How To Stay Fit And Healthy As A Mum

Hello there and welcome to another edition of HELP For Mums. Today we get some helpful tips on how to stay fit and healthy from Bunmi Banwo founder of I Am More Than A Diet. I am more than a Diet is passionate about helping women especially new mums tone their bodies and develop healthy eating habits.Borne out of a passion to mentor women who want to lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle. Bunmi helps women become who they really want to be and compliment their goals with a body and mind to match. bunmi banwo
  1. Put your health first: I discovered fitness during maternity leave after I had my second child. On going back to, I had no clue on how I was to cope with taking care of 2 kids, work, house chores, cook and getting out of the house in time to gt to work, much less a workout. It looked daunting. I broke out in spots within a week. But it made me realise that I needed to get creative.  I needed to practice what I preached to my clients. My daily 1.5 hour workouts were a thing of the past (and that’s OK), but being active was still a part of who I was and the family life I wanted to create.  I began hitting the pavement early in the morning, when that didn’t work as I was getting late to work; I packed my gym bag and hit the park at lunch time. When that didn’t work, I broke my workout into 2 sections in the day. Morning and evening. That made things worse :).  I mean I tried every trick in the book till I found what suited me and my lifestyle. As the kids are now older, the challenges have changed and I adapted accordingly, but being fit remained a priority and a measure of my creativity. In all this time, I realised being fit was way beyond losing the baby weight. It is about my health, my sanity and purpose in life. And for this reason, fitness will always be a priority for me. This does not mean I exercise everyday I just don’t make excuses when I have to.
  1. Include the kids in your Exercise time:
    • Create family fitness time (Challenge your kids), go to the park for some games, get bikes for the kids and yourself. Have fun with them and get fit at the same time.
    • Home exercise: Fitness DVDs are a good way to stay in shape. You may get bored in the end, but it is a good place to start.
    • Plan your exercise /fitness around your daily activities: When I take my kids for any activity and I have to wait for them, I don’t sit around playing with my phone. I go for a quick sprint, walk or jog. I have been known to take to the streets with my Jump rope.
    • Fitness play dates: invite you friends over for some exercise with their kids. The kids can play together and you and your friends can get your fit on.
  1. Include your family in your new lifestyle: Learn how to cook healthy meals for your family so that it becomes part of your life and you don’t have to eat separate meals. Agreed there will be foods you can’t share with them. But ultimately life will be so much easier for you if your family is included. Especially if we are talking sustainability.
  2. Eat as close to the farm as possible: Whilst exercise is important for energy and fat loss, Eating balanced meals rich in all macronutrients is the key to having lots of energy for your daily activities, clear skin, and melting away the fat that hides your gorgeous curves. Don’t go on a diet. You will only find yourself back to square one. Instead device a plan you can live with for the rest of your life. Avoid cheap shelf-life fat-enhancing chemicals foods that are full addictive’s. Instead, invest in whole quality foods — vegetables, fruits, lean organic meat, nuts, legumes, and whole grains. Drink lots of water. Cut out refined sugars and flours, sweetened beverages sugar laden drinks including diet drinks.  So when I say eat as close to the farm as possible, I mean stay away from foods you will not typically find on a farm.
Tips on how
  • Learn how to read labels. Reading labels is much more than checking the calorie content of the pack. It also involves, serving sizes and macronutrients such as fats, carbohydrate and protein. Also as a rule, if I cannot pronounce an ingredient name on a label , I wouldn’t buy it.
  • Keep healthy snacks at home
  • Make your snacks
  • Don’t eat your kids left over or snacks
  • Pack your lunch.
  1. Plan: Planning and consistency can take you wherever you want to be a.) Meal prep: This is where most moms fail. Having a simple guide on what foods you want to eat for the week/ day goes a long way. Take a step further and prepare your meals for the week. It will save you a lot of time during the week and a lot of calories. Every Sunday I get back from church, and I cook my meals for Monday – Saturday. This helps me stay away from fast food. This way, I can control what goes in my mouth and my waistline. b.) Exercise: Every weekend sit down and set times to workout throughout the week. Pre-planning gives you time to make adjustments and make it work. Know what you want to achieve each week, making sure you have a balanced workout. For me, I change my routine every month. So I know what I am doing every day of the week. If anything changes. I go with the flow or I improvise. I find that it you don’t plan for your time, some else or something else will plan it for you.
  1. Support System: No one survives without support from one person or the other. Surrounding yourself with people who encourage and support your fitness goals is crucial to your adherence. The road can be long and lonely if you attempt to do it alone. Find a buddy to jog together. Find a buddy who likes to talk about fitness as well or who is aspiring to have the same body you want to have. Motivate each other. If you don’t find anyone, invest in people. Some people do not know they what they want until they see someone else do the same. Draw them closer because the more they learn from you, the more advanced you become.
  1. Sleep, Sleep and Sleep. I am one of those that if sleep deprived, you will not get anything out of.  As mums, it’s easy to cut back on sleep to get things sorted for everyone else but us. But Lack of sleep or lack of enough sleep induces stress, which in turn makes us lethargic, causes us to binge, and reduces our metabolic which all point back to weight gain. And of course, if you don’t sleep early, I don’t think waking up early enough to exercise is an option. Even though the time of exercise does not matter, I like to get it over with in the mornings. One of the best decisions I have made lately was to start sleeping early. Everyone in my house is aware that at 8.30pm I am on my bed preparing to snooze no matter what it takes. Because the quality of sleep I get also impacts on the quality of the care they get from me.