On this episode of the Real Happy Mom Podcast, I am talking to Laura about why moms have a hard time losing weight.
She helps bust 6 common myths/excuses why moms can’t lose the excess weight and give us practical tips that we can start to implement now.
Why is it so hard for Moms to lose weight?
Very often, what happens is the metabolism slows down after baby. So we don’t really digest the same way. We don’t process the same way. Lots of changes happen, you know, and it’s hard to get back to where you were before. And also moms are exhausted and that makes a huge difference.
You don’t really, you don’t easily achieve big goals when you’re by yourself. Right. That’s why we all go to mom’s groups, right?
6 excuses why moms have a hard time losing weight
I don’t have time.
This is one of the most common excuses that Luara hears. Get ready for this tough love.
We all have 24 hours in the day and it’s all about planning. It’s all about scheduling. So I would say no, the issue is just that you are not planning.
Planning doesn’t have to be time consuming or intensive. Even taking a few minutes to plan out your meals for the week can save you extra, unnecessary calories and avoiding that annoying question of what’s for dinner.
What I do, I take a sheet of paper. I’ve put it on my fridge. I have the days of the week and I have my lunch and my dinner planned already. And once you have that, you just find your recipes, make your shopping list, go shopping one time a week, done. That’s your meal prep.
Remember, meal prep doesn’t have to be complicated. It is all planning and preparing for the week so that you don’t make poor choices that’ll prevent you from losing excess weight.
Pinterest is Laura’s go-to spot to find recipes and ideas for dinner if you want to try something new.
I am too busy
I’m sure you’ve heard it before. I’m too busy. I’ve got too much going on.
Laura’s solution to this is simple.
It’s all about scheduling. Scheduling your things in your day and in your week.
Meal planning will help you eliminate the need to spend unnecessary time on cooking during the week.
Finding time to exercise can be difficult for moms. Mom guilt has a way of making us feel that we should be spending time with the kids instead of working out.
The beauty of working out is it doesn’t have to be complicated or require expensive gym memberships.
Just something as simple as going on a walk can give you enough movement to help burn calories and interrupt a sedentary lifestyle.
It is too expensive to eat healthy foods all the time
This is an excuse that holds a lot of people back. There’s this thought that you’ve got to eat all organic in order to be healthy. But that’s not the case.
Laura explains just transitioning from processed foods to whole natural foods is eating healthy. For example, replacing frozen chicken nuggets with baked chicken. Or fruit snacks with bananas.
You don’t have to go all organic to start eating healthy. Just transitioning from processed food to whole natural foods. We’re talking just getting some meat and vegetables and some whole grains.
It doesn’t have to be all organic, but avoid processed foods like, frozen dinners are huge.
Laura brings up the movie Fed Up. And references part of the movie when Mark Hyman visits a family at their home and gives them a budget-friendly meal plan.
He’s completely transitioning their diets so they can actually eat real food and they all lose like a ton of weight.
I am too tired to exercise
And there was this mom who would come to class and no jokes, she would go to a corner and just curl up on her yoga mat and just sleep for an hour …. I learned that she had six kids at home. She was totally exhausted. But I mean, my point is that she had scheduled in her week to come to yoga every week. The thing to do even if just to go sleep, have it scheduled.
I have a picky eater and it is hard to cook nutritious meals
This one is for the moms that have a picky eater that only want to eat the same limited menu. And you don’t have time to cook two separate meals every night.
So, you end up eating what your kids eat. And it’s not the best.
Laura keeps it real with me and lets me know that this is more of a parental issue than a nutritional issue.
She suggested to give a little tough love and reminding the kids that you are not a restaurant.
Laura gave a really great tip to help with picky eaters:
Just putting the food in the center of the table. Don’t serve your kid. Let him or her choose what they want in their plates. Right. And just gives them that sensation that they’re kind of in power, right, of what they’re eating.
I love eating junk food
You can find substitutes. Just ask yourself, what is the small little change that you can do in order to like help you find that satisfaction.
- Sweet potatoes wedges instead of potato chips
- Frozen yogurt instead of ice cream
- Banana bread instead of cake
- Flavored water instead of soda
Laura cautions to pay attention to the amount of hidden sugar is in the foods that you’re eating. High sugar intake is a common culprit of why weight loss is so challenging.
I shared my struggle with stress eating before. It came up again while talking to Laura because once I tracked what I was eating,
I was able to see not only the ridiculous amount of calories that I was consuming but the high amount of sugar that was in all of the foods that I was eating.
5 steps to change your mindset
Of course, what you eat is important, but your mindset is the most critical.
Because if you just address the diet without changing anything in the way you think and believe, you’re going to go back to your unhealthy habits.
You don’t want to go down the road of yo-yo diets. So start with changing your mindset and live a healthier lifestyle.
Because I think a lot of women get in that place of like, Oh, I’ve tried that before. It doesn’t work. Oh, I’ve tried that before and it doesn’t work. So you’re like, why bother? This doesn’t work for me, so I’m not gonna even try again.
This defeated mindset makes it impossible to lose weight.
Here are the steps that Luara mentioned to help change your mindset.
Believe you can
The first step is to believe in yourself and believes that you can. You’ve got to believe in yourself first.
Set a goal
Set a realistic goal and make it non-negotiable. Try to make SMART goals so that they are more attainable and trackable.
Focus on the positive
Focus on all of the great things that you’ve done versus the one bad choice that you made.
Stop beating yourself up. You know, so many women beat themselves up, be like, oh, I ate a cookie. Oh my God, I feel so guilty.
It’s okay to eat the cookie. Don’t go down the road of thinking that you’re a failure because you had one cookie.
Watch the mind chatter
Be careful not to fall victim to all of the ridiculous thoughts that come into your head. You know the thoughts like:
- I’m too fat
- I can never do this
- I will never lose this weight
Take notice of those thoughts and replace them with positive thoughts.
One of Luara’s favorite exercise to do with her clients is to have them stand in front of a mirror and look at themselves. They say the first thing that comes to mind.
This gives you a good idea of what is going on in your mind.
If your first thought is something negative, you need to pay attention to your thought and replace them with positive ones.
Don’t forget why you are trying to lose weight.
When you have a good reason why you are trying to lose weight, the excuses won’t prevent you from reaching your goals.
What is one step that we can take today that can help us have a less frustrating weight loss journey?
The number one step is always going to be remove processed foods from your diet. I mean this is number one.
What is the big deal with processed food anyway?
First, processed foods have a large number of hidden sugars. AKA “empty calories.” If you are going to consume 500 calories, you might as well make them count.
Consuming “empty calories” don’t leave you satisfied, so you end up wanting to consume more.
You already know the problems that can occur with consuming too much sugar. Let’s just say weight loss will be extremely difficult if you have too much sugar in your diet.
Secondly, process foods have a ridiculous amount of artificial ingredients. Have you taken a look at on the label of processed foods lately? It can be a bit overwhelming.
Many processed foods have chemicals that are meant to preserve, provide texture, and add flavor and color to food.
Long term, these chemical are not good for our body.
Lastly, processed food can become addicting. As a result over consumption is easy and so is weight gain.
So what exactly do we mean when we say processed foods?
Anything that comes in a box or a bag.
Next time you are in the grocery store, try to shop on the outer perimeter where there are fewer process foods.