How Long Can I Call This Extra Weight “Baby” Weight?

Ten years ago I naively thought I would snap back to my pre-baby weight with ease after having children. And if not with ease, with hard work. Either way, I was not going to be a frumpy, out-of-shape mom that lived in sweats and looked remotely unkept. My plan was to be one of those fit and fly moms with unlimited energy, manicured in every way possible. Enter reality.

I never considered lack of “me” time, sleep deprivation, overall exhaustion, or anything of the sort that comes along with having these little blessings (e.g. gaining 70 lbs with both pregnancies, having a 5 pm glass of wine because if I didn’t find a way to chill I might lose my “expletive,” eating kids leftovers because my mom taught me not to waste good food, eating pizza at some birthday party each weekend because my God, who can be in a room with pizza and not have a slice, the mental exhaustion of non-stop chaos, non-stop little things following you around, non-stop noise….the non-stopness of everything except working out and eating healthy).

So now, many years later, I still have baby weight. And I’m hoping I can still call this baby weight even though I no longer actually have a baby. I’m still in the timeframe of it all, right? I can still blame my weight gain on becoming a mother because obviously, it has nothing to do with my lack of willpower or ability to motivate myself to regularly go to the gym regardless of everything. Okay fine, the brutal truth is I don’t have to be out of shape and eat whatever I want, when I want. I could get up at 5 am and work out each morning and I have at times. But I don’t stick with it, or stick with it enough, or change my habits, or align the stars with my diet and working out, or whatever it is, I don’t seem to do it.

I think I’ve finally hit my wall though. I’m tired of starting over, feeling as if aliens have abducted my once svelte body, and I’m mostly tired of the guilt and shame of being where I am today (it is my own fault…although much more fun to blame motherhood).

So this is the part that I tell you that I’m going to re-commit to working out and eating healthier. And all of the other things I’m supposed to say. But I won’t. I can’t create yet another plan only to have it interrupted by life yet again. In fact, my new plan is not to have a plan at all. Hear that? No more plan. Having these plans has led me to this moment and that’s not worked so I’ll try something new. It’s called, not having a plan. And by not having a plan, I can release myself from any guilt or shame felt because I couldn’t stick to “the plan.” My not having a plan will be replaced with remembering that I have a perfectly imperfect life full of “good” problems, period.

And while I’m living this perfectly imperfect life full of “good” problems, I’m going to “SworkIt” when I can, go to the gym when I can, eat mindfully, and most of all, go easier on myself when life happens and the routine of exercising or making healthy eating choices all goes to hell. Because it will all go to hell, any moment now.

(Disclaimer: Truth be told, I’m down 20 Ibs in 3 months because of diet and exercise, although not consistently! But woot-woot! 15 more to go! I’m not getting excited just yet–life is still happening and there’s nothing that stubborn baby weight loves more than to reappear, even if it’s ten years later).

Published by Lisa Meyers Johnson

Lisa Meyers Johnson is the creator of Listen Little Girl, a blog dedicated to her eight-year-old daughter. Lisa created the blog because she knows that being a little girl isn't easy and becoming a woman can be even harder. She hopes that by sharing her experiences, thoughts, and life lessons, it will empower her daughter, and moms and girls everywhere, to support one another along the journey of being/becoming a woman. Lisa currently consults with nonprofits and teaches graduate and undergraduate students about public relations for nonprofits at the University of Southern California. Prior to this, Lisa was an accomplished communications, marketing, and development professional and worked for organizations including the American Cancer Society, Magic Johnson Enterprises/Magic Johnson Foundation, ABC, Ketchum Public Relations, and Black Entertainment Television. Find her @lisabrandgirl on IG, Lisa Meyers Johnson on FB and @brandgirl on Twitter.

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