Getting Back to Normal

Imagine my utter shock and surprise when I went into my closet last week and decided to torture myself and try on a pair of pre-pregnancy jeans.  I got them on, zipped and buttoned, but I was concerned they might be a little uncomfortable to wear all day long.

Yesterday (Aaron was 4 weeks old!) I gave it another shot on a whim.  They fit like a glove, and were comfortable all day long.  Not only was I able to wear my old jeans yesterday, I was also able to pack away all of my maternity clothes!  I haven’t tried everything on, but I feel like even if it takes awhile to get into some of my clothes it doesn’t matter, I’m back!

I was really upset when Aaron was about 12 days old, and never thought I’d see this day.  I went to my doctor because she likes to check in with her patients who are on anti anxiety medicines within about 2 weeks (by the way, I think meds are fantastic, and I plan to write a post on it soon!).  Anyway, I got on a scale and was really disappointed that I had only lost 12 lbs. (a pound a day)!  I even cried (I did that a lot in the beginning).  My doctor and Solomon both let me know that I had some unrealistic expectations for myself, which finally got me to calm down, and give myself a break.  After all, I just squeezed a baby out of my lady parts, and was still recovering.

I decided to take it easy on myself, and wait until my 6 week checkup before I concerned myself with really taking the weight off.  I thought I would just let nature take it’s course, and perhaps my relaxing and not worrying is what got me back into my normal clothes?  I didn’t do any crazy crash diets, or anything insane or unhealthy.  There were no body wraps or any other postpartum contraption “guaranteed” to help you lose the baby weight and belly.  I don’t know for sure what did it for me, but here are some of my tips for staying in shape, and bouncing back much easier!

I ultimately gained 28 lbs. during my pregnancy, and my belly was huge in the end!

During Pregnancy:

  • WATER! I always, always, always have drank a ton of water.  I carried a Nalgene with me EVERYWHERE.  I think everyone knows the benefits of water, so I’m not going to go on and on, but several bottles a day (~200 oz. for me) make a huge difference!
  • Exercise. I kept myself active throughout my pregnancy.  I ran until I was about 13 weeks.  Once I stopped running, I began to spin at home.  I also walked a lot (having an energetic dog helps).  I did prenatal yoga, and some light lifting.  I stayed active and worked out 4-7 days a week depending on the week.  This helped me feel good about myself, have energy, and probably have an easy delivery.
  • Eat. Babies in utero need nutrition that you, as the mother provide for them.  I made sure I was eating enough and often.  I ate healthy for the most part, and kept it balanced.
  • Give in to cravings. Just like normal cravings, pregnancy cravings should not be ignored, or you’ll just overindulge.  Yes, I ate several things I wouldn’t normally eat, and ate more sweets and pastries than I would have ever touched, but who cares?  I didn’t go overboard, and my body needed whatever it was asking for.

Postpartum

  • WATER. Enough said.
  • Eat! Just like nutrition was crucial during pregnancy, it’s also crucial afterwards.  You need energy to keep up with a newborn, and that’s not going to come if you aren’t eating enough, and eating well.
  • Breastfeed. Did you know breastfeeding burns an extra 500 calories a day?  The benefits are great and endless, both for mom and baby!  Additionally, it helps to contract the uterus, making your belly flatter a little bit sooner.
  • Give in to cravings. Just because you are trying to lose the baby weight doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the foods you love.  Give in, in moderation.  You’ll feel your best, and when you’re happy, baby is happy!
  • Stretch. Giving birth, sitting to breastfeed, changing diapers, etc. all take a toll on your body.  You are in some weird, contorted positions, and things begin to hurt.  Take care of your body, and it will take care of you.  I stretch a few minutes everyday, or do some yoga
  • Lift. I’m not doing any sort of lifting program yet (not until I have my 6 week checkup), but I am doing some light lifting when I can, even if it’s just a few reps here and there throughout the day.  Lugging around a newborn and all of his stuff gets heavy, you want to be in great shape!
  • Walk. I walked the hallways when I was in labor, I walked them pushing a little bassinet in the hospital.  We brought Aaron home on Friday, and on Saturday Solomon and I took him and Rufio on a 45 minute walk.  This allowed me to stretch  my body, connect with my family, get some fresh air (which Aaron needed in the beginning since he was jaundiced), and ensure that my first baby (Ru) was getting the love and attention he needed.  We still get in walks whenever the weather permits.

  • Take some YOU time. Even if I enjoy a nice long shower while Aaron naps, it’s so important to have some time just for you.  Relax, think and just be.  When you feel good mentally, your physical wellbeing will truly benefit.
  • HAVE FUN! Having a new baby is a lot of work and can be really stressful.  Enjoy this time!  When Aaron has a diaper blowout then spits up all over me, and my bed all I can do is laugh (once I know he’s feeling fine).  There’s no point getting worked up.  Babies can’t control it, so it’s best to take it all in stride.  Taking tons of pictures, getting in plenty of snuggle time, and just enjoying him has made me feel so much better.  Again, mental wellbeing will lead to physical wellbeing!

Sure, I’m no expert, but this is what did it for me.  Now I just have to wait until my 6 week checkup and I can start tightening it all up again.  I also can’t wait to begin running, and break a good sweat.  Until then, I figure I’m just lucky, and I can thank genetics 🙂

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16 Responses

  1. He is so precious! I am sorry you have been going through some ups and downs. I am not a mom and have no idea how you all do it. What’s most important is you are feeling great and making the time to enjoy the crazy big physical and life change you just went through!

  2. Welcome back! You have one sweet baby on your hands.

  3. Congrats Morgan!!! Aaron is perfect!

  4. Aaron is such a little cutie and congratulations to you! I have never been pregnant (and have no plans to change that for a long while), but I’m always a big believer in just relaxing and doing what feels good. Your body always knows what it needs!

  5. Good for you for listening to your body and being able to take off the extra weight in a healthy way 🙂 Aaron is an absolute cutie and I’m so glad you are enjoying him!

  6. First of all, LOVE the picture of your handsome boy!! He is such a cutie!! Thanks for sharing your experiences with weight gain and then losing it. Must feel great to get back into your old jeans in a healthy way!! I’m keeping my fingers crossed that getting my body back is as easy!!!!!!

  7. That last picture of him is just precious but hell, all pictures of him seem to be! I love the sweater you’re wearing in the walking picture. I never knew that you burned that many calories breast feeding!

  8. I LOVE HIS CUTE LITTLE JAMMIES! Aaron is adorable! I can get my jeans on and zip them but no way in the world could I wear them more than 10 minutes because they are WAAAYYY TOOOO TIGHT! (And that is the big pair LOL).

    You go girl!!

  9. Sounds like you and Aaron are doing great.

  10. HI!
    Another thing to remember is that while nursing you may weigh a little more. You’ve done amazingly well…Wish I was there! HUGS!

  11. I’ll second everything you said. I am in awe of my body and how quickly it bounced back!

    See you tomorrow! Can’t wait 🙂

  12. Sounds like you did do a lot of good things to stay on track and did not stress out too much. I am glad that you are back to your pre-pregnancy clothes. You have a wonderful baby and that is most important.

  13. You look great and Aaron is absolutely adorable!! Congrats!!

  14. You are stunning. So proud of you in every aspect!

  15. He’s adorable! You look great, so proud!!

  16. I don’t know how I missed this post…but wow, you are amazing to be back in normal clothes so soon! Aaron is soooo cute!

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