I’m a mom of Irish Twins. You know, those back to back babies that are less than a year apart. After the second of the two (who is actually my third), I was left with about 90 pounds to lose. I clocked in at 200 lbs, the heaviest I had ever been. Naturally, I got a membership at an expensive gym, and mostly used it to sit by the pool and drink smoothies. After I gave that up, I decided to approach a healthier sense of living. Here are my top four tips to drop the baby pounds.
Think about what you eat. You don’t necessarily have to purge your kitchen of all your yummy, sanity-preserving delectables but you do need to be smarter about how you use them. My favorite way was to mix it up a little. I would buy smaller sized bags of potato chips, and when I wanted crunchy I would count out seven potato chips and fourteen baby carrots (or other crunchy vegetable). Crunch on two veggies, eat one chip. Two more veggies, eat one chip. This is a great way to enforce portion control and avoid tons of empty calories and sodium, but it takes a lot of self control, more information.
Read your labels. A lot of packaged products contain amazingly high amounts of sodium, which is awful at encouraging water retention. Simply being aware of, and curbing a high sodium diet will help you dry up a lot of that water weight you’ve gained during pregnancy. Also look at calories per serving size, and stick to the serving size.
Be active. While the easiest thing in the world is to gain weight while watching TV, you can’t lose it that way. Get some sort of physical activity in every day, at least 30 minutes. It doesn’t matter if you have a gym membership, or a treadmill in the basement, or nothing. You can be active and burn calories no matter what equipment you have at your disposal. If you need help getting started, there is a plethora of free resources online. Naturally, always check with your OB to be cleared for exercise before you start. You can even use your baby as resistance in lieu of hand weights, so play a lot of airplane.
Don’t rush it. You took a long time to pack on that weight. I took two years to put it on, and you can’t reasonably expect it to just magically melt away. Healthy weight loss is a process, and most of the time it’s a slow one. Believe it or not, this is amazing for post partum women because guess what? Your skin will get a chance to rebound on its own, so that means smaller, lighter stretch marks for you. Give your butt and thighs a chance to recover.
Losing baby weight is a long, arduous process that will probably be fraught with many ups and downs, a closet full of “in-between” sizes, and a ravenous desire for chocolate. Working these simple tips won’t turn you into a hard body, but they’re a good place to start. My whole journey was two or three pounds at a time, over two years. It takes a lot of self control, but now I weigh in at 115, and I have to say it was definitely worth the wait.