Stepping onto the scale yesterday morning, I was not sure what it would reveal. To my surprise I was at my lightest I have been since before my pregnancy. I am currently at 156 lbs with the goal of getting down to 145. Since having my baby (Alina) I have lost a total of 34 lbs- I gained over 40 lbs while being pregnant! (the recommended amount is 20-30, but I guess I am an over achiever;)
This last week I have started doing more cardio, eating more protein, and drinking more water. Let me tell you, it has paid off. For moms like me, who cannot workout without their babies, I have a baby bjorn (best gift ever!)(get your own at Amazon following this link:Amazon)and I do cardio by walking on the treadmill at 2.5-3.5 at an incline of 10-15. I readjust it as needed.
Here is a pick of us with ours:
The major amounts of protein I get is from protein bars and protein shakes (Herbalife). I try drinking 3-4 water bottles worth of water (this is my very scientific way of calculating how much I need to drink).
Before I ever got pregnant I knew I wanted to breastfeed. In my college class, Infant and Family Mental Health, we discussed all the benefits of breastfeeding which helped me to stick with my decision. Things people do not tell you or talk about is how breastfeeding can be a painful process (at least in the beginning). When I first started breastfeeding, it was a painless, but stressful experience trying to get my baby to latch on and having a nurse telling me what to do. Then there was the stress of making sure my baby was eating every 3-4 hours. Something I also did not know was that your breasts can become engorged which makes it so your baby cannot latch on (also painful). During these stress filled times, I questioned why I was even doing this.
I am glad I have stuck it out though because now it does not hurt and it is great to have that one-on-one/skin on skin time with my baby.
Here are some benefits I have learned from experience and discovered in my research:
Benefits for Mom:
- Burns calories! Hence making it easier to lose weight (this was a huge factor for me, all my older sisters who have breastfed, lost their baby weight within a month or two).
- Helps uterus return back to its normal size and reduce bleeding ( I haven’t even reached my 2nd week of postpartum and already I am only bleeding a little to none).
- Reduces the risk of breast cancer (this was something new that I learned).
- Can lessen or sometimes even alleviate postpartum depression. (My first week of postpartum, I could cry about anything and felt really inadequate. It has helped to talk about it and I feel that since I have been breastfeeding, my sadness has gone away).
- It is free!! Lets be honest, I have been spending a good hunk of cash on diapers, who wants to spend that on formula?
Benefits for Baby:
- Healthier- meaning baby is not sick as much because they are receiving mom’s antibodies for sicknesses. My sister (who is an RN in labor and delivery) always says that mom will get sick before baby ever does (when breastfed).
- Lower risk of obesity (I was really surprised about this and need to research the why behind it).
- Have lower incidence of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome)
- Are on the road for optimal brain development. I think this is due to the skin on skin (promote brain development as well as releases chemicals in the brain).
- Get nutrients that help strengthen and develop their immune system (which goes back to not getting sick). My sister (again the RN) says that her youngest never got sick until she stopped breastfeeding her.
I do not know if other women find themselves lacking an appetite after giving birth and continuing on in the postpartum weeks. I find myself not hungry, forgetting to eat, or just not having time (what is more important peeing, sleeping, or eating?). My baby just wants to be held and I love snuggling with her. This just means that when she is happy or sleeping in my arms, I will either work on my blog or business (not eat). I try to have snacks in the house so I can just grab something, but I do not feel that granola bars and cheese sticks are giving me the calories I need.
Does anyone have ideas or advice???
I’ve been reminded (mostly by my mom and midwife) to take it slow and allow my body time to heal. So I haven’t fully jumped into my pre-pregnant workouts. I have been doing yoga. The great thing about yoga is each pose can be made easier or harder/more advanced. My yoga practice includes forward bends, downward facing dog, plank, stretching, I have also attempted push-ups, squats, wall sits, and more stretching. I feel that yoga puts me in a place where my mind is at ease and my body is allowed to heal. Also, it feels so good to be able to stretch like I did before I was 9 months pregnant.
Yoga is great for all body types and fitness levels. Awe what would I do without yoga…