Good morning and happy Monday mommas! Sara is back again this month with more Mommy Fitness tips and tricks for us! Today’s topic is all about one of my favorite things… FOOD! Sara is sharing that Fit Moms Have to Eat in order to lose unwanted weight/gain muscle. Sara shares some great tips and go-to recipes for the busy mom who is trying to stay fit.
When you bring a new baby home everything changes instantly. When I became a new mom, I found that it was a crash course in time management. Here I was with my thoughts of, “I can get so much done when the baby is sleeping or playing or –fill-in the blank–.” Don’t worry, I can hear you giggling now as you read this because you know what I didn’t know, having a brand-new baby takes so much time.
Now, for the most part I figured it out the tricks for finding tid-bits of time to get things done here and there.
What I didn’t have figured out was something pretty essential to sustaining life (and sanity): eating.
There would be evenings my husband and I would say, “Gosh, we are so hungry” and then try to recount the last actual meal we had eaten. Sometimes, we wouldn’t have eaten since breakfast and others it would be the night prior.
For someone who loves food, not eating really doesn’t bode well for the body or mind (you know you’ve all reached a point of being ‘hangry’ before). Also, when you’re trying to lose the baby weight (that was supposed to magically go away because you’re breastfeeding, but it didn’t so now you actually have to work at it) not eating makes losing weight really difficult.
Did you know that when you skip meals it makes it more difficult for your body to sustain enough energy to properly function? Your body actually goes into starvation mode and takes whatever you eat (healthy or not) and stores it as fat to be later used as energy because it has no idea when it will be fed again.
Yeah, so, not eating = not a good weight loss trick.
For the first three months postpartum when I figured out eating actually helped, a lot, I lost a bit of the baby weight.
And then, nothing.
For two months.
Not a single pound.
Eating is one thing, but eating the right foods is a whole other thing. (Doughnuts aren’t healthy, say what?)
For me, I knew I had to clean it up. (Seriously, why can’t doughnuts be healthy?)
Now, if you know me, you know I don’t cook. I bake…. Which of course is completely counterproductive to losing weight.
In our household, my husband is the cook, but he is also a fireman which meant that for forty-eight hours I was on my own for meals. Six meals to be exact. For a girl who doesn’t cook and can’t cook very well, that’s too much thinking and too much work. Add a brand-new baby in the mix and that makes the task of cooking a meal daunting.
To solve that problem we began to prepare meals that were very simple for him to prepare ahead of time, easily re-heatable, and versatile. This included meats, veggies, and breakfast pancakes. (C’mon, if doughnuts were out of the picture I needed something to take its place.)
I am a master at re-heating foods.
I’m also a master at eating really healthy if someone else does the work. (Thank you, husband.)
The plan worked. Within a matter of months, I dropped the baby weight and by the time my daughter was eight months old I was in my pre-baby jeans. (My goal was to be in them by twelve months so eight was stellar in my book.)
One of our go-to recipes that is part of our weekly menu is Mexican-style shredded chicken. It’s so simple and easy to prepare that even I can do it. (Can we get a cheer for crock-pot meals?!) Plus, it is super versatile and can be used on a salad, tacos, healthy tex-mex burritos, healthy enchiladas, or, if time is really tight, heaped on a plate with a side of sweet potato.
Mexican-style Shredded Chicken
3 lbs. Chicken
Dash of garlic salt, cumin, Spanish seasoning of your choice
1 large can of Mexican stewed tomatoes
1 can of Rotel
1 small diced onion
1 can of green chilies
Chuck it all in the crock-pot and let it cook. Our timing depends on how quickly we want to eat it; we put it on high if we need it within a few hours or on low when we want it after a workday. Once the chicken is ready, shred it and enjoy.
For breakfast, I am a fan of easy-peasy. I normally scramble four egg whites and one whole egg to be enjoyed with a side of healthy pancakes. The pancakes my husband throws together are amazing, but he literally throws them together so I have no idea what the ‘recipe’ is. Maybe someday he will actually come up with a recipe for me to share. Until that day, however, you’ll just have to enjoy this photo of said delicious pancakes.
Finding time to cook is difficult when you have a new baby (or have kids, or a job, or a life) at home.
It’s easy to just go through a drive-thru or pick-up something that can be thrown in the microwave. But, with a little planning you can make really healthy and really yummy food that you can use throughout the week.
Don’t let all of your hard work in the gym and in life get sabotaged by what does (or lets be real, does not) in the kitchen.
Light and Love,