See what I did there? I put nachos in a bikini title. I like nachos. And it was a play on words. Get it? “Not so” is also “Nacho”.
But you totally got that.
If you’ve been doing all the right things but still don’t look like one of those rock hard bikini bodies on Instagram or Pinterest, don’t be discouraged. I am right there with you.
Let’s just jump right out of the gate shall we with the cold hard truth. It takes way more than 30 days to look like you’ve got washboard abs and buns of steel.
And when you want it to happen like all the charts and gurus and detox whatever folks are telling you it can be done by, but it hasn’t, you throw your hands up in the air and say ‘fuck it’. I’ll just order the onion ring tower. Might as well since I’m just going to be fat forever, is what you tell yourself.
Well, let me tell you. Don’t. Or do, but share it with friends and eat just a few onion rings.
Don’t give up. Slow and steady wins the race, not fast and hard.
And you know what else? Being 40 totally sucks. My body doesn’t get in shape as fast as I want it to. AND I am more susceptible to injury and strain. So I can’t go full on Cross fit for 2 hours and think I will be able to function the next day. If by function I mean pull my pants down myself to go to the bathroom. Also, there’s these things called kids that I’m in charge of. Sucks that I can’t work out and be all ‘me, me, me’.
It’s not fair for a woman with 13% body fat who’s been working out most of her adult life to pose for one of those pics that us squishy moms look at and get all excited about and start hitting the mat with our lunges, planks, and squats. Yes, those exercises work, but it takes TIME.
I had been skinny all my life up to getting pregnant with my first at 27. I packed on the pounds, was stuck on bed rest, had a hard postpartum, and didn’t get moving much until my daughter was around 6 months old. I finally felt like myself when my daughter was 2, only to gain weight again with the pregnancy of my son. After he was born the weight came off fast and I really seemed to be more kind to myself. I understood what I could do to get fit. Things were working. For the next several years I did a random circuit of my own workouts that included classes, gym time, and my own stuff of walks with the dog and training for 5ks. I was pretty disciplined with my diet. I didn’t realize how good I had it. I still wanted to be thinner, skinnier. I was probably around a size 4/6. I always felt self conscious of my waist or my arms. If I knew then what I know now, boy would I have been more accepting of how my body looked.
Once I started blogging I became lazy. I spent more time on my laptop and social media than I did working out. I thought I could just get away with the occasional walk with the dog, skipping lunch, maybe a few squats. Then I would read different articles that would make my head spin. I could get fit in just short workouts, no wait, I had to sweat it out for at least 45 minutes, no wait, sweating wasn’t necessary, as long as you engage your core. Ninety percent of how you look starts in the kitchen not the gym. Drinking wine is like a workout. Eat kale. Drink coconut oil and you’ll totally whittle your waist down. Eat avocados and lose weight. Do Pure Barre. Do ten minutes of planks. But hey, if you’re not doing cardio, then all your core work is wasted.
Dear GOBS I want to scream.
WTF? Eat less and work out more right? Nope. Hold the phone. You might be making yourself fat if you eat too little, and maybe the workouts you’re doing and the food you’re eating are working against your hormones. How much coffee do you drink? Coffee is bad. Coffee makes you hold fat in your stomach. No wait. Coffee is good. Coffee before a workout helps you burn fat.
If you’re confused too then- yay. My point is made.
Here’s what’s going on right now. I’m using My Fitness Pal app to track my food. I’m using my pedometer on my phone to track my steps. I get 10,000 a day for the most part.
I am still doing my 30 day whatever challenges for abs, planks, pushups, etc. BUT. I am reminding myself that it will take me more than 30 days to even look the way I want to look. I’m remembering that feeling stronger climbing up into my son’s loft bed to change the sheets is a win. Pants that were tight to zip up 3 months ago are fitting better. My favorite little black dress still doesn’t fit. But it’s closer than it was to fitting a year and a half ago. So I’m keeping at it. My waist is 3 inches smaller than it was before Christmas. It’s still soft and pudgy like a bagel before it’s cooked, but hey, 3 inches is 3 inches!
After 8 weeks of consistent exercise, calorie tracking and just feeling like I was getting somewhere, I headed to the hotel pool of our vacation in my two-piece feeling a bit sassy. I had Emma take my picture, you know as a ‘look at me, I’m on vacation’ picture.
I have to say I was disappointed when I saw it. I felt thinner in my head. Seeing my dimples and fleshyness kind of bummed me out. But I shared it in a private group of friends and they were so positive. Of course they said I looked good and I was rocking the two-piece and yadda yadda yadda. Because they are my friends and that’s what friends do. Which was what I wanted to hear. But what it proved to me is that we all have our ideals in our head. Just because I see this picture and don’t feel a hundred percent like I’ve ‘arrived’ at some fitness precipice of awesome, I can feel good in the fact that I am on my way. I couldn’t do a 25 second plank 8 weeks ago, but now I can rock 90 seconds and maybe two minutes on a really good day. My arms are still squishy, but they are stronger than they were before. And remember those 3 inches I lost around my waist? Yeah, that’s something!
So here’s my journey. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. My point is that even if your success story doesn’t seem as obvious as the next person’s, don’t give up. Keep on doing what you’re doing. Doing nothing is not an option.
Also, I will not caption this, “How a ‘real’ woman looks in her 40s after 2 kids and not a whole lot of exercise”. But instead I will caption it that I’m just a ‘regular’ woman. Real women are size 0 and size 18. Size isn’t what makes us real. But you already knew that didn’t you?