Nothing can beat the euphoria of finding out that you are pregnant. You just can’t wait to meet the little one! And once the little one comes into the world, your world is turned upside down, in a good way.
Adjusting to your new baby schedule can be taxing, whether you are a first time mommy or not. If you have been fit pre-pregnancy and have been fit throughout your pregnancy, you’ll be expecting to have lost all the baby weight the moment you step out of the hospital.
Unfortunately, this is not the case even for the fittest of moms out there.
Don’t be hard on yourself and give yourself some time. You will shed off the weight, in time.
Your first priority should be your new born and once you get adjusted to your new life, you can take up the weight-loss challenge! Here are a few ways you can lose your post-pregnancy weight.
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Your Weight Loss Goals and Expectations
Every one is different and their bodies behave differently, as well. There is no thumb of rule when it comes to weight loss post-pregnancy. It depends on a number of factors, ranging from your age to the amount of weight you gained during pregnancy. While some lucky mommies lose the bulk of their weight by the time their baby is 6 months old, not everyone is that lucky.
- Your metabolism slows down by 2 percent every decade after 25 years of age. This means you burn fewer calories at rest as you age. The fewer the calories you burn, the harder it gets!
- Your weight loss post-pregnancy depends on the weight you gained during pregnancy. If you gained more than 35 pounds during pregnancy, it can take up to a year to lose that weight.
- To some extent, your genetics may play a role in your weight loss, however, with diet and exercise you can beat the genes!
- Be patient with yourself and be persistent. Do not be too hard on yourself and do not compare yourself with other mommies.
- You should be aiming to lose 1.5 pounds and no more in a week.
Breastfeeding Your Baby Helps You Lose Weight!
You read it right! Breast-feeding is important when it comes to losing weight naturally. And many new moms can attest to the fact that breastfeeding melts off pounds. Depending on how much milk you produce, it can burn up to 500 calories in a day, without pounding the treadmill! Isn’t this awesome?
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It has an added benefit of shrinking your uterus back into its place, along with your baby tummy! Don’t be alarmed by an increase in your appetite during breast-feeding, however make sure you stick to the right diet to prevent any unnecessary weight gain.
Your diet is crucial for weight loss. But as mentioned earlier, give your body some time to heal. Do not think about going on a diet until your baby is 6 weeks old. It does not matter how anxious you are to fit in your old jeans. Your body and your new born come first. Once your body has healed and your doctor has given you an OK signal, you can start calorie counting.
Crash diets are a big no-no, even if you have not given birth recently. They wreak havoc with your health and mess up your body. If you are breastfeeding and you are on a diet, then you are not getting enough calories and your growing baby will be on a diet with you, quite literally. What’s more, if you burn fat too quickly then it will trigger release of toxins in the breast milk.
Remember, if you are exclusively breastfeeding your baby, your calorie needs will be more. Make sure you stick to healthy foods. Keep processed foods out of the kitchen pantry. Include fruits, vegetables, fresh milk, nuts and organic whole wheat and oats in your diet. You need proteins, so stick to lean proteins like skinless chicken, lentils and beans.
As soon as the doctor gives you the green signal, try to carve out some time for exercise. It does not have to be a full-on workout. Even 20 minutes of walk, to start with, is good enough. Remember every step counts. You can do Pilates and yoga to stretch and soothe your achy muscles. If you don’t want to stay away from your baby, you can put the baby in a baby carrier or stroller and enjoy a brisk walk.
Ask someone to help you look after the baby, when you are exercising, so that you can get some time for yourself, too. Since the baby has its own timings, you can’t pick and choose your exercise time. Sync your exercise time with the baby’s nap time and you are on your way to having a fitter you!
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Team Up and Shed Those Pounds Together
Losing post-pregnancy weight is a journey, so get you partner/ spouse on-board. Make a commitment to stick to a healthy diet and instead of sitting around watching television together, put on your joggers and go out for a walk. It doesn’t have to be an hour-long-walk, a fifteen-minute walk is good enough for you. Breathing in fresh air clears your mind and keeps you motivated.
Ask your mom to help around with the baby, so you can get some time for yourself. Meditate, if you can and bring things into perspective. Stay positive throughout, even if you can’t fit in your skinny jeans as yet. There is nothing more refreshing than a little bit of retail therapy. Do not go overboard, though!
The bottom line is that you gained this weight over a period of nine months, give your body at least the same amount of time to lose it. The key to weight loss is a combination of regular exercise and mindful eating!
Losing weight post-baby is important, but do not put undue pressure on your body. Relax, enjoy your baby and with time, you will lose the baby-weight!