YOU’RE too tired to work out?! What about people who ___” and then I fill in the blank of others who have more excuses than I have. Here we have an example of someone who takes care of two young kids and stillllll finds the time to reach her fitness goals.

If you catch yourself thinking “Well, I can’t go to the gym as often as she can”  then slowww down partner. This wasn’t meant for anyone to compare themselves to anyone else. This isn’t about, who can go to the gym the most. This interview is meant as a source of inspiration on our own journeys. This is an example of how Aubrey is going about her journey. When she felt that something wasn’t working, she reevaluated her plan, and made adjustments. We each need to look at our own situation and figure out what changes are necessary and appropriate in our own lives.

If you are a new mommy and are wondering how in the world you are going to get back on the fitness journey. Don’t you worry, this is proof  that you can do just that.

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