I never thought of myself as a skinny person, but I never really thought of myself as fat, either – at least until recently. I have never been happy with my body – ever. Even as a triple athlete in high school, I still hated my body. I stopped doing organized sports in college and ate like a college student – and gained 30 lbs. After college, I married my sailor and have since been pregnant three times. I dropped all the weight I gained with the first baby (60 pounds, yikes!), but was left with high blood pressure even after dropping the weight. I gained 29 pounds with the second, and dropped all of it plus a few more. But, deployment stress and the bad economy took its toll and I took comfort in food – add 15 pounds. And another pregnancy and the ten pounds I could never manage to drop from that one, and another deployment – another 15 pounds. And then another PCS immediately after deployment – more stress – and another 10 pounds. That’s one BIG weight issue.
Now that we are on a shore tour, I’m medically done being pregnant, and I’m not working full-time for the first time in 10 years, there is no excuse for me to not do better for myself. If I don’t do it now, I don’t know how I will face another deployment when we go back on sea duty in 3 years. I’m not getting any younger, and it’s only going to get harder. Plus, I have three little boys to chase after; they are fast, and I have a hard time keeping up. To me, this is not acceptable. It is time.
We are currently stationed in Pensacola, which admittedly has a brand new, state-0f-the-art gym. However, in the classic Navy way, they did not build in any kind of child care mechanism and I always have two toddlers with me. Evenings aren’t an option because of my school-aged son and his activities (soccer practice, soccer games, Cub Scouts, etc). So I started walking. I recently made up my mind that I can do even better. I’ve started tracking my food and caloric intake with the Lose It! app, and I started the Couch to 5K training program. NAS Pensacola built a great park on the Sea Wall along Pensacola Bay, so I take the kids there to run (they ride in the stroller while I do the main part of my workout, then they get out and run alongside during my cool down). I’m greatly reducing the amount of highly-processed food my family eats. I’m using “real” foods as much as possible. My progress so far has been slow. I’ve lost 1.4 lbs. But I have to remind myself that I’m doing this to be healthier and it’s not only about the number on the scale. I feel better, I’m gaining flexibility, I’m less sore after each workout, and I’m slowly gaining speed. As added bonuses, I even have a slight tan starting and my naturally blond hair is getting a nice sun-kissed appearance.
My husband is currently training for a 10K race and my 8yo son is training for a 5K. They’re at the two mile run part of their training, which lines up nicely with my workout and the Sea Wall (which is a perfect mile one way). We went together as a family on Monday thanks to the federal holiday, and I loved it. It’s great to be giving our kids the idea that fitness is fun and that we can all do it together. We are all going again this afternoon. I’m hoping to really get in the routine of my workouts before the weather gets miserably hot and humid (which is realistically only a few weeks away – this is Florida, after all).
In short, this is what I’m doing:
1) Tracking food and calories in Lose It! app.
2) Reducing processed foods and using real foods as often as possible.
3)I’m actually using 3 apps to track my workouts: a) Runkeeper, which tracks my mileage and calories burned; b) Charity Miles, which donates money for each mile walked/run/biked to the charity of your choice (I chose Wounded Warrior Project – it’s a nice incentive to keep up the hard work!) and finally, c) Couch to 5K Training Program (C25K), which is helping me to gradually start running and prepare to run my own 5K sometime in the future!
4) Getting my entire family involved in being healthier!
I’ll share some of the smaller things I am doing (to help curb cravings, etc.) and share some healthy recipes in later posts.
My initial goal is to lose 30 pounds. Once I’ve done that, I can work on more – but I don’t want to get too far ahead of myself.
Is anyone else up to the task? Will you accept our fitness challenge? Tell us what you are doing to lead a healthier lifestyle!