10 Weight Loss Strategies for Busy Moms

scaleWhen most of your meals consist of scavenged chicken nuggets and cookies that are gobbled while you stand at the sink during a rare window of narrow opportunity, managing your weight is a challenge. Adding the demands of a career and running a household while struggling to drop remaining baby weight even years after giving birth makes the process even more difficult, and can be so frustrating that it’s very tempting to simply give up. After all, who has time to go to the gym and prepare perfectly balanced meals? Actually, you may be surprised at how easy it is to work simple, effective lifestyle changes into your everyday routine that will help you reach your goals.

  1. Make Your Smartphone Work for You – Most modern, productive moms have a smartphone that they rely on for everything from scheduling to family photo storage. What you may not realize is that your phone can also be a fairly powerful weight loss aide. There is a plethora of diet and fitness apps available for a variety of operating systems, making it easy to keep track of your diet or calorie intake as you go about your day.
  2. Set Up a Support Network – When you have a support network of other moms with similar goals, you may find it much easier to get yourself in shape. A partner or a small group are very helpful when it comes to accountability, and will also give you a built-in shoulder to cry on when the going gets a bit tough.
  3. Take Advantage of Every Opportunity to Be Active – You may be surprised by how much of your day is spent on inactivity. Rather than whipping out your phone to play games or an eReader to keep you company while the kids are at soccer practice, take the opportunity to go for a walk. Park farther from the door when you shop, and opt for the stairs rather than waiting for the elevator. Remember, every bit of exercise will add up!
  4. Think Before You Eat – Scarfing a handful of cookies and washing them down with a swig of soda may seem like a quick-fix solution when hunger pangs strike while you’re on the go, but you can make it easier for yourself to make healthier choices. Before you eat something, stop to think about how healthy it is. That one brief pause may bring you to your senses, and several of them can help you lose weight.
  5. Remove Temptation at Home – Even if you have a houseful of sugar-addicted children, there’s no real reason why you have to keep tempting, unhealthy food items in the house. Toss out the empty calories and fill their space with less fattening fare. Getting your kids in on the act may cause a few protests at first, but it will also help them form the foundation for better eating habits as they reach adulthood.
  6. Play With Your Kids – Chasing after a healthy, active child is no mean feat. Just managing to keep up with a child can be physically demanding, which is why going the extra mile to engage in active play that’s appropriate to your kids’ age groups can have real results. You’ll also be killing two birds with one stone, as you’re providing the little ones with the one-on-one time they need.
  7. Plan Meals a Week in Advance – Pulling together a healthy meal every night just isn’t something that the average, harried mom has time for. When you set aside a bit of time on Sunday evening to plan simple, healthy meals for the entire week and even do a bit of advance prep work, you’ll be able to whip up healthier and significantly cheaper meals than those you share in a restaurant.
  8. Stick to Water for Hydration – Sodas, energy drinks and coffee all have their appeal, but they may also be filled with artificial sweeteners, chemical additives and loads of empty calories. The next time you start feeling a bit dry, reach for a glass of water instead.
  9. Don’t Let the Scale Discourage You – If you’re pairing your dietary changes with physical activity, the scale probably isn’t your friend. Replacing fat with lean muscle can even raise the number on your scale’s display, but your “skinny jeans” are a far more accurate measurement tool.
  10. Keep a Journal – It’s easy to say that you don’t have time for a journal, but it can be as simple as a quick email sent to yourself each day detailing what you ate and how much physically active time you had each day. Writing down everything you eat forces you to be honest about your habits, and can be a very powerful motivator.

Whatever you do, remember not to be too hard on yourself. Getting discouraged when you don’t feel like you’re losing enough weight is easy, but it’s important to keep the old adage about Rome being built in a day in mind. Your progress won’t happen overnight. In fact, it may be quite gradual. Still any results are better than no results, and you won’t obtain them if you don’t persevere.