Monday, January 05, 2015

2 Years of Health & Fitness!

How I Look:
2 Years of Health & Fitness
2 years ago I made a New Year's resolution to my family and I to get daily exercise, and eat nutritiously and moderately too.  How the time has flown by, but I wanted to provide an update to everyone wishing to do the same.  Hopefully I can also provide a few words of inspiration and encouragement!

After having had 5 babies over a period of 5 years, I had not taken care of myself and let my health slide.  I weighed 215 lbs, wore a size 14, my knees hurt when ascending the stairs, and I was easily winded.  Back then, I was sedentary and my diet consisted of fast food, junk food, unscheduled eating, and unreasonably-sized portions.  I was a poor role model to my children, and they were emulating my poor habits.

I had recently turned 40 years old when I realized if I did not make a lifestyle change, I would become more and more sickly and have a hard time digging myself out of a self-made hole.  That is when I threw out all junk food in my kitchen, did a "healthy" shopping, and began exercising for 1 hour daily with my 5 young children--summer or winter did not matter.

After hard work, determination and will-power, I lost 80 lbs and rested at a size 6 clothing.  I did not follow any diet or exercise plan; I just used common sense and did it together with my husband and kids.

2 Years Later...
I'm proud to say that I have held onto my convictions for 2 years now.  In order to keep up with my healthy lifestyle, I have tried to take each day at a time and have made the best choices at each and every meal.  

A Bumpy November & December

Halloween and Christmas break were the two hardest months for me in recent times. This was because 1) I gave into the urge to eat sweets during these months, and 2) a change in routine (Christmas break) prevented me from getting my usual amount of exercise.  (The kids were home for the holidays, as I was concurrently working full-time in my career.)

Problem #1 would have been averted, had I insisted on keeping the sweets out of the house as usual.  Once I know that the sweets are in the house, I have a problem with impulse control.  If sweets are out of the house, I will not actively seek them out.

Problem #2 will no longer be an issue, as the kids are back in school--and I can now return to my previous exercise schedule.  It may be hard to keep up with my exercise routine as the temperature continues to drop in Toronto, but this is now my third year of intense winter exercise.  I WILL PREVAIL.    

The Consequence

The consequence of my actions, is I have gained back 10 lbs--although I'm happily back on track now.  I know I will feel better about this bump in the road over the next few weeks, as my pants start fitting me better again...tee hee.

One the note of pants, I got a great tip from a former The Biggest Loser winner on maintaining long-term weight loss!  She said that rather than stepping on the scale, she would put on her "skinny" jeans once per week to see how they fit.  If they were getting tight on her, she knew to exercise more and eat better.  And that's exactly what I'm doing!

My Goals for 2015

I know I've said this months ago, but I need to find a gym or exercise classes in my area.  We are still members of the YMCA, but we moved houses and that location is just too far to visit regularly.  I really enjoyed using the exercise equipment, going for a swim, or attending an exercise class to round out my routine. 

Are you also on a journey to improve your health, fitness or nutrition?  What are your health goals for 2015?    

13 comments:

  1. Congratulations, Jenna! I'm inspired by your comittment and your success! I ate all the things over Christmas and haven't exercised in weeks but I'm determined to work out every other day (I started today) and stop eating after 7 at night, when I tend to snack and snack and snack. I don't go near the scale and instead go by the fit of my clothes and for a while now they've been snugger than I'd like. But that ends today! Getting there little by little. :) All the best in 2015!

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  2. Thanks Julie! It's a new year and a fresh start for you and you can do it! Cheering you on!

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  3. You have done great and continue to do so! I have gained weight in the last year which drives me nuts but I am working to get it under control. It's so hard!

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    1. Thanks Merry! Just keep at it and keep a positive attitude. It really helps if you know WHY you want to keep the weight off. If the reason is strong enough, you will succeed.

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  4. You have done so well! I so know what you mean about schedules changing and affecting your "flow". I was exercising twice a week last year when my son was in preschool and now I can't even make that because his schedule has changed. I try to still fit in good workouts but it's not the same as it used to be. Keep at it! You look amazing!

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    1. Thanks Ladena! Yes, "finding time" to exercise with young kids is a reality. I like how YMCA offers childcare for a nominal fee; what a shame it is no longer close to us.

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  5. The holidays threw me off routine as well.

    My goals when it comes to health and fitness are to figure out my health problems first. I don't have a thyroid and this past year has been a huge roller coaster with problems (up and down and then up again a total of 15 pounds). I weigh more then I have in a long time (while I'm working my butt off and eating right - most of the time). So I'm now working with a ND to find my balance with thyroid meds. It's starting over all over again.

    After that I'm going to take care of my liver after years of added up toxins, do a candida cleanse (we're hopeful it will take away 125 food sensitivities) AND THEN I will re evaluate and see where I'm at weight wise. Actually no - size wise :)

    It's going to be a big year.

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    1. Randa, wishing you well for this new beginning. I did not realize about your thyroid and health concerns, and if anyone can overcome, it would be you. Cheering you on.

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  6. We definitely let things slide over the holidays around here too, glad to hear you are back on track! My husband is too, but I am having trouble getting motivated in this cold!

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    1. Tell your husband to bundle up and get outdoors. There's no other choice when living in Canada.

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  7. Good for you Jenna, this is so impressive! I know that I need to make better choices about what I eat (and I need to exercise.. right now I don't) and I'm hoping it will help with my health. It's inspiring to read about people like yourself who have made it happen! (I know you lost weight, but do you also find that you feel a lot better?)

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    1. Thanks Heather. Yes, I do feel a lot better (no more aches and pains in the knees or shortness of breath). However, it has not helped me with my low energy level, which I suspect is an entirely different issue.

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  8. Totally inspiring Jenna. I have slowly put on about 15 pounds the last couple years, and really need to work out more often. I have not given up at all, and have toned up some, just can't seem to lose a pound. Well, cheers to you my dear. You look amazing, totally inspiring. I'm glad I dropped in on your blog to come across your story.

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