Pregnancy weight is a touchy subject for many new mother’s. No matter how much you gain soon after your baby is born most mom’s are ready to get the extra weight off. Many mother’s typically lose a small amount of weight after having their baby. However, I often hear mom’s talk about losing the baby weight a few weeks after they have given birth. Rapid weight loss even after having a baby isn’t healthy. Most experts recommend losing 1to 2 pounds a week. Mom’s it is important to remember that it took 9 months to gain the extra weight so you should expect it to take 9 months or longer to take the weight off. It is important that you don’t start an exercise regiment until after you have had your 6 week post-partum check up from your OB/GYN or midwife. You want to make sure that you are fully healed before starting to avoid further complications.
Disclosure: This post is for informational purposes only. All opinions reflected in this post are my own and all advice is based upon my own experiences with losing the baby weight. If you plan on losing weight after having your baby, make sure that you get your doctors approval to work out first.
Many mom’s will attest to losing weight while breastfeeding, unless you are like me and get more cravings while breastfeeding than I did while pregnant. Some women do hold onto the extra weight until they stop nursing altogether, so try not to get frustrated if this happens to you. Breastfeeding typically burns around 500 calories a day. If you plan on losing weight while breastfeeding, it is important that you maintain a healthy diet and eat plenty of calories so that your milk supply isn’t affected. In fact if you are breastfeeding, it is important that you don’t try to lose weight until your milk supply is fully established. Typically, your milk supply is fully established around 4 months, so it is best to wait to start trying to lose weight. However, it is okay if you lose the weight without trying. Make sure that you don’t drastically reduce your caloric intake or burn too many calories at a time, it can reduce your milk supply.
Choosing Healthy Food Options
When trying to lose weight, it is important to choose healthy options when you are choosing foods to eat. You can lose weight effectively by watching what you eat. I don’t like using the term dieting; instead, you want to incorporate healthy eating into your daily lifestyle so that it becomes a habit. I personally have found that counting calories, using MyFitnessPal, is a great way to hold myself accountable and track the food that I am consuming. In order to successfully lose 1 pound a week, you must decrease your caloric intake by 3500 calories. Many people believe that a low fat diet is the way to go but in reality your body needs some fat in your diet. MyFitnessPal will give you target information so that you know how much fat that you can have in a day to eat. Focus on eating more foods such as nuts, avocados, and foods that contain more of the healthy fats. Making small changes really makes a difference.
I realize that most new mom’s are exhausted after taking care of their newborn around the clock, especially, during those first few weeks. Once, your baby is a bit older you can slowly begin adding exercise or movement into your daily routine so that you are burning more calories. If you have a stroller you can easily take your baby with you on a walk. Just make sure that your baby is shielded from the sun and is dressed in cool light clothing to avoid overheating.
Some mom also use their baby to develop an exercise routine. You can dance with your baby, do squats, sit ups, and arm lifts. Lifting your baby helps build muscle and improves your strength. Playing with your baby is a great way to get exercise while entertaining your baby.
There are also DVD programs that are great for working out in the convenience of your own home so that you don’t have to leave your baby; in fact, some of the DVD’s only take 15 to 25 minutes a day. If you prefer working out at a gym, find a gym that is kid friendly or one that offers free childcare with your membership so that you can work out without having to worry about the kids.
Don’t Get Frustrated and Keep Focused on Your Long Term Weight Loss Goals
You can use a combination of these three tips to help you lose the baby weight. If you find yourself frustrated or find yourself not losing the baby weight, talk to your doctor to rule out any post-partum medical conditions that could be causing you to hold on to the weight.
Most people don’t realize how much they are consuming, I know that I am personally guilty of this, and I hate seeing food go to waste so I will eat whatever my toddler doesn’t eat. All of those extra calories add up and make it harder to lose the weight. Like I mentioned before, MyFitNessPal is a great application that is free for both iPhone, Android, and Online. It can help you track the amount of calories that you are actually consuming and you may quickly realize that you aren’t burning what you are consuming on a daily basis.
How did you lose the baby weight?