This post probably contains affiliate links, to items I am in love with, and I am confident you will too! For any health advice I give on nutrition and weight loss, make sure you check with your doctor, as I am not a health professional. I am just a mama with lots of health and fitness knowledge and experience.
I’ve gained and lost a lot of weight in the past 5 years because I’ve had three babies. I’ve gained an average of 25 pounds per pregnancy, then lost it all, only to gain it all back by getting pregnant again. I talk a lot about losing the baby weight because it’s something I’ve developed a skill in. Or, I’ve just figured out now. I like to give as much advice on losing the weight, and tips on eating and working out as possible. That being said, there are some shortcuts out there that can really help you accomplish your fitness goals, and you should totally take them. Taking shortcuts to lose weight is a good idea in my opinion because it’s such a hard goal to achieve, and I believe if you can take a few shortcuts, you will stay motivated on your journey.
You can start with my free ebook. That’s got more details on how I’ve gained and lost the baby weight each time. It also has just general, personal tips and tricks that can help anyone with their weight loss journey.
First Shortcut: Get Meal Planning Help
This is one of the biggest places to take a shortcut. Rather than relying on yourself to do all the shopping, cooking and planning. find resources to make it easier. What you eat is THE KEY to your weight loss. That’s why I have this first. There are lots of printables out there. I have a free meal plan printable, which is great for someone who just needs some organization, but if you don’t even know where to start, I highly recommend something like the Ultimate Healthy Bundle. It’s super affordable and has so much in it!
I also just found out about Platejoy. They create meal plans and grocery lists for you. What an awesome service. The testimonials state that people have saved hundreds of dollars, so I’m gonna give this one a go and see what I think. I love that they have everything from Paleo, Keto, Vegan and more too! You can get $10 off your plan here.
The 7-day meal plan from IdealRaw, which is the protein I love is another free option. Not as much details and information in these as the bundle, but a great start that is totally free. See more about choosing the right protein powder in this post. It can be totally confusing, but I break it down.
Second Shortcut: Use Quality Apps
This is such a helper for me. I use the free Map My Run app for keeping track of how far and fast I run. That’s the simplest one I can recommend right off the bat. I save my runs, so I can remember how far I’ve gone. Without it, I swear I ran 5 miles, and it was really two. Another great new app is the Noom app. I signed up for the 14-day free trial to see what it was all about. It’s actually a really great way to get some help, and it’s a HUGE shortcut. Like a major help because it puts you on a plan.
You have to stick to the plan, and that’s all you have to think about. You can communicate with real health professionals, and talk to your coach on a regular basis. I like this because you aren’t left wondering why you aren’t seeing results. There’s a focus on the emotional and social habits that surround weight gain, so the app helps you get to the root of the issues that are preventing you from losing weight. The biggest thing is you can try it for 14 days free. Two weeks is enough time to really know if something is working or not, at no charge.
Another app I just signed up for to shortcut my workouts is the new Aaptiv. Talk about taking the gym anywhere! I particularly look forward to using it while I’m running with two little ones in the stroller. I NEED encouragement in that department, and there’s an awesome running trainer on there to help. I think it’s worth a try for the free trial, and its a nice shortcut to using the gym, and way cheaper! Plus they are offering 45% off for new years, gotta love that!
Another app I like is the Jillian Michaels app. She’s more hard core, which is my style when needing a push to get going. She does a 7-day free trial, so you can do your first week with her to see if you like it! For me, using an app to get help is much more affordable than a gym or personal trainer, and I don’t have to go anywhere!
Third Shortcut: Sign Up For a Run/Challenge
This is a shortcut because it’s forcing you to workout and “train” for something. It’s giving you something super fun to do, and an extra bit of motivation for working out. I do the color runs every year when they come to my city. I can bring the kids in the stroller, and they love it. The t-shirts and gear just for attending are totally worth it, and you can celebrate your accomplishments by running just over 3 miles. By setting a goal and committing to an event, you are setting yourself up to succeed, rather than letting yourself dwindle out of your new habits. And, after you see how fun it is, you’ll be signing up for another race down the road, which will help you stick to your weight loss goals even longer!
You can also get yourself in a challenge. There are a lot of them out there, and its a great way to push yourself and stay accountable. Here are some I like:
Fourth Shortcut: Use Protein Powders
Protein shakes, with a good powder, are so worth it because they are fast and easy to make. I think a protein shake with all the right ingredients is super filling too. Not much prep, lots of nutrients, and easy to clean up. That’s the basics of what I need in my life right now. I talk about how clean the IdealRaw protein powder is for nursing moms, and I think its a great powder for anyone to start with because its not full of chemicals and artificial sweeteners. I can’t tolerate sucralose, which is in many of the protein powders, but this one is sweetened with Stevia. You can get some cheap sample packs to see if you like it before you buy a big tub of it. Here’s a link to a 7-day meal plan from IdealFit.
I also talk about some other great protein powders for breastfeeding moms, which links to all-round great powders for anyone looking to add a protein powder to their nutrition plan. Here’s some recipes that are super yummy to get you inspired too!
Fifth Shortcut: Skip Workouts and Sleep In
Yep, I said it. You should sleep in and skip a couple workouts. You know why? Well, your nutrition is what is going to make or break your weightloss, not your workout. And, if you miss sleep, you are way more likely to grab junk food. It is better for you to skip the workout and get your sleep, so you can stay focused on your eating and meal plan. Believe it or not, many fail to take this shortcut, and they run themselves into the ground trying to fit in an hour of working out. It’s not your workout that’s going to make or break that extra pound. Read more on that here, and let yourself sleep in to make sure your mind doesn’t get tired. If you are mentally tired, you won’t have the strength to withstand temptation.
Lastly, don’t let yourself get too focused on eating super healthy and working out for two hours a day. Find something that is enjoyable, and get involved in activities or hobbies that make you happy. If you are emotionally well, there won’t be as much emotional discomfort that will trigger eating issues. Think of this as a journey for your mind and body, and be patient! Even with shortcuts, it takes time and practice to learn new habits and keep them!