How To Fuel Your Energy Tank When You’re Running After Baby

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We’ve all heard it, in fact we all have most likely sang it on the playground many moons ago…“First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby in the baby carriage”. So idyllic, and so blissful, the thought of bringing a baby into the family. And so it is!

After 9 months of preparation, and eager anticipation, the curtain drops and into your life comes a small miracle. Through the haze of emotional ecstasy comes a slow and steady realization that this ‘little one’ is now solely dependent on you, the caregiver. Even with all the love that you can provide, that is no small feat! From this point to forever, as a parent, you will expend physical, mental and emotional energy. That energy may wane as the years pass, but as a parent, it will never subside.

So what is the secret to getting energized and staying energized?

In order to perform admirably in duties such as the countless diaper changes and baby feedings, to getting up throughout the night and becoming entertainer in the daytime, your body and mind requires an abundance of energy!

Think of yourself as your favourite car for a moment. You have a gas tank. In order to function, and to travel any distance, you need gas in the tank. Gas fuels the car and can allow the car to perform optimally. As the fuel gets used, the gas tank empties, therefore the car will need more gas to continue to perform optimally. You still with me?

Now to you. Your body requires fuel to energize your system. Over time that fuel gets used up and needs to be replaced. Fuel comes in different forms for the human body. Check out my tips to stay energized and on a full tank:

SLEEP
This is one of the most important aspects of our lives and typically the area we cut back on most. Your body needs sleep for recovery and energy. Optimal sleep is anywhere from 7-11 hours per night. Naps are also proven to be extremely beneficial. Why not sneak a 20-30 minute catnap when the ‘little one’ dozes off!

NUTRITION
Much like the gas tank analogy, the quality of what you put in the tank is equally important for performance. The better the gas, the better the performance. Much has been said, written, studied, and documented about nutrition and its absolute benefits. Some general principles and guidelines: Reduce or remove all sugars, refined products, and processed foods. Eat the colours of the rainbow. Increase your intake of fruits and vegetables. Drink pressed juice, or make fruit and vegetable smoothies. Add more nuts, beans and legumes. You are what you eat! Eat good, feel good!

In addition, take time to plan meals and snacks ahead of time. Have the ingredients, have meals and snacks prepared and ready to go. This time saver alone is a huge energy booster.

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HYDRATION
The human body consists of 50-65% water. It is a crucial part to our day to day functioning. Even a 2% drop through dehydration causes lethargy, lack of focus, and low energy. A study by Loughborough University showed a water loss of as little as 5% can result in a 30% loss of energy. The recommended daily intake of fluids by the Dietitians of Canada is 9 cups (2.2 litres) for women, and 12 cups (3 litres) for men. Now that is not easy, but learning to drink on an ongoing basis is certainly more optimal than drinking when thirsty. Have a water bottle handy and drink continuously throughout the day. Although you’ll begin by running to the bathroom more, you will notice a clear mood and energy difference.

EXERCISE
There is nothing like some exercise to boost energy and promote feeling good. Exercise stimulates the body and releases dopamine, the bodies natural feel-good drug. Whether you are tired and run down, or just flat out not in the mood, if you can muster up the strength to get through a 15-30+ minute workout, (run, bike, swim, yoga) you will feel rejuvenated, self-confident, de-stressed, and energized!

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Sleep, Nutrition, Hydration, and Exercise are by no means a secret. In fact, they are the pillars to leading a well balanced and healthy lifestyle. Here are some additional tips to find energy in other ways:

JUST BREATHE
Step outside, go for a walk, or open the windows. Let some clean air circulate through your lungs and permeate your system. Breathing in clean air and ridding your body of toxins is a great way to grab an energy boost. Take 5 minutes or more to connect with nature.

BE PRESENT
Sometimes when your child is playing and all you can think of is the laundry list of things-to-do, take a moment to be present. Enjoy the moments that seem to pass in the blink of an eye. You won’t regret it! Be silly, dance, play, laugh, act like a scary tickle monster, sing like Elmo. You’re kid(s) will love you for it all the more, and guess what, you’ll love yourself that little bit more too. Yay for energy!

Looking forward to greater health

OTHER MOMS (PARENTS)
Seek out other moms. They are everywhere, and most likely feeling, and thinking, the same as you are. There is strength in numbers. Call and meet up with friends for a playdate. Looking for new mom friends? Check out your local library and community centres for events and gatherings. Head out to the park. Say hi and spark up conversation at the grocery store. Find mom groups online in your area, check out ‘Mom Meet Mom’. For many, this is a welcome relief and a win-win. Some like-minded adult contact and conversation goes a long way in dispelling any doubts, fears, and concerns. In fact, you may feel energized and supported by the network you create.

Simply put, your energy can come from intentional acts and behaviors. Raising a baby is arguably the most rewarding responsibility in your lifetime. Make each day and each moment count. Nobody said it would be easy, but they all say it was worth it!

Calea

Calea is a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (CPCC) through the Coaching Training Institute (CTI) who specializes in helping moms find a balance between being a mom and being themselves. She is the founder of Yummy Mummy Life where she will help you in the confidence department, offering 1 on 1 signature packages designed to make your dreams happen + goals happen. In addition, Calea is also a mom & baby fitness instructor, and an essential oil wellness advocate. Follow her on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.

Lick your lips green smoothie bowl – A smoothie you can eat with a spoon!

Start your day with a hit of GREEN!

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Ingredients

⅓ cucumber
¼ apple
1/2 banana
3 cubes of frozen greens (spinach, kale, arugula) or 1 handful fresh spinach leaves (if you use fresh spinach, add 3 ice cubes to the mix)
1 small piece of fresh ginger, peeled (fingertip sized) or 1/2 teaspoon of dry ginger
1 cup coconut water
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon hemp seeds
optional: scoop of protein powder, 1 teaspoon of maca, sweetener of choice

Instructions

Put all the ingredients in your blender and blend away
Pour in a cup and top with nuts, berries or granola

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This recipe started as a green smoothie bowl, then after I was done I had a smoothie. Pretty much the yummiest smoothie I have made to date. So yummy I had to share it and, bonus, it’s super healthy. This is a smoothie that will help give you energy, nourish you and make you lick your lips.

If you want to make a thicker smoothie bowl (how I like it), use less coconut water and 1/4 of an avocado.


A little note about hemp hearts:

Hemp seeds are one of the most nutritionally well-balanced plant foods on this earth. They are power-packed with a healthy dose of protein, fatty acids, antioxidants, minerals and fibre that offer the perfect harmony for the human body. These amazing seeds also contain all 8 essential amino acids required for making a complete, plant-based protein source. Hemp seeds are also rich in
omega-3 fatty acids, ideal for boosting mood, increasing brain function and reducing memory loss, as well as reducing inflammation.

Enjoy and if you don’t want a green smoothie mustache, you can always try a durable glass smoothie straw.

 

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Our amazing food blogger is Kimberly Ignas from Appreciating Health, a Holistic Nutritionist with a specialty in pregnancy, postpartum, and family health. She is happiest helping mothers and their little ones live a healthy and vibrant whole food lifestyle!

Quick & Healthy Morning Ritual

Breakfast? Who has time for that?

I don’t know about you, but I find the mornings terribly difficult to manage. All I really want to do is wake up to a nice cup of coffee and sit on my terrace in the sunlight, but none of that is going to happen, for many reasons (first being not having a terrace).

What my mornings actually look like is a blur of clothing, toast crusts, and spilled juice. Usually by the time I get out the front door for class (or playgroup), I have totally neglected to feed myself and my next stop will be a quick fix scone at a local coffee shop. Not a good idea!

I think we all know how important it is to start the day off right. It is one of the best ways to combat the blood sugar ups and downs that often accompany the strenuous (and tiring) job of motherhood. A good breakfast can keep you energized all morning and full of the fruits and veggies that give your immunity a boost.

Smoothies (with a twist) to the rescue!

So, how can you squeeze a healthy breakfast into an already hectic morning? The answer is always the same: be prepared! By now you must have seen the amazing ziploc bag smoothies all over Pinterest. These have been an absolute saviour for me! If you have a blender and a freezer, a healthy breakfast can be yours in the time it takes your toast to pop!

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The one thing I don’t love about this is waste, so I tend to package my smoothie contents in a few tupperware containers instead. Some even use jars, but I will leave that up to you! 

6 easy steps to a delicious, healthy smoothie!

1. Pick a few of your favourite freezer containers 

2. Chop a bunch of your favourite fruits and divide equal parts into your containers (about a cup). I always make sure I get bananas in each one. 

3. Add a little creamy flair to each container if desired:
            – yoghurt
            – peanut butter
            – coconut meat 

4. Pop all containers in the freezer (be sure to label them). 

5. In the morning, empty one of the containers into a blender with a liquid base
             – Almond milk
             – Coconut water
             – Water
             – Green tea (don’t knock it ’til you try it!)

6. Blend….but not so fast, let’s make it extra healthy:
              – Handful of greens
              – Spirulina 
              – Protein powder (I like Vega) 
              – Chia seeds
              – Flaxseeds 

Technically you can freeze the greens with your fruits but I find it does not blend very well, and I like my greens REALLY hidden! You can be creative and enjoy a bunch of different combinations. You can’t really go wrong, and if it needs a bit of sweetness you can add honey, maple syrup, or chopped dates.

Super Immune Booster Smoothie:

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Immune Smoothie

1 cup chopped mango
1/2 chopped orange
1 tsp zest of lemon or lime
1/2 cup greek yoghurt
1 tsp maca powder or vanilla protein powder
1 cup water

Combine chopped mango, chopped orange, lemon zest, and yogurt into freezer container of choice and place in freezer. In the mornings empty container into a blender and add water and maca powder or protein powder. Blend and enjoy!

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