Losing the Weight
Swollen and Shrinking
After you deliver your baby you will most likely be pretty swollen. You can be swollen for a good couple of weeks depending on how you delivered. This swollenness, and the water weight you retained, should go down within the next couple of weeks. Your body has moved around organs and expanded to make room to carry your baby. So it only makes sense that it'll take some time for it to go back down. During your recovery, you will want to take it easy and focus on healing before you think about anything else. If your body doesn't heal properly, you can be worrying about a lot more than just losing the extra weight.
If you are a breastfeeding mother you will most likely lose weight much more rapidly than a formula feeding mother. It's believed that breastfeeding helps to shrink your uterus back and pull off the extra weight you've gained. I can tell you from experience that I burned through everything I ate and drank while I was breastfeeding. You'll want to make sure you're drinking plenty of water if you decided you going to go back to some sort of work out regimen. Breastfeeding and exercising can dehydrate you rapidly if you aren't careful enough.
"To expect someone to look like her pre-baby self immediately is odd. Because you just grew a human and then birthed that human—there's a lot that needs to go back to where it was. All your organs moved around for chrissakes."
— Zoey Deschanel
Pregnancy Body & Post-Delivery Body
Back to Working Out
Back at the Gym
Once you've recovered enough to start working out again you might want to start back at the gym. I would recommend taking it slow and not overdoing it since your body is still recovering internally and maybe even externally. My first few times back I made sure to start with a light walk/jog on the treadmill to make sure my muscles were warmed up. I also didn't do any ab workouts for a few weeks till I felt like my muscles had completely healed (I waited until my 5th week postpartum to do any ab workouts).
Maybe getting to the gym is a struggle for you- luckily there are plenty of at home workouts and activities you can do to help you get some workouts in! You can purchase a yoga mat and do at home workouts—leg lifts, crunches, push ups, bridges, etc. Or maybe you like yoga and want to do some yoga poses. Either way, a yoga mat is a great investment if you plan on working out at home. I recently bought a kettlebell and added a few of those workouts into my at home workout regimen.
You can also invest in a jogging stroller if you're not one for working out. This way you can bring your baby with you whenever and head to your local park or even just around your block. Make sure during any of these at home workouts you remember to stay hydrated!
You can also look into doing some baby yoga. Some yoga studios offer special classes for women with babies under one year of age, where you can do yoga with your baby. What a fun and active way to bond with your little one! This offers you the work out you want outside of the house, while not having to worry about who will be watching the baby.
If you are still having trouble losing the extra weight even though you are working out a few times a week, you might want to consider some forms of detoxing. There are several ways you can detox your body to help encourage you too keep going to the gym.
Body wraps are a great way to detox your belly post-baby. And the best part is you don't have to order one online! There are plenty of easy ways to make your own at home body wrap using a few simple ingredients you can buy from your nearest Target or Walmart.
The wrap I used to help pull off some weight is super simple. You'll need the following ingredients (in the photo above, you can see the products I choose to use):
- Detoxing cream or a cellulite cream
- Vitamin E oil
- Plastic wrap
- Warm blanket
- You'll want to mix about a tablespoon of the detox cream with a tablespoon of the vitamin e oil.
- Once you mix it together, rub it on the areas you want to detox.
- After rubbing it on the areas, you can wrap yourself with the plastic wrap. Don't wrap yourself too tight but tight enough for it to stay on.
Before you mix together your ingredients, throw in a blanket into the dryer for about 10 minutes. After you're all wrapped, pull the blanket out and wrap yourself in it and throw on a movie. I sat about one hour the first time I did my wrap. The heat from the blanket will help you sweat out all the toxins in your body. And lastly, drink lots of water. The more you drink and pee the better results you'll see.
I mean they say that abs are made in the kitchen and they aren't wrong. Detox your body naturally with a basic diet. Get rid of all the junk you've been conveniently eating (don't worry—we all do it). And meal prep some lunches/dinners you can eat quickly. Grill up some chicken and roast some veggies. Split the chicken and veggies up into Tupperware and viola.
You can also make a smoothie batch for the day to help quench your hunger. Buy some fresh fruit, or a frozen bag of mixed fruits will also do, and add in some leafy greens, almond milk and maybe some protein and boom. Meal on the go. I have a Nutribullet and it only takes a few minutes for me to make a smoothie. Super easy and quick, especially when my little guy needs my full attention.
Juice Cleanses are a great way to detox. But be careful because some of these cleanses can be quite drastic. If you are a breastfeeding mom, you'll want to really be careful that any detoxes or cleanses you do don't dehydrate you.
This is more of an untraditional way to flush the toxins out of your body but you can bet you will see major results from it. A lot of times we don't realize that the food we eat can get hung up in our body and stuck to the walls of our colon. Sometimes about 5-10 lbs of toxins! If you're feeling weird about doing hydro colonic therapy you can always try an at home colon cleanse tea. But please remember, this as well as the above detoxing, are to be used along with a healthy diet and exercise. Otherwise, you may fail to see results.