Friday, July 19, 2013

Post-Baby Slim Down: Getting Your Body Back

This was my second pregnancy and it seems to be a little harder to lose the weight than it was the first time. Having twins might have something to do with it. Or the problems I had the first time where I couldn't eat for a couple of weeks and had to eat a no-fat diet for awhile. This time I had zero problems and can eat normally. Here are some tips for getting back into shape after you have a baby.

Reclaim Your Pre-Pregnancy Stomach

Crunches don't always work. During pregnancy the outermost stomach muscles have to separate to make room for your expanding uterus. Even after the uterus shrinks back down, they may still be separated (diastasis recti). If this is the case, crunches could do more harm than good. To find out more about diastasis recti check out BeFit-Mom.

One thing that you can do right away after birth to strengthen your abdominal muscles is to sit up straight, shoulders down. Draw your belly button in towards your spine. This is an easy exercise you can do anywhere, sitting down or standing up. It will help prevent back pain and make your abs firmer and flatter. 

Wait until your doctor gives the okay to do other, more strenuous, exercises. This will usually be about 6 weeks postpartum. If you are just starting an exercise regime, remember to start slowly and build from there.
photo credit: mikebaird via photopin cc
Ways to Get Rid of Bloat and Excess Fluids

Drink lots and lots of water. Eat high fiber foods as well as foods that are high in potassium, such as bananas, apricots and spinach. The potassium will help to counteract the sodium that is helping to retain water. Also avoid foods with lots of sodium. 

Cardio exercises are very important in getting rid of belly weight. This can be as simple as a power walk with your baby in a stroller. Keep your abs pulled in and your spine straight.
photo credit: quinn.anya via photopin cc
Healthy Eating Tips

Don't cut too many calories after you give birth. You still need the energy, especially if you are breastfeeding and cutting too many can make you keep or even gain weight. 

A good idea is to get rid of all the junk food and soda in your house. Make a list of healthy snacks you can eat if you feel hungry. 

If you are breastfeeding you do need extra calories, but make sure they are healthy calories. You should aim for 1,800-2,000 calories a day and an extra 500 if you are breastfeeding.

photo credit: Bruno Girin via photopin cc

Breastfeeding can help you with losing weight as well. I know it helped me the first time, and I'm sure it's helping this time as well. It doesn't always work so easily for everyone, you might have to add in some exercise and make sure you eat healthy to see a big difference. It's hard to be patient when you want your body to be back to the way it was before. I know it is for me. I know everyone says this all the time, but it took 9 months to gain the weight and it might not come off immedietaly

Remember that nothing is the same after you have a baby. Go easy on yourself and feel proud. You just made a human being (or two)!


(I might be linking to some of these lovely parties)


  1. Stephanie,

    This is an excellent post! Can you link this up on our Mommy Monday Blog hop. The linky is still open. I think other Mothers would find this post invaluable.

    I hope to see you there!

    1. Thanks! I did actually post it on your linky :) I'm just really slow about answering comments lately!

      Hope you are having a great week!

  2. Thanks! I'm five weeks into motherhood and it's time to start getting back to it! Our On Display Monday link is still open....come check it out on my blog.

    Britney @ The Princess and Her Cowboys {dot} com

  3. Great tips! The husband and I haven't started yet...but we are planning on it soon. Found you via the Lovely Blog Hop. xo

  4. I'm stopping by from Grab A Friend Blog Hop. I'm now following you please follow back when you get the time Evoluchun's Miscellaneous

  5. Good stuff! I still have about 10 pounds I want to lose after baby #3. I'm really liking some Pilates moves that are modified for postpartum women - they have really helped me rebuild my core strength in a safe and effective way. Random question (if you know) - I always have trouble with all the loose skin around my middle! Any ideas about how to get rid of that? I'm afraid I may be stuck with it...

    1. That's a good idea, I should find something like that to do for now. As for the loose skin, I'm not really sure! I found a bunch of things to try on Pinterest, but I've never actually used any of them so I have no idea if it works or not :)

  6. Great info! Baby #3 and #4 were back to back (IMO) and I have ome lingering weight from babies 2 and 3. I will be on it after I give birth this time though. Need to make those changes.

    Thanks for linking up at Fitness Friday {9}:

  7. I am 5 weeks post labor! I've been to the gym a few times. I did Crossfit all through pregnancy, so I'm working with the same trainer now. Still got a ways to go (as far as weight loss), and I'm just taking it easy.
    The reminder about flexing your abs is just what I needed as I'm sitting here! My trainer talks about it all the time, and I just forget because I'm usually holding the baby all day.
    Anyway, I appreciate your encouragement and great ideas! Since strenuous exercise is out for now, and cutting calories is not a good idea, it's important to eat better! And of course drink water. :)
    For what it's worth, I started writing "Operation: Fit Mom" posts a week or two ago where I outline what I've been doing to get back into shape!

    1. You are already way ahead of me, I didn't work out at all during my pregnancy! I think you had your little boy about 2 weeks before my twins were born. I've been reading your updates :) You look great by the way! I'm sure we will both be back in shape soon.

  8. I'm drinking fierce melon Gatorade (yum) and your melon made it taste even better, if that's possible (power of suggestion?). :)

    I like your attitude here about the losing weight. It's funny that real people think they can pop back into their pre-pregnancy clothes in 3 weeks like the celebrities w/chefs, trainers, etc. can do. I hate that it's becoming the thought that they should be able to.

    Visiting you today from the Sunday Social. :)

    1. That's funny about your Gatorade :) I agree with you about the way people think about post partum weight loss, I am guilty of thinking the same thing at times, and have to keep reminding myself that it's normal to take longer!

  9. Go you!! Thanks for the amazing tips!! I've shared this post on my shout out post because it was so inspiring!

  10. Stephanie - I so need this and pinned it! If you have time maybe you can link this to Family Fun Friday - we usually get over 100 bloggers and 500+ readers and I think they would really like your tips.

    1. Thanks for the pin! I will check out your link up :)



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