A Challenge and A Mom’s Weight Loss Lessons

I wear many hats.

I’m the ‘pull up queen’ of Challenge Workouts.

I’m the ‘Mistress of Misery’ here at Calgary NW Fit Body Boot camp.

I run the Fit Body Boot Camp University (training trainers),

I’m the ‘Female Fat Loss Over 40’ Expert.

I’m a former school teacher of 20 years.


But first and foremost, I’m a mom.


challenge workouts

I know that several of you are likely parents and I wanted to share two things:

  • a weight loss strategy that relates to dealing with teenagers
  • a cool body weight challenge (unrelated to teenagers)

Those of you that are parents of teens out there will understand what I’m talking about when I refer to teenagers and my weight loss strategy. You should know that all my experience with teenagers isn’t just from my own two wonderful specimens. I also taught school for 20 years, so I’m well versed in ‘teenager’.

I say this weight loss strategy was learned in ‘Mom school’. If your children are still at a tender age, no offense is intended. You’ll understand me better when they grow up a little and you learn first hand what I’m talking about.

Isn’t it amazing how teenagers know so much? In fact, they know pretty much everything. I can always rely on a (smart ass) comment or answer to any question if I ask a teenager. No need for Google or further research,


There is one exception to this ‘have an answer to everything’ rule. Teenagers are extremely busy with their own high level stuff. They tend to have selective hearing, or the ‘is your homework done?’ ‘please clean your room’ ‘go the principal’s office’ type comments aren’t deemed important enough to illicit a response.


I’m not out to bash teenagers. I actually LOVE teenagers. They’re honestly the most genuine and possibly misunderstood people out there. But this teenager trait is a perfect correlation to what’s going on with your belly and brain. There’s actually a weight loss strategy around this concept that’s so simple you may be reluctant to try it.

Imagine that you’re sitting down to eat. In this case, your brain is the teenager. About 15 minutes into your meal, your stomach knows that it should tell your brain something, but it knows that your brain is too busy doing something else to listen. Just like teenagers are distracted with so many other pressing things they don’t listen when their mom tells them to ‘bring a jacket’ or ‘remember your key’.


So, although the stomach will send an important message to the brain, like ‘slow down, I’m full!’, the brain ignores it. Or, the teenager gets rained on and is locked out of the house.

First, how many of you eat with the TV on?


Eat while reading a magazine?


Eat in front of your computer?


This is the same as you talking to your teenager whilst they listen to their Ipod with their noise canceling headphones on.



Your stomach is trying to talk to your brain saying, ‘I’m FULL!’, but your brain is too busy doing better things to listen. And so you overeat.

The stomach and the brain are connected, but there’s a bit of a time lapse. It takes about 15 minutes for the brain to recognize and say ‘OMGosh, I’m stuffed, I need to go lay down and undo my pants’ but since your brain wasn’t listening, you’ve had an extra 15 minutes to stuff food down your throat.


There’s an obvious solution to this.


STOP watching TV,

STOP reading

STOP working on your computer or doing any number of other distracting things while eating.

When you’re eating, just EAT.


Pay attention.



Chew your food. (OMGosh, now I sound like your mother!).

Put your fork down between bites.

Give some time for your stomach to tell your brain, ‘I’m full’. When the brain is paying attention, you’ll feel full and actually stop eating. You’ll save yourself loads of calories.

I know it sounds too simple to work, but it really does work. It’s a matter of enjoying your food, being in tune with your body, listening to its cues.

It’s amazingly simple.

Unlike teenagers, who aren’t as simple to deal with at times (but totally loveable).

challenge workouts
Nothing weird going on here with my daughter and her beau...

I have to say that my kids aren’t your typical teenagers. They’re pretty good at listening, but they do know a lot so I have a great ‘go to’ resource 😉

They’re turning out to be great people. In fact they’re both honor roll students and do volunteer work to help make the world a better place. (Even if their room isn’t one of those places 😉

Now, onto a cool workout for you as promised…


Some of you may know that I’m dealing with a torn meniscus so my workouts have been a little shy on leg work. It’s driving me crazy. I feel like I’m gonna look like this soon:

challenge workouts

I’ve discovered kettlebell swings hit my hamstrings and bum without bothering my knee much. They’re pretty exhausting, so I’m happy to add them in with pretty much anything. I tend to break my body parts up when I train. I like to keep my workouts to about 35-45 min and I make sure I add some intervals within the workout or at the end in the form of finishers. If you need great finisher ideas, check out my pal, Mike Whitfield’s program, awesome fat burning ideas there for you.


Today I trained chest and biceps. This is a new combination for me. I usually do pushing movements on one day and pulling the next. It’s fun to always change things up though and I’m enjoying this new (to me) combo. I like how chest and bi’s are non-competing muscles so that if I throw them into a superset, exhausting one muscle won’t affect the strength of the second movement. Anyway, I thought I’d share my workout with you here. I used my gymboss set at 30 seconds work with a five second transition:


  1. 30 lb KB swing
  2. 115 lb BB bench press
  3. push ups
  4. 50 lb BB curl
  5. 30 seconds rest


Repeat 5 times.


I counted reps each set and recorded during the 30 seconds rest. My goals was to match reps from my first set. This kept the intensity up. I felt I got my heart rate up and exhausted my upper body in record time. I realized after the first set that I needed more than a 5 second transition, but because I’m stubborn, I kept with the plan…take a look at my training log:

push up workout


I finished up with single arm DB incline fly to single arm DB bicep curl, three sets, no rest between arms. I love doing single limb training, especially once I’m fatigued.

Give this one a go. Your comments are always welcome, I’d love to know if you do this workout and how you make out.