Happy Spring Everyone! It’s that time of the year to pull out the summer shorts and dresses. Apart of January 1st, it’s the time of the year when most people start a diet plan. As you all know, I am a single mom. My daughter and I are always together, except for work and school days. I wouldn’t have it any other way! That being said, having to take care of my daughter alone and having limited money for child care, I hardly ever get any time alone to focus on myself.
A few weeks ago, after I put my daughter to bed, I passed by our hallway mirror and had to take a second glance at myself. I hardly recognised my body. In my mind, my body is stuck at age 23, when I fitted into my skinny jeans, everything looked awesome on my body and I was always confident about the way I presented myself. As I passed by that mirror, I realized that I look nothing like I imagined myself looking at 35. My mind is stuck at 23 but my body looks far from it. Something about the way I looked that night instantly propelled me to want to change; not for anyone else but for myself. I think that’s the key to change; to want to do it for you and your own personal reasons rather than to fulfill another’s expectation or perception of yourself.
With my daughter always with me and our weekdays lasting more than 12 hours, I knew the standard diet and exercise plan will be difficult to accommodate into our schedule. I also wanted to fit into my clothes for an upcoming trip. I hate having to buy new clothes every season because I can’t fit into my already pretty closet staples. To keep me motivated, I walked around with a picture of when I was 23 taped to the back of my phone! I know looking like my 23 year old self is an unrealistic goal as my body has chemically changed with having a child and the because of naturally aging. This was also my personal goal. Everyone’s will be different based on their own objectives. My goals had nothing to do with how much I weighed but rather how I perceived my appearance.
May 1st, 2017, I am:
- 5’2″, 138 lbs
- Pants size: 6-8
- Top size: Medium
- Waist (around belly button): 33″
- A model for the muffin top
- Fit into the clothes in my closet.
- Feel confident about my appearance
- Have more energy to keep up with my daughter
- Throw away my Spanx
Requirements for my diet
Note: I hate salad! I may eat it once or twice but I really can’t stand any form of it. Wish I did, it would give me so many other choices. However, I knew I had to stick with what I would realistically eat if I wanted to reach my goals.
- Quick and easy, on the go foods
- Cost effective- all my money goes towards my daughter’s activities so I can’t spend a ton on organic and whole foods.
- Foods that can be frozen- we usually cook on Sunday’s and freeze for the rest of the week.
- High fiber vegetables
- Water enhancers- I hate water so I need a tiny bit of the sucralose enhancer to motivate me to drink a ton.
- Water, water, water- I drink 1 cup before I eat and 1 cup after.
- Minimal to no sugar
My food choices
- Soup broth: chicken, light coconut milk
- Certain vegetables- cauliflower, okra, broccoli, asparagus, mushrooms, spinach
- Smucker’s natural peanut butter
- Dr. Praeger’s vegetable burgers
- Lettuce- whole wide leaves, not cut up
- Sunflower seeds
- Whipped cream- occasional desert
- Low carb fruit- strawberries, blackberries, tomatoes
- 2 boiled eggs
- 1 avocado
- Scrambled or fried eggs with sauteed spinach (weekends only when I have time)
- Vegetable omelette (weekends only when I have time)
- 2 bacon strips (microwavable type for time savings)
- Matcha green tea
Daytime Snack Choices
- Matcha green tea- I would drink about 5 cups a day.
- Sunflower seeds in shell
- Small handful of almonds
- 1 tbs Smucker’s natural peanut butter
- Sugar-free sucker (maybe just 2-3 a week). Favorite is Werther’s Original Sugar Free Caramel.
- 1 string cheese
- Dr. Praeger’s Vegetable burger with one slice of tomato wrapped in lettuce
- Bowl of thawed soup– low carb Thai Coconut Soup, Vegetable Soup with Chicken
- Two cups of okra with baby shrimp
- Sauteed large shrimp with vegetables
- Shredded seasoned chicken wrapped in lettuce- 2-3 wraps
- Beef kabob- seasoned on homemade soy-based sauce
- Chicken breast with sauteed spinach and asparagus
- Chicken caesar salad without croutons
- 1 avocado
- Parmesan crusted cauliflower
- Few pieces of buffalo wings (no batter)
- Boiled egg
- Small side salad with ranch dressing
- Bowl of low carb soup
- Bowl of Buffalo Cauliflower (so so yummy)
- Bowl of lighted fried okra (I love okra and I usually make a giant pan of it on Sunday’s and freeze it)
- Salmon with vegetables (put in the oven with slight seasoning of salt and pepper)
- Bowl of homemade chicken curry with a small side of sauteed spinach
- 5 strawberries or blackberries with some whipped cream
- Diet cream soda with a bit of whipped cream on top- diet root beer float
Eating Out Choices
I tried not to eat out much during my diet. It costs much more to eat out and there are too many temptations.
- Alcoholic drinks: Vodka with Seltzer and lime. I also sometimes put a bit of my water enhancer in it.
- Any diet soda with sucralose- I try to not drink more than 1-2 diet soda a week.
- Burgers without the bun- 1-2 times a month
- Salads with dressing on the side- use dressing sparingly
- Seafood with side of vegetables (no sauce)
- Grilled meat or vegetables
I have no gym membership and I get home at 7 pm every day so going to the gym with my daughter is not an option. On weekends, we have dance, swim and other kids clubs so again, gym is not an option for me.
- Johnson and Johnson 7 minute app– I do one 7 minute workout every night after I put my daughter to bed and before I hop in the shower.
- 30 minute Youtube workout Saturday and Sunday mornings with my daughter.
- Mowing the lawn- I do about 30 minutes lawn mowing every Saturday.
- Walking for 20 minutes during my lunch break at work.
- Playing with my daughter and dog at the playground on the weekends.
- Yard work with my daughter on the weekends.
Its June 15th, 2017, I am:
- 5’2″, 123 lbs
- Pants size: 2-4
- Top size: Small
- Waist (around belly button): 26″
- Modelling my skinny jeans
I still definitely don’t like I did when I was 23 but I am so much more confident in my appearance. I am wearing more dresses and skirts. I still wear my spanx on the occasional date, but not as much. I am not going clothes shopping this summer. I will wear my clothes in my closet. I also have so much more energy to keep up with my daughter. I also saved so much money from not eating out and cooking more at home. My stomach drastically shrank! I eat about 1 cup of food now and I am so full. Yay!
I am planning on continuing with the J&J 7 Minute Workout App because it is really convenient. I enjoyed eating what I ate during my diet so I will just continue. I will also try and keep away from the sugar. I am planning on adding more glycemic friendly fruits and the occasional indulgence of high fiber carbs.
All in all, I think I will continue doing what I am doing and try to make this a lifestyle.
Thanks for all your support.