Recently, a couple people asked me what I have been doing for diet and exercise because I look great. In those couple moments, it hit me. I knew I was doing something right. I had jumped on the health and fitness bandwagon and finally am seeing great results.

 You have heard this so many times, and I have said this myself many times: "I am physically active, I exercise regularly, but I cannot lose weight." At least this is what I thought for many years. Prior to my changing things up and truly challenging myself, I exercised five days per week, was active playing with my son who is now 4-years-old, ate reasonably (OK not always reasonably well, but reasonably) and yet I still was tipping the scale in the wrong direction. 

Now over the past four months that I have made healthy changes both nutritionally and in my exercise routine, the little needle on the scale is moving to those lower numbers and not being stagnant in one place or slowing creeping up. It truly feels great.

It is a relief to have finally figured out what I need to do to achieve a goal I have had and wanted for many many years. Now after quite a bit of sweat, a few pulled muscles, fighting the desire to snack, breaking through a couple weight loss plateaus, the first twenty pounds are off (yes 20!). They simply melted away… I wish it was as simple as melting. It has actually been a lot of hard work, but every minute of it and every drop of sweat has been well worth it. Plus the energy boost I get from my morning workouts fuels my day both physically and mentally.

How I dropped the weight

The changes I have made are really simple. I began incorporating fruits and/or vegetables into every meal, eliminated snacking, increased the amount of water I drink daily, and exercised with my favorite personal trainer, fitness guru Jillian Michaels five to six days per week. Well, not actually with her personally, but with her awesome DVDs.

I now am exercising for less time per day than when my weight was stagnant. I exercise smarter now compared to before, of course with a little help from Jillian’s DVDs. I push myself to do the full workout with all my heart to see the results I want to see. 

Prior to becoming a mom, I worked as a Registered Nurse. I have seen so many people in the hospital who did not have healthy lifestyles, some of which were too young to have the health problems they did. Many of these people were inactive and/or overweight. I am keeping images of them in my mind as I strive toward my own health goals. 

It is a good incentive to keep going because I do not want to have the health problems that come along with being overweight (diabetes, heart and joint problems just to name a few). Our bodies have enough to handle to carry us through our long lives. Why not provide it with the right amount of fuel it needs and the physical activity to be strong and feel great along the way?

In starting with myself on this health journey, my son is picking up on some of the healthier habits as well. He is becoming a little more adventurous with what he will eat.  He has found a new vegetable he loves, asparagus. Yum!  He also joins me many mornings to exercise. Seeing these little changes in his choices for food and activity really drive home to me how much of what we do as parents really makes a difference in our children and they choices they make. Like many people have said, our actions speak louder than words. I want to be a great role model for both of my children now and for many healthy years to come!