PREPARE + PLAN
My Fitness PalThis app tracks your foods consumed. You can choose to track calories or just use it as a way to be accountable for what you’re eating. You can even use it to track your sodium, sugar, fat, or other intake, or even use it for macro tracking. My Fitness Pal also connects with other apps and devices that you may use to assist you, like FitBits! This app also has the widest options for foods, including many chains and restaurants you might visit, and brands, even in Canada (which is usually hard to find)!
PactPact is very cool. Basically how it works is you get paid for completing activities, and if you don’t complete them, you have to pay. When users miss a deadline for activity completion, that is what helps pay others for their success. You have 3 activities you can choose from – meal tracking, fruit and veggie intake, and physical activity. You can choose how many times per week you will complete the activity, and also how much the stakes are worth to you.
I have mine connected to My Fitness Pal so that when I track meals it counts toward my 5 x a week meal planning Pact. I also have a pact for increased fruit and veggie intake – all you have to do is take a photo of yourself eating the fruit or veggie, or about to eat them! The physical activity pact option uses a motion tracker or gym check ins to monitor your physical activities. Basically you’re making a pact with tons of other people to achieve the healthy lifestyle goals you’ve set for yourself, and if you don’t, you pay! If you do – cha-ching! Such great motivation.
Ease Into 5kWhen I first tried running (which I had never really done in my life for leisure) it was embarrassing how out of shape I was. However, with Ease Into 5k I learned how to run and I watched my fitness level and stamina increase, and my inches decrease, rapidly. I did not run fast, I lightly jogged! And with EI5k you walk for a bit, then run for a bit, and repeat for a total of 20 minutes with 10 minutes or warm up and cool down time. It is the ideal app for beginners who want to get into shape or learn to run, or even anyone who wants to prepare for a 5k (the main intention of the app).
You cannot get in shape by not eating. Yes, for the most part calories in need to be less than calories burned in order to lose weight, but your body also requires many things to function at peak level and to maintain your energy, such as nutrients, carbohydrates, and even fats!
Increase Your Fruits + Veggies Consumption ● Ideally raw, but steamed or boiled from raw or frozen is good, too. Raw fruits and veggies contain the highest level of nutrients, which is why tossing them in a juicer or smoothie is so popular. However don’t discredit the cooked veggies! They’re great for you, too. Ever since our family has increased our fruit + veg, we have felt better overall, felt more satisfied after meals, and felt more energetic.
Decrease Meat Consumption ● You don’t have to stop eating meat entirely, but it truly does not contain the protein amounts you may THINK it does, AND it’s actually better for your body to consume less meats. There are so many benefits to a vegan/vegetarian lifestyle, but I do not know enough about it to preach it, however it is worth reading about. We decreased our meat consumption by using one chicken breast for a meal for our entire family, or even half of a chicken breast, or by dropping meat from a meal entirely a few times per week. We were able to eat more food for the same amount of calories, as well. We also very rarely eat red meat.
Obviously physical activity is key to feeling and looking better. 30 minutes a day of physical activity per day is the recommendation we are all fully aware of, but I totally understand busy lifestyles and exhaustion as a working mom! My goal is 3 times per week, and even then sometimes I fall short. But any amount of activity you do is better than NO activity. Here are some of the things I do at home our outside of the home that require no equipment, and can be done with children (while teaching them positive things about keeping active and making sure our bodies are healthy)!
Dance ● B and I will pop the top hits station on and just boogie. I actually let HER decide the dance moves, and they usually end up being pretty hilarious/strenuous. It’s like adding music to a game of Twister. If she gets bored of that we move on to mommy doing push ups and sit ups, and lifting her up and down, or doing squats. She will mimic me, or sit on my tummy or back, or just ignore me altogether. Either way, we are getting active and having FUN!
Walk ● Go for a walk. This is obviously pretty self explanatory, but just go on an adventure. Tired of your neighbourhood? Drive to a trail or to another city. Walk at a moderate pace with the stroller for a bit, and then walk around at your child’s pace. Enjoy the sights, and the company.
Run ● My mom found us a jogging stroller on a local buy and sell site for $40. She fixed it up for us and we use it for jogs. B loves hanging out in it and she even echoes the Ease Into 5k app whenever it tells me to walk or run. Actually, everything is “run!”, so when it tells me to walk she tells me to “run!”. I guess she is motivating me. Someday, kiddo – I’m working on it!
DON’T PUNISH YOURSELF
CELEBRATE YOUR ACHIEVEMENTS