|Jastrow (2005), |
via Wikimedia Commons
A couple of months ago I signed up for a marathon training program for walkers. It's been going great. I am feeling good and my clothes are fitting better, but when I step on the scale the number is the same (no, I will not disclose that figure).
Yes, I know I am building muscles and that it weighs more than fat. Yes, I know that I should be paying more attention to how my clothes are fitting than to the scale. But something about hitting a plateau this soon was bugging me. It kept nagging at my brain until I had a eureka moment one day last week...MY KIDS ARE MAKING ME FAT!
Before you burn me at the stake for speaking blasphemy, let's take a look at the evidence:
- Stress. Raising kids is a joy and it's also stressful. Stress releases a hormone in your body called cortisol. Cortisol causes your body to go into survival mode which can manifest in increased abdominal fat. I definitely look like I am smuggling a life-preserver under my t-shirts. It's not cute. Time to step up the yoga so my body feels relaxed even if my nerves are shot.
- Snacking: Kids grow at a rapid rate and eat constantly. I realized I was eating constantly too even though my caloric needs are about half of what my active 3 year-old needs. If she asks for a almond butter and jelly or grilled cheese sandwich, I'd fix one too when I don't need to eat and should be avoiding breads and dairy. I'd also find myself finishing her leftovers. Her fuel is my fat.
- The eating for two myth: I indulged in too much with this last pregnancy. I was always hungry for some reason (I am told it was because the baby was a boy, but I am not sure how much truth there is to this old wives tale). Now I am breastfeeding and I have to consume enough good fats (think avocados and nuts) to plump up my little guy. The reality is that I only need about 200 more calories to do this. I need to say no to second helpings!