MFBS note: CR Photography and I are starting off the #FitMom series with my dear friend, Kristen Fay! I met Kristen at our children’s preschool and after months of speaking to her in the hallways, one day she looked so different! Kristen had lost weight, but her skin looked gorgeous and her usual sweet smile turned into a happy bursts of laughter. I wanted to share her story with you because Kristen has learned so much about nutrition and fitness and willing to talk with anyone who wants to make little changes in their own life. Moms should carve out a little time for themselves and be considered a priority. Kristen is a perfect #FitMom example and has a few ideas so that you can too start or continue on your own journey. Enjoy!
When did you decide to change your life and live it to its full potential? What happened that made you say, “Today is the day?”
Since college, I’ve always had to exercise and eat healthily to maintain a good weight for my body type. Since then, life changes including: work (before kids), moving to CA and back to the East Coast, having 2 children born close together & raising them, plus managing the family’s needs have taken priority over my own needs and health. My exercise and eating well have been inconsistent over the last 10 years. In the late Winter of 2014, I was at my highest non-pregnant weight, I felt like I didn’t look good in my clothes, I lacked energy, and felt like my present state just “wasn’t me”. I decided to make a long-term, sustainable lifestyle change and hired a trainer to come to my house to help me get started. Lisa Gagliano, my personal trainer, was coming twice a week for an hour, then we backed down to once a week to maintain my fitness level.
What does your typical workout entail?
I work with Trainer Lisa once a week for an hour, then I do our workout on my own another day that week. We do a circuit of cardio, weight training, abs and stretching. I also play doubles tennis at least once or twice per week for 90 min. For toning, I do PureBarre classes once (sometimes twice) per week. I try and fit in a trail walk with the dog or a run outside around my neighborhood once per week for an hour.
How do you make time for training?
I usually workout on weekdays, when my young children are at preschool. Some weekends, I get up early before anyone else is up and squeeze in an hour workout at home or running in my neighborhood.
We all wake up feeling unmotivated once in a while. How do you get through a tough day?
Some days, I just need a break, so I allow myself to take one. I make up for it by adding a workout on another day or on a weekend. I try not to be too hard on myself, but I do appreciate the value and positive energy that exercise brings. I think about how good I feel after I accomplish a workout!
How many children do you have and do they “work out” with you?
I have a 5.5 year old daughter and a 3.5 year old son. I don’t typically workout with them, unless it’s yoga or stretching together in the basement. We hike together as a family at the South Mountain Reservation in NJ on weekends too! We plan to go on more bike rides as they get more comfortable on their big kid bikes.
Tell us about a challenge you overcame during the process of ‘changing your life once and for all.’
Finding the time and sticking to your schedule, when you have young kids is most challenging. I only have so much energy in one day, and my kids and family use a lot of that up (in a good way)! Also, budgeting for a personal trainer and taking classes is expensive…so I’ve given up other luxuries like mani/pedi’s at the salon and extra shopping to afford making exercise a priority.
What’s a typical dinner for you?
I eat my carbs earlier in the day, usually at breakfast (cereal or oatmeal). Since, I’ve made these lifestyle changes, I limit my portions of carbs, processed foods, and sugars. If my family is having a pasta entree, I will substitute pasta for a bag of steamed or sauteed spinach. I’ve never cut out any food groups, just reduced portions of the ones that add too many calories. I drink lowfat milk, and eat lowfat yogurt & cheeses when possible. I stay away from sauces, fried foods and try to grill meats and sautee in only olive oil.
How do you manage cravings and social situations that entail lots of food and drinks on your “no” list?
I do like sweets, especially cookies and ice cream! So I have small portions of cookies (1 instead of 3) or a bite of chocolate, and eat frozen yogurt instead of full-fat ice cream. I don’t eat sweets on a daily basis, but if we go out to dinner I typically share a dessert with my kids or husband! I like wine and the occasional light beer, so I limit my intake to 2 drinks at the most. I try to eat really well at home and cook my own foods during the week so that there’s room for extra calories at dinners out and social events.
Images: CR Photography
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