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12 Tips to Shed Those Baby Pounds Fast

by Katlyn Joy | January 22, 2013 1:57 PM
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Today's moms feel more pressure than their mothers or grandmothers ever did to get back to their former figures and fast. While we know it may not be healthy to drop pounds instantly, we also know the longer we walk around with extra weight the more likely it is to stay. Women tend to carry several extra pounds with each successful pregnancy, which can lead to a lifestyle of obesity. Here are some tips to get your body back in shape and lose the baby fat.

1. Be realistic.
There will be no quick fix, no easy route, no magic pill. If you just wait for the pounds to mysteriously melt away because you don't want to quit eating Cheetos and drinking gallons of Sprite, and a work out to you is changing channels without a remote, you are doomed to be sloppy and despondent. Know that it can take at least as long to take off the weight as it did to put it on.

2. Understand what is happening with your body.
Did you gain the recommended weight or did you pack on some extra pounds during pregnancy? You will lose approximately 10 pounds during the birth process. This loss includes the baby, placenta and the bag of waters surrounding baby. In the next few weeks you'll lose more as you drop the water weight of pregnancy. However anything that became stored as fat during pregnancy will stubbornly remain.

3. Get an explicit OK on what level of exercise is allowed and when.
Talk to your physician before you're released from the hospital about if you can start walking and doing gentle stretches prior to your 6 week checkup. It's highly unlikely that you should go hard in marathon exercise sessions.

4. Breastfeed your baby.
Here's some motivation for you - Nursing your baby can burn up to 800 calories a day.

5. Know your nutrient needs.
If you are breastfeeding you will need to eat an extra 400 calories per day. One of the best ways to keep your diet in proper range is to watch those portion sizes. Americans are infamous for eating outrageous portions, which will quickly sabotage your diet even if you are generally choosing healthy foods.

6. Keep moving.
If you don't have a gym membership or time, it's OK. Just bundle up baby and head out for a nice brisk walk, and keep walking. Walk for at least 20 minutes a few times a week or more. Instead of watching TV after feeding baby, get on the floor and do some exercises. Swimming, riding a bike and walking are great exercises for new moms. You will be too tired at the beginning but if you don't give up, you'll notice your energy levels will start to rise.

7. Weight training can build your body from the inside.
If you don't have weight training equipment, you can at least use some dumbbells to do some simple reps. If you don't have that, then play with baby and lift her to build some strength. Weight training will help get your metabolism going as well, helping you to more effectively burn fat.

8. Try to get sleep.
Yeah, we know. Impossible, but the difference in skimping on sleep can be seen at the scales. Fatigue breeds stress which makes your body produce more cortisol which means stubborn baby pounds clinging to you. Nap if need be but get adequate rest.

9. Eat well and often.
Eat smaller meals and snacks and concentrate on making good food choices. Whole grains, fresh fruit and veggies and super foods like walnuts, fish, and other omega-3 rich foods should be the bulk of your diet.

10. Listen to your hunger.
If you are reaching for a bowl of ice cream, ask yourself if you are actually hungry. If you aren't hungry, and eating from boredom, or an emotional reason then distract yourself. However, if it's a definite craving then just go ahead and have a small bowl.

11. Keep well hydrated.
Have plenty of water, no more than 8 ounces of fruit juice, milk and limit sugary drinks. You know you're drinking enough if your urine is clear and you're heading to the restroom at least every 4 hours.

12. Don't do it alone.
Remember this isn't a temporary thing. You are trying to keep a healthy lifestyle so enlist the help of your spouse, join with other new moms in walks, and if you are struggling and not seeing progress such as losing a pound or two a week, then contact a dietician or get a consult with a fitness trainer.

Remember, your body just like your life will never be the same after having baby. There's a chance your hips will stay broader, your belly softer and your breasts different. Embrace your new body and take good care of it.


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