Flab to Fit: Running my way to a Healthy Lifestyle

By no means am I obese or extremely overweight, but I’m certainly not at a size I’m comfortable with. Over the years I’ve grown from a size 10 to a 16. The majority of my weight gain has been since having children. It’s nothing to do with my kids or the pregnancy that I’ve been growing in size, it’s more to do with our lifestyle and activity. My goal is to lose weight and live a healthy lifestyle and for running to help me get there.

Since giving up work a couple of years ago my daily exercise has plummeted. I used to walk to and from work, and walk regularly as a twosome, then as a threesome when our little boy arrived. Then all of a sudden I found that the only exercise I did was a twenty minute stroll in the evening, or the odd walk around the zoo. Sometimes the most exercise I do is a few trips up and down the stairs. I feel terrible admitting it, but sometimes we spend a day at home and the opportunity to exercise just isn’t there.

Not long after having my children I suffered quite badly with the baby blues. This meant my motivation for going out and doing anything was at its all time low. Then I discovered my love of biscuits and convenience food. It all went a little downhill from there. So it isn’t because of my children that I’ve near enough doubled in size. I now have no need to go out every day and exercise and I’ve not often had the desire to do it.

When we had our kiddies, life became about convenience. Convenient meals like spaghetti, chicken, fishfingers and all those simple dishes every week. Driving to the supermarket instead of walking, because a five minute drive is much more appealing than a forty-five minute walk. And again, it’s convenient. A simple life is what I, and most mums desire. This means I’ve not been living a healthy lifestyle. I hate to say it but we’ve been living a lazy lifestyle. By no means do we sit on our bottoms all day, but I put no effort whatsoever into exercise and this needs to change. I do put a nice amount of effort into biscuits and crisps.

Eating cake

This goal has been spurred on by todays playdate. We scoffed our faces with quiche, crisps and cake. It was absolutely delicious but once my friend and her children left, I looked down at my tummy and could have cried. I look pregnant. My tummy used to be my favourite part about my body and once I’d birthed both of my babies, I ended up with sagging, stretch marks and what looks like a bump – with no baby.

I’m all for body confidence and loving what we have, but there isn’t any part of my body right now I’m happy with. It’s important to be happy as happiness exudes confidence and that’s how I want to feel. Everything is a little wobbly and too big for my frame, so I’m going to say what I probably shouldn’t and that is that I want to lose weight. For vanity as well as a healthier life.

So, after I rubbed my tummy I quickly decided I want to start running. I’d talked about this with Mr F a few days ago, with no real intention to do it. But, he had today off work. There was no better time for me to grab my trainers, pop on a fresh top and hit the streets.

My worry about doing this was embarrassment. I worry about someone seeing me jogging, or even walking with fluorescent running shoes, running shorts and bottle of water. They’d notice all the parts of my body that make me cringe when I look at them. It’s a daunting feeling to exercise in public, it’s different from the gym, in the gym you’re exercising with a group of like-minded people.

So once I’d left the house I walked for a while. We’re lucky we live right on the edge of the countryside so it doesn’t take long for me to find a little lane that I can start jogging along, without anyone nearby. Then I set a target of jogging along the length of this lane and walking quickly around the rest of the block. Each time I ended up at the start of this little lane again I’d increase the distance I would jog for.

It was tough. I have been trying to exercise a few times a week doing the Cize DVD. But when I’m at home trying to exercise, I have to keep pausing the DVD and tending to my little ones. So it all seems a little pointless unless I’m doing it once they’ve gone to bed. I’ll keep going with Cize because I enjoy it, but I also want something that takes me away from distractions. Running gives me the option to exercise at my own pace and in the most beautiful spots of our village.

Running at my own pace meant I could run a little and slow it down to a jog or walk if I needed to and catch my breath. Because my body isn’t used to exercise like this, I felt out of breath quickly and had to slow it down quite often. This is ok, I’m hoping one day I’ll have trained my body to jog at a steady pace and feel comfortable in doing so.

Running to lose weight

It was so lovely to explore our little neighbourhood by myself, so much so that it didn’t feel like exercise. Well, it did when I returned to the little lane that I jogged/ran down. But it meant I could walk a little further, down the roads with no footpaths. I finally discovered the entrances into a couple of fields. I’ve wondered since we moved here a year ago how on earth you got into them, they always look so appealing to walk around as a family on a summer evening. So now I know, I’m excited for us all to go and explore.

Anyway, I digress. This post is the start of my personal goal to a healthy lifestyle and an aim to lose weight. I will check in regularly to record how many times I’ve managed to jog, personal goals I’m setting myself, how I’m finding it and any tips I’m learning. Just in case you have an interest in this too. I’m hoping to have a little run/jog a few times a week or whenever I can slip away and leave the kiddies in Mr F’s safe hands.

I may look back on this post in a year and feel embarrassed about setting a goal I wasn’t able to complete. Or I may look back in a year and think this was one of the best things I did. I’m hoping one day I’ll feel healthier and body confident. One thing I do know is that exercise and healthy eating goes hand-in-hand. With a goal to lose weight, I can’t expect results by only eating healthy or only exercising. Plus eating healthy is just as tough as running! 

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28 Comments

  1. July 6, 2016 / 5:37 am

    Well done you for taking the steps for change! If I wasn’t so pregnant I think I’d take up running, I bet it’s actually quite calming and serene exploring where you live without the kids in tow! #bestworst

  2. July 6, 2016 / 6:23 am

    I love your trainers; they’re so girlie. There’s nothing better for jogging as it puts you in a good mood. Much necessary when you go jogging (I hate it!!!). Good luck with your new project and keep us updated.
    #bloggerclubuk and #bestandworst

  3. July 6, 2016 / 8:46 am

    The first steps on a weight loss journey are often the hardest but now that you have started keep going. Just moving more will make a huge difference and you will feel so much better in yourself too. Good luck. #BloggerClubUK

  4. July 6, 2016 / 11:25 am

    Good on you. Everyone has to start somewhere and no matter how much you do, that’s always going to be more than the person that does nothing at all. You should consider getting a fitness watch. I’ve got a fitbit and it challenges me to do a minimum number of steps each day. I love it.

    Sally @ Life Loving

  5. July 6, 2016 / 1:28 pm

    The first run is always the hardest, in fact the first few runs are, so major hats off to you. The important thing is, you are doing it for yourself and I love that you are exploring your neighbourhood too. You’ve inspired to get the trainers out tonight and run. I recently got a jogger pram, which is amazing, but I keep finding excuses not to use it. Thanks for the motivation Renee @peonieandme #bestandworst X

  6. July 6, 2016 / 7:50 pm

    Ah good on you hun. I think it is soooo hard to keep motivated sometimes and I only have one. I’m quite lucky hubby cooks and a lot is from scratch but without that convenience would be easier. Keep at it and hopefully the running will get easier and you never know a bit addictive! Thanks for sharing with #bestandworst x

    • firstooth
      July 7, 2016 / 10:10 am

      I’m hoping it’ll get addictive so I’ll never lose motivation! We do cool from scratch but it’s the dead easy and boring meals that we cook. Followed by a Belgian bun or something naughty for pudding! X

  7. July 6, 2016 / 8:45 pm

    I felt exactly the same as you last year. I really recommend a couch to 5k app (I’ve got one called “Get Running” but the NHS one is supposed to be great also). A voice just tells you what to do which I find really motivating as I’d definitely stop to walk before she tells me too ;-). It starts off really slow and builds you up to 5k over 9 weeks. Embarrassingly, it’s actually taken me a year to get on with it but I’m now on week 9 and it feels GREAT!! Best of luck to you, you can definitely do it! Also – i’ve been eyeing up Cize. Might have to purchase… #BloggerClubUK

    • firstooth
      July 7, 2016 / 10:08 am

      Thank you! And we’ll done to you too! Cize is so much fun! You don’t really feel like you’re working out… until the morning after!

  8. July 6, 2016 / 8:47 pm

    Good on you for going out and running. I have been doing the couch to 5K but live a big residential area so it doesn’t matter what time I go out I always see someone. Keep going, it certainly makes me feel better p, even the 6 am alarm calls!! #BloggerClubUK

    • firstooth
      July 7, 2016 / 10:07 am

      Thank you! I seem to bump in to quite a few people but it’s character building I like to think! There are so many helpful apps aren’t there x

  9. July 6, 2016 / 8:59 pm

    Well done you! Amazing stuff! Have you checked out Julie Creffield’s #onebigfatrun? Details on http://www.toofatorun.co.uk – exciting campaign for inactive women. I’m not plus size but am getting involved – her aim is to get 10,000 women all running on the same day to raise awareness. It’s a great cause! Amy x
    #BloggerClubUK

    • firstooth
      July 7, 2016 / 10:06 am

      She was a talker at Britmums and it’s everything that she said that has been playing on my mind. In a good way I mean. I’m definitely signing up she’s brilliant for setting something so motivational and achievable up x

  10. July 7, 2016 / 5:27 am

    Running is brilliant! I started 2 years ago & although I have periods where I don’t go for a while, I always come back to it. Join Run Mummy Run on Facebook, v motivational! Also, look for a local race to give you a goal, maybe race for life? It’s a great way to stay on track. I always find it gives me headspace too after a tough day.xx

    • firstooth
      July 7, 2016 / 10:05 am

      I will thanks for telling me about it. I’ve been toying with the idea of signing up to a race but I just want to grow a little in confidence. I’m going to join my local park run though which I’m looking forward to. Yes it definitely gives you a lovely period of head space xx

  11. July 7, 2016 / 10:00 am

    Well done you! Sounds like a great start! I have done exactly the same recently. Since my two were born, I’ve been desperate to get my fitness back and lose my mummy tummy! But all my attempts at exercise were a bit futile, until I discovered running! I joined my local running club’s beginners’ course back in April. We started with 1 minute walking, 1 minute running and increased it by a little bit each week until we could all run for 30 minutes. Since the course ended I’ve done a 5k race and managed to run 10k on my own without stopping. I’ve combined it with eating more healthily too and, though I’ve not got rid of the mummy tummy yet, I’ve lost loads of inches round my waist and I think it will be just a matter of time and sticking with it. I already feel loads healthier and so chuffed with myself for doing it, plus I really love it! Running is the perfect exercise to do when you have kids – as it’s so easy to fit in around them and you can go any old time for as long or as short as you can manage. I hope you continue to improve and reach (and exceed) your goals. I will look forward to reading about your progress in the coming weeks and months ๐Ÿ™‚ Eb x

    • firstooth
      July 7, 2016 / 10:03 am

      That’s brilliant! And we’ll done on your achievements it’s given me a lot if hope that I can do it. You’re right though running or jogging is probably the best exercise to fit in around family life. You really can do it anywhere anytime. Thank you for your lovely comment! If you have any tips or apps that you think are fab let me know x

  12. July 7, 2016 / 4:43 pm

    Well done you for getting out and doing it! I’m currently trying to workout at home as I cant get to the gym with a 3yr old and a partner that works away all week! I too get midway through a workout or whatever and then Mia needs me for something and I lose momentum! I then decide I’m going to workout when shes in bed but by the time I have got organised, made my dinner, etc… (excuses, excuses!) I don’t have the energy! I’m definitely doing it for the confidence boost as that is lacking at the moment. Good Luck with it, keep going!! ๐Ÿ™‚

    #brillblogposts

  13. July 7, 2016 / 6:31 pm

    Go lady! I think setting a goal and not being able to attain it is but giving it a good shot is far better than not having one at all – reach high and good luck lovely! And thanks for linking to #coolmumclub xx

    • firstooth
      July 11, 2016 / 8:22 am

      Definitely! I’m hoping I’ll keep it up so far I’m enjoying it x

  14. July 7, 2016 / 7:31 pm

    I think running is an awesome way for us mums to grab some exercise. It’s free, you can go when you fancy, and you can do as little or as long as you like. So don’t feel silly – feel proud! You’re doing something for you.
    I think running is the perfect analogy for motherhood…I spend the first half of the run running away, feeling liberated and embracing my own thoughts and space, then it hits me, and I just want to run home again, as fast as my legs will carry me to those little ones I left at home, who’ll be wondering where I got to.
    Thanks for linking up with #coolmumclub

    • firstooth
      July 11, 2016 / 8:23 am

      It’s a flexible way of exercising isn’t it and probably my new favourite form of exercise other than dancing. Thank you, yes I couldn’t agree more x

  15. July 8, 2016 / 6:21 am

    Woop well done you for starting have you tried the couch to 5k app? I am currently using that and on week 6 it’s fab and builds you up slowly xx

    • firstooth
      July 11, 2016 / 8:24 am

      I haven’t yet but so many people are recommending it that I’ve got to give it a try! Thank you x

  16. July 8, 2016 / 2:37 pm

    Good luck my lovely. I dabble in running from time to time but I’m not a natural but enjoy the fresh air. I’m also trying to lose a bit of weight but fear the summer holidays will mean teashops & cake & parks & ice cream!!! #coolmumclub lifeinthemumslane

    • firstooth
      July 11, 2016 / 8:25 am

      I fear the same! It’s like one long eating holiday over the summer isn’t it. Hopefully running will balance the rubbish out x

  17. Abby
    July 9, 2016 / 7:55 am

    Good luck with the running! Its tough but the results will be so worth it!! Well done!

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