Let’s talk about baby weight.
We all deal with it.
And it is absolutely worth it for a healthy, happy babe… but that doesn’t mean we have to like it.
I’ll admit I am very lucky to have only gained 22ish pounds during the pregnancy, and to have lost those pounds by my 6 week check-up.
But while the number on the scale might be the same… my body is certainly not the same.
Things have softened and migrated… ahem, mostly south. Muscle mass has been replaced by blubber. I mean, Back fat?!?! Where did that even come from?!!?
I’ll admit that the first three months postpartum, I didn’t even try to exercise or eat right. In May I gave a solid 50% effort, and June has been a 75% effort so far. I’ve lost six more pounds, but that’s just a drop in the bucket.
Breastfeeding has certainly helped me slim down. It burns a lot of calories, which rocks. Breastfeeding also signals your body to hold on to a little extra "fuel," in case baby needs it. Not to mention the 5 pounds of water weight and the ounces of milk currently in the udders. But you need to consume plenty of extra calories every day to keep your milk supply up. I’d rather be chunky than forced to wean. Dieting can cause you to dry up.
But let’s be clear… I don’t diet. That low carb, no carb, count every calorie, south beach crap isn’t for me. Anytime I want to slim down, I work out and make slightly better food decisions. I don’t deprive myself and I still eat…. A lot. I love food. Eating is enjoyable and I don’t ever want to change that.
I’ve always been pretty comfortable in my skin… with a healthy, strong body. I have never been a size 2, but I find curves sexy and feminine. I don’t care about the number on the scale, just how I feel and how my clothes fit. My “happy” clothes, that is.
See…I have this ridiculous range of clothing sizes in my closet. Let’s break it down… “skinny-never-gunna-fit-me-again-haven’t-worn-in-ten-years-go-ahead-and-donate-them-already” clothing, “happy-weight-looked-good-felt-good-was-healthy-wore-when-we-got-married” clothing, “got-lazy-and-comfortable-was-a-little-heavy-suck-in-the-tummy-happy-clothes-got-too-tight” clothing, “pregnant-so-cute-love-my-belly-so-comfortable-not-allowed-to-wear-again-until-preggars” clothing, and “post-baby-hide-the-soft-belly-and-backfat-easy-to-breastfeed-in” clothing.
But I digress. So...we’ve established that I need calories to make milk and that I am a hungry girl that misses her “happy” clothes. That leaves exercise.
I actually enjoy exercise… once I’m in shape, anyway.
But exercise isn’t an easy answer either. It takes time. Time this two job workin', home makin’, breastfeedin’ mama doesn’t have an abundance of.
Losing one pound means burning 3,500 calories.
That’s like 24 hours of pushing a stroller. Or 8 hours of unloading groceries. Or 16 hours of chasing a toddler around the park…assuming, of course, that you don’t stop at McDonald’s on the way home.
Losing weight is hard for most women. Just putting out the effort is tough. Not to mention finding the time and finding childcare. To run I need to catch Skip or my parents at a good time, and to go to the gym I have to make an appointment in the nursery. (and tell Skip to eat something from the freezer for dinner)
But I’m working on it. I think I’ll kick it up to 85% effort and do the best I can… always reminding myself how much I love my body for giving me this perfect baby. Eventually I’ll brave a bikini again. They say it takes 9 months to put it on and 9 months to get it off.
I’m aiming to lose 1 or 2 pounds a week and tone up. Totally doable, but not easy. Now it’s out there. You, blog world, are here to hold me accountable.
I’ll put in the sweat for now. But after I'm done having kids, sign me up for a “Mom Job!”
What do you do to drop the baby weight?