I have bad habits. Not enough exercise. Too many eat-out meals. Too much late night eating. A major sweet tooth. It's not a good combo.
Sure, I could say that it is a matter of not being able to shake the pregnancy weight. But it's been over five years since my son was born, and the 60lbs I gained (Did I just write the actual number? Yikes. Scary stuff. Yup, that's right... 60lbs!!) is mostly gone and I still have a lot to lose before I could consider myself being at a healthy weight.
I could say it's hard, and it is, but you know what? Lots of things in life are hard. Growing a person was hard work. Recovering physically and mentally from having a c-section was hard. Raising a child is hard. Losing too many family members over the past few years has been really hard. Dealing with an ASD diagnoses was hard. My job is really hard.
Controlling what I choose to eat and how often I exercise shouldn't be hard.
It is though. There is so much advice out there, and I really don't know what is good and true. Every time I think I'm trying something new that's good for me, someone will say that's it's not good, or not good enough.
I took the first steps in recognizing that I couldn't do it alone. Years ago, I had lost weight with Weight Watchers. It stopped working for me when meetings focused more about low point value junk food and overly processed food instead of healthy eating. I tried going to a dietitian, which was really helpful, but didn't help me break the really bad habits. The advice was based primarily on the Food Guide, which was long overdue for an update (and since has had one!)
A couple years ago, I tried a much more rigid program. I learned a lot about food and was introduced to new foods and cooking techniques, but it was very difficult to follow because I found I was having to make three meals - one for me, one for my husband, and one for my son. It would usually be three different versions of the same, but it was a lot of work. I found that I grew to hate cooking, and meal planning, and grocery shopping became a really stressful event. I was able to lose the rest of the "pregnancy" weight and dropped a size or two, but I was miserable. I was forcing myself to eat foods I didn't even like. I always loved cooking, and now hated it. I don't think anyone in my house was happy.
So, now I'm trying to find a way to use what I have learned about food, portions, and finding balance and make it work for me. Basically, I'm going to try to eat more vegetables, less sugar and carbs, and drink lots of water. I signed up for the online version of WW (the new name for Weight Watchers) because they are now focusing more on real food. I'm getting out my cookbooks and scouring some of my favourite websites to find new recipes. I want to have fun with food again, so I can enjoy it. I bought an Instant Pot, which is making cooking fun, and we have basically quit eating out. It means that I'm spending more time cooking and doing dishes, but it's not so bad.
Next up, I need to find new ways to work exercise into my day, whether it be a walk or a little yoga or maybe even an exercise video. I'm going to try something new. I guess it's a personal adventure!
Do you have any great tips or new recipes to try? I'd love to hear them in the comments below!