Fitness before kids was easy. Now its a constant juggle! 🙂 The circus has jugglers…cuz juggling is fun 🙂
2012 – our first child!
2013 – our first daughter!
2015 – baby #3 It’s a girl!
The enchanting hours after full time work spent with the love of my life and our 3 small children, then the wakeful nights with our newest nursing baby bring so much joy!! Eating clean as a family has become a really refreshing chapter for my husband and I, as we make efforts to bring our health & fitness world to our children by example.
Finding a workout schedule for myself seems so out of reach unless I sacrifice family or sleep or work…so, what’s a mom to do? I found inspiration from IFPA Pro Melissa Cunningham (mother of FOUR), IFBB Pro Susan Groshek (full time nurse and basically my “gospel of fitness” and trainer who got me 3rd place on my first show!), Maria Kang (From “No Excuses” mother of 3 under 3 post that caused great ruckus in the e-world) and lastly, but MOST importantly and the most influential inspiration are these two: my sister, Leah White, extreme-sports lover, fitness competitor, shock-trauma nurse and wife and [soon-to-be] mother to my nephew that will make his debut in December 2015; my husband the lover, father of my children, joker, motivator, fellow bodybuilder and house chef extraordinaire whom I absolutely cannot live without.
I have read about and talked with countless women who have had children and husbands and full time jobs and still found a way to get in shape, but I still find myself asking, “but…is it really doable?” After much thought, I see that it really boils down to my expectations on the timing of reaching my goal.
This next chapter of my life will be discovering the tactical answer to “is it really doable?” And I have a very good feeling about what I will find on the other side.
Fairly new to the shelf, these sugar free, gluten free, protein candies by BPI sports got me so excited! Who doesn’t love supplement chewies?
I expected the consistency of glutamine chewies (starburst like, with a powdery finish), but these were more like protein powder with a dabble of water. They were hard at first, then paste like. While I was scraping the paste from my teeth I took the time to admire how it did have a delicious flavor, but, with that distinct protein texture and taste, I would rather just drink the dissolved protein powder than try to eat these 1.5g protein chewies again.
It was a fun new way to enjoy protein…maybe if I ate these regularly I could come up with a better way to enjoy them where they didn’t stick to my teeth.
If you’ve tried this, what did YOU think?
My husband is accustomed to prepping and cooking his meals for the week, but we really wanted to create “togetherness” at dinner time, so dinner prep brainstorming is on tornado watch at our house.
My darling complications
My son (2 yrs) had tons of food allergies until recently, so his taste buds developed based on the few things he was able to eat.
My daughter (10 mos) will eat anything, but the poor thing doesn’t have enough teeth.
My husband eats all our protein (yay budget…)
It sometimes SEEMS daunting to think of meals that will serve everyone’s nutrition (and goals) and have them all actually EAT it. HA! I’ve made some awesome meal plans only to have this one push it away and that one pick things out. Le sigh…
Currently, I am <attempting> introducing one new thing every couple of days (one week 3 now!). In between, I am letting everyone eat things they are familiar with and love. In one new meal I now discovered that my kids LOVE the gritty, hearty, whole grain flavor and texture!! That was a win for me mentally and emotionally! So, I truck on! And with enthusiasm!! My daughter and I seem to be the only ones drooling over cottage cheese pancakes, but that’s okay. More for us.
I have talked a lot about pregnancy and adjusting to life with kids, mostly because I wanted to share any information and resources that I personally was so desperate to find during those times. I don’t have all the answers, but I love to share what I have learned, so please feel free to message me in a post here or on facebook: www.facebook.com/RoadofSeriousFitness
I was sent a sample pack of this protein powder and mixed it in water. The flavor is EXACTLY like a peanut butter cookie. I mean, I expected peanut butter, but this was peanut butter COOKIE. Delish. Now…I mixed mine in water and it tasted like peanut butter cookie water. Mix this puppy in your favorite milk-type and OMGOSH…you’ll think you’re melting into a warm cookie.
Syntrax has impressed me again with another low carb, high protein flavor.
I am so excited about getting to teach my kids healthy habits and healthy mindsets for food and fitness. They are both too young to really grasp anything just yet (toddler and infant), but I know they will and it won’t be some designated “education” time where they will learn it; no, it will be learned by how we all live. Eee! So excited!
My husband and I both love the meal prep process and really enjoy getting creative in the kitchen. Now we have new motivation: our kids are watching and learning even when we don’t notice!
First stop: Assessing the family needs
To plan our meals, I like to start by estimating how much each person needs of which foods, so that I can grocery shop and cook just the right amount. (I’m more of an on-demand shopper. Although I anticipate I will become like my mom who loves to be overly stocked so that she can always feed an army at a moments notice. I love her gift of hospitality.)
Approximate portions sizes for our family for the main food items (protein, veggies, fruit, dairy):
Bodybuilder (AKA dad): 6-8 eggs; 8-10 oz protein; 2-3 C veggies; whole grapefruit; 16 oz milk
Bikini Pro wanna-be (AKA mom): 3-4 egg whites; 4-6 oz protein; 1-2 C veggies; 1/2 grapefruit or 1/4 C berries; 8 oz unsweetened coconut milk
Toddler (18 months): 1 egg; 1 oz protein; 1/4 ish C veggies; 1/4 C carbs/starch; 1 small apple or 1/2 any fruit; mini-box raisins; 6 oz milk
Then I multiply by number of meals to note the quantity on my grocery list
Next stop: Grocery shopping!
- red peppers
- sweet potato
- idaho gold potatoes
- snap peas
- gala or pink lady apples
- grapefruit or pineapple
- orange roughy
- flank steak
- ground turkey, extra lean
- ground sirloin, extra lean
- bacon / turkey bacon
- cage-free eggs
- organic butter
- 2% milk
- Unsweetened coconut milk (also labeled sugar free)
- wheat germ
- applesauce packs (emergency grab food)
- cashews / almonds
- whole grain tortillas
- 3 pepper blend
- green beans or green peas
- sprouted grain bread
I will post here occasionally about the meals we make and will also be posting recipes at http://www.faithkeith.com
My budget tip: Once I have my groceries in hand I can start planning the meals, because sometimes they may be out of stock of something, or maybe there is bad produce or sometimes I just don’t like the price! When the menu is based on the groceries it usually works better for the budget.
When I read this excerpt I nearly died laughing because I could totally relate:
Let’s run through a day:
5:45 AM Feed baby. Put to sleep.
8:30- 9:00 AM Feed baby. Play and then struggle to get baby to sleep until next feeding at 12.
12 PM Feed baby. Put baby on mat while I snarfle lunch. Put baby in stroller and walk around (does this count as exercise?).
3 PM Feed baby. Play with baby. Get baby to sleep by 4:45 PM (FINALLY!). Put him in crib. Baby wakes up. Try again and again. Finally get baby down at 5:30 PM.
6:30 PM Feed baby. Pass baby off to hubby while I cook dinner.
Eat dinner with baby in one arm.
Miscellaneous house/baby/family stuff.
8:30 PM Feed baby laying down. Doze off.
10 PM Stumble into bed.
5:45 AM Rinse and repeat.
Excerpt from: http://blogs.babycenter.com/mom_stories/when-do-new-moms-exercise/
Now add in the mix that I actually work full time 8:00-5:00. I work remotely with a nanny, so I still see my son a few times a day and get to spend lunch hour with him, but it is certainly not the same as getting to stay in PJs or take him to the park mid day and join play groups (*dreams*).
It all boils down to the fact that there are limited number of hours in a day, so something’s gotta give. What new mom wants to sacrifice sleep or time with baby? Especially us working mom’s who already have very limited time with our little nuggets.
Living in Texas also limits what I can do WITH baby – I cant always put him in stroller or bjorn because its either too hot, or too bright, or too windy, or too cold –We so rarely have that “perfect” weather.
Oh and criticizing outsiders (who are not mom’s) don’t you forget, we are new mom’s but we are still a wife! Keeping my husband a priority in my life like I still love him severely or something 🙂 in between diaper duty is a balancing act in itself! Not to mention the babies change all the time!! Every phase is different, so just when you think you’ve got them figured out and can start planning a little schedule, he hits a growth spurt. My baby #1 just turned 1 year old and I feel like I am still trying to figure things out. I better move fast because baby #2 will be here in 8 or so weeks! Can’t wait!!
I am not going to pretend like I’ve got it all together, but you can bet yer sweet bippy that I am trying my hardest to look for ways to make fitness happen AND not sacrifice a second of this sweet growing time with my little one. I have come to realize that every child is different, every MOM is different, and every household has its own unique needs, SO there is no ONE right path or schedule that will work for all moms. We all seem to have to pave our own way. I’d like to leave new mom’s with the feeling that you are not alone, fitness and health CAN be yours, trial and error is how we roll, and keep being creative – the fact that you are trying at all proves you are a good mom who won’t give up. Keep it up.
An article with ideas for fitting in workouts AM, mid day or PM: New Moms Find Time for Fitness
I just was informed at my last doc appointment that I have diastasis recti (abs are tearing down the middle due to the pressure of growing uterus) 😦 It is not that bad yet, so that’s good. I was suuuuuper bummed because I still have 3 more months to go and it will probably get worse. HOWEVER, I am happy that LOTS of research has been done on what exercises I can do WHILE pregnant AND I am so thankful for the many fit mamas who have paved the way for me. One in particular who I recently received great pointers and encouragement from is IFPA Pro Melissa Cunningham (check out her blog at: melissacunninghamifpapro.blogspot.com). I had originally contacted her for my friend who had diastasis recti with her 2nd pregnancy, so I had all this info, youtube links and tips already at my fingertips! Special thank you to you, Melissa, for your time and compassion for reaching out to someone you don’t even know!
Thankfully, running is still totally ok. I was bummed when the Physician’s Assistant told me no lifting or exercising, BUT …I am going to wait and talk to my doc (who was out of office that day) who’s husband was a bodybuilder and knows my backgroud, so she is very familiar with workouts. I am hoping she will be able to shed more light on what REALLY is ok or not ok. Like pull ups with my transverse abs activated- are those ok? I’m thinking yes. But push ups…maybe not since gravity is putting pressure on the weak connective tissue.
Informative online resources:
I’m an all-in kinda girl. When I set my mind to do something I give it everything I’ve got and I don’t let up. I am a force, a fierce hurricane of ambition. With my baby now trying to walk everywhere and getting into everything and knowing I am only 3 months away from also having an infant in tow it has brought my hurricane to a stagnant stale air. I have felt fatalist and allowed my mind to think that if I can’t get it in consistently then what’s the point of getting it in at all? I mean TODAY I have time, but I probably wont again the whole rest of the week, so is it worth the energy?
The answer is…yes!
I am learning to break this bond I have on myself and learn to seize the 1 set of 50 squats and tomorrow a full run and maybe the next day nothing, but maybe a set of pushups or pull ups. Fitness is there for the taking and I am truly the only one stopping me.
I am going to write a challenge for myself, but its the kind that allows me to stop stressing and beating myself just because I can’t be on my previous bodybuilding rampage right now. Life changes…we have to learn to change with it and not against it.
Eventually I know I will have the time to reach all the crazy goals my heart desires, for now, life has me in a different place.
This is SUCH an important concept for all those in the fitness world. Whether you are trying to get lean, maintain a lifestyle or create a new one, something we all need to be acutely aware of is…Fitness is NOT #1 priority.
I LOVED this post by bodybuilding.com. Namely #4 and #9 of their “10 Commandments Of Getting Lean”. Sohee Lee, the author of the post said it so well, so I wanted to just add a few comments while including an excerpt from her article. Faith, family and friends come first. Enjoy life! The most terrible thing you can do is turn fitness into your god and cause everyone around you to be annoyed and turned off by your lack of ability to enjoy life or see the greater priorities of life. I HAVE BEEN GUILTY OF THIS VERY THING!!! Feeling upset at the “haters” that were/are so negative about my lifestyle and annoyed when my family would have junk food laying around the house (and would make that very clear to them), the list goes on! There is a place for fitness in the enjoyment of life and I think fitness can help you enjoy life to its fullest, but I am so avidly against making fitness the only thing surviving in my world. I have so many friends who compete or are fitness icons in my life, but they have found a balance to also being some of the greatest friends I will ever meet. They are a reminder that fitness does not have to be your god for you to master it. It’s not all or nothing!
4 / Thou Shalt Not Make Fitness Thy God
Oh, boy. I don’t want to think about how many years of my life were tainted by my insistence of making fitness my first priority, above absolutely everything. I’m painfully aware of the friendships that I let dissolve and all the missed opportunities for laughter, cherished memories, and inside jokes. I started countless ridiculous fights with my family over what restaurant to go to, and whether we should go out at all.
It hurts my heart to think about it now because I know it wasn’t necessary. And ironically, in my fanatical quest to become lean and strong and physically healthy, I became mentally unwell. I took a sick sort of pride in spending my evenings scouring fitness forums when I could have been sitting by a bonfire with my buddies. I snapped when my brother came near my food, and I didn’t let myself enjoy my family vacation to Bali. Does the hotel have a gym? What kind of equipment does it have? I should pack all my own food. It sucked, but I didn’t know any other way.
Fitness isn’t the panacea to all of your life’s problems, nor will it ever be. I believe that it should be an important part of everyone’s lives, but by no means should it take up the number-one spot. Family, friends, and religion and spirituality should all come before fitness. So much more gratification stems from those things.
Today my life overflows with love, and fitness is just one part of that—as it should be.
This is exerpt is from an article on bodybuilding.com. Click here to read the full article [http://bbcom.me/19YWqLq]
Motivation is over-rated. I talk to people all the time who have the desire, but cannot muster enough will power to get started OR stay consistent. Discipline is a very difficult thing! I know…I totally understand…there are days, weeks, months, where I have struggled with fitness and diet consistency. Discipline is never easy, but it does get easier. Here are some tips to success in weight-loss, fitness improvement, and the road to fitness elite.
5 Tips for Fitness Success
- Establish your true goal. Determine a realistic goal that is definable (“look good” and “be fit” are not definable. “__ inch biceps” and “size __ dress” is definable.)
- Game plan. Create a game plan (diet/workouts) based on that goal – INCLUDING A SCHEDULE
- Plan to celebrate a milestone. Mark your calendar that you will do this plan for 21 days. On that last day, treat yourself (buy a new workout bag or gloves, get a pedi, relax at your fav coffee shop and enjoy a pastry…whatever! Then plan your next 21 days – maybe tweak your diet/workouts)
- Don’t swallow the whole pie. Take it one day and one meal at a time
- Don’t do it alone. DAILY enlist the motivation power of pictures of your fitness heroes, eat clean recipe web-browsing, fitness forums/twitter/facebook/blogging – Community can mean all the difference in you reaching your goal!
Whatever your goal is, don’t EVER let yourself or anyone else tell you that it is too difficult or unattainable. Anything worth having is hard work getting! There are thousands of people just like you, in the same walk of life, with the same goals…you are not alone. Some of those thousands will actually see their goal become reality. Be one of that “some”!