This is me less than a month after I delivered my first child.
Let me clarify, I do not think that I have bounced back… this just seems to be a compliment that I have received quite a bit. Many tell me that I in no way look like I delivered a baby 2, 4 or 6 weeks ago. This question really confused me because I was constantly asking myself what a woman who had recently had kids is supposed to look like? What is the standard?
I can tell you what I did during and after my pregnancy that help me retain my shape. I didn’t go on any binge diet or wacky exercise routines, I didn’t starve myself or sweat it off; I just lived by a few rules that I have always lived by. I want to share because maybe if you adjere to some of these rules you may have success. I say may because I am in no way denying that there genetics involved in this whole thing.
In my practice, I always tell my patients: you have 30 days to break a habit and 30 days to break a habit and those will be 30 very painful days.
When you are ready to make a lifestyle change it is the equivilant to do an about turn and entering directly into the most resistance. It is going to be hard until you get some momentum going. Your body and mind want you to revert back to what you were doing, what was so easy, even if it was killing you. Diets don’t work because your body reverts. Same with anything that isn’t meant to last forever. I followed rules that were meant to last forever, I made them into my way of life so before, during and after pregnancy there was no absolutely no change.
I followed rules that were meant to last forever
- Don’t eat unless you need to. Meals should be planned. They should follow a schedule… as good as they can. Don’t eat a twinkie just because its there… it’s not breakfast, lunch or dinner (and you probably would have a twinkie with those meals anyways). Now, I did have to add snack although I’m not a snack person to keep up with my appetite, but even these snacks came around the same time every day.
- Don’t eat to be FULL. I don’t mean that you should eat to satisfaction or that you should starve yourself. But eating until you cant breathe is not a good idea. Usually you don’t need a second serving. Try using a small plate and not the oversized platter for dinner. Drink water with your meals and this will help you gauge your intake better.
- Don’t eat out of a bag or box. Our pantry is unimpressive and our fridge is overfull. Eat foods with ingredients you can understandand don’t make you sick to your stomach. If it isn’t fresh then its processed and probably not very good for you. I usually buy all of my ingredients and make things from scratch, but then again I like to cook. If you must buy pre-made meals then look at the ingredient and if the first few ingredients are salt, sugar, or some chemical… er.
- White ain’t right. Bleached breads, cookies and snacks are not good for the waist. Same with sugars and dairy products (will talk more about this later). I avoid breads like the plague. Sugar is what causes most health problems in the Western world not fat! If it has sugar in it just say no… that goes for juices, candies, pastries, cereals, starbucks drinks. It just isn’t worth it at least for me.
- Dairy and Devil. the Dairy and the Devil. Same difference. Milk is a fattener. If you are breastfeeding then you know this. Look how fast your baby has doubled in size… all from you MILK. Do you want to double in size like a baby cow or baby pig? If the answer is no then just avoid milk and all things composed of it. There is no such thing as a healthy cereal because it will break my 4th and 5th rule.
- Eat as many vegetable and fruits as you can. There is no limit on the God-given foods. The things he brought forth from the ground for you. He knew these things would never make you fat so why not eat them. When you are thinking about a McDonald’s combo eat a juicy peach! If Chik-Fil-A is calling you steam some broccoli. The sugar in fruits is no where as bad as table sugar, they have done studies that prove that even though who ate upwards of 20 pieces of fruits daily didn’t have more health problems than those that stuck to five.
- Try different spices. Aren’t you tired of seasoning your foods with salt, Maggi, Knorr and soy sauce? Jeez, salt overload much. Even if you are losing weight you wont feel it if you are bloated. Besides have you seen what is in knorr and maggi? MSG? More salt? Try cumin, curry, paprika, and fresh onions and garlic. Change your palate. It took me a while to get used to NOT having salt in my foods and now I can hardly eat out without a pitcher of water nearby.
- Shop in the grocery perimeter. Nothing good is the aisles. Trust me I’ve been there. You should hardly even venture into the aisle for anything, everything there is processed, bagged, boxed and unhealthy. Anything that need to be got from the aisle once in a while should be consumed in moderation ie oil, breads and grains, condiments, etc.
Bodies are made in the KITCHEN and not in the gym. No amount of workout will shrink that waist like a good diet will. You can burn 700 calories jumping around for an hour and eat it in 2 minutes with a poor diet. You can on the other hand, eat less calories in a day and lose up to two pounds in a week and then compounded with exercise get a good tone to your body!
There is plenty where that came from but that is enough for now. The moral of the story is: you know what is good for you so just eat it. There is no secret diet plan. Just change what you put in your mouth. It’s going to be hard at first but that is the beauty at first. Initially, you will kick yourself and fail often. But once you are in cruise control it is a good feeling and the pound will fly off.