You’ve had a lovely summer, relaxed and had fun with the family. Eaten and drunk maybe a little too much, and gained a few extra pounds.
Now the kids are back at school and you’re left feeling like there’s a mountain to climb again.
A lot of women are feeling the same.
Yesterday one of the ladies in my free women-only private facebook group (click HERE to come and join) posted that she’d regained most of the weight she’d previously lost, felt like a failure and had no motivation to start again.
It’s a horrible feeling when you’ve lost weight and then let it slip, but sometimes you have to cut yourself some slack. A lot of women in the group chipped in with support and advice, and shared similar experiences they’ve had themselves.
The thing is, that’s life. It’s not always an easy path, and you’re not always going to be perfect.
The summer is lovely, but in a way a tough time for a lot of mums; being out of routine, not doing the school walk each day, needing to entertain the kids and being surrounded by ice cream and tempting food on days out. Then you have the barbecues and other social events, and then there’s the holiday where you want to relax and enjoy your food and drink. It’s no wonder so many mums gain weight!
Did you have a really lovely summer with your family, with lots of special moments together? Did you enjoy relaxing, eating a few ice creams, and not being as strict with your food and drink?
If so, then that’s great! It’s OK if you put on a few pounds. Not ideal for sure, but maybe if you HAD been more strict and managed to stay the same weight, you wouldn’t have enjoyed things quite so much? Saying no to the ice cream you wanted or the glass of wine with friends. Choosing the meal you thought you SHOULD have instead of the one you really wanted. Maybe you would have felt more restricted, had less laughs, and not been able to be quite so present enjoying the moment.
Either way, beating yourself up won’t help. You’re not a failure, you’re just a normal human being who likes food and drink! I’m the same, hence why I gained a good few pounds on my holiday a couple of months ago. I came back feeling far from my best, but after a few weeks of tracking my food, eating much more sensible amounts and increasing my exercise, the weight had mostly dropped off and I felt a lot better again.
Although it can feel like you’re starting again, you’re starting with more experience and knowledge of how to do things. You know what it takes to get to where you want. You know what works and what doesn’t. Now you have more chance of finding a way to do the things that work and be able to keep doing them. Consistency is the key. You’re not a failure unless you give up and stop trying.
The other thing to remember is that it’s VERY easy to compare yourself to others you see on social media. They never seem to gain weight right? Don’t forget, everyone shows you their highlight reel on facebook, instagram and everything else. The people who DO manage to stay in perfect shape the whole time will be making a lot of sacrifices and missing out on a lot of experiences that you’ve been able to enjoy.
There’s no perfect way to do things, it’s just what suits you best and makes you happy. For most people, having the flexibility to go off track every now and again, even if it means gaining a few pounds, is more enjoyable than constantly guarding against weight gain and having to be really careful all the time. It’s all about balance and learning how to live your life in the best way for you.
So if you’re currently feeling like you’ve gained weight over the holidays and want to do something about it, here’s some tips –
1 – Stop beating yourself up – negative thoughts wont help. Remember all the fun you’ve had and be grateful for that. It’s OK to have enjoyed a more relaxed approach for a while. Now you’ve got that out of your system and feel the urge to be fit and healthy. Get excited about what you can achieve now going forward.
2 – Create a vision in your head of you, looking, feeling and being exactly how you want to be. Then trace backwards from there – what steps do you need to take to get to that point? Write them down. Keep picturing yourself as you want to be, every day, whenever you are tempted to stray off track. Keep thinking about how you can step closer to that vision of who you want to be.
3 – Set a little goal for yourself. Where do you want to be in a month’s time? Are there any events in the next 6 – 12 weeks you’d like to wear a nice outfit to? This can really help get you motivated. Think about how good you can feel if you get inspired and knuckle down for the next month or so.
4 – make a plan for how you’re going to get back on track. keep it as easy and simple as possible. Think in terms of habits you can implement that you then don’t need to think about – you just do them. Will you plan your meals for the week? Eat protein at breakfast? Take fruit and a protein shake to work for snacks? Start walking every day? Pick one or two things that you know will be effective and then plan them into your week.
5 – Spend a couple of minutes each morning and/or evening planning out the day ahead. How will you make it a good one? Is there anything that might throw you off track? What do you need to get in place to make things as easy as possible for yourself? Think ahead and you take away the need to make decisions later when you’re more likely to be tired / stressed / lacking willpower.
6 – Whenever you hear yourself saying or thinking something negative, stop that thought immediately and turn it into a positive instead. Stay aware of your mind and how it can easily work against you. It sounds simple but you CAN change your thoughts and look for the positive in every situation. So much of your success is down to your mindset. It is EXTREMELY powerful.
So if you’re not happy with where you are now, don’t feel bad about it, just decide you’re going to change and get to where you want to be.
Get the habits in place and then keep following them, even when motivation drops off temporarily, as it does for everyone at certain points.
Have a clear vision of where you want to get to, and make sure you can enjoy the journey along the way.
If you keep going and stay consistent, you will get there.