- Women's Health
How To Lose The Baby Weight
Take It Off, Take It All Off
You CAN get rid of excess pounds gained during pregnancy! Not only that, but you can bring back that muscle tone you thought you traded in for motherhood.
The human body is a fascinating machine, and (barring certain medical circumstances) was created to regenerate and renew. Your body, when properly taken care of, will right itself and return to a state of health and balance.
By following a few key guidelines, you will be a happy, healthy (and hot) mama!
Do You Really Want It?
Of course, getting the body back takes work. Ages ago, we humans toiled and labored all the day through -and since there was no such thing as Twinkies or McDonalds, there weren't really any fat-inducing foods available. Now, we sit on our hineys many hours of the day and eat all kinds of ungodly things. This has, of course, led to the big 'obesity epidemic' we hear so much about. It has also led to (and forgive me for this one) a lot of excuse making on our part. I do it, too. "But, it's soooo hard!" or - and this is my favorite- "I don't have time!" Well, I ask you this: do you really want it? If you smoke, you'll probably walk a considerable length to light up if the situation calls for it. If you are really in to someone romantically, you may pull all-nighters wooing them, all the while logging in extra time at work to finance said escapades.
The point is that if you really want something, you will make the time for it and you will push yourself to obtain it. Period.
So, do you REALLY want to get back in shape after baby? Sweet! Time to get up and off of the ol' rump - as soon as you're done reading this, of course!
Breast Is Best
I can't stress enough the importance of breastfeeding, if you are able. Not only does baby receive the very best nutrition available, but nursing is known to help mommies shed extra poundage much more quickly than not doing so.
Another added benefit is that breastfeeding burns calories - so you don't have to start dieting right after pregnancy. Lactating women should eat an additonal 500 calories a day. If the majority of those come from healthy foods, your metabolism will be whirring along like a triathlete's.
Let us not forget to praise the boobs in the aesthetic sense. If you were already blessed with ample bosoms, you may not appreciate this aspect of new motherhood. However, the milk-swollen breasts certainly bring your body into nice proportions while your belly and hips are still livin' large. Oh, and they DO eventually stop feeling like they are going to explode. Be patient. It's worth it.
Breastfeeding also helps foster the bond between you and your baby. This bonding releases endorphins and all kinds of other great chemicals into your body, alleviating stress and staving off the dreaded post-partum depression. Time and again it has been proven that a happy mom is a thinner mom!
Breastfeeding Helps Women Lose Baby Weight Faster
Drink water, tea, and more water - especially if breastfeeding.
Water flushes out toxins and will help your body to shed the extra layers.
Drink water throughout the day. It's good to have a mug or cup that you really like drinking out of. This is important. Test out different containers - bottles, mugs with straws, travel cups, etc. You may well find that you drink more throughout the day when using a certain type of vessel.
Cool Cups on Amazon
Exercise is Everywhere
Now that you've got a new baby, you have also become the recipient of your own home gym - congratulations! Not being able to get to the gym is no excuse for you!
- Walk It Off- Put Baby in the stroller and hit the streets! Take a tour of your neighborhood, or walk a local mall. It doesn't matter where you walk, just go do it! Hills? Even better. Walk with your little one every day, and walk a little further each day. If you push yourself just a little more each time, and continue your walks faithfully you will see results. Also, most wee babes really enjoy going on a walk & it gives you a chance to point out and name different objects to jump-start that little vocabulary.
- Tummy Time- When baby is having his or her playtime, lie down nearby and do as many ab crunches as you can. If you don't feel a slight burning pain in your stomach muscles, you can probably do some more. (You may want to place a rolled towel or small pillow under the small of your back for comfort and less back-strain.) Remind your body that you know those muscles are still under there and that you intend to uncover them! Also, baby will enjoy having you so close and will likely be fascinated by your strange, contorted expressions.
- Crib Notes- Hold on to the side if the crib for balance and lift one leg in the air behind you as high as you can, holding and squeezing the buttocks for several seconds. Slowly lower the leg and repeat with the other leg as many times as you can. Do this at least once during the day.
- Dance, Dance - Baby will love it when you put on some tunes and dance like an idiot. You'll burn calories while entertaining the little one. The best moves for toning are ballet related, so grab a chair (or use the crib!) for balance and recreate all those fancy looking ballet moves you've seen. Even if you don't know a thing about ballet, as long as you are stretching, extending, lifting, holding, and squatting -no matter how awkwardly- your body is going to respond by sloughing off that extra layer of fat!
Give your body the good stuff it needs to be its best. Food is to be enjoyed, not feared or hated! Stock up on nutritious foods to feed the machine. By making some healthy trade-off's, you can optimize your body's bounce-back potential.
Trade In: Candy (well, you can have some - but only in moderation) For: Blueberries (there are so many fabulous health benefits from blubes, and they are just so yummy)
Trade In: Vegetable or Canola Oil For: Olive Oil (Not only is it delicious, but Olive Oil is swimming with vitalizing properties)
Trade In: Ice Cream (have some - we are only human!- but, again, in moderation) For: Frozen Yogurt or Sorbet
Trade In: Wimpy wannabe salads with iceberg lettuce For: serious greenery - choose greens like kale, spinach, watercress, romaine, and endive for your salads and don't forget the sprouts!
Once you start making healthier choices, your body will begin to crave more healthy foods and it will be easier for you to pick the body-better eats.
Body Image Poll!
Are you content with you current weight?
Keep your eye on the prize. Put up pictures of your prebaby self or of women whose physiques you admire (go for someone natural and unenhanced as we don't want to give ourselves false ideals here) to remind you of why you are making these extra efforts.
Set up a reward for yourself, such as a vacation or a new swimsuit (depending on what your budget allows, of course) as your prize once you have completed a set goal. The goal could be losing x amount of pounds, or just sticking to your exercises for x amount of days.
Now, get up and get going. Really, if you have a laptop, you could have been on the floor doing backward leg lifts as you read this..no more slacking, chop chop!
Hats off to you, healthy Mama!