It’s everywhere these days. The memes tell us that if the kids don’t behave, we need to pound back a bottle of wine. The TV commercials tell us that if we’re out for dinner – we should enjoy cocktails to heighten the dining experience. It’s plagued social media, radio advertising, and TV.
Alcoholism is in.
And the problem isn’t the alcohol itself. The problem lies with how normal it has become to have a drink on every occasion and how easy it is to reward ourselves, “Well, I went to the gym today, so I deserve this,” as we round off another bottle or another beer. It’s a reward. It’s the prize for making it through the day as a Mom, for getting everyone to school on time, and even helping Charlie with his homework without having to Google the answers. “I earned this,” we say as we top up our glass and head for the bathroom to immerse ourselves in a tub full of warm water and bubbles. The problem is that a bottle of wine negates every Zumba move you performed in the gym today.
For logistics purposes, a quick Google search states that in a 1-hour session at full intensity, a participant might burn 350-650 calories. That is a full-intensity workout for an entire hour. While the 750mL bottle of red wine, 12-14% alcohol contains roughly 530-660 calories.
So if you count calories and track macros all day long, and then you crack that bottle – you flush all your progress out.
You see, it’s become natural to the people in our circles now, and it is becoming increasingly more apparent to Moms. When you start a fitness program, the people in your life say, “Why did you get a gym membership? You JUST had that baby! And you don’t need to worry about your figure yet! You look great!”. But when we’ve had a bad day, everyone is so quick to offer us a glass of wine or let us know we work so hard as a mom and deserve that evening nightcap. But this is the furthest thing from support and shouldn’t be categorized as care from friends or family.
Of the mamas I spoke to on my local Mom groups, more than 75% said they felt that social media forced a connection between wine/alcohol consumption and a “normal” mom-life.
Some moms private messaged me to let me know that as non-consuming mommies, they often felt demonized by the drinking population in the groups. Often left out of local meet-ups or gossiped.
Of the Mom clients I work with, many had avoided fitness to focus their attention on their family. When they realize that changes need to happen for their health, fitness, and wellness, they struggle to separate mom from the booze-culture. Leaving them vulnerable to new problems – overindulging and emotional eating included.
My best advice to give to moms looking to start a fitness program, personal training, or anything to repair bad habits is to find a group of supportive friends, even if that means you have to make new friends. Inherently, we cannot pick our family, but that doesn’t mean we have to take their advice. Support is the backbone of making the changes you need to fuel a healthy lifestyle. And girl, don’t feel bad about grabbing a glass of water while your friends pound back the wine – they will be the ones with hangovers.