Let me just jump right in, right now and say that this post is not meant to be a slam to beginners or those that have hit a plateau. This post is meant to help and to point out some of the top things I’ve seen as a professional that slow mamas down in their journeys. Beginner fitness mistakes can be avoided though!
Over the course of my career, there have been many mistakes that I have seen folks make, heck, that I made at first too, that really slowed down the process.
The whole postpartum fitness journey is a slow journey.
It’s like a road trip across the country, and we start in New York and we make a pit stop at every attraction along the way and we take all back roads and not highways all the way to Los Angeles.
It’s a fun journey, but it’s slow. In fact, it’s a continuous thing for the rest of your life even after you’ve reached your weight loss goal.
It’s not about being as skinny as possible, it’s about being as healthy and strong as you possibly can.
But, you want to lose the rest of that baby weight, right? Nothing wrong with that!
Here’s the top four things that I have seen over the course of my career that have slowed down mamas in trying to reach their goals.
Beginner Fitness Mistakes #1 – Not Having a Plan
One of the biggest mistakes that mamas make in this journey that they are embarking on is heading over to Pinterest and downloading some random free workout plan that they find.
First, we don’t actually know who created that infographic that you are working off of.
OR better yet, there’s a post claiming, “Drink this and the fat will melt away”.
If you see a post like that, run away as fast as you can.
Find a solid plan, made from a professional that is either created custom to you, or a general program that you can trust, that was made with certain outcomes in mind.
For example, the 30 day Instant Downloads in my store were created with the outcome in mind of high calorie burning workouts that will help sculpt your body into a strong mama.
Girls love them, you can click here to check it out and rest assured that these workouts were created by a professional with the certs to back it up.
Beginner Fitness Mistakes #2 – Not Counting Calories
While this sounds super overwhelming and scary and like you’re going to starve yourself, that is not the case.
Did you know that we often eat more than we realize?
I am in a maintenance phase and I STILL count my calories, because it is so important to ensuring that my body gets the calories it needs, but it helps keep me in check to not go over my calories consistently.
Remember, in this postpartum weight loss journey and postpartum fitness (no matter how far postpartum you are) in general it is vital that we remember that calories are king.
What I mean is, I encourage all of my gals to follow a flexible dieting approach.
This means that they follow the 80/20 rule. I don’t do meal plans or tell them what to eat.
Together, we figure up their calories and then they start making small changes to their diets, every day that will lead up to big results.
For weight loss, we must be in a calorie deficit, right?
But trying to do too much at once can set us up for failure. But, more on that in a minute.
It’s not necessary to eat grilled chicken and kale every meal unless you just want to. However, it’s simply not necessary or even yummy.
Count the calories, eat, and move on with your life. It’s that simple.
Beginner Fitness Mistakes #3 – Jumping From One Routine to the Next
This is a big one. A lot of times, when we don’t see the results that we want right away, we will assume that what we are doing isn’t working and jump right into something else.
Our society today is that immediate gratification society that wants things right this very second and there aren’t that many folks that are willing to work for what they want.
Here’s some tough love, ready?
This is not a short process. Another thing? This is NOT an easy process. If this entire process were easy, then everybody that wanted to lose weight and get stronger would be doing it.
This process requires time commitment, effort, and consistency.
My girls will do the same workouts for at least 2 weeks, I will then re-evaluate how they’re handling those exercises, and if they are still needing to build on that strength, then we stay there for another 2 weeks.
If at the end of those two weeks those exercises are easy and they’re flying through them, then we stick with exercises that will work those same muscles and either change the movement just a little bit to get a deeper workout, or we stick with the same exercises and go up in reps or weight.
What we DON’T do, is we don’t just jump to the next round.
We focus in and we work and get stronger in the areas that are target.
Remember, you can’t spot reduce fat. Get in a calorie deficit, have a killer workout routine, be patient, and have an exit strategy.
You can do this.
There is a fine line between doing the exact same thing over and over and staying in a routine long enough to see results.
This is a learning process, so be patient.
Beginner Fitness Mistakes #4 – Trying to Do Too Much at Once
A lot of times, girls will dive head first and decide to just do it ALL at once. Well, when you’re learning a new way of doing things that is not yo-yo dieting and jumping from one free workout to the next and you’re learning a lifestyle, it’s going to take small steps and decisions every day.
Here’s an example,
When I have a really busy week and I’m looking at my calendar wondering how I’m going to get it all done, I will look at just one day and focus on that one day.
I will work through that calendar and do my best to own that day. Then I will move on to the next day.
Same goes with your healthy lifestyle journey. Take each day at a time.
Another example – you’re at the coffee shop and you are in need of some caffeine. You can grab a yummy coffee that has some creamer of your choice and throw in some Stevia, which would equal to anywhere from 50 calories to 150 calories or you can grab a coffee that has loads of sugar and whipped cream that equals around 300-400 calories.
And, while I am a huge advocate for treating yourself on the occasion (remember the 80/20 rule?) however, that shouldn’t be a normal order.
One last example – it’s Monday and you’re just not feeling the gym today. The kids are being crazy and you know that if you drop them off at the childcare in the gym, that they will be calling you because baby is crying and toddler is just cranky for some reason.
Instead of that day being a gym day, make that day a LISS day (Low Intensity Steady State).
This means, load them up in the stroller and go walk around the block or a walking trail somewhere.
Make it work for you and make the small decision every day.
There are other mistakes that I have seen folks make. Heck, I’ve made PLENTY of mistakes myself over the course of my journey.
It’s called learning and it’s called trying.
If you’re not making mistakes, you’re not trying. Trying means that you’re going to fall-down and get scratched up and you need to hop right back up and try again.
If you’re wondering where to start with “cleaning” up your diet, I have an awesome free 5 day mini course that is delivered right to your email that many girls have loved.
I will send you an email everyday for five days giving you a tip for how to make a small change to eat some yummy food.
Keep in mind that these particular emails are on automatic, but you can still reply if you have questions!
These 5 tips are simply things that I have applied to my own diet and I’ve gotten tons of great feedback on this free little course from girls literally all over the world.
Biggest thing to take away from this, mama is that this is a long journey and it takes time. Don’t give up if six months from now you aren’t where you want to be.
Did you know that it took me 18 months after my son was born for me to look in the mirror and say, okay, we’re really getting somewhere now.
That’s a long time! I still create fitness goals for myself and I work towards them knowing that it will take time, effort, and commitment. Perfect example? Check out my Diastasis Recti Series here.
You can totally do this. Don’t stress, and as cliché as it sounds,
Enjoy the journey.
You’re learning amazing things about your body and consider it a privilege that many are not awarded to be able to become so in tune with your body and how it operates.
You’ve got this, mama.