If you’re a wife and mother there is probably nothing more important to you than your family…not even yourself. But when health and wellness come into play there’s no one who can spark a change better than the queen of the household. When Kim Scott, wife and mother of six realized that her health and lifestyle choices were not only affecting her health but the health of her family, she knew that it was time for a change and it had to begin with her. It all started when Kim saw this unsightly photo of herself.
Three and a half years ago, after baby number five was a year old, Kim was at her heaviest. At 5’6 and weighing about 175 lbs, she weighed more than she did when she was pregnant. There were many indications that her health was being affected by her weight. After growing up with unhealthy eating habits including plenty of fried foods and “pop”, Kim suffered from chronic kidney and urinary tract infections. In one instance, she was even hospitalized for a week. Everything she ate showed on her outer appearance. The photo that started her journey to getting fit was taken at a friend’s birthday celebration on Halloween. She described how she felt when she saw the photo. “I was disgusted” she said “gross, why didn’t anybody let me know what I looked like”.
She spoke to her best friend who was also unhealthy and they decided to get gym memberships together. They challenged each other to see who could lose the most weight, making it fun instead of a chore. Through hard work and moral support Kim went from 175 to 144. But how did she do it?
Kim’s eating habits were so bad that she knew she couldn’t go from 0 to 100, so she was very basic with her eating. ” I didn’t make it harder than it needed to be. Some places do meal preparation and they give you food you’ve never even heard of”. Portion control and having heavy foods earlier in the day with an exercise regimen of 1 1/2 hours three to four days a week was how she got started.
An ideal day included oatmeal in the morning and a salad for lunch with a grilled protein. She even cheated when she had the urge. “I would allow myself to cheat but literally minimally. If I wanted french fries I would have them and that would be it. ” Of course she wouldn’t allow it to happen often but the point was to keep it simple. “If you take away too many things it’s difficult, you won’t succeed and you’ll just go back to your old ways”.
After getting the weight off she started taking vitamins and supplements to get the nutrients she lost after changing her diet. “Don’t sacrifice nutrients for the sake of losing weight” she says. She also doesn’t deprive herself of enjoying food either. “When I’m at a party I will have a piece of cake. I’m not a maniac about it” she laughed. “I’m not the skinniest thing but I’m healthy. I’m your average classic mom who wants to eat healthier.”
But Kim reiterates that it takes time to get where you want to be. When you’re used to eating fast food five times a week, change doesn’t come easy. “I was unhealthy for 25 almost 30 years. In 2 weeks you’re not going to get it perfect. It takes time to change bad habits. There are so many pieces, that’s not how it works” she says. “Our minds and our commitment….there are mental reasons why people eat. Mentally you have to be prepared to make that uphill battle against yourself.”
Another factor that Kim says contributes to unhealthy lifestyles is the misconception that skinny equals healthy. Her husband was skinny with high metabolism but after she started losing weight, he wanted to get bulked up. As a government employee he couldn’t use his employers’ gym facility without a health clearance. At 5’11 and 140 lbs soaked and wet, he thought he was healthy. Through his employers physical he learned that he had high blood pressure and high cholesterol. It’s not about weight. It’s about health. Kim and her husband have gotten healthy together. It’s become a healthy fun competition to remain fit for themselves and each other.
Making the decision to make a change affects everyone. Their kids are on board, wanting want more fruits and vegetables now. Their middle daughter makes a point to choose the fruit for a breakfast smoothie in the morning without prodding from Kim. The kids even use some of her wellness products. Leading by example has more impact than any lecture ever could. Encouraging outdoor activities in lieu of gaming systems and computers is another way that Kim keeps her children active and healthy.
Need some solid tips to get started on your journey to a healthier lifestyle? Kim says these five tips can help you get going.
- Detox your body quarterly. Your body needs spring cleaning. Diseases thrive in certain environments and detoxing helps against that.
- Find a good natural organic vitamin. A lot of multivitamins don’t break down. So invest in something that will breakdown in your system and give you the nutrients that they are meant to.
- Make sure you get enough fruits and vegetables each day. They help your body detox itself. Supplemental blends are okay but having real fruits and vegetables are important. Salads rich in dark vegetables are a good source. Nuts are also good to add.
- Making sure you drink enough water. A lot of people are hungry because they are dehydrated. Your water intake should be half of you body weight. So if you are 230 pounds you should have 115 ounces of water a day.
- Exercise, exercise, exercise. A lot of diets say you don’t have to exercise and that’s just not true. You want to exercise at least three times a week because you body is like a machine. When you exercise fluid is released from your joints keeping them moving properly. Staying active helps to you stay young. It also relieves stress which helps with depression. Starting off mild is okay. Taking a brisk 30 minute walk is a good start. Exercise is your friend not your enemy.
Kim’s biggest piece of advise? “Remember, a healthy lifestyle is a journey not a destination. Be patient with yourself.”