Nursing Beth for 4.5 years brought us a both a lot of good. I'm so grateful. In the last six months she slowing became less interested and grew to enjoy cuddling as much as nursing, whereas before every cuddling became a nursing.
I expected it to happen this year, since worldwide 4 years old is the average age to self-wean.
The process was so subtle and slow that neither of us are sad about it, thank goodness. The relationship took its full and natural course.
What I am sad about, though, is the loss of the calorie burn nursing affords a mother. I had quite forgotten most of the time that making milk kept me thinner.
I'm up five pounds and I'm eating the same, which is not much. During the peri-menopausal years a woman can expect to gain a pound per year, unless she exercises an hour a day or reduces her calorie intake.
Nutrition has always been an interest of mine and in the past I was an avid exerciser, at one point running six miles a day before my knees suffered. Low-impact gym workouts followed for many years, sans weight machines, but the gym visits stopped after I became a mother.
Walking and hiking took over, but a solid routine never arose as God continued to add to our family and to my responsibilities.
I'm up against some tough hormones and the battle to lose this weight, or at least stay right here, will be difficult and require much discipline. Growing old gracefully is a goal of mine, and perhaps accepting some extra weight might be part of that. I can't be sure though, until I try harder.
My body is a temple of the Holy Spirit and it behooves me to do my best in every stage of life, calling on God's grace and strength to help me.
I found 10 habits to avoid and thought you might glean something from them. I'm only listing the habits themselves, so if you want to read the additional information about each habit, you'll have to click on this Livestrong article.
1. Poor preparation (Have healthy foods on hand)
2. Not drinking enough water
3. Not getting enough protein
4. Consuming too many liquid calories (This is why I only drink water and skim milk, and in winter healthy cocoa 3 to 4x week.)
5. Not getting enough sleep
6. Skipping breakfast (I wake up famished most of the time so I never skip breakfast.)
7. Shopping the center aisles at the grocery store (stick to lean meat, whole grains, produce, lean dairy--center aisles have processed food. I eat 7% lean ground turkey, lean turkey sausage in pasta, white meat chicken from a baked chicken, and skim milk. I do use colby-jack cheese in casseroles 1x week. We only buy 100% whole wheat bread, and I eat 2-4 slices a day between breakfast and lunch.)
8. Poor record keeping (Write down everything you eat to uncover your worst habits.)
9. Not lifting weights (I've never liked weights, but I'll have to find substitutes I can use at home.)
10. Throwing in the towel (If you make a mistake, bounce back by the next meal; don't give up.)
Your turn. What works for you, and have you gained weight in your forties, despite eating the same amount?