Amanda Fisher Coaching

I help women get crazy strong - physically AND mentally - through strength training, sustainable eating habits, and a heathy mindset.

Category: Feelings (page 1 of 31)

Three Ways I’m Practicing Self-Care Right Now (and loving)

A few weeks ago, I texted my best fitness friend to tell her I was in a massive funk.  The same old story – I should be doing this, I should be feeling like this, I should be doing more at this, blah blah blah.  I was at the tail end of my maternity leave and starting to get a little (lot?) nutty.  Her response…..get your ass on journaling.  Journal, journal, journal.

And I did for a few days.  She gave me a few reminders about journaling and checked in with me.  And to be honest, I was fine in a few days.

You know why I was fine after a few days?  Because I was back in my happy place routine.  With a little structure but not too much.  And back in the gym watching others tear it up and getting myself easing back in a bit more to workouts.  OMG, once you are out of that setting and then get re-entry….it’s AWESOME.

Not gonna lie to you, having some weeks at home with a new babe and more family time rocked too.  It really did.  But I also get a little nutso when my brain doesn’t get a dose of strength training and talk of strength training, a loose schedule, or a few minutes of solo time.  LOL.

And so I have more of an opportunity to try out some self-care in different ways right now.  Mostly because I’m easing back into work and workouts, and have time between classes/clients to do some of these things right now.

Before Maren showed up, I would say self-care was a bit easier.  Todd, Emma and I were in a routine, and Emma is four, so she is independent quite a bit, and also has her own little life with pre-school and part time daycare, and friends and grandma’s stealing her to come play.  So going for a solo walk, journaling, meditating, and all that jazz was something that COULD easily fit inside my day.  OR, getting up early in the morning to do those things before she woke up, because sleep was regular and plentiful, lol.

So, I still love those things, but they don’t always fit as easily into life right now.  So, I’m practicing self-care a little differently.

I’m dedicating 20 minutes each and every day to go for a walk.  Either by myself, with my kids, or with our entire family.  I don’t care how I get it, I just gotta get it.  First and foremost, it’s just a regular movement practice that I can count on that’s easy enough to do EVERYDAY.  To be honest, solo walks are nice some days, but I also really dig an entire family walk (yesterday we went to a local county park and walked and that rocked).  Spending time as a family unit IS part of my personal self-care routine right now because we are still new to being a family of four and it’s important.  So is solo time, and so the few times each week that solo walks have been happening, they’ve been with coffee cup in hand and that has been LOVELY, and I’ve been sometimes doing it without any music, OR I’ve been listening to a cool podcast or something, or complete silence.  Twenty minutes EVERYDAY.  Loving it.

I’m doing a mobility/feel good routine most days.  Nothing crazy at all.  To be honest, whatever I feel like that day, and sometimes it’s in jammies or sometimes it’s after a workout, or sometimes it’s in the living room at night.  Just to un-crunchify and get my body feeling like a working body again.  And to remind myself that I’m a priority and I can feel present in this body.

I’m trying out a no-spend month for size.  Technically probably not a true self-care practice, but it’s still a good thing for me.  In June, I’m nixing the non-essential spending.  No Old Navy random orders, no Target fun trips.  Nothing except food, toilet paper, etc.  I did slip once in the first week when I wasn’t thinking and bought a bath bomb, lol.  But….so far, this is making me rethink a bunch of things.  So, obviously no-spend months probably aren’t realistic for every month BUT in July I’m already brainstorming how I can take this and make it realistic….like buying ONE cool thing per month, or actually establishing a formal fun budget for myself or something that doesn’t end up in me buying kid stuff, lol.  Basically I’m learning that a little planning goes a long way in the form of eating more meals at home and less on the go, packing snacks and water, I don’t need every last tank top that’s on 60% markdown from American Eagle clearance, etc.  OH, and I haven’t bought workout clothes for TWO MONTHS (technically a business expense…..but still, lol).  This little no spend month has been a lot of thinking and honestly, peace of mind knowing that there is cash tucked aside and not just vanished into thin air.

I can tell you I’m still ducking into the bathtub for some epsom salt goodness when it’s convenient.  And I usually bring a beer with me and Todd asks if I’m seriously drinking in the tub (yes).  I still journal and will come and go back to that always.  I’m also creating a bunch of things for my blog and online business that are technically still work BUT they are almost more self-care because I’m creating things I believe in, and wish were created for me when I needed them, and it’s almost therapeutic in a way.

What about you?  What kinds of things are you doing for self-care right now?  Are they traditional or are they wacky and random?  I want to know!  Drop me a comment on my Facebook page!

Want Exclusive Weekly Content?
I send weekly knowledge bombs on fitness, nutrition, and mindset!
We respect your privacy.

Fourth Trimester: Month Two

I think I’m 10 weeks postpartum. I’m pretty sure anyways, but I’m not going back to the calendar to do the math, so we will just say I’m 10 weeks, lol.

Month two of the fourth trimester.  And….I can’t remember JACK.  My memory is gone.  So is my ability to think and form normal sentences.  Yikes!  I can remember what size free weights my clients use in the gym….but I can’t remember if I ate lunch yesterday.  HA!

So, last month, I had all allllll the post birth cravings.  OMG.  Every single one.  I was hungry ALL.THE.TIME.  I think it’s to be expected….recovery from birth plus my body trying to feed another human.  I dunno, I can rationalize being that hungry anyways, because it makes sense.  I can tell you this month, cravings are not like that anymore, and my hunger has slowed way down.  I feel like I’m evening out just a bit on hunger.  Which rocks.  Our grocery bill will likely go down, lol.  Our beer bill won’t though.  Oh WAIT!  There IS something weird going on.  Beer is still good…buuuttttt, my new drink of choice lately is Roscato (red Moscato).  On ice of course, lol.

Emotionally, I would say I have all the crazy pregnancy hormones exiting the building so I’m pretty good for the most part, but have the odd crazy freak out (just ask Todd), and….while I did good with dropping off both kids at daycare for the first time, I pretty much ball when I’m feeding Maren and see her perfect little toes and her crazy antics.  Or, when I dropped off Emma at vacation bible school, and realized she didn’t need me anymore to get her name tag, and find her way to the gym with the other kids.  THAT shiz, makes me BALL like a baby.  And I would say Mama Bear comes out when we are out in public with lots of people/strangers around.  I get like nutso protective over my kids, lol.

Physically!  Here’s the Cliff’s notes from last time.  Last post, I thought I was dealing with a mild bladder prolapse.  NO!  I am NOT.  Seriously, I am thanking God on this one.  I was really freaking out about that one.  However, I am dealing with really weak pelvic floor muscles, because they are trying to be strong all the time.  I’m learning that my pelvic floor is hypertonic, which basically means the muscles are contracting ALL the time and have a hard time relaxing….I’m the walking definition of a tight ass.  Think about flexing your gunz in the mirror, and never being able to UNflex them.  That’s what’s going on here.  So, I’m working on contracting pelvic floor when necessary, but also working on relaxing it as well.  A strong muscle is only a muscle that can contract AND relax.  A constantly flexed muscle isn’t all that strong because it can’t function.  So, when I have prolapse symptoms, it’s actually because my PF needs a break and NOT because my bladder is ACTUALLY falling out.  And, apparently this shit is very common, SO, if you’ve been pregnant/birthed a baby (C-section or vaginally), I stand by my recommendation…and get yo ass to the pelvic floor PT, plz!  And STAT.

And…..it’s interesting what are major causes of prolapse or weak PF.  Straining on the toilet (not my issue, lol).  Excessive coughing….I did that for about 2 months when pregnant with Maren with a nasty cold.  I also puked and/or dry heaved for about 30 weeks of my pregnancy most days, so you can imagine the force that produces on one’s PF.  Here’s where it gets REALLY interesting…..forceps or vacuum delivery.  Welp, Emma was born with vacuum assistance.  And to be honest, now that I know what some of this stuff feels like that I’m working through….this has been slowly building since Emma was born.  So I’m taking this whole recovery and physical therapy thing seriously, because I want to making sure my body is REALLY recovered this time.

Also, I started workouts at about 7.5 weeks PP.  I would definitely say they feel “easy” compared to my normal, but I’d also say I’m damn proud of myself for doing what is needed right now, and dropping my ego to ease back in.  I can tell you for sure, I feel like I have NO core connection.  I can tell my core is starting to act like a core, but I literally feel like a big empty space from my sternum to my quads.  Like NOTHING is there and I have to work damn hard to make my mind connect to my core to workI do a lot of glute bridges with bands, and in a variety of positions.  I’m doing lots of upper body pulls and band pull-aparts.  Unweighted squats.  Floor presses.  And band presses.  I’m not doing any planks or push-ups because I’m respecting my core and the fact that there was a lot of outward pressure on it for some time, and I’m not going to add to that pressure in those positions.  I’m also not doing much for exercises that put downward force on my PF – no weighted squats or lunges, no deads, no swings, no overhead pressing, nada.  So, my workouts take like 20 minutes, but I can tell they are helping.  I also spend a fair amount of time each day deep breathing, and giving my PF a break, and doing some resets like rocking, rolling, and crawling.  When I sit, I make sure my posture is spot on, because that is HUGE for PF health.  I’m also trying to sit in a variety of positions – on the floor, on my knees, with legs extended, etc.  All good things for PF health.  I feel like all I talk about is pelvic floor stuff right now, buuuutttt I’m living and breathing it so it’s what is on my mind.  OH, and I walk for 20 minutes at a time, 2-3 times per day.  Walking is GREAT for PF health, but also the force on PF is a factor here, so shorter more frequents bouts are best right now.  And I still sit tons.  Because recovery, yo.

My workout buddy and I during my first week of workouts!

Also, all the cool postpartum pregnancy stuff is happening.  My beautiful pregnancy hair is GONE and now I have greasy hair that is falling out in clumps.  I had really nice skin during pregnancy and welp…..here we go with zits again.  And, I have way less muscle than I used to and way more body fat than I used to, which is a little bit of a mindgame, but to be honest, it is what it is right now.  I’m not one of those ladies that breastfeeds and has weight just fall off.  The whole weight thing is interesting to me.  It was a mindgame for a bit, especially during pregnancy, but it is what it is.  Through about weeks 20 or so, I lost about 15 pounds.  Which feels like a crime because you’re trying to build a human when you are pregnant.  BUT, I also spent a lot of time either feeling nauseous from food OR throwing it up.  So I’m not surprised that I lost weight of course.  Then, I put that back on, plus 8 pounds by the time Maren showed her face.  Then dropped like a rock by about 20 pounds in four days post birth after Maren was here plus extra blood and fluid.  And then I put about six pounds back on til this point.  The weight itself isn’t a factor for me…it’s just the mind game you go through like….is my baby growing….when I was losing weight.  Then, OMG, I feel SO FULL all the time, when I got that weight back plus 8 pounds.  Then, OMG I literally don’t give a shit about weight post birth as you are going through alllll the new feelings and getting used to a new baby in your family.  And then, one day you wake up and your boobs are huge (for you), you are leaking fluid from literally everywhere in your body, you literally feel a little like yourself, but not REALLY like yourself just yet, and your body doesn’t appear all that different from the outside, but it’s hugely changed on the inside.  It’s all just a big mind game is what I’m trying to say.

I went back to work last week, and I’m not gonna lie, I LOVED it.  Spending time in the gym with people I enjoy being around, ADULTS with ADULT conversations, and just feeling like I’m getting back to my purpose outside of raising humans has been AMAZING.  It hasn’t even sucked getting up at 4:15 a few times a week, because to be honest, I’m getting up at 3:30 to nurse a baby anyway, lol.  I love time at home of course, and I still get a ton of time with my littles, but being outside the house and back to work ROCKS.

And one final thing – I can honestly say that the balance between two kids has gotten WAY better.  Emma loves her sister so much, and a little one on one time from mom and day with just Emma goes a LONG way.  I still go back and forth between feeling like super mom for Maren, being a crappy mom for Emma, thinking OMG I can’t spend enough time with my littles, then OMG is it a daycare day yet, and alllll the stuff in between.  But it’s pretty awesome.  And I would also say that I don’t remember being pregnant anymore, even though I loathe it (I know that’s not nice to say, but it’s also the truth).  And 40 weeks and 5 days is really a drop in the bucket of time for the little human being that shows up (eventually) at the end.

But don’t you dare ask if we are having more kids anytime soon, because almost having a baby on the side of the road is still fresh in my mind.

Three Tools I Use To Tame Medusa (The Cravings Beast)

I’m jumping right in today.  Because I’ve been getting the cravings question a lot – how should I handle them, how can I stop them, how can I manage them….etc.

I want to share three tools I use to tackle my own nutrition, and…..how I have sort of diminished cravings for the most part, and help my clients.  I’m also rolling out these tips with my gym crew AND Confidently Consistent crew.

And when I say diminished cravings myself, I want to call attention to that.  MOST cravings.  I am going to talk about one thing that jacks up my cravings big time below.

You are busy, so am I.  Let’s get right to it.  Here we goooooo……..

Keep a food journal sometimes.  Yup, I do keep a written food journal sometimes.  Like, a super fancy pen and paper (right, it’s usually the back of an envelope and whatever pen my kid hasn’t stolen) with my meal times, and a brief account of what was included at meal times.  I probably food journal a few times per year, for a week or so at a time.

My mindset around the food journaling is the big huge tool though.  Not actually accounting everything stupid calorie or macro or nutrient that goes in.  The mindset is the win during food journaling.  Here’s why…..writing down what I eat creates this big awareness umbrella.  It makes me REALLY aware everything that I write down.  It also makes me REALLY aware of what my eating habits actually are versus what I think they are.

How does this relate to managing cravings, you ask? I can scan very quickly through my food journal and look for clues.  Are my meals complete meals, or are they half hearted things tossed together?  Am I eating enough at each meal, or too much?  Much of my craving stuff stems from those two things.  That’s for me personally, and it could be different for anyone.  Balanced meals and eating enough but not too much, but not too little, well….those are two big ticket items for me.  Missing nutrients from veggies and fruit also cause the cravings monster to show up.  So knowing what I’ve been taking in on the regular for a week or two gives me INFORMATION to make changes.  I can boost the quality of my meals with bumping the protein or produce.  I can boost the quantity of items in meals if I need to.  Also important for me personally….am I SATISFIED from my meals?  Technically, a calorie counter could tell me I should feel satisfied eating chicken breast, and broccoli, and maybe rice with no butter on it.  BUT, is AMANDA satisfied from eating that?  I can tell you without a doubt that I won’t feel satisfied from that bland meal.  Now, I COULD eat that meal with some minor tweaks and feel satisfied….but, figuring out the satisfaction factor for ME personally helps me greatly diminish cravings.

Also – this one is kind of in my control but not really right now.  SLEEP.  Low sleep (right now from a slightly unpredictable baby sleeping schedule) means the cravings monster WILL rear her ugly head when I am least prepared.  Low sleep, and lots of days in a row of low sleep will have me craving quick instant stuff A LOT.  Mostly sugar.  Or sugar and fat.  Like, donuts.  Or gummy worms.  Or things like that.  Knowing that makes handling cravings easier than just walking around life wondering why I feel so powerless around food.  Recognizing that I’m low on sleep helps me manage those cravings better simply by being AWARE that the lack of sleep is driving the craving.

Think critically, not dramatically.  Anyone else go up in arms when Medusa (the cravings beast) hits and makes them overthink and get more dramatic than a four year old not getting her way?  Yeah, drama can really amp up cravings, and if it doesn’t amp THEM up, it can amp ME up.  Getting all emotional about what I am eating or telling myself I have no control over eating is NOT helpful.

Instead, what about taking a step back and thinking critically.  For much of this, I can even revert back to my food journal…..sorta what I was talking about above.  Is my sleep driving the cravings?  Is the fact that I’ve eaten like a bird for three meals a day for the last three days driving the cravings?  What about when I had the day from hell where nothing went right and all I wanted to do was eat ice cream after everyone went to bed at night, and not just ice cream but ALL the ice cream…..in the country.  That sort of thing.  Taking a step back and thinking about what CAUSED the cravings is way healthier (in my opinion) than getting all panicky and dramatic about “not being able to control them” and “I can never get my act together nutritionally……I suck.”  Right?

Strategically plan some treats.  I don’t call this cheating.  I don’t like the thought behind cheat meals.  I decide what I eat, and I also decide that no food is bad or ever off limits (unless I’m allergic, and I’m not allergic, lol).  BUT, actually planning some treats into my week is SUPER helpful for managing cravings.  If I know that it’s Monday, and on Wednesday I’m going out to eat with friends and probably going to have a beer or something, well….I’m maybe more inclined to look forward to that beer (or two), and not have beer tonight.  Or, maybe I’m excited about whatever we are having for dinner in the evening, and it would go REALLY well with a glass of roscato (kinda digging this lately)…..well then, I probably don’t need to have a peanut butter egg at 10AM.  That sort of thing.  Looking forward to something to enjoy, and maybe making a trade off (and sometimes maybe not) somewhere else, or planning to NOT stick a treat somewhere.  It’s more the concept – do I need to indulge three times a day or three times per week.  And, week by week…it depends on a whole bunch of things.

These are three tools that I use in the cravings department that are fairly simple, but get me lots of mileage.  They aren’t super high tech, I don’t need them to be.  They aren’t super complicated, and I don’t need them to be.  They are just little things I use in my tool box that I pull out when the time is right.

OK, I showed you mine, now you show me yours (ha!!!).  What tools do you use to handle cravings?

PS – not one of these tools was “chew gum” was it?  But if chewing gum helps YOU, then by all means…chew the gum!

PPS – I have a super effing awesome Confidently Consistent Nutrition course beginning MONDAY.  All about four core nutrition habits to help you friggin’ rock your food choices this summer and navigate alllll.the.parties.  You can find out the deets here ==>  http://toughmuddette.com/confidently-consistent-nutrition-summer-2017-e-course/

Older posts
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers: