Today’s fit mommy is Vanessa, from My Life Balanced. I “met” Vanessa when she posted this amazing video on my Facebook wall. I love her vibe and the message she sends to moms everywhere. Please read on for more about Vanessa and how she is definitely “One Fit Mommy”!
Q: Have you always been fit?
What inspired you to live a fit lifestyle? I’ve always been fit, but I haven’t always been healthy. I fell in love with sports at a young age and it transformed into different forms of exercise over time. I was continually moving my body but let my ego lead the way. My body was getting movement but lacking the right fuel. After graduating with a bachelors in exercise science and health promotion and beginning a masters in wellness and fitness I fell in love with yoga. Yoga led me to it all – holistic nutrition, mindful movement, and many much needed deep breaths. What inspires me to live a fit lifestyle is my desire to not need medication, to have energy to keep up with my toddler, and to feel healthy, happy, and strong. It's amazing how a few sweat droplets sets the tone for my day. Click To Tweet
Q: What advice do you have for moms who claim they don’t have time for exercise?
You’ll never have enough time unless you create it. To do lists are never empty because once you cross one thing off more will appear. Create regular movement in your day that works for you. I exercise every morning for 60-80 minutes with a free momma and kiddo group I created. We all have different schedules create something that is not another “thing” to check off your list. Do a few squats here and there. Lunge as you pick up the house. Get on the floor for core work while watching TV. Play with your kids, I mean really play chase them, jump, and be a kid again. You are a priority, your health is a priority, create a fitness routine that works well for your individual lifestyle and most importantly make it something fun you look forward to doing. Click To Tweet You will be better able to take care of all the roles you play if you first take care of yourself. Whether it’s 15 minutes or 60 minutes a day make exercise a priority for yourself.
Q: How have your workouts changed since having kids?
Before having my son I was practicing hot vinyasa yoga for 75 minutes Monday – Friday, running on Saturday’s, and hiking on Sunday’s. After the birth of my son I created a free mom’s workout group. Fast forward to the present, he’s almost 3, I’ve moved from Hawaii to California and created a new group, and my son has been by my side for 3 years now leading moms to a healthier lifestyle. I’m rarely in a yoga studio now, and that’s OK because I’ve learned to practice yoga off the mat. I’ve trained for a marathon with the stroller, learned to hold not only my son on my back during a plank but also his friends. Some days I make it through an entire workout on my own, other days I have a monkey on board. It’s not a failure if my workout didn’t go as planned, it’s just the opposite, it’s a huge success because not only did I physically make it through holding my son I also mentally became stronger.
Q: What is your least favorite exercise?
Push ups. You wouldn’t believe that a few years prior to having my son I was able to do 80 push ups in 2 minutes for the army physical fitness test. I’m now approaching 36 months of breastfeeding and think my chest muscles must have gotten lost in the milk. This is the only exercise I have noticed is much tougher for me after becoming a mom.
Q: What are your 3 favorite exercises and why?
1) I love planks, they are filled with opportunity of creativity when you start moving and lifting limbs.
2) Sun salutations always rejuvenate me. They remind me to be present, breathe, and connect with my body. I focus on letting my breath guide my movement. One of my favorite yoga practices is continually flowing through sun salutations. As I move through them I notice the changes in my body as I breathe. At least once a year I try to do 108 in one practice.
3) Burpees, ok maybe hip thrusters because you know I don’t like push ups so I often take the push up out. I love how this one move can get me out of breath, dripping sweat, and challenge my entire body. I often add a squat jump or knee tuck in for an extra leg, core, and cardio challenge.
Q: Do you have any mental tricks that you use when you just don’t feel like working out?
I honestly never have to talk myself into exercising. It’s been my source of staying grounded through all the chaos for more than ten years. Everything around me can be going wrong and exercise is what keeps me going. I exercise in the morning before the day takes over. Starting my day off with exercise I feel good, I did something for myself, and I am ready to catch all the curve balls that come my way. When you don’t feel like working out, think about how good you will feel after you do. Focus on how good you feel post workout.
Q: Random question: what is your go-to snack food?
I’m a three meal a day person. If I’m exercising more than my normal routine or my body is telling me it needs more fuel I have two go to’s. The first is seaweed – it doesn’t fill me up but it re fuels all my minerals. The second is dipping apples in peanut butter and coconut oil, this one fills me up! The bonus is my son eats both of these snacks with me. Our daily routine keeps us out of the house for most of the day. I never leave home without packing a lunch for us. By always having a lunch packed no matter what adventure we find we continue to befueled by nutrients.
Thank you Vanessa for letting me feature you and for being an inspiration to all moms!
You can see previous fit mom interviews over here.