My Healthy Living for Mom series on Today’s Mama has been focused on my real-world struggle to lose weight, stay healthy, eat nutritiously, and maintain a balanced attitude.
I’m kicking off a Healthy Living for Mom Q&A series so I can pick the brains of healthy people that I admire...to learn their tricks and share them with you.
All too often we assume that we’re the only one that struggles or utilizes little incentives to stay on track. With this series I hope to give us all the opportunity to learn something new and be inspired.
Emily Hill, isthisREALLYmylife.com
I am a wife, mother, entrepreneur and writer. When I’m not driving carpool, cleaning crayon off the walls, scraping dried macaroni off the floor or hiding in my closet, I enjoy entertaining readers with random ramblings on isthisREALLYmylife.com. I am the co-owner of SassyScoops.com, contributing editor for BoutiqueCafe.com, social media specialist for Where Women Create and a member of the eBay Parent Panel. In my spare time, I am a freelance copywriter and copyeditor. Diet Coke and chocolate make it all possible.
Have you always been healthy a person?
I’m healthier now than I was during my high school, college and early years of marriage. I was never seriously overweight thanks to a good metabolism and the high school swim team, but my diet consisted heavily of cinnamon rolls, pizza, cereal, junk food. I didn’t see much of that mysterious fruit and vegetable food group.
What motivates you to stay healthy?
Working out is how I maintain my sanity and steal some “me” time during the day. I also love a good challenge and set new goals all the time. Who doesn’t love checking something of her to-do list?
Do you have a favorite image or saying that helps keep you on track?
An image in my head of me about 7 or 8 years ago when I was my thinnest. The funny thing is, I’m just as strong now—perhaps even healthier physically—but I do have a little extra around the middle thanks to nearing 40 and birthing 4 kids!
What do you do to stay physically healthy?
My week consists of spin class, yoga and Pilates. During the summer I like to do cycling events and a sprint triathlon or two, so that adds an extra element of training. I’ve also found cutting out any sort of snacking after 8pm (not easy when you’re a night owl) is a great way to keep off unwanted pounds. Of course once a month I find this nearly impossible!
What if you don’t feel like going to the gym / going for a run / getting on the bike?
That’s when I know I most need to do it so I force myself out the door. Once I’m there, I’m so glad I made the effort. On the other hand, once in a while I’ve found missing a workout and sleeping in is its own reward…as long as you don’t make it a habit.
How would you describe your nutritional habits?
I’m still not very good at the fruits and vegetables thing but I am pretty good about making healthy food choices like local whole grain bread, organic peanut butter, lean protein, healthy snacks (light popcorn, plain almonds, cold pears). Of course if you take me to Texas Roadhouse, I’m going to eat my weight in rolls. Just sayin’.
What is your approach when it comes to indulging in not-so-nutritious foods?
See above. I find if I cut out indulgent foods altogether, I’m super grumpy and super inclined to binge when I get the chance. I believe moderation in all things is truly the way to go. Have those peanut butter M&Ms but measure out a small handful and put the bag away.
How do you talk to your kids about being physically active and eating well?
They know how important exercise and healthy eating is to me and I think they’ve picked up on that. We try to do things as a family like work in the yard together, go on family walks and visit the park. I often encourage them to step away from the TV or computer to play with friends, walk the dog or do something active outside. They don’t always appreciate this move but they’ll thank me later…I’m sure of it.
Any parting words?
If you’re already active and healthy, I raise my sweaty earbuds to you. If not, find little ways to incorporate healthier decisions into your lifestyle. Switch out white bread for whole wheat, pretzels for potato chips, low-fat sorbet for full-fat ice cream. Turn off the TV and go for a walk, do some dance moves while vacuuming the house, or try a few dance moves in your local Zumba class. Just like Bob said, baby steps, my friend. It’s all about the baby steps.
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