Every time you look at social media you are bombarded with #fitmoms who appear to be flawless and do everything right. At Stay Fit Mom we don’t want to be another slap to the face about how you could look so much better or how what you’re doing isn’t good enough. We love sharing REAL life with you and everything that comes along with it. This is why we are so giddy over our newest mom crush. I want to introduce you to someone who is just as beautiful on the inside and she is on the outside. This mom is the most humble person I know, she has an amazing spirit, she is very personable, down to earth, and just radiates happiness. This mom has a true love of health and fitness and she is kind enough to share a little bit of it with all of us. Meet our newest mom crush, Rebecca Berkabile!
Photos of Rebecca for today’s post were taken by Nate of TNG Photography.
Rebecca: I am 27 years old, I was born and raised here in Las Vegas. My husband Jonathan and I have been married for 9 years. We have 3 beautiful children, 2 girls and 1 boy. Sadie, our oldest who is 7, Cooper who is 3, and Harlee our youngest who is 18 months. Some of my favorite things to do include spending time with my family (doesn’t matter what we’re doing), fitness, and date night with the husband (we have date night every week).
SFM: Where did you get your passion for health and fitness?
Rebecca: Truth be told, when I first started getting into fitness and nutrition, I didn’t do it for the right reasons. I was unhappy with myself physically so I tried the extremes in fitness and dieting. I had hopes of obtaining the “body” I wanted. I found that the harder I tried to obtain it, the more unattainable it became. I had let something that was supposed to be “healthy”, become very unhealthy both physically and mentally.
What I’ve learned over the years is that often times less is more. I learned that excessive amounts of cardio and under eating were not the answer, but were only short-term. I’ve learned our bodies run off of fuel and the better we fuel them, the more efficient they will work. This changed the way I looked at fitness and nutrition. For me it was very scary at first because the majority of the fitness industry tells you that you need excessive cardio and extreme diets to reach your goals. I began to look and question everything I did, whether it would lead me short-term or long-term. Anything short-term, I did away with. It wasn’t until I began to do all of this, in pursuit of true health, that I began to have a love for it. My whole view of health and fitness changed. The negative outlook and burdensome feelings I had towards my workouts changed and I started to enjoy every bit of my fitness journey and it became my passion.
SFM: Can you tell us about your training schedule?
Rebecca: I go to the gym 5-6 days a week. Not because you need to go that much in order to get results, but because it’s what I love to do. And hello, free day care! Haha. But honestly, my kids enjoy going as well. Most of my training I do is weight lifting. I always hit shoulders twice per week, legs and glutes twice per week, and chest, back, biceps, and triceps at least once per week. For cardio I do 3 HIIT sessions per week no longer than 12 minutes. I also sometimes do 2 moderate cardio sessions per week for circulation and blood flow purposes. Those are no longer than 15 minutes per session. I try to keep my training sessions no longer than 1 hour to an hour and fifteen minutes with everything included (although some days we moms get talking). Leg days are a bit longer, but I never let it go longer than an hour and a half with everything combined.
SFM: I joked with you a few weeks ago and said that you look like you could be in a bikini competition tomorrow, what keeps you so motivated to stay on track?
Rebecca: The stage is not for me, but that’s another story! Honestly, what keeps me motivated is the stress relief I get from going to the gym, it’s therapy for me. I can put my headphones in for an hour and no one needs me for anything. If you’re a mom, you know what I mean. The gym is my medicine and because of that I feel like it helps me to be a better mother and wife. My time at the gym keeps me not only physically healthy, but also emotionally healthy. The endorphins for me are everything.
SFM: How do you balance keeping to a consistent workout program while mothering?
Rebecca: I always take the kids with me to the gym and they love it. Because we’re there daily my kids always seem to find one of the workers that they get super attached to, it’s really sweet. Granted there are days when it’s not that easy. For example, when my kids are sick and I cannot take them. On those days I wake up earlier, while my husband is home, and go or I will go sometime later on that day when he gets home. Some days that might not even work out and I may just have to miss it. Whatever obstacle is thrown my way I just do my best to work around it.
SFM: We often tell our readers that it’s ALL about the food! What’s your diet consist of?
Rebecca: When it comes to food I’m all about balance. One thing I’ve learned about myself is that I cannot feel deprived because that sets me up for binge eating. I’m a hungry girl and I HAVE to be fed! I do not starve my self, I do not eat “clean” all day, and I just like to enjoy food. I count macros so I don’t eliminate anything from my diet. What’s great about counting macros is I can fit anything I want to eat in according to my macro-nutrient needs. Some things I eat daily are: oatmeal, toast, bagels, cream cheese, eggs, egg whites, berries, green beans, Brussels sprouts, protein drinks and protein bars, some type of serving of meat (not a huge meat fan, never have been), and potatoes (red, white, sweet, I love potatoes!). I eat a lot of rice, nut butters, homemade protein bread, cheese, pancakes, sandwiches, bacon, and really just about everything. Everything I eat I love and I will not eat anything that I do not enjoy just because it’s “healthy”. If I’m not thoroughly enjoying my meal than I won’t eat it. Food has to keep me happy emotionally. Healthy isn’t just what you look like physically, but it’s also how you feel emotionally. Long story short, emotionally I don’t do well if I can’t eat delicious food.
SFM: What’s one of your favorite foods/meals?
Rebecca: Breakfast foods! Especially Pancakes! I love pancakes, there are so many ways to make them!
SFM: What is your weakness when it comes to food? How do you manage to keep your treats under control and in moderation?
Rebecca: My biggest weakness is cookies. I love sugar cookies and homemade soft chocolate chip cookies! I’m not going to lie, I like to indulge occasionally but I will still try to fit them into my macros for the day. Some days I will fail at that but I’ve learned not to let it mess with me and just pick up and move on. The important thing is not to give up!
SFM: You have 3 beautiful kids and look amazing! How do you tackle pregnancy and post pregnancy fitness/diet?
Rebecca: Well thank you! Honestly, not much changes with my approach to health and fitness while I am pregnant. The only problem for me is those first few months when I’m so sick and I can’t even think about eating any type of protein. So I just know those first few months without an adequate amount of protein I lose a lot of muscle. It’s never fun watching your body change so quickly and drastically but I’ve just learned it’s part of being a mom. I usually gain about 20-23 pounds but with the exchange of muscle loss it seems like so much more. Pregnancy is rough, no doubt, but all I can say is that I’m consistent through my pregnancies and just always do my best. I definitely don’t let it be a time to just let go, but I also try not to stress about it and just go with the daily changes pregnancy brings. Post pregnancy is the same for me. I try to stay consistent and do only things that I can do long term. I mean don’t get me wrong, it’s always such a shock to see yourself post pregnancy and not feel desperate to do anything to get back to where you were, but I’ve found that slow and steady wins the race and that is always my approach.
SFM: What advice do you have for women that want to make a drastic change in their own lives?
Rebecca: My advice to women that want to make a change in their life is to start with setting small daily goals that are attainable. Don’t just wake up one day and try to do it all because you will exhaust yourself. If you’re not someone who exercises on a daily basis don’t start exercising 5 days a week for an hour everyday. Instead start with one-three days a week. Anything more than what you normally do should be celebrated and is a step in the right direction! It’s those small daily/weekly goals that you meet that add up over time and make you successful. Just be patient and always trying to make small progressive steps. If what you’re doing now makes you miserable then find another way! If you’re not enjoying what you’re doing that it won’t last so find something you love and stick with it.
SFM: You have plans to get your personal training license in the near feature. What is your fitness philosophy and how do you plan to use it to make a difference in other’s lives?
Rebecca: My goal is to help others find a happy place in health and fitness. There is so much negativity everywhere you turn telling us that what our bodies look like is what’s important in life, and it’s NOT. Be kind to yourself, do your best, exercise, fuel your body properly, and remember that we are so much more than our appearance. Don’t make the same mistake I did years ago by chasing after the perfect body because I promise you’ll never catch it. Strive to be healthy so you can precious time with your family, children, and friends. If you do it for those reasons I know you will find happiness and enjoyment in it.
A huge thank you to Nate Grant of TNG Photography. Nate has consistently exceeded our expectations during each photo shoot. He is professional, hilarious, and prides himself on meeting his clients’ needs for every occasion. TNG Photography specializes in creating timeless portraits of families of all sizes, head shots and high school senior portraits. Visit: www.TNGphoto.com for more information.
If you’re looking to get your family portraits taken in time for the holidays, Nate’s shooting in ZION, my favorite place of ALL TIME!! See the flyer below for details.
Another Thank you to Rebecca for taking the time to answer our questions and share her tips for success with us!
If you know any inspiring momma’s in the Las Vegas Area who you think would make a great mom crush let us know in the comments below.
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