Fitness Friday: The Little Things Really Do Add Up | The Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans LLC


I remember when I first embarked on my 50 pound journey.

I was overwhelmed. I didn’t know where to start. I began to accept my “fat” self as normal and the person that I was destined to be. I had a 2 year old and a 6 month old and it was spring. Which also meant: time to garden. Or realistically, buying more plants that I can kill by neglecting to water them.

So for a few days in a row, as I was coming out of my post-partum shell, I loaded the kids up in the minivan and headed to Home Depot and Target to purchase some plants that were for sure cowering in the corner as I entered the garden sections and I went home and planted during naptimes. I even parked really far away at the stores when I went, just because.

I lost 5 pounds that week. As if out of nowhere. It was the same week a very unflattering picture of myself at a birthday party surfaced and the same week a family member mentioned something to me about how I “used to be” athletic, and well, that serendipitous 5 pound loss completed the trifecta for me and made me motivate myself to not just try to lose weight, but really to just plain old move more. I realized that making tiny changes really did add up and it was also the first time I became a believer of the whole “parking really far away at a store” thing.

To this day, I am still a believer in constant movement and have gotten to the point now that I rarely even actually sit down now. I am always doing and going. I guess because of that whole objects in motion thing…

I don’t have one of those trusty counters that track your calories burned, but I do have a heart rate monitor, so this past week, I decided to put my heart rate monitor on while I was gardening. And according to my heart rate during my gardening, one teeny tiny plant along with being outside watering = 100 calories burned! Imagine if I mulched, pulled weeds, mowed the lawn and did a little more gardening! That’s the same amount of calories burned as running ONE MILE. And all I did was plant one teeny little pot of impatiens.

Some of my other favorite ways to move:

  • Doing planks during a television show which inevitably ends up with two toddlers sitting on my back while I do planks which equals much more resistance. As in 60 pounds more resistance. Usually, I eventually collapse in an out of breath heap, but I just know I’m working something there. Right?
  • Of course doing the planks also ends up somehow with me doing push-ups with two toddlers on my back because it’s just so much more fun for them to go up and down rather than just sit there while I plank. Momma can’t do too many of these yet though. Momma falls into a big breathless momma-heap.
  • Squats in the shower while my hair conditioner is working its magic. Sure, naked squats can’t be pretty, but I’m the only one in there so ain’t no one seein’ me!
  • Carrying my grocery bags out to the car instead of using a cart. Even if I have a hundred of them. The bagboy always feels all sorts of bad about watching me do this and always asks to help me out or get me a cart.
  • Doing bicep curls with my gallon of milk as I carry it through the grocery store (I like to do this while walking down the ice cream aisle as a gentle reminder to myself to steer clear of the Ben & Jerry’s.)
  • Wear my heart rate monitor all day, just to keep a tally on my calories burned.
  • Squats and lunges at the stove while making dinner. I can usually be pretty discreet about this, but sometimes someone catches me. No one asks questions anymore.
  • Nookie. But probably don’t wear your heart rate monitor. Just sayin.

It sounds a little weird and crazy and it might even look like it, but these little extras really do go a long way and if you don’t believe me, wear your heart rate monitor and watch what these little bursts of exercise do to your heart rate and your calorie count. It doesn’t always have to be about the gym time!

So feel free to chime in about your favorite ways to squeeze in some exercise (and about the crazy looks you get while doing it!!)

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