Mirror, mirror on the wall… I’m my mother after all

Since I became a mom, I have heard over and over again that I am my daughter’s role model and that my actions will either inspire her to become like me, or make her not want to be like me at all.

My earliest memories of my mom and her struggle with weight, were watching her do these crazy diets. One in particular was some weird diet that promised to change her metabolism for 5 years, she’d eat only hard-boiled eggs on day one, then meats another day, then vegetables another, then bananas another, etc., although I don’t remember the exact order of this diet, I do recall watching her  keep the weight off for a few months, maybe even a year or two and then put on the weight again. My mom was a ballerina when she was young, yet years of abusing her body like this and not taking good care of her body with diet and exercise probably had taken a toll on her body.

When I was pregnant, one of my mom’s sisters died of complications from diabetes, although everyone knew how ill she was, the fact that my aunt had been at a birthday party where once again, she ate everything a diabetes patient should not eat, (cake, ice cream, etc.), and then the next day went to see her doctor complaining of not feeling well, at which point she collapsed at her doctor’s office and died, was a real shock for everyone on my mom’s side of the family. As a result, my mom went to see her doctor who discovered she was following my aunt’s same path. She now has reversed her diabetes completely, with her doctor’s help, diet and exercise and looks great.

As I was growing up, I became the complete opposite of my mom. I took on exercise as my favorite thing to do to release stress. I was a perfect size 4 for the majority of my adult life, I practiced kickboxing for a while and once I stopped doing that, I started running, lifting weights and I was training for my first full marathon when I got pregnant with my daughter. I had just ran 20 miles as part of my training when I discovered I was pregnant. During my pregnancy I still exercised, I walked  2 – 3 miles everyday and had a very easy pregnancy and delivery, but due to having to watch my diet since my sugar levels were a little high during my pregnancy, I had felt deprived of eating what I really felt like eating (ice cream, cake and all sorts of sweets), once I had my daughter, instead of losing weight, I ended up putting on 20 Lbs. Nothing fit, my beautiful size 4 clothes were stashed away and my hopes for ever getting back my before-pregnancy body quickly faded away.

Then I met Tracey Mallett, a mom, trainer and amazing woman who promised to help me get my body back. I was one of the mom’s featured in her book titled “Super Fit Mama.” I quickly signed up to participate as one of her guinea pigs for her book, sent her before and after pictures and started her weight loss, exercise program. She kicked my butt good and I enjoyed every minute of it. By the time her book was in the process of being published, I had already lost all the wieght I had put on, and although I was still not my dream-size 4, I had lost 4 dress sizes and was on my healthy way to get there.

In April 2009 my husband, daughter and I moved to the country. It was a good move for us financially speaking, but the fact that here I had no motivation to look good (I have seen people in their p.j.’s at 3:00 pm at the grocery store), I worked from home and had no other female workers to compete with in regards to looking fabulous, combined with an ankle injury in July 2009 that took a long time to heal, just gave me one excuse after another to not continue working out. I had been running consistently since we had moved and was one dress size away from achieving my dream… so, so close. After the ankle injury, I stopped working out completely, working at home with the fridge next to my desk was another excuse and the pounds started to add one after another very quickly. Now, here I am, starting all over again. A few weeks ago,  I was falling into my mom’s old and familiar pattern, trying to figure out which fad diet would work for me and forgetting completely that I already know what to do and have all the tools to achieve my dream size.

As you may be able to tell already I am a competitive person, I found out that there is a 10K coming up on April 17 and since I had ran several 5K’s in the past, I decided to go for it. I told my husband that we should both run it, and since he loves me so much, he said yes, so we started training last week. But oh, the cravings, the hunger and the need to eat more starchy carbohydrates than I should has slowly crept in with a vengeance. Instead of losing weight this past week, my weight kept steady. So now, it’s time  to journal so I can have some type of accountability to what I am chugging down my throat, ahem, I mean eating.

In order to achieve my goal I have started to log my food intake. I am committed to eat 7 servings of protein in one day, 3 servings of dairy, 5 servings of grains, 3 of fats, unlimited amounts of veggies, 4 of fruits, 8 glasses of water for a total of approximately 1700 calories per day, by eating 3 healthy meals and 3 snacks per day. Unlike the diet fads, this is a life style and because I want my daughter to have an amazing self-image, my goal is to teach her to exercise and eat healthy in the process. So hopefully like me, she’ll be able to look at herself in the mirror and say: “Mirror, mirror on the wall, I am my mother after all, and damn, I look hot!”