I'm a single mom. There’s no co-parent. It’s just me and my girl. There are a lot of decisions that I've made for myself and my daughter that I feel are sound and that I'm proud of. There is one place, however, that I feel like I have been lacking; that would be in the arena of exercise.
After my daughter was born, I nursed and did my best to eat well. I ate rich foods and drank wine in moderation and took good care of myself for the sake of my daughter. I got back down to my pre-pregnancy weight quite easily. As time went on though, the stresses of raising my babes alone began to take their toll. One glass of wine became two, I was "just too tired" to go for a walk, and I said to myself, "If I strap Lorelei in a stroller for my walk, when is she going to get her exercise? She’ll just be on her back and not sitting up or crawling.” I realize that that was a silly way to think, but those were the thoughts I leaned on to allow myself to accept lethargy as an acceptable state of being.
You know what?
As I’m writing this post, trying to explain away why I’m so overweight and inactive, “Blah, blah, this reason. Blah, blah, this excuse.” I realize that none of my rationales make any damned bit of difference.
There are two valid reasons why it may be more difficult for me to work out and stay fit: the matters of time and money: I have no money to pay for a gym membership. This is a valid reason. I also don’t want to spend any more time away from my daughter than I already do, which is nearly forty hours a week (the majority of her waking hours). This is a valid reason too. But all of the “Wells” and “Buts” don’t matter.
I’m making excuses.
All this being said: I don't exercise. Since Lorelei was born I have gained fifteen pounds. This weight is on top of the twenty pounds that I had gained from June of 2006 until May of 2008, when I found out I was pregnant.
Something’s got to change. But… why change now? Well, I’m five months away from my 40th birthday; that’s a good reason to bust my ass and lose thirty-five pounds. The other reason, however, is much more profound than vanity and health: it’s Lorelei.
Last week, when we were over at our friend Heidi’s house, her youngest daughter said something that has played over and over in my mind since,
“Oh no! I haven’t done my daily exercises yet! I’ll be right back.”
A four-year-old said that.
I realized then that I needed to start setting a good example for Lorelei and that I need to start a daily regimen of exercises so that she can learn that taking care of yourself is just as important as eating well.
And so, I am here to announce that I have taken on the challenge of losing thirty-five pounds in five months. Exactly five months from today, on April 3, 2012, I will be forty years old.
I will be following the 6 Week Pregnancy Weight Loss program developed by Sara Dean of FitHealthyMom.com. I have been told that, even though my weight can no longer be blamed on my baby, who is almost three years old (my words, not hers), this six week program will give me a good kick in the butt and be an efficient platform from which I can successfully launch my self-imposed weight loss challenge.
Of course I will be documenting this. Starting next week I will be reporting back to you, my readers, about my progress; most likely kvetching, wining, and complaining. I’ll share my successes and my failures, and, (gulp) I’ll be sharing my before, during, and after pictures. Oy vey. I’m told that this step is good motivation, but this part just sounds horrible to me. BUT! I’m doing it. Lucky you, right?
You may be wondering why on earth I would think that people who read this food/parenting blog would want to see this Mama on a weight loss challenge. Well, here’s what I’m thinking: it’s about setting a good example for my daughter. This blog is about teaching my kiddo how to be a good, healthy, informed, and well-rounded person. Learning about food is critical, but exercise is just as important and I’m the one who has to lead the way for her. I can no longer sit on the couch licking my salt-covered fingers telling her to do jumping jacks. I have to do them too. (That doesn’t really happen, but you catch my drift.)
All in all, my daughter needs me; not just to set a good example, but she needs for me to be there for her for a long time and I intend to be there, fit as a fiddle.
Please feel free to comment during this process. Tell me that I’m doing great, tell me that I’m screwing up, share your stories, whatever. Your support will really mean a lot to me and I’m sure your words will echo in my head while I’m faining pleasure in front of Lorelei while I’m doing sit ups.