1. Give Yourself Time. You just had a baby! Remember you didn’t put all the baby weight on overnight and you shouldn’t expect to take it off that fast either. Be patient with the process. It will take time to take the weight off and get back to the body you used to have before you were pregnant. Take time to remove the focus from your weight and changing body to allowing yourself to be happy in the moment. You just had a baby, you did an amazing thing by bringing another life into the world. Enjoy the time you have with your child and don’t stress about the immediate weight loss. It will happen. It will just take time. And remember, if you are breast feeding your body will hold on to an extra 5-10 pounds to help with milk production.
2. Sleep is Important. I know you are not getting sleep. Long nights of getting up every few hours to feed or soothe your baby can be exhausting just thinking about it. Getting a full night’s sleep can seem like it’s impossible but try and prioritize getting at least 7 hours a night. When you don’t get enough sleep stress levels are higher and cause your body to hold onto weight. Also, when you are sleep deprived you are less likely to workout. Try to chose healthy foods and take care of yourself. Don’t be afraid to ask your partner or another family member or friend for little help so that you can get some extra sleep.
3. Get Yourself Sweating Again. You don’t need to spend hours at the gym a day, just do something to get your body moving. Get a pair of weights and do a 20 minute at- home workout. All you need is a short intense workout (see sample workout below) that gets your heart rate elevated, gets you breathing heavy and makes you sweat. You can do a simple workout while your child is napping or sitting near you. Balancing a short intense at- home workout with plenty of leisure walking daily will help to shed the pounds.
4. Don’t diet. This is not the time to start drastically cutting calories and start “dieting.” Instead, focus on eating more healthier and fat loss friendly foods. Start by eating 5 mini meals a day filled with veggies, lean protein and complex carbohydrates. Keep your hunger, cravings and energy in check by staying away from processed foods and eat more whole foods. You will automatically reduce your caloric intake without having to stress over counting calories.
5. Find a Partner. It is always more fun to workout with someone and have a support system. Find a friend that is going through the same things you are and commit to help each one another. Plan times to workout together or go for walks, encourage each other to eat healthy and inspire each other when you are feeling down and discouraged.
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