“Women, one of the things we do… is make everything look so easy. We’re supposed to be perfect. We’re supposed to be beautiful. We’re supposed to be thin. And it’s all supposed to come easy … And it isn’t. On every level. trying to work, balance a family, succeed, make money, which should be as fundamentally important as everything else we do, it isn’t easy. We all need to have a true, honest conversation about not only the challenges we face but how we can help each other.”
And it got me thinking, I truly think this “easy” philosophy is why so many woman, especially mothers, fail at weight-loss and staying healthy. I’m calling this the “easy” failure.
Women see other women “doing it all” and making it look “easy.” When they can’t live up to that picture, they feel like a failure and give up. They gain weight and live in a body they don’t love. Let me remind all the ladies out there. LIFE IS NOT EASY. And, if another woman makes it look like it is, she is dying on the inside from the stress of presenting the perfect picture.
Some important stats:
- According to a 2007 study, over 60% of adult women are overweight. If you are overweight, YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
- Factors in becoming overweight: Your environment, culture, genes, family, behaviors, etc. YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
- Health Effects: Heart Disease, Stroke, Diabetes, High Blood Pressure, Joint Pain, etc. YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
LIFE IS NOT EASY. WEIGHT LOSS IS DIFFICULT. BUT YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
Ladies, let’s give ourselves a break and remember the following: (Note: this is not an article “okaying you to get fat and be lazy.”)
1. Taking care of kids is not easy. Kids are a mess. They are dirty and need constant attention. They drive us crazy but we love them regardless. They change our lives and consume most of it. So, when you miss a workout because you’re helping with homework, relish in the moment. They’ll be gone soon enough and we’ll crave those simple moments.
2. Working a full-time job is not easy. Work is hard enough. Being away from your kids can be even harder. Throw in a house to clean, dinner to make, groceries to shop for, kids activities, hubby time and we’re pulled in every direction. It’s okay to need a moment to yourself. It’s okay to feel the need to scream. We’ve all been there. Take your moment and start over.
3. Preparing healthy family meals nightly is not easy. When you run out of time because you’re busy taking care of everyone else, and can’t chop fresh veggies from the local farmers market for a healthy dinner, don’t beat yourself up. We all have these days. The drive thru may be your best friend at that moment. Don’t let guilt over the “family meal” bring you down completely. Just try your best. Tomorrow try again.
4. Being fashionable is not easy. For the majority of us, we are not fashion models. We have kids who spill food on everything, poop their pants and destroy everything in their path. We have bodies that haven’t recovered from pregnancy, breasts that sag to our knees. We spend all of our money on family needs. If we get one night to dress up, it’s hard to pull it all together and make it out the door in one piece. If you can accomplish “the getting out the door in one piece” you’re a success. Don’t worry about looking stick thin in the latest skinny jeans and 3-inch heels. Enjoy the night out!
5. Staying healthy and fit is not easy. The ACSM recommends up to 300 minutes of exercise a week in order to lose weight. That’s an hour of exercise, 5 days a week. It’s hard for working mothers to hit the gym that often for that amount of time. We’re inundated with “skinny” pictures and celebrities back to their pre-baby weight in just a month. Facebook splashes “friends” workout pictures and “I’m awesome” statuses in front of us daily. Many of these stories are so unrealistic for the normal person. It’s easy to feel like you’re not giving you’re health enough attention and call it quits. DON’T!
There is a solution. My next post will feature tips on how you can recover from what I call the “easy” failure. Until then, keep at it. Remember, we all have different obligations in life. We all have different body types. Life is hard on all of us. Don’t let anyone tell you or show you anything different. Do your best. And I mean an honest best. And, you’ll be on your way to a mentally and physically healthier you.