Monday, January 10, 2011

Healthy Tips for Busy Moms

Recently, I've been looking into healthy eating tips for busy moms who have full plates and not much time left for themselves. Obviously I'm going to suggest Garden Lites as a helpful tool to healthy food on the fly, but that's just one piece. Some of the articles I've read are appalling.

This article advises readers to throw out your kids leftovers or else "[...] you're bound to stuff a few of their nuggets or a hot dog in your mouth."
They aren't alone in the message they are sending moms. Avoid the junk you feed your kids.

In the spirit of "getting real"... C'MON PEOPLE!

The best solution to eating healthy with a busy family is to involve your family. No more cooking multiple dinners to appease everyone's pallettes. You should cook for the lowest common denominator. Are you trying to incorporate healthy fruits and vegetables into your daily life? To drink more water? Move more? Get everyone into that mindset. Make it a game! Keep a chart on your fridge to keep track of how many glasses of water each of you has had per day. After meal time, go for a family walk around the block or shoot hoops. See who can reach their daily recommended amounts of fruits and vegetables first. (Okay, that one is a little dorky, but hey - maybe it'll work?)

If you consider a food not worthy of entering your healthy lifestyle, why feed it to your kids? Teach them about reading food labels, what each nutrient means and how it helps your body function. Make it a challenge to find clean food labels when you go grocery shopping. (*Ahem* - Garden Lites) As the healthy challenge progresses, your kitchen will be rid of temptations and full of healthy options for everyone.

When it's not just you versus the world, you stand a fighting chance to maintain your healthy lifestyle. Also, you have your very own support system! What better way to teach kids the importance of nutrition early on? You will be giving them a lifelong tool for success. And for you? Another chance to get into your skinny jeans.

If you don't know where to start with healthy meals your kids will love, check out Meal Makeover Moms!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Been there, done that. Working towards the t-shirt.

They say if your ears are burning, someone is talking about you. But if your legs are burning, it means you're training for a 5K.

It's crunch time for me, as I am almost a month away from race day - Saturday, February 12th. I did my best to stay healthy over the holidays, but having 4 weekends in a row celebrating with different family groups was a big challenge. Now I am back into the swing of things, almost all of the cookies are gone, and I'm ready to get running.

These past couple months since resolving I will run a 5K have been rocky. Despite being excited at the idea of being one of "those people" who do races, I couldn't find the motivation to actually go out and start. I'd think about it a lot though. If thinking about exercising actually burned calories, I'd be set. Too many excuses were at my fingertips. I guess I expected that one day I'd be so ready that I'd just feel the urge to run. Lo and behold, that happened. I don't think this is normal for people, but yesterday I suddenly got the urge to put on my running shoes when I got home from work and run. Not just run, try the whole 5K distance and see how I did.

I enlisted the help of a running buddy and set forth. Amidst the dark, still snowy streets of Queens, I gave it my all. Before I left the house, I researched online a spot 1.7 miles away (the movie theater) and purposely left my money at home to prevent any last minute "Why don't we just stay here and catch a movie?"

I won't say it was fabulous. I huffed and puffed the whole way, trying to keep my whining at bay. We jog/walked it, and it took a while. My goal was to get to the halfway point in 20 minutes, and we achieved that. Overall the 5K took 50 minutes (including the .3 extra miles on our route) I'd like to get it down to 30 for race day. I heard for beginners, the 30 minute mark is a good, attainable goal.

I think my next training goal will be to jog for 30 minutes straight without stopping. Hopefully that will get me accustomed to a steady pace. No matter what I do next, it feels easier to get up and go because I've already been there. I guess Nike had it right when they said "Just do it." It really helps get the momentum rolling!