Don’t let your Opinion of your Appearance Affect your Physical Capabilities

I’ve spent countless hours critiquing myself in the past; picking out the things that were wrong with me or not good enough! Looking in the mirror and seeing my flaws instead of my strengths.

How many times have you done this yourself? I don’t think I’m alone with these negative lenses I look through. For some reason we live in a society that has a general level of superficial focus…..Do you have a nice big house? A fancy car? Are you thin? Are you attractive?  It’s sad, but true. I feel over the past few years there has been a bit of a change, focusing more on strength over being thin; but it still feels like a competition out there about LOOKS and SUCCESS and not about just being your best you.

After I had my children like many new moms I felt as though my best years (from a physical standpoint) had passed. After 3 c-sections, and complications with recovery on my third, I did feel as though maybe my body was just ruined in ways that could never be repaired. But I decided I wasn’t going to succumb to those feelings and I changed my focus to strengthening and challenging myself. I wanted to get back to a place where I felt comfortable in my own skin. I started taking pictures about 8 weeks postpartum and began training for a half marathon; which was just 5 months to the day after I had delivered my youngest!

I’ve written previously in Respecting my postpartum body about the physical and mental challenges and changes that training and accomplishment had on me. And recently, after completing two half marathons this year, I looked up those old postpartum pictures I took to see what progress I’d made.

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Here is a comparison showing my progress. It’s humbling to see myself in the left pictures. I was 5 months postpartum and had just completed that half marathon I was training for. I used that training as my motivation to help me get back into shape. I had lost weight and was feeling good about the progress I was making. Looking at them now it’s interesting to see what perspective and self-appreciation will do to those lenses we critique ourselves with!! That body still needed some work, and the one I have now still needs some work! But I didn’t let my negative opinion hold me back because I started focusing on new motivations. It was no longer a motivation to be thin or look my best, it was a motivation to challenge myself and appreciate what I could do regardless of how I looked. This change in focus has helped me get 10 pounds UNDER my pre-pregnancy weight and has helped me have confidence in how I look for the first time in, well, I can’t tell you how long.

The best take away I can share from my experience is to stop setting weight loss goals, and start setting physical goals that challenge you in a way that seems impossible! Follow through with those goals and the weight will come off, you will appreciate your reflection, but most importantly you will find a real, true sense of self-appreciation and respect. And THAT is the best gift you can give yourself!

Until next time……Thea 🙂

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Progress not Perfection- 21 Day Fix/Clean Eating Reviews

Since the start of this blog I have been working on and shared my many fitness and weight loss goals. I thought I would share some of the success I have had so far with the Clean Eating and 21 Day Fix fitness programs I have been following.

They have a saying in the beach body world (Beachbody offers the 21 day fix and various workout/fitness programs like P90X, Insanity, Piyo and more), that you should focus on progress, and not perfection! This is so true as I am still 5 pounds from my weight goal but here is a before and current picture showing the progress I have made so far this year!

WL beforeafter Collage

I’ve been able to make these changes doing mainly 30 minute workouts from the 21 day fix program, roughly 5 times a week. Yes, I trained for, and ran a half marathon during that time, but my long runs were only once a week. I’m glad I listened and took these pictures. My weight difference is only 10 pounds! To me it looks like more, or maybe I just seen the difference in body composition. My upper body and waist have really shown the most noticeable change. Working on strength more verses just cardio makes a big difference!! Lift weight people, it is GOOD!

I have also made a big change in my diet cutting out most, but not all, processed foods and sugar. Small changes make a difference on the scale and measurements, but also with how I FEEL! I’ve always been a huge salad fan using healthy dressings but during these 6 months I have discovered how simple and delicious homemade salad dressings are! Also, I finally went for the shakeology protein shake option. Even though it is more than some store-bought shakes, I was very surprised at how much I LOVED the taste and it kept me full longer. It includes tons of vitamins and probiotics, and using the chocolate flavor helps me fulfillment my daily sweet tooth cravings!

I’m still working on my goal of hitting the 145 mark, but in the meantime I’m feeling GREAT! I’m more than just content; I’m happy with the changes I’m seeing and feeling with my body. If you’re interested in trying one of these programs check out my Beachbody website; www.beachbodycoach.com/theasinclair. My dream has always been to be a personal trainer, or to be involved with fitness, and this company is a great way for me to offer multiple options to people looking to improve their health and fitness. I would love to be your supporter and coach!!

Until next time… Thea

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Pumpkin Gingerbread Recipe

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This bread has been a favorite in our house for years!! I got the recipe from an old co-worker and over the years I’ve updated it to try to cut the sugar and overall calorie content. (It originally called for almost 3 cups of sugar and a cup of vegetable oil!!)

With my new clean eating endeavors this year I have converted this to a much healthier, yet still awesomely delicious family favorite! So here’s what you need!

  • 1 Cup Honey or Maple Syrup
  • 1/2 cup Coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup apple sauce (no sugar added)
  • 4 eggs
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1- 15 oz can pumpkin puree
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 tsp. allspice
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. cloves
  • 3 & 1/2 cups Whole Wheat flour (or flour preference /required for your diet)
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp. Sea Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder (this is debated with clean eating, but it’s only a 1/2 tsp)

Step One: Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F). Lightly grease two 9×5 loaf pans.

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Step Two: In a large mixing bowl combine honey/maple syrup, apple sauce, coconut oil and eggs. Beat until smooth.

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Step Three: Add water and blend well.

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Step Four: Stir in pumpkin puree and spices.

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Step Five: In a separate bowl combine flour, baking soda, salt and baking powder. Add dry ingredients into wet ingredients and blend with a spoon until just mixed (pumpkin chunks are good).

**Optional: Add dark chocolate chips, nut of your choice, or unsweetened coconut.**

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Step Six: Pour into pans and bake for 45-50 minutes. Check with a toothpick. Once it comes out clean it’d done.

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Step Seven: Remove from the pans while warm, cool on Rack and store in a sealed plastic bag to retain moist texture.

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    Now enjoy!!!

0412151727Recipe Details

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Honey or Maple Syrup
  • 1/2 cup Coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup apple sauce (no sugar added)
  • 4 eggs
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1- 15 oz can pumpkin puree
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 tsp. allspice
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. cloves
  • 3 & 1/2 cups Whole Wheat flour (or flour preference /required for your diet)
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp. Sea Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder (this is debated with clean eating, but it’s only a 1/2 tsp)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F). Lightly grease two 9×5 loaf pans.
  2. In a large mixing bowl combine honey/maple syrup, apple sauce, coconut oil and eggs. Beat until smooth.
  3. Add water and blend well.
  4. Stir in pumpkin puree and spices.
  5. In a separate bowl combine flour, baking soda, salt and baking powder. Add dry ingredients into wet ingredients and blend with a spoon until just mixed (pumpkin chunks are good). **Optional: Add dark chocolate chips, nut of your choice, or unsweetened coconut.**
  6. Pour into pans and bake for 45-50 minutes. Check with a toothpick. Once it comes out clean it’d done.
  7. Remove from the pans while warm, cool on Rack and store in a sealed plastic bag to retain moist texture.

If you’d like to read more select “follow” on the bottom tool bar from your PC OR “Like” me on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/rusupermom.