No Sugar Challenge: Fit for Good

Get motivated to kick the sugar habit for 21 days! We're sharing tips, encouragement, recipes, and checking in daily!

Are you ready to give your body a break from sugar? Many people resolve to get in shape in the new year and not eating sugar is a great way to drop a few extra pounds and inches.

This challenge is simple. Stop eating sugar. You can set the parameters, regarding whether you are going to try and substitute sugar with honey or agave or if you want to give up the sweet stuff altogether. My recommendation is that you give it up totally so that foods that are naturally sweet (mainly fruit) can serve as your sweet treats and you will be able to make better choices in the future.

We’ve done many no sugar challenges in the past and I’m excited to be doing another one with you. For many people this is what it takes for them to give up their daily soda or candy habit.

While we’re doing this challenge together beginning January 9th. Just sign up below and you’ll get daily reminders, helpful tips, and encouragement for 21 days.

The challenge has already begun, so if you want to start midstream you can participate in daily check-ins in the Facebook group and sign up for the email list

Don’t forget to use the #fitforgood hashtag on Instagram and Twitter so we can follow you!

So, on January 9th we get started! Don’t miss on your opportunity for accountability and a way to share your success with a community of people cheering you on.

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5 Secrets of Fit Moms

We all have friends who just seem to be naturally fit. What I’ve learned is that while some people can be naturally skinny, no one is really naturally fit.

Before I got fit, I noticed that my fit friends did things differently. When I started doing those same things, I saw almost immediate changes in my health and weight. These five secrets of fit moms can help you get fit too.

These five secrets of fit moms can help you get fit for good. From a mom of seven  at The Happy Housewife.

Fit Moms Eat Meals

I’m not sure when moms decided they didn’t have enough time to eat breakfast or lunch, but I know many people who skip those meals regularly.

The problem is that by early afternoon you are starving and will eat just about anything in the kitchen. That usually means something convenient and loaded with carbs and sugar. Eating several small meals a day is a great way to maintain energy levels and avoid the feeling of starvation which can lead to poor choices.

Fit Moms Watch Serving Sizes but Don’t Stress Over Food

Do you know how much one serving of ice cream is? One serving of ice cream is half a cup. I’ve NEVER seen anyone scoop only half a cup of ice cream without being told to do so. Have you seen those kid’s plastic bowls from IKEA? One serving of ice cream will easily fit in that tiny bowl.

Ikea Kalas Bowls

I’m not suggesting that fit moms walk around with a scale and measuring cups in their purse, but they are aware of how much a serving should be. They fill up on low calorie, nutrient dense foods before they reach for the bread basket or dessert.

While fit moms tend to eat smaller portions, they don’t feel guilty about eating a piece of birthday cake or getting dessert every once in a while. They know that an occasional treat is not going to derail their fitness goals.

Fit Moms Keep Junk out of the House

I have two teenage boys at home. If they did the grocery shopping, we would eat pizza rolls, hot wings, bacon, and Doritos on a daily basis. It’s a constant struggle to let the kids have some of their favorite foods yet not let them live off the junk.

Fit moms limit junk food and fill their fridge with fresh fruits and veggies. When junk is available, it’s usually the most convenient food to eat when you are hungry. It is also tempting even when you are not hungry!

You can avoid grabbing unhealthy quick foods by making your healthier options more convenient. Every few days we cut up fruit and veggies and place them in small Ziploc bags. These bags go in a plastic shoebox in the fridge. When the kids pack their lunches or want a snack, they can easily make a healthier choice and so can I!

Fit moms spend time throughout the week making sure there are quick healthy foods available for themselves for days that don’t always go as planned.

Fit moms avoid soda (both diet and regular) and drink lots of water.

Fit Moms Move

Fit moms park a little farther away from the entrance, take the stairs instead of the elevator, walk the track while their kids are at practice, play with their kids at the park, and plan activities that involve being active.

Moving is tricky because it’s easier to move when you’re fit, but you aren’t going to get fit until you start moving. Even walking three times a week can increase your metabolism and help you burn calories.

Fit Moms are Slow and Steady Eaters

Did you know that it takes about 20 minutes to feel full? If you eat slowly, it gives your body time to release the chemicals that cause your brain to send the “I’m full” message. If you scarf down your food, you might be overeating by having a second or third helping in less than 20 minutes.

Fit moms tend to fill up on veggies or salad before diving into the higher-calorie meats and sides. This leads to smaller portions of the foods that are higher in calories.

Fit moms fill up on the healthiest options first and eat slowly so they don’t trick their body into overeating.

It’s a Lifestyle Not a Fad

Being a fit mom is a lifestyle, not a fad or a 28-day program. Slowly making changes in how you eat and move will lead to long-term results and help you get fit for good.

Want to learn more about how I managed to become a fit mom? I share how I lost 25 pounds and got my life back in the Fit for Good series.

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5 Healthy Habits Challenge: Fit for Good

fit for good sign up

It’s time for another challenge! I really struggled coming up with the next challenge, because our accountability group is filled with people who have different goals and needs. Some of the ladies in our group need to lose 100 pounds or more and others just need to tone up or lose those last five pounds.

As I was thinking about what could be helpful to everyone (or at least most folks) I started thinking back on what it was that helped me change my life and it really boiled down to habits. If I was to sum up my health journey in one sentence it would be that I replaced my bad habits with good ones.

For example, I love carbs, like LOVE them! I would pass up a piece of cake for a plate of fries or garlic bread every single day of the week. I also seriously disliked exercise. While is is hard to give up something you love, or start doing something you hate I realized that if I created new habits eventually they would replace the old habits.

five healthy habits

It became less like giving up something I loved, and more like learning to like something new. Instead of subtracting something from my life I was adding. It is much easier to add something than it is to take something away.

Based on that principle, for the next five weeks we will be doing a Healthy Habits Challenge. I want you to come up with five healthy habits you can incorporate into your life. You may already be on your way to doing a few of them and that’s okay. I want you to think about things that you really need to do more of or do with more regularity and add those on your list.

Here are my five.

1. Drink more water

Most people don’t drink enough water. For me, this wasn’t a problem until a few years ago, then I got busy and just forgot about it. Not the best idea if you are exercising and sweating a lot. Also, if I’m being honest, drinking a lot of water means numerous trips to the bathroom, and #aintnobodygottimeforthat!

The rule of thumb for the amount of water you drink every day is to drink half of your body weight every day. So if you weigh 160 pounds you should drink 80 ounces of water every day. That’s 10 eight ounce glasses a day for someone who weighs 160 pounds.

I use my blender bottle most days and fill it up several times a day. I like this particular bottle because it has a very tight seal, but that thumb tab opens it easily so I don’t break a nail! Not that my nails are long or even pretty, but I’ve broken many of them trying to get things open.

how to drink more water

This bottle is 28 ounces, so I only have to drink a two and a half bottles, which is easy when I have it with me.

2. Get on a sleep schedule

I know that I feel better when I go to bed at the same time and wake up at the same time every day. I need less sleep and a feel more rested when I stay on a routine.

However staying on a sleep routine is so hard, especially when you travel once a month!  My goal is to be in bed by 10 pm on the weeknights and get up before 6 am. I know that if I can fall asleep before 10:30pm I can get up early and feel great all day.

I’m creating this habit by going to bed a little earlier every night, not watching tv or being on the computer before bed, and trying to read at least one chapter in a book before I go to sleep. Television and electronics actually hurt your ability to fall asleep but man it is easy to get on your phone and check Facebook before bed, isn’t it!

3. Eat a low carb breakfast

For me, I gravitate towards high carb breakfasts, however, we do the bulk of our homeschool in the morning and carb loaded breakfasts seem to lower my energy level by 11 am. I know that if I eat eggs and lean meat or a smoothie for breakfast I feel great until lunch.

low carb breafkast

I also know that eating tons of carbs for breakfast is one of the quickest ways I put on a few pounds. This is true for me, however it might not be true for anyone else. It is important to track what you are eating and how you feel after you eat, so that you can do what is best for your body.

I’ve gotten out of the habit of making eggs because grabbing a bowl of cereal is so much easier, but I know I feel better when I eat eggs so I need to start making them at least four days a week.

4. Eat two healthy snacks a day

I am not a snacker, so this one has always been a challenge for me. I just don’t like taking the time to eat, however I know that when I have a healthy snack my energy levels stay high and I feel better throughout the day.

healthy snacks

It also takes away the “I’m starving” at mealtime feeling so I make better choices instead of quick choices (which is usually not the healthiest choice).

5. Exercise at the same time every day

This has been the hardest for me since we have moved to Florida. I used to be on an exercise routine and I rarely missed a day, because it was part of my schedule, just like taking a shower or homeschooling the kids.

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Since our schedule has been wacky in general since moving here I’ve struggled to get in a good routine. I still exercise but it hasn’t been daily because I can’t seem to find the best time to make it a habit.

I really need to exercise five to six times a week to keep prevent back pain and migraines. While I prefer to work out in the morning, that might not be the best for my schedule right now so I need to figure out when the best time for exercise is for me.

How the challenge works

This is a five week challenge, where we are going to focus on each habit for one week. When the new week begins we will continue with the previous habit, plus add in a new habit. Hopefully this will give you time to get a good routine going with each habit so that by the end of the five weeks are you moving towards some awesome changes in your life.

I’ve created a very basic Healthy Habits printable if you want to have your goals on paper. Please, please, please print and fill it out. Writing things down is a great way to get things done! Saying you are going to do something is one thing, but writing it down takes it one step further.

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List out your five healthy habits and then decide what order you want to work on them.

My advice is to start with the easiest habit first. Get your small win, so you can move on to something harder and get a bigger win. Then list three ways you can succeed starting your new habit. You only need to list out your three ways to succeed when you start that week (although all my over achievers can do that today too!).

The Healthy Habits Challenge starts today! Start making your list and get to work on your first healthy habit!

Follow along on social media with the hashtag #fithealthyhabits and don’t forget to join our Fit for Good community!

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At Home Exercises: No Equipment Needed

This Monday we begin our 21 day exercise challenge. We are challenging each other to exercise regularly for 21 days to create good exercise habits. Here are a few things to consider before you begin this challenge.

Make sure you read to the end because I’ve included exercises you can do at home and a tracking worksheet. 

Every little bit counts.

Even if you can only exercise for 10-15 minutes each day that is better than not exercising at all. I know many of you are moms with young kids, working moms, and all around very busy people. The point of this challenge is to get us in the habit of working out. If you can only find time for 10 minutes a day, make it 10 minutes a day.

You have the time.

I would encourage you to find the time to exercise at least 30 minutes a day three to four times a week. This might mean spending less time on Facebook, or watching television, but it will be worth it.

Drink water. 

If you aren’t use to exercising this is especially important. Use a water bottle and keep it filled up to help remind you to drink water frequently throughout the day. You all should be really good at this from our last challenge!

Work to your fitness level.

I’m not a personal or athletic trainer, and I don’t live with you so I can’t tell you exactly what exercises you should be doing. Please work to your fitness level and don’t attempt to run a marathon or get through P90X if you’ve been a couch potato for 20 years. Start slow and build up.

You don’t need any fancy equipment. 

There is a list of exercises below that you can do, in your home, without any equipment. If you are going to spend money on anything, I would recommend getting a Yoga Mat. You will tear up your back and hiney doing floor exercises on carpet.

Eat Better

Don’t waste your workout by eating junk all day. Great meal ideas are posted every day in the Facebook group, and weekly in our Fit Food series.

Next week I’ll be sharing healthy snack ideas as well. Hopefully the junk will seem less appealing as your workouts increase, but if not it is important to tame the cravings!

Accountability works.

While we probably aren’t neighbors, accountability is necessary to achieve results. When I had a trainer, I always made my gym appointments because I didn’t want to let him down.

I also worked hard because I didn’t want to embarrass myself at the gym, so I always gave 110%! If you have a friend or neighbor that you can be accountable to that is best. We also have the Facebook group where we will be doing daily check-ins.

At Home Exercises: No Equipment Needed

  • Crunches
  • Push-ups
  • Jumping jacks
  • Mountain climbers
  • Plank
  • Side plank
  • High knees
  • Leg lifts
  • Donkey kicks
  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Burpees
  • Calf raises
  • Flutter kicks
  • Elevated hip lifts
  • Wall sits
  • Run in place
  • March in place
  • Russian twists
  • Tricep dips

If you aren’t sure how to do some of these exercises I would suggest searching for them on YouTube. You’ll find some great demonstrations, I’ll also be including links as I find them.

Youtube exercise videos you can do at home:

To help you track your daily exercise I’ve created a printable tracking sheet. Just record your workout each day and the time spent working out.

exercise tracking worksheet

 

You can download your exercise printable here.

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This post may contain a link to an affiliate. See my disclosure policy for more information.