I was asked by the very busy mums over at 17brightideas.com to share my 17 bright ideas to help busy mums to achieve their fat loss goals. So, I did! And here they are for you:
I know just how difficult it is to achieve ‘that’ goal when children become your priority. It is part of the reason I began Her Master Plan, as a more convenient option for busy women. Taking from that experience, here are my top 17 practical tips to make exercising and eating well easier.
- Take part in an online health and fitness program. This means you can exercise when it suits you – no paying for missed Personal Training sessions or missing classes at the gym because of an unexpected babysitter / snotty nose / food vs clothes situation. The support that comes from these types of programs is also great motivation to keep going, having a little online community and knowing you are not alone is priceless.
- Make the children part of your exercise plan. Head out of the door and walk, play tag, race; they will love it just as much as your waistline will.
- Cook with the kids. Healthy recipes can be fun and rewarding for both parties.
- Give yourself rewards. For every little weight loss give yourself to a little treat! A nice candle lit bath when the kids are in bed, a DIY beauty treatment. Just make sure it isn’t a food treat!
- Don’t dwell on bad days. Beating yourself up for bad days will only make you feel worse and cause you to go in to that ‘all or nothing’ spiral. Brush bad days under the carpet and get on with being good again the next.
- Be kind to yourself. If you are exhausted and the thought of exercise fills you with dread – don’t exercise! It will only cause you to resent exercise. Just relax while you are exhausted, recharge and get straight back in to it the next day.
- Enjoy it. Don’t look at exercise and eating well as a chore. Enjoy learning new recipes and learning about your body.
- Involve the kids in the shopping. Send them on a little chore in the supermarket to find the ‘greenest apple’ etc. fun for them, healthy food in your basket = win!
- Learn with the children. Read about why you are changing your (and their) habits. Kids are like sponges and will take it in, as will you!
- Be prepared. Dedicate one evening / day per week to batch cook several of your favourite healthy meals and snacks. This means no excuses to cheat because of being ‘too busy’.
- Get a friend on board. Ideally one who has children your age – healthy play dates!
- Change your view of housework and use it as exercise. Pick up one item at a time meaning you are back and forth more times, consciously squat rather than bend when picking things off the floor, run up the stairs rather than walk – it all adds up.
- Find new activities that you enjoy. This is proven to keep you more motivated. Try a dance class, a long adventure walk, anything that will keep you engaged.
- Make small, easy swaps – potato chips for pumpkin chips, spaghetti for zucchini spaghetti. The possibilities are endless.
- Keep a diary. Keeping track of how you are doing will not only help to keep you motivated on those hard days but it means you can look back and see what worked for you and the kids, and what didn’t.
- Get the kids involved in a meal rating game. Every time you try a new healthy meal, get them to rate it – keep a chart on the fridge. You will continue to add to your arsenal of meals that won’t be snubbed by the kids.
- Measure the kid’s height as you measure your waist. You can make this in to a fun weekly activity and something you all look forward to. It will keep you on track because you will be accountable to your kids!