work out

***i’ve been working on this post for a couple of days.  i think “body image” posts {if that’s what this is} are easily misconstrued.  i’ll either look like a skinny bitch complaining about her weight OR… a skinny bitch complaining about her weight.  when really, i’m just a girl, struggling with making a lifestyle change.  i think what i’m looking for is inspiration from women like me.  women who have had children, women who are getting a little older and need to work a little harder, women who want to live a healthy, fit life the right way.  not by starving themselves or eating leaves for dinner, but by making healthy choices every day.  choices that will benefit them mentally and physically.  i’d also like to say this:  i love my body, it’s beautiful.  it’s birthed two children and for that i am grateful.  my issue is not with what you see on the outside – it’s with what i feel on the inside.***

i used to be fit.  i used to run 5-6 days a week, at least 3 miles a day.  i hiked and did weight training.  i was so proud of my tight abs and defined arms.  my butt was tighter and my hips were straighter.  and then i had zoey… ever since, i’ve been soft.  my tummy is squishy and my butt is sorta droopy.  my underarms flap when i wave… now before you roll your eyes and sign off, hear me out.  i’m petite and thin, yes…but i’m not fit.  and while i am not one of those skinny girls who complains that she’s fat, i am one of those girls who eats shit food, doesn’t do one second of anything physical {for months at a time} and then complains about/wonders why she’s not fitting into her pre-pregnancy jeans.  that is the girl you should be annoyed with.  the one who complains, but doesn’t do.  oh sure, i’ve gone on walks here and there, but it’s not frequently enough nor intense enough to shed the fatty deposits that have settled comfortably beneath the “smile” of my butt cheeks.  we’ve attempted “diets”, as well.  while they work for a short amount of time, it’s hard to keep up with the expensive grocery lists and the time-consuming prep.  plus, i like food.  i’m not one of those girls who skips meals {on purpose} and then eats a carrot stick for dinner.  can i get an amen?!

where is this coming from?  last week was not a good week for me.  i was cranky and had no patience.  i wasn’t sleeping well and i was eating horribly.  i sat in bed one night and just cried.  what am i missing in my life?  the answer was clear… i’m not taking care of myself, physically.  i’m not making good decisions for my body.  i have become lazy.  it’s time to make a change.  no more excuses. 

monday after work, i dropped zoey off at nonnie and papa’s house and i went for a run.  it felt so good.  i felt like the old me.  i felt strong and inspired.  i only ran for 35 minutes {using the couch to 5k app as a guide}, but it felt like a successful first attempt at getting back into something i truly love.  i’m running again tonight and i’m really looking forward to it!

i guess maybe i’m saying all of this out loud because i’m hoping to inspire other women, as well.  it’s so important that we support each other.  just remember that when you’re healthy physically, you’re healthy mentally, too!  you’ll have more energy, you’ll sleep better, you’ll feel stronger.  and if you lose a few pounds along the way…great!  there’s nothing wrong with wanting to fit back into those pre-pregnancy, pre-marriage, pre-anything jeans.  wink, wink

i’m interested to hear your thoughts…your inspirations…your motivations.  please share!

{image via}


15 thoughts on “motivated

  1. Two kids will do INSANE things to your body. My body has always been soft and more feminine, so I never had the “tight” everything you mentioned. But I did always have PERKY everything. And clearly, now, two kids later, I do not. Apparently, I was more vain pre-kids than I realized. I was very comfortable with my body, even though I didn’t think I was at the time. For me, post-baby body work is two-fold. First, yes. I want to be healthy, and not just for the sake of looking good. I want to live a lifestyle like I want my girls to have, where I feel good, where I’m able to keep up with them and be a confident example for them. But secondly, I’m still working on excepting post-baby changes. Probably I’ll never again be the girl who has full C-cup boobs but can get away with no bra if she wants. I keep telling myself to respect my body and what it’s done and to allow myself the space to age gracefully. It’s a physical AND a mental thing for me.

    • absolutely! and i hear you about not appreciating what you had pre-babies…that’s sort of what you were saying, yes? i keep telling myself if i get back to where i was…i will never ever complain about my body again. but i will say this – i do like being “softer”, as i feel more feminine. there were times when i was too thin and honestly, it wasn’t attractive. more so than anything, i’m trying to stress how important it is to live a healthy lifestyle. not be so focused on looking fabulous in a bikini. you could be the skinniest girl on the beach, but that doesn’t mean you’re healthy. or even happy! thank you for sharing, sarah. xoxo

      • Ha! So true…The skinniest girl on the beach is NOT healthy and absolutely not happy…especially when her adorable bikinis fall off her nonexistent butt ;)
        Miss u. Xoxo

  2. I hear you! I was pretty skinny before my (only) child, I am still skinny now but with stretchmarks all-over my belly up to my waistline. For me it is very hard to undress at beach settings or spa`s. On the health issue… I feel pretty fit, but I must say I live in the Netherlands, I don`t own a car. This means everything I do is by foot or bike. Grocery shopping, driving to school, driving to work etc. So I`m pretty sure I keep fit quite easy. But I am very fond of chocolate and stuff, I think I should tone down my intake on that a little, and focus more on making healthier choices. And I agree with you, not to get skinnier, but to get healthier and to have more energy!

  3. Last night, I ran for the first time in a while… oh my feet, but It felt so good mentally and physically. Although, I might not ever have the body of my 22 year old self. I am happy to be embracing my 32 year old body more and treating my body good… eating right, sleep, exercise, foot rubs, dancing, and nice threads ;)

  4. I hear you! Skinny girls are not allowed to complain about these things, but its hard not to when you start to see your metabolism change and you loose muscle definition. No kids here, but I’m rounding the corner on thirty and I’m thinking now is the time for me to get moving again. My goal for this year is to learn to enjoy exercising. I’m hoping this sort of resolution will lead to a long term positive change. Now I just need to get off the couch…

  5. i hear you loud and clear!! i too am not fat but am squishy. have been since Lily was born. and even though we eat well in this house, aside from riding my bike around because i don’t drive, i do not do anything physical. and i need to. i have been telling myself this for over two years now and there is always an excuse. i don’t have sneakers (there is now a new pair in the closet), i don’t have time, it’s late, i’m tired… it’s all clear that i have become lazy.
    my advice to you on eating better but yet have it be cost effective is this: meal planning. i didn’t think we could do it because committing to a weekly menu sounded scary and restricting to me but it has helped immensely. both on the wallet and on time.
    we plan out what we would like to eat for the week and shop according. this also keeps from wasting food.
    we also get our produce from an organic food co-op. we pick up every monday. most of the produce is seasonal so that also inspires us to come up with new recipes.
    eating healthier not only gives us energy and keeps us healthy but i also don’t feel so guilty when i binge on that bag of chips/chocolatebar/icecream…
    we got the eating down but now i need to focus on the physical and get my droopy ass off the cuch.

  6. i LOVE this!!! Even though we can’t relate in terms of our body type or maybe even why we want to work out and be healthy we CAN relate on that we DO want to work out and be healthy and feel better about ourselves. I’ve struggled with my weight my whole life- I’ve always been naturally plump but it wasn’t until my 30’s that I’ve taken it seriously both for my health but also for aesthetic reasons, cuz well, a girl wants to look and feel sexy. :)

    I’ve gotten into healthy eating and exercising regularly. I never thought I’d be one of those people that talks about exercise being so good for your mind, but it is! What makes me even more motivated is that I haven’t had kids yet and I want to make sure that the good habits both with food and exercise are instilled so I make smart choices during pregnancy and after and it won’t feel like some new torture!

    Thank you for being so open and honest!!! I, (along with lots of readers, I’m sure) are here to motivate you!!!! I have lots of delicious healthy recipes, exercise ideas (love the couch to 5k, glad you have that app!) and just general cheering on should you need it! I recently joined a 28 day weight loss challenge that starts on Monday. I’ve found that I can be quite competitive in a healthy way, so I’m using this challenge to motivate me to get on it and work out!! Anyway no judgement, whether skinny, pudgy, plump or round- we’re all women and we all have things we’d like to improve and we should support one another even if I’m secretly wishing I had your ass! It’s your ass and if you want to improve it, who am I to judge?! haha!!

  7. This year, more than ever, I have just felt inspired to live healthy. Pre-baby I wasn’t totally ripped but I was active and I was running 10km/15km races and felt pretty great, overall. When my daughter turned 1 last summer, I suddenly realized that she was shedding her baby skin and was busy and active and closing in on toddler-days. Gone were the hours & hours of nursing and broken hours of night-time sleep. Suddenly I DID have time to go out for a jog. On my daughter’s 1st birthday I was the same weight as my last day of being pregnant and I was easily winded climbing up a single flight of stairs. Yes, I definitely wanted to lose weight but I also wanted to feel alive and strong. So here I’m 6 months in, and I’m hooked. I’ve registered for my first half-marathon so I have a goal to work towards. It’s exhilarating and tiring but SO good. Cheering you on!

  8. Ahh..pre-baby the body was so different! Like many of the other women that have commented, I have more squish…the tummy will never be the same! I, too, have battled with much of what has been commented on (never skinny but my body was definitely different pre-children). Finding that balance of feeling good when you look in the mirror and feeling good inside can be a hard balance to strike, especially if you are only eating leaves for dinner (starving & crabby), as you mentioned.

    Have you heard of Tracy Anderson Method (TAM)? I found her method after having my first son and battling for 3 years to trim off the 40 pounds I had gained. While always being fit and very active, I just didn’t have quite the right tools, especially since everything had changed. After my second pregnancy, I returned to my pre-pregnancy weight after 8 mos. using TAM. My arms no longer flap and my backside is more toned and lifted. She offers the metamorphosis program, which is what I use and I am on year 2. Her dance cardio videos (original) are fun and have rockin’ music! Meta. is like having a personal trainer as your muscular work changes every 10 days. Check it out at I love it because I never have to think through it, the program is designed for my body type, I just do it (at home) and don’t even need a sitter!

    Good luck on your journey! I enjoy reading your blog and following you on Chictopia. It is so great and refreshing to see style posts from a mom and I love that you include your daughter in many of your outfit shots!

  9. I am in my early 30’s and have 2 kids. My youngest is almost 2 and I have been really down on myself about losing these last 30 pounds of baby weight recently. It’s taken me a while to realize that when I feel best about myself is when I make healthier decisions and include physical activity in my daily routine. It has been an uphill battle staying on track (getting older sucks and my knees just cannot tolerate running) so I have had to adjust and accept that I am not in my 20’s and I can’t just give up alcohol for a week and drop 5 lbs. The other part of it too is that I want my girls to have a mother that loves her body and can keep up with them physically. SO my motivation is my girls, myself, and all those darn people on my facebook wall posting another clean eating meal followed by their workout at the gym. :)

  10. I agree with you in regards to that look that people give you when you say you need to go to the gym/run and you are not a large person. Ugh. I have never been a big person but I know how much better my body can be and how much better I feel when I get the chance to take that time for myself.

    It’s a deal with how you feel. How things fit. When my tummy folds over my jeans a certain way (more than just the normal skin bunching, when the thicker rolls occur) I know that my jeans can fit a certain way and I’m not there. I also see that my energy is effected. With all our hectic schedules, we need as much energy as possible…

    It is also a mental break where I sort through my day. Some people watch TV, some read, some talk with friends. But the gist of it is that we all need that time to ourselves.

    Enjoy your run… And thanks for reminding me to stop working and put on my running shoes. I will be more productive after a long run. :)

  11. I’m glad you wrote this post. I know it must have been hard. I’ve been having some pretty ridiculous body image issues for the past few weeks and it’s such a painful thing to deal with. I have had trouble keeping on weight my entire life and after a serious bout of norovirus a few weeks ago that caused me to drop 10 pounds in a week, I felt so bad about myself. I felt like I had the body of a little boy when, in reality, I’m a nearly 35 year old woman who longs for bigger breasts and sizeable thighs. I never mention this on my blog or even to my friends because I feel really narcissistic talking about how hard it is to gain weight, even though none of that comes from a remotely narcissistic place. While I’ve not had children (yet!), I am in my mid-thirties and things like a firm booty are things that we have to work on. Besides that, eating healthy and exercising regularly just makes you feel better about yourself, despite the physical benefits. For the past 2 weeks, I’ve been exercising again and not making lazy food choices that will inevitably give me a big ol zit (or 3) to deal with and I’m not crying in the bathtub over my cup size anymore. My increased levels of happiness have encouraged me to accept the type of body that I have and I think that’s the greatest benefit of healthy living there is. Afterall, self love is the first step!

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