Bouncing back after pregnancy weight gain
Updated: Feb 28, 2020
Gaining too much weight is generally a big concern for new moms. Don't worry mama, we've got your back! About 6 months before our wedding day, we welcomed our baby boy Liam. I bought my wedding dress before my pregnancy and worried I would gain too much with him. Now you should never worry about gaining weight during a pregnancy unless otherwise recommended by your doctor. This would be a concern if your BMI (Body Mass Index) is on the higher side. Some women are able to bounce back in a snap but not for this mom.
With Keira, our first baby I gained a whopping 70lbs!! So my weight gain concern was legitimate. If I had gained another 70lbs with Liam it would be next to impossible to get back into my wedding dress in time. Every trip to the doctor's office gave me a bit of anxiety as I stepped on the scale. Luckily by the end of the pregnancy I gained 40lbs. This was by following the recommended calorie intake to maintain my pre-pregnancy weight. I guess I am genetically blessed in carrying a few extra pounds during pregnancy. With both children I had caesarean sections as was medically necessary.
Here is what I did to get back to my pre-pregnancy body back.
I planned out my meals every day, staying within my calorie allowance window and when eating out I would avoid anything too oily or fried. I also tried to consume sodium free or low-sodium and avoid refined sugar options whenever possible. This is definitely next to impossible when eating out so if need be I would eat any "unhealthy" foods in moderation but ate extremely healthy at home.
Protein is the building blocks of life so incorporating lean proteins in every meal was and is essential for you and your baby.
I would eat a salad before every lunch or dinner meal. I practiced pregnancy safe yoga and pilates even though I'm not a pro at this method of exercise, any exercise is better than nothing at all. I researched my way through what felt like the entirety of the internet kingdom to figure out my game plan.
As soon as I was medically cleared to begin more rigorous exercising, 12 weeks after birth (which left me 3 months until the wedding day), I jumped into HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) exercises; more specifically Sean-T's Insanity from BeachBody (not sponsored). I listened to my body and when I felt like my body needed a break I wouldn't push it past that point. It is very VERY important to listen to your body when resuming exercises after birth, particularly caesareans. Please get clearance from your doctor before starting or resuming any rigorous fitness activity. After one month of HIIT, my friend recommended trying out Hot Yoga, there was a one month free trial period at the location close to me, so I jumped on board and did HIIT in the morning and Hot Yoga at night, 6 days a week. Yes, it seems overwhelming but if you are motivated to get your body back it's absolutely worthwhile.
Another point I would like to make is that I ate as I did while pregnant but also concerned about breastmilk production. With the amount of exercise I was doing I was worried that my milk supply would dwindle for the baby. That's when I discovered this awesome lactation recipe: https://detoxinista.com/vegan-lactation-cookies-gluten-free/
Man alive did these cookies work! Every time I felt like my milk supply was lower than it should be, I would grab a cookie, a glass of milk and chill out with Liam.
With my first baby it took me 3 years to get my body back and so I knew I needed to make some drastic measures the next time around if I was determined to be fit and ready for our big day. Did I do it??? You bet I did! All that hard work and determination led me to 5 lbs below my pre-pregnancy weight. The day of the wedding I barely ate anything as I was so busy and it didn't cross my mind. I would occasionally eat a small snack throughout the day but that was it. I jumped on the scale the following day and realized I dropped another 2lbs!
For a good reference I am 5'2. My pre-pregnancy weight was 132lbs. My weight just before baby #2 was born was 162 lbs. My final weigh in for wedding season was 125lbs! In a 3 month span I was able to slip back into my dress, have one of the most amazing days of our lives and live to tell the tale. If I can do it, you absolutely can too!
If I can recommend anything to take away from this article is to plan your comeback and stick to it. You got this mama!