Hey momma! One of the most noticeable changes your body will undergo during pregnancy, as I’m sure you’re very aware of already, is weight gain. You will gain around 25 to 35 pounds, concentrated in your middle. You might think that your body will revert to its normal size right after giving birth, but the truth is it will take your body several weeks or even months to return to its regular size!
I can tell you that I went into pregnancy with the total wrong expectation! I expected that within 6 weeks after giving birth that I would be back to my normal size. Man, was I MISTAKEN! Here I am over 9 months since giving birth and I am STILL not back to pre-pregnancy size. I’ve been having various issues that I will explain in another post, but that is besides the point.
There’s one more thing you have to keep in mind – breastfeeding! Your body and your baby will need all the crucial minerals and vitamins especially for the first 6 months after childbirth. Now I know not everyone follows this suggestion, and I never judge whatever you decide because everyone has their own choice! I only lasted until 4 months, because as someone who had to exclusively pump, I really was starting to sacrifice myself in a way that was making me struggle with postpartum depression. I was constantly attached to a breast pump and then feeding my child. That was quite an experience. 🙂
Here are some tips to promote weight loss while making sure your body still gets all the nutrients you need.
Keep a stockpile of healthy & fast foods
There’s this stereotype that whenever someone says ‘fast food,’ it means unhealthy. But that’s not true, because ‘fast food’ only means foods that don’t require a long time to cook! If you’re tired and hungry, you might be tempted to grab a bag of chips and a can of soda. So what do you do? You keep your refrigerator full of healthy & fast foods!
You can get low-fat and fat-free yogurts and puddings made with milk and rich in calcium, which will satisfy your chocolate cravings. Get part-skim cheese sticks, pre-packaged sliced fruits, and ready-made vegetable salads. You can even replace your white rice with brown rice, or other whole-grain cereals like breads and pastas.
Watch those portion sizes
Because of fast food chains and imported items at the supermarket, you might have become accustomed to super-sized portions. You might think that a meal labeled ‘regular’ is actually regular in size. But more often than not, that’s not the case! You need to make sure to keep track of what you eat. If you already feel full, stop eating and save the rest of the meal for later. Sometimes, it’s not the fact that you eat chocolates that ruins your diet, but the fact that you ate the whole box of chocolates in one sitting! And being up late breastfeeding can make it super easy to overeat on ANYTHING! Those cravings are intense! Am I right?!
Another tip for portion sizes is to check out a program such as the 21 Day Fix. I consider myself a PRO when it comes to following this system. For more information on this program, CLICK HERE. I’d love to have you and teach you how to modify this program for breastfeeding!
Drink lots of water
If you’re breastfeeding, you need to keep up your energy. Drink lots of water to keep your energy up. Your body will stay hydrated and this will even help you avoid overeating. You see, sometimes people confuse their thirst for hunger. Moreover, consuming lots of water will increase the rate at which your body burns calories! It can also increase your milk supply! So be sure to drink at least 8 glasses a day!
Eat fiber-rich foods
One common problem most women experience after giving birth is constipation. (Horrible memories I’d love to forget – anyone else?!) Drinking lots of water can help you with this problem, but so can loading up on fiber-rich foods. Fiber can move your bowels, while at the same time reducing your cravings so you will have the urge to eat less. To complement your water intake, drink warm liquids like herbal teas. Mint tea and green tea in particular are known to reduce your appetite. Lemonade is also an option! If those don’t work, it’s time to bring out the big guns – prunes and prune juice. Eek!
Start an exercise plan when you are cleared by your doctor
Definitely wait until your doctor says you can safely exercise, but as soon as you’re cleared, get moving! This can seem overwhelming, especially when you’re exhausted and feel like you’ve always got a baby attached to you. 🙂 But trust me, you will feel SO MUCH BETTER if you get some exercise in. It can be as simple as a 30 minute workout from your living room while the baby naps. Trust me on this one. If you’d like to chat with me about suggestions for workouts, please fill out the form below for me and I will be in touch. <3