The Making of a Mom Bod

My entire life I've never been the super skinny girl.  The one that was naturally thin, that didn't have to worry about what she ate and never had to exercise.  Regardless of that, it never made me actually change my eating or exercise habits.  I always ate what I wanted, when I wanted and I very rarely exercised willingly, other than during team sports growing up.
That high metabolizing, blissfully ignorant, smiling 20-year old coed on the right is me. The others' faces have been covered to protect the innocent :)
After college I joined a gym with my bff and roommate at the time.  I only went to said gym because she made me (my post-college body thanks you for that K!) and I never would go on my own to work out alone.  After I moved out of our apartment for a job in another city, I stopped my gym membership and didn't even think twice about it.

If a wedding won't motivate me, what will?!
Even when I got married in 2007 I didn't even think seriously about trying lose weight.  I knew I was heavier than I'd been but it didn't really motivate me to try to change my habits and lose the weight.  Fast forward a few months later that same year, and my best friends wedding was a month away.  I was the matron of honor, I picked up my dress, and well... IT. DID. NOT. FIT!!!  I could zip it about halfway up, but that was it.  Four more inches left to zip and it would not budge.  I took the dress to a fancy schmancy seamstress so she could work her magic and was told that the design of the dress would make it impossible to fix without completely changing the look of it.  Umm.  Nope.  That can't happen.  My bff bride would kill me.  The seamstress said that if I could lose a little weight and get the zipper up a couple more inches, she could make a small fix that would close it up all the way without completely changing the dress.  Either that or tell the bride I needed to order a new, larger dress.  Well duh, I joined a gym the following day and got a personal trainer.  It didn't matter how much it would cost, I had to fit into that dress.  In that time I lost enough weight for the small fix, my bff bride never knew there was a problem, so my mission was accomplished.  I kept the gym membership for the next year, until I got pregnant with Av.
Giving my matron of honor speech in the dress that cause a thousand headaches
And to be fair, I wasn't the only one in the wedding party that had trouble with the dress.  A couple of us had to get some fabric moved around and one of us had to be taken to a seamstress the morning of the wedding to be sewn into the dress because we couldn't get it to zip up!
Try hiding this scene from a bride asking all her maids "What's going on in there???"
Being pregnant was my excuse to indulge in everything I wanted to eat and to not exercise.
"Oh, the baby wants some ice cream!""Oh, the baby won't like it if my core temperature rises too high from working out!"
Needless to say, I gained a lot of weight during my pregnancy.  After Av was born in 2009, I wasn't too worried about losing the weight.  I knew it took my body nine months to gain the weight and I wasn't going to lose it overnight.  It slowly came off with breastfeeding and chasing after a toddler, but I didn't get back to pre-baby weight before getting pregnant with Iz in 2010.  This time, I knew better and tried not to be so reckless with my body.  I tried to eat healthier to avoid the massive weight gain I experienced with Av.  And like the first time, when Iz was born 2011, I tried to be patient about the weight loss.  I did get close to my pre-Iz-pregnancy weight at the end of 2011 but then I started gaining.

At first it was slow, I just chalked it up to my metabolism slowing down and to too many indulgent meals out.  By the beginning of 2013, I knew I was heavier than I'd ever been, but I didn't think it was that bad.  I would get the weight off when I had time to go work out.  But the problem was, there was never time.  I was too busy with work.  Too busy with the kids.  I wasn't making taking care of myself and my well-being a priority.  I had long ago stopped weighing myself because I just didn't want to know; I didn't want to see the actual number of pounds I weighed because that would mean I would have to do something about it.  My carpel tunnel started flaring up and I started having problems with my feet (plantar fasciitis), which I chalked up to just getting old.

It wasn't until March 2013, when my husband came home from his yearly doctor appointment upset because he was hitting the 200 lb. mark, that we decided to make a change.  Up until that point I was in denial.  I didn't think my weight gain was a problem.  I thought it would eventually come off.  But without changing the way we lived, how could it come off?  We changed our eating habits, started counting calories and exercising regularly and slowly my body responded to the change.  All those problems I had with carpel tunnel and my feet went away.  It wasn't because I was getting old.  It was my body's way of telling me I'm pushing it too far, I'm overweight and it just can't take it anymore.

It's been three years since I started this journey to reclaim my body and I've had my ups and downs.  I know I can be more hardcore about what I'm eating or how often I work out.  But as for now, I'm happy.  My body is a lot different than it was 20 years ago, but this body has created and birthed my two beautiful girls, and for that I am forever grateful.  Yes, I no longer wear the teeny bikini's of my teens and 20's.  This mama has made the transition to tankini's and one-pieces because there are just some things that don't need to see the light of day.  That being said, I'm proud of my mom bod!  Wrinkles, stretch marks and all!
When I started this, I didn't think it was possible to lose 10 lbs., let alone the 35 lbs. I've lost so far.  It feels good.  It feels really good.  I'm so grateful to my husband for being so encouraging and for loving me even when I didn't love myself enough to take care of me.  And I'm thankful for those little girls in the picture above because they are my constant reminder of why I want to live a long and healthy life.

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