It’s getting hot and sweaty around here today as Hot (Sweaty) Mamas: Five Secrets to Life as a Fit Mom makes a virtual book tour stop at FatFighterTV. Now, this is not a how-to-drop-the-baby-weight book – it’s about letting go of Mother Guilt and making fitness a priority, not only for mom, but for the whole family. More from co-author, Laurie Lethert Kocanda.
What is the biggest fitness mistake moms make?
There’s a big misconception out there that you need large chunks of time to make fitness worthwhile. With that attitude, it’s easy to see why so many moms give up on exercise. The biggest mistake moms make is adopting an all-or-nothing attitude about fitness. Motherhood is full of the unexpected, which oftentimes means things don’t go according to plan. When that happens we have to be content with Plan B, maybe develop a Plan C on the fly, if we’re going get and feel fit. Any exercise is worth when you consider both the mental and physical benefits. You are making small deposits that will eventually pay off. Guaranteed.
How can other members of the family support a mom’s fitness goals?
Having a good support network is essential if Mom’s fit lifestyle is going to take hold. Family members can help by providing encouragement and support—both in action and in word—whenever possible. Help keep Mom accountable by asking about her workouts; show her what a wonderful mentor she is by joining her whenever possible. In this way, she’ll be encouraged to continue on her path to fitness.
You mention mother guilt as a big barrier to fitness. What is it and how can you keep it in check?
Mother Guilt is that little voice that comes from within telling you it’s selfish to choose a workout over another more “important” mommy task. And while sometimes it is good to listen to your inner voice, too much banter from Mother Guilt is usually an indication that you’ve set unrealistic expectations of yourself and of motherhood in general. “Putting family first” does not mean ignoring your personal well-being. You are, after all, a pretty important part of the family, right?
Mother Guilt is prone to unexpected visits. If you want your fit life to take hold, you must first do a little mental training to prepare. Start by identifying your preconceptions of motherhood; perhaps what you thought were parenting no-nos might actually have a place in your life. Maybe 30 minutes of television isn’t so bad if it frees up some time for you to squeeze in a quick workout. Challenge what you’ve accepted as parenting truths and get realistic about what life is really like.
Next, take some time to write down what’s important to you, what values you want to impart on your children. Then work to make health and fitness a value you act on—a priority to which you allocate some time each day. If laundry gets more attention than you do, it’s time to do some more mental work. Saying “no” to something that isn’t a priority will feel good when you use the time freed to attend to something that is. Especially if it means saying goodbye to Mother Guilt.
Check out Hot (Sweaty) Mamas here!