How to Lose Weight after Having a Baby – A Simple and Practical Guide!
Truth is, postpartum weight loss is NOT easy for a lot of women! But having the right information on how to lose weight after having a baby can make the process easier.
So, this post will provide the vital information you need to make weight loss after pregnancy easier and doable.
There’s that ingrained, “I can eat what I want; I’m pregnant,” thought that goes through every mom-to-be’s head.
Some of us do just fine monitoring our weight gain, adhering to the 25-35lbs the doctors recommend.
However, a vast majority of us have a tendency to really pack it on, some adding upwards of 50+ pounds.
So, how do we get rid of that weigh-as-much-as-our-children excess?
Here are some questions I’ve received on how to lose weight after having a baby and my best answers for you.
When’s the Best Time to Start Losing Weight after Having a Baby?
I know that you want to lose that weight as soon as you walk out of the hospital. The truth is though, that it took nine months to get there and some doctors suggest that it should probably take just as long to come off.
Certainly, we’ve all seen the vomitously skinny celebs coming out of the maternity ward wearing their size 0’s but that’s just not reality (besides we don’t have personal airbrush artists).
Trying to take the weight off too soon, and too quickly, can be quite detrimental to your health.
As new moms, we need to be patient with our bodies and our weight loss efforts. Dieting too soon can delay recovery and steal your energy (something that’s already depleted, we’re sure).
Realize that you might not be able to return to your pre-pregnancy weight, make your goals realistic and embrace exercise. Make sure you’re eating healthy and, as with any weight loss endeavor, take it slow!
What about Losing Baby Weight While Breastfeeding?
In all honesty, weight loss attempt while breastfeeding isn’t generally supported. The reasons? Well, quick weight loss can reduce your milk production (which your wee-one certainly won’t approve of).
In addition, quick weight loss can release toxins from your fat stores which will then enter your bloodstream and your baby’s dinner.
If you feel that weight loss is a necessity in the midst of breastfeeding I cannot emphasize enough the import of taking it slow!
Average weight loss of one pound a week, up to one and a half pounds, is acceptable and shouldn’t affect milk production or make your milk toxic.
You can achieve this level of weight loss by cutting 500 calories a day (or exercising them off).
What’s the Best Diet for Losing Weight after Having a Baby?
The best diet for baby weight elimination is really no different than the best weight loss diet designs, period.
There are no magic pills, or operations, that will ensure weight loss or the maintenance therein. All successful diets revolve around lifestyle and eating changes.
That said, the best diet is one that incorporates roughly 1500 calories a day (unless you need less, or you’re breastfeeding and therefore need more).
It will require you to focus your meal plans on lean proteins, fruits and vegetables and whole grains.
Anytime you can add organic, non-processed foods to your daily intake, is an opportunity you should embrace.
Chemicals and weight gain are certainly in cahoots.
Don’t forget to exercise. While some people think that calorie counting is the end all be all to diet success, there is a missing element.
When we reduce our caloric intake we run the risk of burning muscle instead of fat as muscle takes more energy to maintain.
Don’t lose your muscle in the midst of attempting to lose the baby weight. Exercise!
What are the Best Workouts for Postpartum Weight Loss?
You’re a new mom and you’re constantly on the go in more ways than we care to relay here. This makes losing weight after having a baby even more difficult!
That is because it may seem a bit daunting to incorporate a workout routine into your seemingly sleepless and wholly exhausting existence.
What if you were able to do some quick exercises, with your 3-4 month old, that would be useful for returning to your pre-baby weight (or as close as you can get)?
Here are some workout ideas for losing baby fat:
You can do this with the baby in front of you, either in your arms or in a carrier on your chest. Dancing is a great cardiovascular workout that boosts coordination and balance and works all the major muscle groups.
You could always put the baby in a swing and dance around him/her using wildly animated gestures while he/she looks at you like you’ve lost your mind.
You’ll have fun, your mood will be elevated thanks to endorphins and you’ll get some calories burned too!
Remember your own mom placing you on her shins while she laid flat on the floor? She called it “airplane” but exercise people call it a reverse curl. The baby just thinks it’s fun while your abs burn.
You can sit on the floor and lift your baby (with your arms bent) straight up overhead. Do this repetitively and notice the arm sting.
If that’s not enough, you can then lay down and lift your baby up and down (bench press style) parallel to your body.
Keep your mouth closed, breathing through your nose, because you just never know (and we don’t want the blame).
You can do walking lunges while securely holding your baby (or wearing him/her). Pretend you’re a dinosaur and listen to the giggles as the dino lunges after her meal.
Yeah, we know it’s weird, but you’ve got a new baby and sometimes you’ve got to improvise!
What about Losing Weight after Baby #2 (or 3rd or 4th…)?
So, this isn’t your first go round on the baby weight carousel. Maybe you, like some of us, never got off after the first one.
Is losing weight after baby number 2 or 3 or 4 really that much harder?
Well, that like everything else depends on your personal stance on the subject. Do you think it’s harder? Do you want it bad enough to work at it?
It really doesn’t make any difference how many children you’ve had. Weight loss concepts (including post pregnancy weight loss) are pretty universal, cut calories and exercise.
Sure, the fads come and go and every year or so they tell us something else is good or bad for us (sometimes switching positions on last year’s items).
Yet, the fact remains, when you cut 3500 calories a week you will lose at least 1 pound. There is no arguing numbers. And eating foods that aid weight loss will surely be helpful to you!
The method you use to reduce those calories is up to you, though we’ve been told that weight loss is really 90% what you put in your mouth and 10% what you do.
In truth, weight loss has a simple formula I’ve shared with my readers elsewhere (losing weight after having a baby is NO different):
Consistency+Enthusiasm+Endurance=Success. You’ve got to stick to it if you want to see continued and enduring results in losing post baby weight.
If you are looking for something that will help jumpstart your weight loss, click here to learn about how the ketogenic diet can help you lose weight!