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ways to work out when you don't have time to hit the gym

Recently, right before my Disney vacation last week, I hit my 200th day of working out. To celebrate, obviously, I went to Disney World. That’s what athletes do to celebrate, right? Unfortunately for me, I had the best vacation ever and ate all the food on the free dining plan and came home, 7 pounds heavier, despite walking 20000 steps every single day. I know most of it is water weight from the change in diet but still, I need to figure out ways to work out when I don’t have time to hit the gym.

Old Debi would be freaking the freak out right about now. New Debi, well, I may or may not be eating my smuggled Biscoff cookies from my flight this past weekend with a hot chai tea. The thing that I’ve learned on this weight loss/ get healthy journey is that it is a journey, not a race. Being 50 pounds lighter than I was at this time last year is a huge accomplishment and I am not going to let vacationing in the real world, derail 6 months of hard work and exercise. I’m going to get over it and learn from it.

READ ALSO: How a Simple Trip to the Doctor Could Have Saved my Life

Hey, I enjoyed my vacation. I was mindful of my carbs (because I’m diabetic and I have to be) but I still ate and drank around the world. I had cocktails with meals and dessert. I don’t feel guilty about it. Guilt is a useless emotion. I feel human about it. I enjoyed the food and the drinks and now, I’ll just get right back to it. The thing is when you are out of your routine, sometimes it is hard to find the time and place to exercise and that’s why this post is so important to me because I feel like this is a universal problem for most people.

In honor of my 200th workout, I’m going to give you some pointers for ways to work out when you don’t have time to hit the gym.

A crucial part of the journey is the scenery, enjoying life on the way. I’ll be honest, working out can be boring. It can be painful and it’s hard to maintain enthusiasm when you are a grown-ass person trying to work, take care of kids, keep a house clean, a dog alive and a marriage functioning.

Sometimes you need to flip the script and do something else. Exercise comes in all shapes, sizes and in the most unexpected places so don’t give up. Set your apple watch to “other” and do you, boo! You’ll be surprised how many calories you burn and steps you take doing “other.”

Ways to Work Out When You Don’t Have Time to Hit the Gym

Walk around the neighborhood

I know this one sounds almost too simple. My mom suggested this to me when I first found out that I had diabetes. Obviously, because I am still a teen when it comes to my mom, I poo pooed her. Like I legit, was like yeah right mom. 50 pounds later, I am woman enough to admit, my mom was right. There I said it. And for as simple (almost childish as it sounds), it is my favorite part of the day. Every morning, I get outside and get some fresh air and see the beauty in the world. It also gives me time to clear my mind and get in tune with my body. It also reminds me every day just how much I love my mama.

BBG or any home video or YouTube workout

I’ve worked out at home for years. When I was in middle school, my bestie’s mom introduced her to Jane Fonda step aerobics and we were fans. Since then, I’ve done lots of home workouts from Zumba to Tae Bo and Turbo Jam. More recently, I’ve been addicted to Beach Body’s CIZE and BBG and there are a plethora of workouts on Youtube. My point is that it’s not so much how you choose to move your body as it is that you choose to move your body.

Window shop with your teen

Remember when I was telling you about the walking around my neighborhood trails and how well that works? Well, walking around the mall with your teen, window shopping burns just as many calories and on top of that, you get bonding time with your teen. Don’t overthink it. And believe me, it is much easier to get your teenager to accompany you to the mall than it is to get up early on a weekend morning to take a nature hike with you. Hell could freeze over waiting for that to be enjoyable.

Play at the park with your preschooler

Have I told you guys that in my day job, I am the pied piper of preschoolers? I am and it has reminded me that it takes a lot of energy to keep little kids entertained. There is a surprising amount of running, jumping, chasing, carrying and picking up that I had forgotten about. If you think I’m not being serious, in about 4 hours at work, I burn about 1500 calories playing with preschoolers and if you’re carrying babies around, just think of how buff your arms will be. Not joking at all. Playing with kids especially at the park where you will most certainly be running, jumping, swinging and air planing and carrying them on your shoulders will burn loads of calories.

Beach walk with your partner

Now, you probably won’t burn a zillion calories walking after dinner on the beach with your partner in the moonlight. But you will burn some and some is better than none. But if there is some playful flirty chasing or maybe a pit stop for love under the moonlight, all of that burns more calories than just sitting on the couch, falling asleep watching tv. Bonus, you get alone time with your special someone under the moonlight and they get to burn some calories too.

These are just a few ways to get exercise when you can’t get to the gym. Also, FYI, walking around Disney in the hot sun all day having the best day ever with your whole family burns about 3000 calories a day. Just one more reason that Walt Disney World is my favorite place ever.  Of course, I went way over my calories while there too (vacation cocktails) so it all balanced out in the end.

The past few months have been life-altering for me. I was diagnosed with diabetes and, in that moment, my life seriously flashed before my eyes and I knew I wasn’t done. I was faced with the question, do I change my entire life and live or do I continue on the path I’m on and die? It sounds simple enough but it was anything but.

READ MORE: How I Cured Myself of Type 2 Diabetes in 3 months

I knew I had to change but it has been hard. I took a solid week to mourn my old life; my old ways. It’s not easy. No more autopilot. I had to put on my big girl panties (and they were getting pretty big) and take responsibility for my actions. It is a choice every single day to keep going, even when I hit plateaus and I’m not getting where I want to be as fast as I hoped. I have to accept that this is s journey not a destination.

What’s your favorite way to work out when you don’t have time to hit the gym?

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My why, why I am working to reverse my diabetes, family, Signs of diabetes, diabetes, diabetes symptoms, type 2 diabetes, how to reverse diabetes

Once upon a time, there was a mom who forgot to take care of herself. She put off physicals, yearly gynecological visits, haircuts and dentist’s visits because everyone else came before herself. She got diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol, had a heart attack and died obese. She didn’t know the signs of diabetes. She didn’t know type 2 diabetes symptoms. That’s how the story could have gone, still can, if we’re being honest. Make good choices people. And the story could be how that mom worked her tail off, put herself first for the first time in a very long time and figured out how to reverse diabetes in 3 months.

The kids were healthy and never missed a dentist appointment, doctor appointment or even a haircut. They wanted for nothing. Neither did her husband. However, mom always came last. No one asked, or expected, her to do this. She just did.

Diabetes didn’t care how selfless she thought she was.

One day after many years of ignoring her own needs, eating whatever was fast and cheap, not exercising and wearing herself out doing for others, she was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and hypertension. She is me. I am the mom who forgot to take care of herself. I am a diabetic. Have you forgotten to take care of yourself?

READ ALSO: How a Simple Doctors Visit might have Saved my Life

I’m not special. This isn’t an unusual set of circumstances. Many parents, especially moms, put ourselves last because the goal of life is to keep your family alive and healthy. I didn’t know the symptoms of diabetes so I didn’t think anything about it when I was tired after eating a high carb meal. I just thought I was an exhausted mom.

Do you know the signs of diabetes?

The life goal was a good, strong marriage and to raise good human beings. To travel the world and enjoy life. This is the ball that we keep our eyes on. Then one day, it’s too late. Suddenly, the signs of diabetes are everywhere you look and somehow you managed to miss every single one of them. You’ve got a diagnosis or three and shit is about to get really real for you. Hypertension. Diabetes. Anxiety. Depression. High cholesterol. Cancer. A heart attack. A stroke. There are too many diagnoses to mention but if you’re a mom, you’ve probably already gotten a diagnosis or two of your own and maybe you don’t even know it.

So there I sat in May hearing the “wahwahwahwahwahwah” as all the blood rushed to my head, after my doctor delivered the blow, “You are severely diabetic and you need to leave here and go directly to the pharmacist, do not stop, get your prescriptions and take your high blood pressure medicine in the car because you are also super hypertensive and could literally have a stroke at any minute. Also, you are morbidly obese.” *Slightly rephrased because “wahwahwah” was all I heard after she told me that I was severely diabetic. It felt like a death sentence. I could have been. My Uncle Ramon died from his diabetes. Latinos are highly predisposed to diabetes and high blood pressure. Why did I think I was special? I was terrified and depressed. How had it gotten to this point?

Type 2 diabetes doesn’t discriminate.

It was just a “few” bad choices, right? Ate some junk food. Never counted calories. Never counted carbs. Either ate whatever, whenever or never ate at all. Never “had time” to exercise. Ignored the symptoms or poopoo’ed them away because who has time for such luxuries as being sick and getting well. I have places to be, people to see and children and husband and the PTA who all depend on me.

Spoiler alert: The world will not implode if you take a few days off and take care of yourself. People can pick up the slack and figure shit out if they need to. No one will hate you (and if they do, so what). Generally, people are pretty good and they really do want the best for you but people only treat you the way you allow them to. If you show them a martyr, superwoman then they are going to push you like a martyr superwoman. Pssst, it’s ok to be human.

READ ALSO: What to do when You Realize You’re Doing Parenting All Wrong

But you don’t me to tell you that. You need me to tell you how I changed all of that. How I went from a morbidly obese, hypertensive diabetic to a mom on a mission who reversed her diabetes in 3 months. Sounds easy right? Like turning a car around but it’s anything but. Being a diabetic is a serious condition and can have serious health ramifications so if you have been warned that you are “prediabetic” take it seriously.

Being prediabetic is a major diabetes symptom red flag. Don’t ignore it.

Soon, you will drop the “pre” and just be a full-blown diabetic and your doctor will be checking your feet to see if you’ve lost feeling and never allowed to go barefoot again. You’ll have to have a special diabetic eye exam to make sure you’re not going blind and will never see your children’s beautiful faces again. You’ll have to count your carbs and work out like your life depends on it because it does. I was prediabetic before I was diabetic and I did nothing about it. That “pre” gave me a false sense of safety.

What did I do to reverse my diabetes? Yes, reverse because you can’t cure. Diabetes is incurable. You either live with it and die from it or you do what you need to and reverse it and get back to a non-diabetic state but whatever damage has already been done, has been done and you can always become diabetic again if you start making those wrong choices again. That’s my warning, that’s my real talk.

READ MORE: Food’s an Addiction and Sugar’s a Drug

How to reverse diabetes

My why, why I am working to reverse my diabetes, family, Signs of diabetes, diabetes, diabetes symptoms, type 2 diabetes, how to reverse diabetesPutting Yourself First

The first thing you have to do is make yourself a priority in your own life. Really. You won’t be alive to take care of or love and be loved by anyone if you don’t take care of yourself because you will be dead. Diabetes can kill you. Type 2 diabetes is completely controllable and reversible but you have to care about and love yourself enough to put your health above everything and everyone else. It sounds impossible but it’s not. With the love and support of those you love, you can do it.

Medicine

If you’re like me, you hate to take medicine. It sucks. Everything has side effects. You’ve seen the commercials; to help alleviate your depression you may become suicidal and to alleviate your migraine you can go blind. They have to list every side effect ever. But sometimes you need medicine to survive or at least until you can work towards getting healthy enough to not need it. I’m not on insulin but I was prescribed medication to control my diabetes and my high blood pressure, along with a plan to eat healthy, count carbs and exercise. There is no easy fix. A pill cannot fix everything. A pill is a Band-Aid to help you get well enough to get healthy.

Working Out

This is hard. Starting is overwhelming but it’s not impossible. When you’re a mom, especially, trying to find the time to work out can feel like trying to find time to do your nails or get a massage, non-existent. Remember when I was talking about putting yourself first? This is part of that. Just move. It doesn’t matter how. I started with a Beachbody workout (dancing), then I threw in some BBG ab work. My mom kept urging me to “just walk” and I thought it sounded too simple. I was hesitant but it was doable and it gave me time every morning to reflect and get my mind right. 50 pounds later, mom was right. It was simple. Don’t overcomplicate things. Just move. I document my daily walks on InstaStories to keep myself accountable.

Join me on Instagram to follow along as I reverse diabetes. We can get healthy together.

READ ALSO: How to Lose Weight and Get Healthy Fast

Eating Healthy

Not going to lie, this was hard because eating healthy means being mindful of what you put into your body and investing in yourself because healthy food is not cheap. It is so much more affordable and convenient to buy a McDonald’s dollar menu meal than it is to go to the grocery store, buy fresh produce and lean protein, cook it and eat it after a long day at work. And that is how we’ve gotten to 30 million Americans with diabetes. Most people start showing symptoms of diabetes after the age of 45 but there are more and more children, teens and young adults who are getting diagnosed. By taking care of ourselves and choosing more carefully what to put into our bodies, we are affecting our families and their health too.

I’m not saying you have to make perfect, healthy choices every single day. I’m not saying to deprive yourself. I’m saying to be mindful of your choices and how what you do affects your body. The most important thing is to not let a little blip derail your whole program. A blip is just a blip. Move on and get back to your plan. You can do this.

Drink Your Water

Yes, water weight is a thing and drinking enough water is good for your body in so many ways. It helps flush toxins and maintain the balance of body fluids. It just makes you feel better. You should be drinking a minimum of 64 ounces of water a day. I drink closer to 100 because it’s the only thing I really drink aside from coffee and tea.

Counting Carbs

I’ve never been one who could stick to Keto or no carbs. I love carbs. Bread might be my love language. But the thing is carbs are in everything; fruit, vegetables, rice, milk, meat and sauces. But yeah, there are a lot of carbs in bread so choose wisely.

My doctor gave me a finite amount of carbs each day to consume. 45 per meal, 15 per snack, three times per day for each. Now, it’s like money, I can spend it my carbs wisely on lean proteins and fresh produce or I can waste it on a snickers bar. You can see that a grilled chicken breast, asparagus, watermelon and brown rice would be more filling than a Snickers bar. Mostly we should choose the balanced meal but if you want to choose the Snickers bar occasionally, that’s ok. Just not all day and not every day.

Portion control

Last but, definitely, not least is portion control. Before I had no idea what correct portions were. The portions that most restaurants serve are not the right sized portion for an adult human. They are often double and sometimes even triple the portion size, carbs and calories that we need. So, I started reading labels and measuring. I know, it sounds like a pain in the ass and it is but so is being dead when you want to be alive. Soon, you will learn the right portions and you won’t need to measure everything anymore. Before you know it, you will be eating for fuel and only until you are full not until you are stuffed.  I used to east mindlessly and that’s how I got to where I was. Now, I am thoughtful about my choices; what I eat and how often I move.

This is how I reversed my diabetes in 3 months. It’s been 6 months since I was diagnosed with diabetes and hypertension. It’s been 3 months since I reversed it all. I will have to be mindful of my choices and work on my health every day for the rest of my life but now, it’s a habit. I look forward to it because I know I’m working towards being a better me. I feel better and I’ve lost 50 pounds. My goal is to lose 70 more pounds and to do a 5K in 2020. Did I mention by listening to my mom I’ve been walking a 5K every morning, 4-5 days a week? It’s the best part of my day and I’ve done it in everything from 20 degrees to rain, snow and 110 degrees. It’s hard but I’m worth it and so are you!

My why, why I am working to reverse my diabetes, family, Signs of diabetes, diabetes, diabetes symptoms, type 2 diabetes, how to reverse diabetes

This is how I reversed my diabetes in 3 months and saved my life. Are you taking care of yourself? Why not? You deserve to be alive and happy and most certainly, healthy. You are worth the investment. I know, as moms, we put everyone else above us, it’s in our DNA but remember your why. My family, my girls and the Big Guy, are my “why” but I have to take care of me to be here to love and be loved by them. I have to love me to be able to love them. It’s simple. Take care of yourself before it’s too late.

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diabetes, diabetic, high blood pressure, how a simple doctor's visit might save my life, healthy, how to keep your kids healthy, happy children, healthy habits, Anthem, ballet, ballerinas

Have you ever heard that song by Tim McGraw, “Live Like You were Dying”? Today, it’s personal. It’s real. I found out Monday that I’m a diabetic with high blood pressure. Now,  there’s nothing I want more than to reverse diabetes and high blood pressure.

In the past, I’ve implemented a “no special occasion” rule ( meaning every single day is special) and decided to go for it now (stop waiting for conditions to be right). Eat the cake. Dance like no one is watching. Enjoy life. Laugh. Love. Tell people you love them every single chance you get. Be more tolerant of people because you don’t know their story. But I was never actually in harm’s way.

Monday, I went to the doctor for my annual physical. Only it’s been more like a year and a half because of all the health issues that happened to me in the fall. The 3-month period and the removal of my lady parts who were trying to kill me. I thought I was finally out of the proverbial health woods. I should have known better.

READ ALSO: Why I’m having a Hysterectomy

I spent 3 months sitting during my last recovery. I’ve been eating like there were no consequences. Pop. Yes, please. Fast food. Yep. Juice. Yep. Late night snacks. Hell yeah. Insomnia makes you hungry. I’m joking but it’s really not funny.

My doctor gave me a whole lot of bad news this week. Not the “you need to eat better and work out”, usual news they give everyone. Nope, I got the “you are severely sick; morbidly obese, extremely diabetic, your blood pressure is so high you could stroke out at any moment and oh yeah, your cholesterol is up too” news. I was shocked because how can you be prepared for that kind of news.

Maybe it doesn’t sound too scary to you. Let me explain. My sugar numbers are twice what they should be. I am a diabetic and I wasn’t on Sunday. My blood pressure was 200/130. I cried. I sobbed in my doctor’s office because how did I get here? How did I ignore my body so much that it could, quite frankly, kill me? Literally, I could die. I might be crying while writing this post. My entire life has changed this week. I have a new perspective on life.

All I want to do is get healthy

I’m still trying to wrap my head around it all. My doctor and I made a plan. Dying is not an option that I want to consider. All of this is reversible. It’s a lot of hard work, planning, completely overhauling my diet and lifestyle but it’s not optional. I have a husband and two daughters who love me and depend on me and I made a promise to be here for them. My goal is 103 years old. This was never part of the plan. I can see so clearly now what is important to me…my family.

I’ve never had a healthy relationship with food or my body. Food is basically my arch nemesis and my body has taken a beating over the years. I was stupid when I was young and I starved myself. I punished my body.

READ ALSO: Burden of Being a Fat Woman

I realized that I could live with being fat a long time ago because perfection and I have a longstanding struggle and to not let it go was going to kill me. Maybe I don’t love being overweight but I knew eating disorders were off the table. Maybe you think there are more options but when your eating is as disordered as mine, it’s like being an alcoholic. You are eating disordered for life. You have to make a choice every morning to not act upon it.

Now, I’m having to make a choice every single day to commit to staying alive. My goal is to get healthy and reverse it all but what damage is it doing while I’m trying to lower my sugar and my blood pressure? I’m so scared. I’ve been walking around in a funk trying to get my bearings since they told me. It’s knocked me off my axis.

“You’re diabetic…have high blood pressure and are morbidly obese”

If you could have seen my doctor’s face, you would have seen the severity of my situation. I cried because did I actually let bad food choices rob my children of their mother? I have a responsibility and a profound want to be here for as much of their lives as I can. I don’t want to let them down. That’s the last thing I ever wanted to do.

And the Big Guy, I made a commitment to him to love him for the rest of our lives. We’ve only had 20 years. It’s not enough. I’m terrified right now. I feel overwhelmed. But I’m not giving up. I’m doing everything I can to right this wrong.

I always put myself last. I remember every few years to make myself a priority but then it falls to the wayside. Everyone else gets their dental appointments, physicals and eye appointments. I make sure to meet everyone’s needs but my own. I put myself on the back burner because my job is to take care of them.

“It’s all reversible. You don’t have to be a diabetic or have high blood pressure. But you’ll have to make serious changes.”

I get a physical every year, but it’s been a year and a half. Either something came up for the kids, or I was dealing with the hysterectomy saga or we had someplace to be or something to do or finances were tight. Every time, I went to the bottom of the list by my own doing and now, I have to focus on me. No more excuses.

I have to let things go. The most important thing right now is my health and my family. Nothing else matters. I want to live more than I’ve ever wanted anything in my entire life. Food is fuel to me now and there is no food worth dying for.  If I have to eat sandpaper for the rest of my life, I will. If I have to give up sweets, eating out, pop, juice, bread and coffee, I will. If I have to work out every day for the rest of my life, I will.

If you have any diabetic friendly recipes that don’t taste like sandpaper, I will take them. If you have prayers to spare, I’ll take them too.  Please, remember to take care of yourselves because if you don’t…you might not be there to take care of the people you love the most.

My family, the Big Guy, Bella and Gabs, they are my reasons for everything including taking care of myself. They are worth living for. I forgot that. I was so busy putting everyone else first that I forgot about me. Don’t forget about you.

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Glucerna, diabetes, carbsteady, healthy snacks, diabetic dessert, dessert

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and Glucerna. All opinions are mine alone. #GlucernaContigo #CollectiveBias

 

Did you know that 6 million(23%) Hispanics in the United States have diabetes compared to 20 million of non-Hispanic whites. In addition to that an estimated that 57 million people in the United States have pre-diabetes, and 35% are estimated to be Hispanic. This is a terrifying statistic, especially for the Latino community.

 

At my last check up my doctor told me that my sugar was higher than she would like. I was not diabetic but she wanted my numbers to go down or one day, I will be diabetic. That really scared me because I have lost people in my family that I love to diabetes. I don’t want to be another statistic and I certainly don’t want to die because of bad eating habits.

 

That’s the thing about diabetes, it is a scary and terrible disease but it can be prevented if you are willing to do the work; move more and eat less of the foods that are bad for you. I know it’s hard because we develop these habits and our bodies crave sweets.

 

It’s not easy but isn’t your life worth the sacrifice? Isn’t being around to see your children and your grandchildren grow up worth it? Do it for your spouse who loves you and doesn’t want to live without you. Do it for you because you deserve to live a long and happy life and no amount of sweets is worth giving up all of that living you still have to do.

 

One way to avoid becoming another statistic is to start by changing some of your favorite recipes and making them healthier. You could be surprised at how a few tweaks can change your life for the better.

 

One of my favorite treats has always been ice cream. I love ice cream but I know too much of a good thing can quickly become a bad thing so I’ve changed up one of my favorite recipes the banana split.

 

Banana Split Parfait

 

Ingredients

Glucerna, diabetes, carbsteady, healthy snacks, diabetic dessert, dessert

½ banana

½ cup of strawberries

¾ cup of organic French vanilla yogurt

½ Glucerna Crispy Delight Nutrition Bar in Chocolate Chip ( which can easily be found at your local Wal-Mart.)

Glucerna, diabetes, carbsteady, healthy snacks, diabetic dessert, dessert

Glucerna products have CARBSTEADY, which includes slowly digestible carbohydrates designed to help minimize blood sugar spikes.

 Glucerna, diabetes, carbsteady, healthy snacks, diabetic dessert, dessert

Directions

Using a small parfait glass, layer half of the bananas sliced on the bottom of the cup.

Then layer one third of the French vanilla yogurt.

Top that with ¼ cup fresh, sliced strawberries

Add another layer of bananas

Add another layer of yogurt

Add a layer of strawberries

Add final layer of remaining French vanilla yogurt

Top with crumbled up ½ of Glucerna Chocolate chip Crispy delight Nutrition bar to give the parfait a little extra crunch and nutrition.

Enjoy in good conscious.

Glucerna, diabetes, carbsteady, healthy snacks, diabetic dessert, dessert

This treat is tasty, healthy and you won’t feel like you are being punished. It’ll fulfill your sweet tooth but its completely healthy.

 

Bonus: You can click here for $1 off coupon on any 1 Glucerna product.

Glucerna – Steady Ahead from Kevin Egan on Vimeo.

Be sure to check out more information about Glucerna, great meal plans and the amazing array of shakes and nutritional bar options at Glucerna.com

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