This summer the kids and I made our way to the west coast where my parents live and I grew up like we do every summer. MM was about to turn two and the summer forecast was going to be a hot one. My mom and I were chatting one night the second or third week I was there and doing what all women do, complain about our weight. I had unwanted baby weight still after two years and maybe last christmases goodies were still sticking to me and my mom just wasn’t happy with her weigh either. So we made a pack then and there to try “our own diet plan” a 30 day no junk challenge to do together. Since I was there for the whole summer we had plenty of time to help motivate and encourage each other.
I found with any diet I have always failed after two weeks. It wasn’t really a diet I needed but an over change in the foods I choose to eat, the foods I cooked and just needed to get more creative with my meals that would help benefit me for the future as much as the present. All diets fail when we resume our normal eating and go home and I didn’t want this to happen to me. My mom and I sat at the breakfast table the day after our pack and starting writing tips and advice from various diets. When you do this you must know your own body. I know carbs are my nemesis and they never make me feel good when I eat them anyways so I was cutting them way back or choosing ones that were better for me like quinoa. We had a few smoothies written down for snacks or breakfast as I am not huge into eating in the mornings. Switching to decaf completely we were allowed two cups of decaf coffee or tea per day whether it was morning or evening. I think a lot of my problem for belly fat was portion control the amount of food I used to dish out on my plate was ungodly. Someone my size doesn’t need the helping size of a 6″4′ athlete. Then I made a little list of all the healthy, non-starchy vegetables that I could eat unlimited and starting building random lunch and dinner recipes around it which I added the list below. I didn’t let me stay in from a good restaurant or not go out for the day as I didn’t want to cheat on my no junk challenge or cheat on my mom. If I was out for the day I would just grab a slim-fast smoothie shake for lunch or breakfast or if we were in a restaurant I went for the roasted chicken and vegetables with rice and no sauces or chicken salads. It’s all about what we choose to put in our mouths and it took me so long and I am still working on leading a healthier cleaner life.
Once we wrote down what we wanted to achieve and what we were going to eat with the fridge stocked we set out our 30 day no junk diet challenge. Each morning, we would come down the stairs and write down our weight for the day, side by side, encouraging each other to keep going. At first I lost a bunch, then I literally didn’t loose anything for almost two whole weeks which really is when it gets tough.
You get hangry (hungry-angry) too and want to quit because you feel it’s not working. There were mornings we bit each other’s heads off and just realized it was the hunger talking. lol Once I got off that road bump it really helped. I was on vacation so I still wanted to have the things I loved most, for a treat while I was there so on Day 15, one birthday party, fourth of July, my kids birthdays, and Day 30, I ate whatever I wanted to. Life is too short to not still enjoy life. This included cake, ice cream, pizza, and a delicious Mexican feast that I am still drooling over.
I didn’t do any hard core working out either. I am a huge fan of kettlebells but I also hate working out so for me I didn’t want to do something I couldn’t keep up at home and in the future. So I did my kettlebell workouts just 15-20 minutes, three times a week. That’s nothing and I did them standing next to the pool at my parents house while the kids swam at my feet and music playing. That time frame is nothing and I just went to YouTube, typed in “kettlebell workouts” and did a different video every day to work various parts of my body, never going back to the same video which keeps it from getting boring. Bonus.
I actually kept my 30 day no junk diet and healthy eating plan after 30 days to make up for the days I cheated. It started just becoming my healthy way of life. A smoothie here, maybe add jar of oatmeal once a week, creating new recipes using my list below and staying fit. I am still doing these recipes and new ones now that I am back home.
4 oz chicken, shredded
kidney beans, unlimited
green pepper, unlimited
1/4 avocado, sliced
2 tbsp salsa
cauliflower rice, unlimited
2 eggs, 1 egg white
1/4 avocado, sliced
VEGGIE SALAD DELIGHT
4 oz chicken, diced
grated broccoli, unlimited
purple cabbage, unlimited
baby spinach, unlimited
1/4 tsp balsamic vinegar
ZUCCHINI (COURGETTE) NOODLES:
two large zucchinis (courgettes), using a spiral slicer
1 can white cannellini beans, drained
yellow peppers, unlimited
1 cup steamed green beans
SNAP PEA SALAD
2 cups snow peas, boiled
1 steamed white fish or salmon fillet
purple cabbage, unlimited
purple onions, unlimited
kidney beans, unlimited
1/2 cup quinoa, steamed
1/2 tsp salsa or balsamic
Snacks: handful of nuts, berries, banana with cinnamon, one apple a day
All recipes above just toss into a frying pan using 1/2 tsp extra virgin olive oil. So easy and fast to make.
Here is your UNLIMITED list of vegetables to eat. Get creative and try new combinations of these together like I have. It’s fun to play in the kitchen and not have to eat the exact same thing every day for lunch and dinner. That’s why I fail so much on normal diets. I think it’s about changing the way you cook, eat and your choices rather than constantly trying various diets.
It wasn’t until I got home and found my before photo that I took and my after photo and put them side by side to see the results. You can see in my before photo I had the baby belly “spare tire” and thighs/butt areas needs work and this is where I gained most of my baby weight with both of my children. I am now just working on the toning and muscle in my arms and legs but never working out intensely just 15-20 minutes during the week, two times a week to maintain what I have achieved. It makes you feel so much better when you are eating healthy and exercising. You feel more confident and energetic and proud of your self control. Or at least this is how I feel now. I lost over 16 lbs this summer and it feels great to be back in my old pre-baby clothes. I have been sharing them all on my instagram with everyone over the last few weeks that I have been home.
The biggest shock for me was when I tried eating a greasy pizza how absolutely bad it made me feel afterwards. My stomach hurt, gurgled, I was bloated instantly and made my skin feel disgusting. Something I have never noticed before when I was eating it all the time. My skin is clearer and my hair and nails are growing faster. Just shows you what a healthier lifestyle can do for our bodies more than just weight lost. I still have treats when its a special occasion or something to celebrate as I will never give up cupcakes, let’s be honest. I just make better food choices during the week and when we are out now and feel so much better for it.
Here are my before/after photos that I have been promising everyone. Have you recently changed your eating habits or swapped for a healthier lifestyle? I would love to hear your story, please leave me a comment.